I recently transcribed the will of Samuel Coates from Essex Co., VA. This Samuel is my Great (x6) grandfather. He married Mary Howerton and had 5 children, all named in his will. I don't know when he was born, but I am guessing it was around ca.1715 in Essex Co. I think he is the son, or possibly the grandson, of another Samuel Coates of Essex Co., who held land there as early as 1690 and died in 1718. This earlier Samuel was married to Margaret Watkins. If anyone has any information that can help sort out these early Virginia Coates' please let me know. I am descended from Samuel's son William. Samuel's will is below. (I kept his original misspellings in my transcript. The underlined spaces are for words I could not decipher.) Also, he spells Coates with and without an (e). In my family, his son William is the first to completely drop the (e), and after William all my descendents have spelled our name Coats.
Will of Samuel Coates Written: 16 Feb 1774, Essex Co., VA Proved: 19 June 1780, Essex Co., VA
In the of god amen the sixteenth day of February in the year of our lord one thousand seven hundred & seventy four, I Samuel Coates of the County of Essex being well strickon in years, & in perfect sence & memory thanks be to god; Calling to mind the mortallity of my body & that there is a time for all men once to die, do make & ordain this my will & testament in manner & form following that is to say principally & first, I give & recommend my soul into the hands of almighty God that gave it & my body to the Earth to be buried in a Christian like manner at the discretion of my Exors hereafter mentioned nothing doubling but at the General ______________. I shall receive the same again by the mity power of god & as touching such worldly Estate where with it hath pleasured god to bless me with in this life; I give & dispose of in the manner following that is to say first I lend to my loving wife Mary all my estate real & personal for & during this natural life & after her decease my desire is that my House wherein I now live together with fifty acres of my land adjacent to the lands of Thos. Crutcher & Luke Covington be laid of for my two Daughters (OUI) Mary & Anne Coates which I give to them & their heirs forever. The remainder part of my land I give to be equally divided between my three sons (OUI) Thomas, Samuel & William Coats to them & their heirs forever. Item I give to my two daughters my negro wentch _________. To be equally divided between them also one feather bed & furniture to each of them & their heirs forever. Item, I give unto my son Thomas my rideing saddle & all the rest of my estate to be equally divided between my severall children above named. Lastly I do appoint my son Thomas & my wife Mary to be my Extors of this my last will & testament in witness whereof I have here unto set my hand & seal the day & year above written. The within will is sign’d seal’d & acknowledg’d in presence of Grisel Covington Luke Covington Thos. Crutcher Caty Crutcher Samuel Coates