The information that Sarah Barnes was the wife of Benjamin Amason (d. 1791 in Edgecombe Co. NC) was based on an article on Amason genealogy published in a historical periodical: The North Carolina Booklet. The article was written by Sybil Hyatt, who cited NO sources nor any documentation for her observations or the published information.
Benjamin Amason's wife, at the time of his death was named Patience (she died in 1796 in Edgecombe Co. NC). The will of Alexander Lewelling (d. 1791 in Edgecombe Co. NC...Will Book C, Pg. 182-183) named a son in law as Benjamin Amason, so I believe Patience was Alexander Lewelling's daughter.
It appears that Sarah Barnes was more likely the wife of William Amason (d. 1793 in Edgecombe Co. NC). William's wife, at the time of his death, was Sarah, named in his will. There are descendants of William Amason who claim Sarah Barnes was the wife of William Amason, and that certainly seems more likely from the available records.
The information in Syble Hyatt's article, that Sarah Barnes was wife of Benjamin Amason, appears to be based on the will of Edward Barnes (d. 1761 in Edgecombe Co. NC) in which he named his daughter Sarah Amason. Edward Barnes never named Sarah's husband in his will.
James Amason also had a wife named Sarah, named in a 1784 deed record.
While the idea of Sarah Barnes as wife of Benjamin Amason has been "accepted" by many family researchers over the years, due to the article by Sybil Hyatt, I seriously question the validity of that claim, since there appears to be no real supporting documentation.
Just because Sybil Hyatt believed that Sarah Barnes was wife of Benjamin Amason does not mean that we have to accept her word for it! And there are many more and better records available for research now, than there were in Sybil Hyatt's time.
Incidently, when a wife's husband died and the wife inherited part of her husband's estate, when she died, whatever property was in her possession, was passed on to her children. If there were no children of the marriage then the property would pass to the siblings of the deceased person, unless the deceased person had a will which provided for dispersal of the deceased's property. Patience appears to have died intestate.
In the case of Benjamin Amason, Patience inherited property from his estate. When she died, although there is little in the way of estate records left, it appears that her property was sold and the proceeds divided between the children of Benjamin Amason, except for Uriah Amason. Uriah elected not to take a share of his father's estate and may have elected the same in the case of the estate of Patience Amason. The records are inconclusive in that respect.
What is obvious is that one or more of the children of Benjamin Amason participated in the administration of the estate of Patience Amason, making it likely that they were her children also. That appears to leave little room, timewise, for Benjamin Amason to have been married first to Sarah Barnes.
Obviously more indepth research and analysis is needed in this area!
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