Captain Thomas Hemphill’s Will – page 3

This is the third installment in a series of nine posts in which I transcribe the will of my Revolutionary War ancestor, Captain Thomas Hemphill.  In the first post, we learned that Captain Thomas’ will was contested by two of his children and a son-in-law, and that the date usually seen for his death may be wrong.  The copy of the contested will as it was transcribed into the court records began on page 2.  The third page continues the will copy 1 .

Click to enlarge


Brevards Creek, to him and his heirs for ever.

Item.  I will and bequeath to my daughter Polly fifty acres of

Land including Birds meetinghouse.  Item.  I will and bequeath

to my daughter Rebechah ninety Six acres lying between the

upper line of Polley’s tract, and the lower line line of the tract

on which I now live, also all the Land that I own lying on

Davidsons Mill Creek, that is the Allison Tract, the hound hill [really not sure about these last two words]

Ballew tract, and the titles for Said Land will discribe them

more fully.  Item.  Two tracts of land that I own in the State

of Georgia in Madison County lying on the waters of Broad

River containing nine hundred acres.  I do will and direct to

be sold by my Executors to the best advantage, and the money

arising to be divided into Seven equal parts, and each

of my Children hereafter named to have one of those parts, (viz)

Martha McEntire, Andrew Hemphill, Polley Hemphill, Ann

Whitesides, Rachel Whiteside, Ruth Whiteside and Rebeckah Hemp

hill.  I now proceed to dispose of my personal property in the

following manner.  In primus.  I will and bequeath to my

Son Thomas, three negro men, Peter, Bob & Louis, also one

negro woman named Jude, and her child named Shala, also

on cubert, one Desk, & one clock, two beds and their furniture

one old wagon and one Still and Still vessels.

Item.  I will and bequeath to my daughter Polly two negro

men named Adam and Ben, one negro woman named Shala

and one girl named Clarissa.  Item.  I will and bequeath to my

daughter Rebeckah two negro men Jo and Jonah also one

negro woman named Ket and her child.

Item.  I will and bequeath to my son Andrew one negro man

named Dick.  Item.  I will and bequeath to my grand daughter

Rebeckah McEntire one negro child named Rachel.  Item.  I will

and bequeath to my grand daughter Mary Hemphill one negro

child named Charity. Item. I will and bequeath to my grand

daughter Martha Young, one negro child named Hagar.

Item. I will and bequeath to my daughter Rachel Whiteside one

negro woman named Ket.  Item.  I will to my daughter Rebeckah

my Big Gray Horse, also one Eagle mare and Colt.  Item. I will

to my daughter Polly one big Sorrel mare & Eagle Horse

What I learned from this page

He named Polly as his daughter in several places, one time including her surname of Hemphill, from which we can conclude that she was not married.  Her single status is also implied by the fact that he left her property (married women could not own property in North Carolina at the time of this will – I’m not sure if that law applied only to real property or to all property; if anyone can clarify that, I would appreciate it).

He named Rebeckah as his daughter.  Like Polly, her surname of Hemphill was mentioned once and she also received both real and personal property, so we can conclude that she, too, was a spinster (she would have been 32 at the time of the will).

He owned 900 acres of land in Madison County, Georgia.  Madison County is in the northeast corner of Georgia and Thomas’ in-laws, the Mackies and his sister Mary (Hemphill) McCleskey moved to that part of Georgia after the Revolutionary War.   Thomas’ father-in-law, Thomas Mackie died in the area that later became Madison County.

He named seven children to receive proceeds from the sale of the Madison County land:  Martha, Andrew, Polley, Ann, Rachel, Ruth, and Rebeckah.  Not all of his living children were named in this section and the ones that were named are not in birth order.  I don’t know what the naming order means yet, but according to a webinar I watched recently, it means something.

Martha was named as a child and her surname was McEntire.  She was married to Thomas Young Hemphill McEntire.

Andrew was named again as a child (he was also named as a son on page 2).

Ann was named as a child and her surname was Whitesides.  She was the wife of Moses Whitesides and she and her husband were plaintiffs in the suit contesting the will.

Rachel was named as a child and her surname was also Whitesides (although written as Whiteside).

Ruth was named as a child and her surname was also written as Whiteside.

Thomas was named as a son again on this page.

He named three of his granddaughters, which is helpful because it provides indirect evidence of their parentage.

  1. Rebeckah McEntire was the daughter of Thomas’ daughter Martha and Thomas Young Hemphill McEntire.
  2. Thomas had two granddaughters named Mary Hemphill.  One was the daughter of Andrew Hemphill and Catherine McDonald; she would have been 14 at the time of the will.  The other was the daughter of Thomas McEntire Hemphill and Malinda Burgin; she would have been four at the time of the will.  There is no way to tell from this document which Mary he was referring to.
  3. Martha Young was the daughter of Rosannah Hemphill and John Young.

Check back next Monday for page 4 of Captain Thomas Hemphill’s will.


  1. Burke County Original Wills, Thomas Hemphill (c1824); box no. C.R. 016.801.1, North Carolina State Archives, Raleigh, Thomas Hemphill, 1824.
Series Navigation<< Captain Thomas Hemphill’s Will – page 2Captain Thomas Hemphill’s Will – page 4 >>

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