Where’d You Go, Bernadette, the Movie

Loved this book! Trailer looks awesome.

The Art of Racing in the Rain, August 9

I didn’t even know they were making this until I saw this on my YouTube feed.  Loved Enzo!

Royal Visit to Downton Abbey, can’t wait for September

I think I’ve found Matilda, wife of Dewitt Sumrell!

From Lenoir County Deed Book 5, pg. 463:

This indenture made this sixth day of December one thousand eight hundred and seventy between Joseph Franklin Sumrell of the County of Lenor and State of North Carolina on the one part and Council Phillips of the County and State aforesaid of the other part Witnesseth that the said Joseph Franklin Sumrell for and in consideration of the sum of one hundred dollars to him in hand paid at the time of ensealing these presents to the result whereof is hereby acknowledge and by these presents do give grant bargain sell alien and confirm unto the said Council Phillips his heirs and assigns a certain tract or parcel of land situate lying and being in the County of Lenoir in the South side of great Contentnea Creek in Contentnea Neck district and known as Lot No. 3 in the division of the lands of Simeon Langston (deceased) and which was allowed in said division to Matilda Langston wife of William Suggs and bounded as follows viz: by the lands of Susan Phillips wife of Lacy Phillips and the land belonging to the estate of James Thomas, deceased, and the lands belonging to the estate of William L. Phillips, deceased, containing forty acres, be the same more or less to have and to hold my interest which was one half in the afore bargained land and premises…

I know she is not Simeon’s daughter.  The only daughter mentioned in his will is Charity “Chelly” Lane.  However, he did have four sons: Kenyan, Grafton, Daniel and John.  Matilda could be the daughter of one of them, right?

Update:  Upon further investigation, I found the estate records of Kenyan W. Langston at FamilySearch (records also exist for Simeon and Grafton, but they don’t really help!).  There was a long drown-out court battle over his estate.  He had no children, so his heirs were his nieces and nephews.  Everyone seems to have chimed in for their share, except for any descendants of John.  Matilda wasn’t the daughter of either Grafton, Daniel or Chelly, so she much have been John’s daughter in order to have been eligible for a share of Simeon’s estate.

Incidentally, Ann was Simeon’s second wife.  Daniel and John come from his first marriage.

Scratch all that.  There were, apparently, two Simon/Simeon Langstons.  One in Wayne the other, which I should be looking at, in Lenoir!  Simeon Langston of Lenoir seems to have died in the 1820s.

Joseph Gaskins and Mary Coleman?

State of North Carolina}
Craven County               }
Personally appeared before me Isaac Guion one of the Justices of the peace for the County aforesaid on this 30th day Novr. 1799. John Morgan and James Askins, who being Sworn on the holy Evangelist of almighty God doth say that being with Joseph Gaskins, who was sick, but of sound mind on the Evening of the 28th Instant, desired that the deponents should declare as follows to be his last will and Testament, that a half Lot of land in New Bern and fifty acres of land in the Pocoson, believed his mothers, shoud be sold to pay his Debts, which if not enough, twenty acres of land he bought from Hillary Parsons, should be also sold, at Vendue to the highest bidder, further he desired that all the residue of his Estate should be left in the hands of his wife Zipporah Squires, for the support of her and the Children he had by her. Bauly [sic Baily], Holland, David Isaac, Joseph Amos until the youngest shall become of age unless she shall marry then the Estate to be taken out of her hands and be equally divided and for her to have a childs part and give her son Fisher forty shilling in Testamoney whereof we have hereunto subscribed our hands in New Bern this 30th November 1799.

James Askins
John J Morgan [the J is his mark]

Sworn by the Subscriber
before me 30th Novr. 1799
Ic Guion JP

On 9 Dec 1799, it was “Ordered that notice issue to Mary Gaskins to appear at the Next Term and show cause to why the nuncupative will of Joseph Gaskins decd. should not be Established.”

film 7640400, frame 00738

Who was Mary Gaskins?

The nuncupative will of my 6th great-grandfather, Joseph Gaskins, was “admitted to probate, and ordered to be registered” 14 Mar 1800. Zipporah Squires Gaskins was granted administration upon the Estate “with the will annexed” “upon entering into bond in the sum of one hundred pounds with John Gaskins and Amos Cuthrell” her securities.

That same day, “Mary Coleman calling herself the wife and relict of Joseph Gaskins deceased came into Court and dissents [word I can’t make out] the will of said Gaskins.”


Immediately after this statement, which had my mouth hanging open, the court adjourns until the afternoon. The second item after the recess grants “the administratrix of Joseph Gaskins” permission to sell the perishable part of his Estate. Then nothing. Nada. What happened? Who was Mary Coleman and why did she claim to be married to Joseph?

The 1796 will of Richard Johnson of Craven County, North Carolina

In the Name of God Amen I Richard Johnson of Craven County in the State of North Carolina, being sick and weak in body, but of sound mind and disposing Memory, do Make and Ordain this my Last Will and Testament in manner and form following–

First of all, It is my Will and desire that my Just and Lawful debts be first paid and satisfied and as touching such worldly Estate whearwith it hath pleased God to bless me with, I despose of as hearafter directed–

Item. I give and bequeath to My nephew Richard Johnston Daughter [or Vaughter] the sum of twenty five pounds Curancy & all my wearing aperal I give to him & his heirs and assigns for Ever

Item. I give and bequeath to My Sister Elizabeth Gattin My wearing Hats and ten pounds Curancy to her & her heirs and assigns for Ever

Item. I give and bequath to My Sister Easter Gatlin a Bed with a white tick and ten pounds Courancy to her and her heirs & assigns for Ever

Item. I give and bequeath unto My Sister Mary Gatlin Fifteen Pounds Curancy to her & her assigns for Ever.

Item. I give bequeathe to My Couson Persis Lambert one Bead with a striped tick and all the furniture there to belonging and My Riding saddle to her and her heirs and assigns for Ever.

Item. I give and bequeath to my niece Sarah Gatlin Daughter of My Sister Elizabeth Gatlin five pounds Curancy to her and her heirs for Ever

Item. I give and bequeath all the rest and remainder (remainder crossed out) Remaining part of my Estate to my three sisters to wit Mary, Easter and Elizabeth Gatlin to share Eaqual share & share a like to them and there heirs and assigns for Ever.

Lastly I nominate and appoint my Frinds Thomas A. Green and Furnifold Green Executors of this my last Will and Testament Revoking all other former wills here before by me made, Ratiffing and Confirming this to be my Last will and Testament whereof I have hereunto set my hand & seal this 26 day of april 1796

Richd Johnson

Signed sealed published & declared
In the presence of
Rich.d Vinson
Josh Clark junr.

State of North Carolina
Craven County Court September Term 1796
Then was the aforegoing last Will & Testament of Richard Johnston decd proved in open Court by the oath of Jos Clark junr and at the same time the Executors therein named renounced that Executorship Whereupon William Gatlen prayed for Letters of administration with the will annexed which is granted upon his entering into Bond with Security and Qualyfying agreable to Law.____ Attest. Saml Chapman CC

This is not my line, I don’t think :), but I’m always interested in a Gatlin puzzle. Just who was the husband of Mary Johnson? I speculate about that in a post at East Carolina Roots. Which Gatlin married Mary Johnson, sister of Richard, Elizabeth & Esther? Thanks, Sara! Pop on over and tell me what you think. Or leave a comment here.

Notre Dame de Paris burns

My eyes were stinging while I watched this on the news.  My heart goes out the people of Paris.

Jemima Kemp, wife of Jeremiah Warren!

During the morning session of the Craven County Court of Pleas & Quarter Sessions on 15 September 1787, was heard the matter of

Thomas Kemp Joshua Kemp Isaac Kemp Isaac Kemp Jeremiah Warren & Jemima his Wife and John Nelson & Elizabeth his Wife


Hannah Kemp Admr. of James Kemp

The Court proceed to hear the petition of the plantiffs and to consider thereupon and do order and decree as followeth that the complainants do recover and be allowed the sum of thirty six pounds Each to be paid to them out of the Estate of the Decd. James Kemp and that Execution for the aforesaid Several Sums of money issue with the costs theron Issue agt the Estate of the sd. Decd.
profits that have heretofore accrued or may hereafter acrue out of the Decd. Estate and that the Administrator of Guardian pay the Same as fast as Income of the Estate will admit Estate of the said James Kemp.


and 19 June 1790

On reading the Petition of Isaac Kemp and others praying for an allowance to be made them from the Estate of James Kemp in the Ferry Plantation for certain causes therein mentioned the Court ordered that Isaac Kemp Thomas Kemp Jemima Warren and Elizbeth Nelson be allowed twelve pounds ten shillings cash to be raised as before mentioned and Costs.

James, Joshua, Isaac, Thomas, Jemima, Elizabeth and three others were children of Mathias Kemp and his wife, Elizabeth. See post: Will of Mathias Cemp.  James died before 15 September 1779 when an inventory of his Estate was taken.  His widow, Hannah, with his brother, Joshua, and John Gooding, paid a £3,000 administrator bond on his Estate the next day.

Will of Mathias Cemp

In the Name of God Amen

I Mathais Cemp of Craven County in Province of North Carolina Being in Sound & Perfect Mind & Memory Doe Make this My Last Will and Testament in Manner and Form Following that is to say

First of all my Will is that My Lawfull Debts be paid and Funerall charges satisfied

Item: I Give to my Belovd Wife Elizabeth the Managemt of My Whole Estate with the Plantation I now Dwell on & the Ferry during her Widow Hood and in case my aforsd Wife should marry to have her equally part out of My Estate of Goods & Chattles with the Rest of my Children.

Item: I Give to my son James Cemp the Plantation I now live on & the Ferry after my Wifes Wifes Widowhood & nothing else.

Item: And My Will is that my sd. son James Cemp shall after mine & my wifes Death Give or Cause to be Given to the rest of my Children due Education becoming them the which Schooling & Education is to be pd. out of the Benefits of the aforsd. Ferry.

And my Will is that all my Moveable Estate after the widowowhood of my aforsd. Wife or her Death be Equally divided amongst the Remain[der] of My Children Being Eight in Number Viz. Joshua, Isaac, Thomas, Mary, Sarah, Jemima, Barbara & Elizabeth by my Excs. When they to the Age of Twenty one Years or the Day of their Marriage of my aforsd. wife should should have married or Decesd. Always[?] after her widowhood Reserving her an Equall share with the aforesd. children.

And I Doe constitute and appoint my Loving Wife Elizabeth My Executrix and my Son James & Joshua Cemp My Executors of this My Last Will and Testament & Do hereby Revoak Disanull & make void all Former Wills and Testaments by Me heretofore Made, In Witness whereof I the sd. Mathias Cemp to this my Last Will and Testament have set my hand & affixed my Seal the 21 day of May in the year of our Lord 1766.

Signd Seald Published                                     Mathaias his M mark Cemp
and Delivd. as his Last
Will and Testamt. In
Presents of us

Michl. Keane                                                       Elijah McCoy
jurat Absolom Tuten


April Craven Inferior Court 1767
Present His Majestys Justices
Then was the annexed last Will and Testament of Mathias Kemp Decd. duly Proved in Open Court by the Oath of Absalom Tuten one of the Subscribing Witnesses thereto — at the same time Joshua Kemp one of the Executors therein named Qualified as such agreeable to Law — Ordered that Mr. Secretary have notice thereof that Letters Testamentary Issue thereon accordingly–.
Test Christ.r Neale CC