Transcript of Will of Alderman John Graham (c1655-1717),
of Platten Hall, Drogheda, Co Meath, Ireland
In the name of God, Amen. I, JOHN GRAHAM of the County of Meath, the Town of Drogheda, Alderman, being in the best of health, etc., I dispose of my Worldly estate in Manner following, but first I recommend my Soul to God, and my body to be buryed, and secondly I give to Charity Graham my wife, an Annuity of 300 Pounds to be out of my Lands of Inheritance in the County of Lough and Meath and Town of Drogheda, to be paid half-yearly during her natural life, on the 5th day of November and May in full satisfaction of all Dower and Thirds.
Thirdly, I give, leave, devise and bequeath unto my son William Graham, for and during the term of his natural life, all my estate of freehold and Inheritance that I have in the Kingdom of Ireland (Subject to the said annuity of 300 Pounds), and from and after his decease, I give, leave, devise and bequeath unto the 1st son of the said William Graham, lawfully to be begotten, to the heirs male of the body of such son, and for want of such issue, to the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th son and sons of my said son William Graham, lawfully to be begotten and the heirs male of such sons. The Eldest of such sons and the heirs Male of his body always to be preferred before the youngest of such sons and the heirs Males of his body.
And if the Wife of the said William shall happen to be with child at the time of his death, I give and bequeath the said estate to the Hon. General John Newton, Charles Campbell and Henry Singleton, Esqs., and the heirs of the survivor of them, until she can be delivered and if it be a son or sons, I devise my said estate to the eldest son and heirs Males of his body and for want of such issue, to the eldest daughter of my son William and the heirs Males of such daughter, Provided always such heirs take upon them the surname of Graham and no other, and for want of such issue, and in default of their taking upon them the surname of Graham, I devise the same to the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and Every other daughter and daughters of the said William Graham and the heirs Males of such daughter.
And in default of their taking upon them the Surname of Graham, I devise the same to my three daughters, Elizabeth, Sarah and Christian, and to the heirs Males of their severall bodys, Equally to be divided amongst them, they and every of them taking upon them the Surname of Graham and not otherwise, and for want of such issue to my own right heirs for Ever.
Fifthly, that whosoever shall be seized of my said estate shall have power to lett Leases for 21 years in possession at the best improved rent. That the said William Graham being possessed of the said estate by virtue of this Will, may by Indenture of ???????????, before Marriage, in presence of 3 witnesses, settle one-third part of the rents on such Wife as he shall afterwards marry, for her jointure, and may charge the said estate by Deed or Will perfected before three Witnesses and with any sum not exceeding 4000 Pounds for portions for daughters or younger sons to be divided equally among them.
Sixthly, Whereas for certain reasons I have passed by my eldest Son Robert, yet that he may not be burthensome to his relations, I give him annuity of 100 Pounds out of my Freehold estate and inheritance, to be paid half-yearly at May and November, during his natural life, in full of all demands.
Seventhly, I devise and appoint to be paid out of my Real and personal Estate, the following portions and Legacys: to my daughter Sarah, 3000 Pounds, to my daughter Charity, 5 Pounds sterling, to my daughter Christian, 2500 Pounds sterling, my said daughters’ portions to be paid them at the age of 21 years, or day of Marriage, which shall first happen. To Charles Campbell 20 Pounds, to General Newton 20 Pounds, to Alderman Newton and to Arthur Graham, to my Sister Cathleen Singleton, my Nephew John Graham, 10 Pounds each to buy mourning, to my son (in-law) Rowland Singleton, 50 Pounds, to Sister Rachell Graham 30 Pounds, to Sister Sarah Johnston’s children, 20 Pounds, and to Sister Sarah Johnston, 5 Pounds, and to my dearly beloved Wife Charity Graham, all my Household Goods, One half of my plate, and if the house wherein I dwell, during her naturall life. To the poor of Drogheda 6 Pounds, To my Servant William McCartney 10 Pounds. I leave my Wife my Coach and Coachhorses, And this my Real and personal Estate shall be subject to such just debts as I shall owe at my death, and likewise to the portions and Legacys to be first paid out of my personal estate, and if any of my personal estate shall remain, my Executors shall be Accountable to my son William for the same, and if he die without issue, to my daughters Elizabeth, Sarah and Christian, but if my personal estate shall not Answer them, to be paid out of my freehold estate and estate of Inheritance, etc.
I will and bequeath to my Wife Charity Graham 1000 Pounds, and if she seem meet to give the said 1000 Pounds to my Grand Children, John and Charity Graham, son and daughter of my son Robert Graham. And my further Will is and I do give to my Wife Charity Graham 1000 Pounds to be given by her to any of my Children she pleaseth to give it to. And lastly, I appoint my Wife Charity Graham, My Son in Law, Rowland Singleton, Executors of this my Will, and I do likewise nominate and Appoint my said Wife, Major General Newton, Charles Campbell, Esq. And Mr. Arthur Graham, Guardians to my Several Children until they attain the age of 21 years, and they to give them such allowance for their maintenance during their Minority as they shall think fitt etc.
In Witness thereof I have hereunto put my hand and seale this 16th July 1714.
J O H N G R A H A M His Seal
Witnessed by: Michael Moore
Whereas since I made this my said Will, I have married my said daughter Sarah to Thomas Taylor and paid her said portion mentioned in the said Will, I do hereby give my said daughter 100 Pounds to buy Mr. Taylor her husband and her, mourning, and I appoint my Son in Law Thomas Taylor Esq. One of the Guardians and Executors of my said last Will. In Witness whereof I have hereunto put my hand and Seale this first day of February 1715.
J O H N G R A H A M His Seal
Witnesses: Ben Heywood
Note: A copy of John Graham’s Will can be found in the Public Record Office in Dublin. His Will was proved in 1717 according to the “Index To Prerogative Wills of Ireland, 1536-1810,” edited by Sir Arthur Vicars, Dublin, 1897.
Extracts from the Will of William Graham (c1705/6-1748),
of Platten Hall, County Meath, Ireland
(Son of Alderman John & Charity Graham of Drogheda)
(See “The Irish Genealogist,” vol. I, no. 11, April 1942 edition, page 338)
“1748, April 1, WILLIAM GRAHAM, of Platten in co. Meath, privy councillor, makes Will. (Born about 1705/6, the testator was M.P. for Drogheda, 1727)
Mentions dearly beloved and dutiful son John. Father, John Graham, late of Drogheda, Alderman, deceased. (This John Graham lived also at Platten Hall – was married to Charity, daughter of ~~~~ Newton, of Drogheda) Only younger child, Granvil Graham. Leaves 50 Pounds for children of freemen of Drogheda. Mentions ring bequeathed to him by late Brigadier-General Graham, and gold pieces also bequeathed to him by same. Refers to family vault in chapel at Platten. Mentions good friend and brother Sir Thomas Taylor, baronet, and good friends Francis Leigh of Drogheda and Nathaniel Clements of city of Dublin.
Proved 30 April 1748. (Prerog. Will).”