Will of John Sanford 1715-1779
Grandfather to Thomas and Mary Ann Sanford
Transcribed by Frances Belsham
Wills are generally written without any punctuation or abbreviations. There is often alternative spelling of some words and using upper case letters which do not always mean the start of a new sentence. Neither are they divided into paragraphs but are continuous lines of writing This can make documents difficult to read or understand.
This post shows the Will exactly as it was written with no attempt to break it down into paragraphs. Done in this way it shows exactly how the original document is written. As the documents are sometimes very large each line of writing in the document sometimes takes up two lines when it is transcribed in to the web site.
John Sanford was an Oyster Dredger. He was married to Deborah Sanford, he being her second husband following the death of her first husband, Robert Hopkins.
John and Deborah had 6 children.
When John died his Estate was left to his wife Deborah.
The Will states that on the decease of Deborah all effects would go to his son Thomas.
Should Thomas die, everything would pass to William and in the event of Williams death the Estate would pass to Benjamin.
On Benjamins death it would pass to Edward.
His stock in trade was bequeath to William and Benjamin
His only daughter Elizabeth who was married, would inherit the property in which she was living with her husband and which belonged to John Sanford.
The only bequest to his eldest son, John was a share in household goods and a share in any monies owing
All of these were also shared equally amongst the 6 siblings.
He nominated his wife, Deborah and his son in law to act as executors.
Will of John Sanford
Late of the Parish of Wivenhoe
Proved 9th August 1779
In the name of God Amen This is the last Will and Testament of me John Sanford of
Wivenhoe in the County of Essex Oyster Dredger First I will and order that all my just Debts and
Funeral Charges and the probate of this my Will be fully satisfied and paid for by my Executor and Executrix
Hereafter mentioned out of my personal Estate within Twelve Months after my Decease which being done
I give Devise and Bequeath to my well Beloved Wife Deborah Sanford all and Singular my Estates and
Effects whatsoever and wheresoever both Real and personal To hold to her the said Deborah Sanford during
The Term of her natural Life and after her Decease I give and Devise to my Daughter Elizabeth the Wife of
James Mason All and Singular that my Copyhold Messuages or Tenements with the Several Appurtenances
Thereunto belonging now in the Occupation of the said James Mason and Situate in Wivenhoe aforesaid To
Hold to her the said Elizabeth Mason and her heirs for Ever I Likewise Give and Devise after the Decease of
my said Wife to my son Thomas Sanford All and Singular that my Freehold Messuages or Tenement with the
Several Appurtenances hereunto belonging now in the Occupation of William Stuttle and Situate in Wivenhoe
aforesaid To hold to him the said Thomas Sanford and his heirs for Ever I Likewise Give and Devise after
the Decease of my said Wife to my Son William Sanford All and Singular that my Copyhold Messuages
or Tenement with the Several Appurtenances thereunto belonging now in the Occupation of Frederick Nicholson
and Situate in Wivenhoe aforesaid To hold to him the said William Sanford and his heirs for Ever I Likewise
Give and Devise after the Decease of my said Wife to my Son Benjamin Sanford All and Singular that my
Copyhold Messuages or Tenement with the Several Appurtenances thereunto belonging `now in the Occupation of
Mary Bragg and situate in Wivenhoe aforesaid and adjoining the former To hold to him the said Benjamin
Sanford and his heirs for Ever I also Give and Bequeath to my said Sons William and Benjamin all
And Singular my Stock in Trade to be equally parted between them Share and Share alike I Likewise
Will direct and order that after the Decease of my said Wife as aforesaid All and Singular my Household
Furniture whatsoever be as near as possibly can divided and parted between my children Elizabeth the wife of James
Mason John Sanford Thomas Sanford William Sanford Benjamin Sanford and Edward Sanford share and share
alike And the Rest and Residue of my Estate and Effects both Real and personal whatsoever and wheresoever
I direct to be sold and the Monies thence arising together with all other Ready Monies and all other sums of Money
Whatsoever due to me in Trade or otherwise howsoever be equally divided between all my aforesaid Children share and
Share alike And do nominate and appoint the said James Mason and my said Wife Deborah Sanford joint executor
And executrix of this my Will declaring this only to be my last Will and Testament hereby revoking all other Wills by
Me heretofore made In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this Twenty Second day of
December in the Eighteenth year of the Reign of King George the Third and in the year of our Lord One Thousand
Seven hundred and Seventy Seven
Signed Sealed published and declared by the said Testator
As and for his last Will and Testament in the presence of us
And we subscribed our names as Witnesses by his desire in his
Presence and in the presence of each other
Peter Conway R Hersham
James Mason one of the Executors within named
Appeared and was sworn to the truth of the within
Will and to the due execution thereof (powers being reserved
To the other Executors within mentioned) before me
Wm Smythies – Surrogate
NB The Testator died in Wivenhoe on Friday the
25th June last leaving personal Effects to the amount
Of about £150 certainly under 200£
This Will of John Sanford late of the Parish of Wivenhoe in the County of Essex deceased and Proved on the Fourth Day of August
In the year of our Lord one Thousand Seven Hundred and Seventy nine Before the Reverend William Smythies Clerk Surrogate by the oath of James
Mason one of the Executors to whom Administration of all and Singular the Goods Chattles and Credits of the said Deceased was granted and
Commited on the Ninth Day of the said month of August he being first sworn duly to Administer (Power being reserved of making the like Grant to
Deborah Sanford Widow the Relict of the Deceased and other Executrix named in the said Will when she shall apply for the same
The last Will and
John Sanford of
Wivenhoe the County
Dated 22nd Dec 1777