Monday, October 29, 2012

Amanuensis Monday: Will of Francis Toms 1633-1712

Francis Toms Sr. was my maternal 8th great grandfather and part of my Quaker heritage. In 1689 his daughter Mary Toms, married Gabriel Newby, son of William and Isabel (Turner) Newby. My Newby ancestors finally daughter out with my maternal grandmother, Mary Fern (Newby) Runyan. 

Detailed Toms genealogy is contained in The Batchelor-Williams Families and Related Lines by Lyle Keith Williams, Fort Worth, Texas, 1976. According to Williams, "Francis Toms 'who came into Virginia about 1649' and was 'age 77 in 1710,' lived about nine years in Martin's Brandon on the South Side of James River (Charles City County, now Prince George County). He then moved to the adjoining county of Surry about 1660, and in 1669 moved to North Carolina. He was among the earliest settlers of Albemarle County, North Carolina. He and his family were accepted in the Society of Friends in 1672".

Friends Meeting House New Garden, NC 1869

The Will of Francis Toms Sr.

Perquomons In No Carolina ye 6th Day of ye 10 Month 1709 I Francis Tomes Snr being of a Sound mind & memory considering ye Uncertainty of this life Doe make & ordain this my last will & testament In manner & forme as followeth Vizt My will is that my estate Shall not be brought to an apraisemt but shall be distributed according to my will att ye Discretion of my Executors hereafter named & after my Just Debts are paid. I bequeath my Estate as followeth. I Give to my loving wife Mary Tomes all her waring apparrel Her Sadle Horse Her White pasing mare & her coult To her & her heirs for Ever. I Give to my loving wife all my houshould Goods & both Iron Brass peuter & other necessaries belonging To us Keeping that Steds Cuboards Chears Chests. I Give unto my loving wife three feather beds with what furniture is belonging to them During her natural Life for her Service & for ye Service of Gods people Messengers & Ministers that he Send amongst us wch feather beds to be keept in ye porch Chamber for Gods Messengers & Ministers to Lodge In & my sd wife Shall not Imbasel nor Sell away of ye Said Goods out of ye house nor of ye plantation for they Doe belong to my Son Francis Tomes & his heirs for to keep up ye truth for ye Honour of God as I have done before him too End of Time. I Give unto my Loving wife Eight Cows & Calves by their Side, foure Stear & one bull & ten sows & six Hillable Barrows & Six yewes & one Ram all which my Executors shall leave In ye hands of my Loving wife for her Sustenance & maintanace During her Natural life. I Give unto my Loving wife this manner house & all ye houses orchards & all ye Clear Ground between Reehers & ye Bridge & So to Thigpens land & Timber for rales or to Repair House or to Build on ye plantation During her natural Life. I Give to my Loving wife my horse mill & my Still & ye two mill horses During her Natural Life. I Give to my loving wife three negroes James, Moll & Pattemore During her natural life. Also Will Plato & Vestaleve till they are free. I Give to my loving wife my Loome & all ye Gores belonging to itt & all my Shoemakers Tools During her natural life. I Give to my wife my Harro & harn hoes & axes weaden hoes hilling Hoes & all other Tools belonging to ye Cropp for her Life. I Give to my son Francis Tomes Six hundred & forty acres of land my negro Sam both to him & his heirs for Ever. I Give to my Son Joshuath Tomes my negroe Mingo to him & his heirs for Ever. I Give to my Son Francis Tomes Six hundred & forty acres of land lying between Reahors land & that as was called Vosses being James Morgins To him & to his lawfully begotten or Shall be ---- of his one body for ever. I Give to my Son Francis Tomes --- fifty acres of land lying on ye sd ---- of Vosse Creak & So running to ye ---- To him & his heirs for Ever. I Give to my Son Joshua Tomes four hundred acres of Land lying on ye -------- to him & his heirs for ever lawfully begotten ------ lawfully to be begotten of his one body for Ever. I --- Give to my three Children namely Francis Tomes Joshua Tomes & Presela Nicholson to each of them one feather bed with furniture that ------- for ye said beds. I Give to my loving Daughter Mary Newby five Shillings for she had her portion when she married Gabriell. I Give to my Grandson Francis Newby Three hundred acres of land lying on the South west of Vosse Creak att ye foot of ye Bridge to him & his heirs for Ever. I Give to my Son Francis & Joshua & Presela Nicholson all ye remaining part of my Estates that Horses & mare Cattle Hoggs & Sheep to be Equally devided between them three ---, my sadle horse Sorrester I Give to Preselo Nicholson & what Debts is Due to me Either att home or abroad to be Devided into four parts one for Francis Tomes one for Joshua Tomes one for my wife one for Presela Nicholson Equally to be Devided between them foure. I Give to my wife my Bible & Isack Penningtons Booke & Francis Kongols (?) Book & ye Bob Witlet (?) Book & a book Called Marage Lost (?). I Give to my loving wife one Third part of all my tand leather & ye rest to be devided as afsd. I Give unto my loving wife one --- & a halfe of barrels with ye H----- belonging to ye Still, but If my loving wife Shall marry or move of ye plantation she shall not any of ye houshould Goods or stock from of ye plantation for Itt belongs to my Son Francis Tomes for him to act & Doe as a afsd to the Honour of God, but my Son Shall not by his one Inheritance but if my wife will stay upon ye plantation She shall not be molested During her Life. I Give to my Son Francis Tomes all my Coopers Tools. I Give to my Son Joshua my Currier knife & Still, but if my Debts Shall be brought Justly against my Estate after it is Devided then my loving wife & all my Three Children Shall pay Equall Shares. I Doe appoint my two Loving Sons Francis Tomes & Joshua Tomes To be my Executors to this my Last will Performed as Witnessed my hand & Seal ye Day & year above Said memorandum that after ye Death of my wife negroe Jane to Francis & Moll to Joshua.

Wittness hereunto-----
WB Francis Tomes
William Boge Mathew N Alberson
John Stepny

Since Itt hath pleased almighty God to take out of this world my Father In law Jno. Nichols my will is that that pt of my Estate I have Given to my Daughter Presilla now wife of Jno Kinsely to be devided ye one half to her ye other half to ye children of her by Jno Kinsely Deceased & my will is that ye windmill now building on ye plantation I live on for ye free hold my wife & Children having ye use thereof She freely for grindeing their familyes Corne helping & paying their portion toward ye keeping & repair & This I Doe declare to be a Codicil to my will.

Fred Jones 
Francis Tomes
Joseph Carron

To this lengthy post I have decided to include an interesting snippit taken from the Greensboro, N.C. Daily News dated Sunday, 9 Aug 1936. It is a quote from Alpheus Briggs' manuscript on Quakerism. A cache of old Quaker Meeting records had recently been discovered in a home once owned by the Lambs and before that, the Newbys; most likely Gabriel and Mary (Toms) Newby, my ancestors, although the article doesn't specify. According to Briggs, the records indicate that the home of Francis Toms Sr. was the original meeting place of the first North Carolina Yearly Meeting.

Greensboro, N.C. Daily News
Sunday, August 9, 1936

In his manuscript, page 11, Briggs writes: "On the 4th day of 4th mo. 1698 at the home of Henry White the Quarterly Meeting by unanimous agreement decide to organize a yearly meeting to be held at this center at the home of Francis Toms the elder." This was no doubt the nearest approach to a beginning to North Carolina Yearly Meeting that any existing records show. "There is hardly any question," Briggs manuscript continues, "but that this quarterly meeting and yearly meeting was 'set up' by Philadelphia Yearly Meeting and not by London Yearly Meeting as some have held."



  1. My Harvey family was in what is now Perquimans County, NC at least by 1670. My known connections there include Fletcher and Sutton. However, I do not know who Richard Harvey married @1670 or before. My Ancestry DNA matches are full of early Perquimans County connections, few of which show a known common ancestor. I've seen Newby show up a few times and I always pay attention because I know of your connection. We may end up finding another way we are related!

  2. Nan, I think we may have discussed another connection once before. Aren't you and I related through the Suttons? Gabriel Newby's grandson William Newby, married Eliz. Ratliff (or Ratcliff). Elizabeth's mother was Mary Fletcher, dau of Ralph and Mary (Guyer) Fletcher. Ralph's paternal grandmother was Elizabeth (Sutton) Fletcher, dau. of George and Sarah (Tilden) Sutton. Pretty sure we have a connection there COUSIN, LOL!

  3. Yes, we do, COUSIN! Margaret Fletcher married Thomas Harvey in Perquimans County @1701. They are my sixth great grandparents. Margaret was a daughter of Ralph Fletcher and Elizabeth Sutton.

    Some day I'll have to catch you up on my known & suspected Walling/Wallen connections as well.

    1. Woohoo! Looking forward to hearing what you've found on that!