Tag Archives: wills

Edward Pryor vs. Edward Phair/Pheir/Pharr in Georgia

It doesn’t look like I’ll be getting out of Georgia records anytime soon. There were 2 men by very similar names who were in Georgia at about the same time. Can I tease apart Edward Pryor and Edward Pharr (Phair)?

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Dearest Dennis Will (John Pryor’s Mother In Law)

Pryor Will

I mentioned Dearest Dennis’ will back in 2013 (see post) when I first saw it transcribed in a Chancery Court file: John Pryor vs. the estate of Dearest Dennis.

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1822 – Peter Pryor and Green Pryor of Tennessee in NC Estate

State of North Carolina.
Rockingham County. Inequity.
April term, a d 1822.
Robert Galloway, administrator of the estate of Charles Galloway, deceased, against Elizabeth Gentry, administratrix of the estate of James Galloway, deceased, and others. It appearing to the court the
Thomas H Perkins
Nicholas Perkins
Peter Pryor
Green Pryor
Edward Williams
Green B Williams
Thomas Williams
Alexander M Williams
Thomas Worsham and Nancy his wife
Steven Coleman and Polly his wife
John T Johnston
Luis Dillabunty and Lucinda his wife
—- Hardy and Sally his wife
Meredith Johnston
Minerva C. Johnston
Nicholas Scales
Joseph H Scales
Robert Scales
Constant Scales
Peter Scales
George W. L. Man
John Man
William M Man
Sally Man
Constant H. P. Man
Peter N. Man
Agatha Man
Matthew Daniel and Agatha his wife
reside without this state, and they being part of the defendants to the bill of complaint filed in this state, it is ordered, that publication be made for 6 weeks in the Raleigh Register, for the above-named defendants and each of them to appear at the next term of this court, on the 5th Monday after the 4th Monday of September next, then and there to answer, plead or demur to the said bill, or the same will be taken Pro confesso against them, and heard ex parte. Test. James T Moorhead, c. M. E. May 4th 1822.
(Weekly Raleigh Register June 7th, 1822)

I took a look to see what I could find out about the people named in this notice.

Peter and Green Pryor

Peter and Green Pryor, the orphans who were raised in Williamson County, Tennessee. Peter and Green Pryor Pioneer Children of Williamson County by Dorris Callicott Douglass concludes they were the children of John Pryor and Elizabeth Perkins, who married Headly Stone after the death of John.

Nicholas Perkins

It’s probable, although there were several men who were named Nicholas Perkins, this Nicholas Perkins was one of the 3 men of this name counted on the 1820 Census in Williamson County, Tennessee.

Alexander M. Williams and Green B. Williams

He is possibly the Green B. Williams who was counted on the 1820 Census in Maury County, TN. Alexander M. Williams was counted in the same county in 1820.

Nicholas Scales and Peter Scales

Nicholas Scales married Elizabeth Perkins – Their children moved to Williamson County, TN (Clarion Ledger, Jackson MS August 27, 1963). Nicholas Scales was the Principal Assessor for the 5th Dist, Williamson County, TN (Nashville Whig, June 25 1816)

Peter Scales appointed assistant marshal for Rockingham County, NC in 1840 (North Carolina Star, March 25, 1840)

1792 Will: John Pryor of Norfolk

In the name of God, Amen. I John Pryor of the County and borough of Norfolk being sick and weak, but Perfect mind and understanding do make and ordain this writing to be my last will and testament in manner and form following.

Imprimis, I give and bequeath to my brother Christopher Pryor, fifty pounds current money to him the said Christopher Pryor and his heirs forever.

Item, I give and bequeath to my sister Elizabeth Pass? fifty pounds current money to her the said Elizabeth Pass and her heirs forever.

Item, I give and bequeath to the orphans of my Brother William Pryor decased twenty five pounds each current money to be paid them by my executor hereinafter mentioned when they arrive to the age of twenty one years, or married.

Item, I give and bequeath to my niece Kitty Vaughan Twenty five pounds current money to be paid her by my executor here in after mentioned, when she arrives to the age of twenty one years or married.

Item, I give to Walter Price all my wearing apparel.

Item, I give and bequeath to my brother Samuel Pryor my house and lot whereon I now live, also all my negroes and their future increase and all my personal estate to him the said Samuel Pryor and his heirs for ever he paying all my just debts and the above mentioned legacies.

And lastly I nominate and appoint my brother Samuel Pryor executor to this my last will and testament in (illegible) whereof. I have hereunto set my hand and subscribed my name this eighteenth day of January, one thousand seven hundred and ninety two.
Signed, sealed, published and declared in presence of Manor Dison and Richard Lewelling
Signed John Pryor.

Norfolk Burough
At a Hustings court continued and held the 24th day of April 1792 the last will and testament of John Pryor deceased was proved by the oath of Manor Dison and Richard Lewelling witnesses thereto and ordered to be recorded–and on the motion of Samuel Pryor, executor therein named who made oath thereto and together with Frederick Williams and Idm Smallwood his sear– entered into and acknowledged this bond on the penalty of two thousand pounds as the law directs. Certificate is granted them for obtaining a probate in due form.

(see the will on Ancestry.com)

Richard Pryor Executor of the Estate of James Durell

handwritingI’ve looked at several Virginia Chancery Court cases that mention Richard Pryor and his wife Virginia Boyd. They are quite lengthy and seem to center around his position as the executor of the estate of James Durell. Among all the documents I found the will of James Durell. Richard Pryor is named the executor. It names relationships and even has a codicil that freed a slave. So passing along the transcript for anyone interested in this line…


The last will and testament of James Durell of the Town of Petersburg and State of Virginia: Being confined to a bed of disease and pain and being unable to foresee the issued of such confinement and disease, I have concluded to provide against contingencies and to make the following last will and testament.

1st I direct my Executor hereinafter named to sell my land in the state of Alabama for cash or on such terms as he shall think proper, and to divide the proceeds in equal shares among my daughter and her children now living.

2nd I devise and bequeath the Durell tract of land owned by me in the county of Mecklinburg to be equally divided among my Grand children who own land adjoining the shares of each to be allotted adjoining the land now owed by them respectively.

3rd I devise and bequeath to Geo. Ruffin a lot of land owned by me situated on Plumb Street adjoining the land belonging to the Estate of the late Dr. J S Gilliam, and the land lately bough by Peter Saunders.

4th I bequeath to each of my Grandchildren a share of the stock of the Upper Appomattox Canal Company now owned by me.

5th I direct my executor hereinafter named to keep together and manage as prudently as in his power, the whole of my estate both real and personal not otherwise disposed of in this will, till the death of my daughter E O Boyd and I then devise and bequeath the same to be equally divided among my Grand children to them and their heirs forever. — in case either of my Grand children shall depart this life, previous to the death of my said daughter, then I give and bequeath to the child or children of such decreased Grand child if any the proportion to which and Grand child would be entitled if alive.

6th I give and bequeath to my daughter E O Boyd yearly during her life out of the profits of my estate, not specially devised, the sum of one thousand dollars if the profits shall amount to so much, which sum my executor is directed to pay to her yearly unless there shall be a deficiency of the profits as aforesaid.

7th I direct my Executor to pay to each of my slaves Andrew and Cuffy the sum of thirty dollars to purchase their clothes and —-.

8th I direct my Executor to have removed and decently interred Blandford Church yard the bones of those interred in the grave yard belonging to me in the rear of the land on Market street owned by E. Pescud and Dr. J. B. Scott and after such removal, I authorize and direct him to sell the land enclosed for said yard in fee simple.

9th I hereby authorize my executor not withstanding anything in this will contained as to the final division of my estate at the death of my daughter to let out my part of my real estate on building leases for a term not exceeding ten years.

10th I hereby appoint Richard PRYOR who married my grand daughter Virginia the sole executor of this my last will and testament.

Given under my hand and seal this 16th of October 1822.
Teste: Patrick Durkin (or Dunkin?) and AB Spooner

A codicil to the will of Jas. Durrell notwithstanding anything in my will continued I do hereby emancipate and forever set free my slave Nancy — and I do this in consequence of her acts of extraordinary merit done towards and for me in saving as I believe my life in an attach on me of a most dangerous disease and being fully persuaded and I always have been since that time, that her extraordinary exertions and almost on stand watchfulness on that occasion particularly throughout the most tedious nights was the main cause in saving my live– I emancipate her also in consequences of exertions of the same kind and nature towards and for me in this my present most distressing illness. Believing the acts of extraordinary merit o-the- part of said slave to be strictly within the meaning of the act of assemby to authorize emancipated slaves to remain in this commonweath and I do trust and expect the Hasting Court to permit her to remain in this Commonwealth. If it should so happen that a decree should hereafter be rendered against my estate in consequence of my being one of the securities of Jno. McRae Jr. and Excr. of Jno. McRae Sr. I direct a sufficiency of my land to be sold to pay the amount of my responsibility instead of a sale of my slave Nancy. Given under my hand and seal this 17th day of February 1827
{seal} James Durrell
J. R. Daniel

Further dodicil to the will of Jas. Durrell. Notwithstanding anything contained in my will, I hereby direct my executor to pay as soon as he conveniently can after his qualification in the first place all debts due by me on my own account and not as security out of such part of my estate as he shall think best for all the parties interested. Given under my hand and seal this 20th April 1827.
{seal} James Durell
Acknowledged after hearing the same read to be his hand and seal and act and deed before us
J. Robertson Jr
Joel Hammon
A. B. Spooner