I've transcribed 2 of the most important pages of the 6 page last will and testament of Clement FERGASON/FERGUSON born 1791 in NC, died May 25, 1856 in Lawrence Co, AL. This is a transcription from photocopies obtain by Sunni Montgomery at the courthouse in Lawrence Co, AL. The words or blanks in brackets were not reasonably legible to decipher.
From: Inventory & Will book A, Lawrence Co, AL
523, 524, 539, 540, 541, 542
Probate Court June term 1856
Clement Fergason, last will and testament
The State of Alabama
Probate Court June Term 1856
Present Crockett McDonald judge of said county...This day being the 14th day of July 1856 and the day set for the final hearing of the application of William R. Fergason and Elijah S. Masterson the individuals named as Executors in an instrument of writing bearing the date the 19th day of May 1856 purporting to be the last will and Testament of Clement Fergason deceased said application came on for hearing. Whereupon said instrument of writing was produced to the Court for probate and record as the last will and Testament of said Clement Fergason deceased and it appearing to the satisfaction of the Court that all the parties at interest in said cause have had due until of said application thereupon appeared in open Court Pleasant Ponder and John M. Clark the subscribing witnesses to said instrument of writing who after being sworn on the Holy Evangelist of Almighty God to speak the truth the whole truth and nothing but the truth and true answers to make to all such questions as should be asked them touching their knowledge respecting the Execution of said Instrument of writing depose and say that they saw the said Clement Fergason sign said and publish the identicle [sic] instrument of writing here to the Court shown & heard him declare the same to be his last will and Testament on the day of the date thereof in their presence and that at their request of said Testator in his presence and in the presence of each other they subscribed their names thereto Deposents further depose and say that at the time of signing sealing & publishing said Instrument of writing they believe the said Clement Fergason to have been of sound mind and disposing memory and above the age of twenty-one years and a resident of Lawrence County in the state of Alabama.
It is therefore considered adjudged and decreed by the Court that the said Instrument of writing is fully proved to be the last Will and Testament of said Clement Fergason deceased and is Order by the Court to Record and file as such
Sworn to and subscribed before me this 14th day of July 1856, C. McDonald, J. P.
John M. Clark
Which said last will and testament in the words and figures following, To Wit:
The last will and testament of Clement Fergason of Lawrence County, and State of Alabama
I, Clement Fergason considering the uncertainty of this mortal life and being of sound mind and memory do make and publish this my last will and testament in manner and form following, that is to say,
First, I desire that the following tracts of land to wit the South East quarter of Section No. 11 Township No. 6 Range No. 9 West. The west half of the South West quarter of Section No. 12 Township No. 6 of Range No. 9 West. The west half of the South West quarter of Section No. 3 Township No. 6 of Range No. 9 west and the South West quarter of the North West quarter of Section No. 13 of Township No. 6 of Range No. 9 west except one acre including for the use of a buriel ground, to be equally divided among all my children to wit:
John S., William R., Ransom F., Julia A., Mary A., Elizabeth [J.?] Fergason, without a sale if it can be done equally and fairly, if not to be sold and the proceeds of said sale to be divided equally between the above name heirs,
I give and bequeath unto my youngest daughter Elizabeth J. one cow and calf two headstands beds and furniture and one hundred dollars out of the proceeds of the sale of personal property in the place of a [looks like "horse" could be 'house'?]
I give and bequeath unto my son William R. fifty dollars more than an equal division.
I further desire that all of the personal property be kept together on the plantation until the present growing crop is made & gathered then to be sold and divided equally between the above named heirs after paying the expenses of making and gathering the crop and keeping the other property and paying all my last debts.
And lastly I do hereby constitute and appoint my son William R. Fergason and my friend Elijah S. Masterson my Executors of this my last will and testament
hereby [____ing?] all other or former will by me made.
In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal the [17th or 19th?] day of May 1856 ..............................Clement Fergason (his signature and seal)
The above instrument consisting of one sheet was now here subscribed by Clement Fergason the Testator in the presence of each of us and was [______________?] at the same time declared by him to be his last will and testament. And we at his request sign our names hereunto as attesting witnesses.
Pleasant Ponder (his signature)
John M. Clark (his signature)
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