In the name of God Amen; the fifteenth day of September in the year of our Lord one thousand six hundred fifty and seven , I JOHN LAWRENCE of Bray in the County of Berks, Yeoman, being sick in body and weak in body but of sound and perfect memory (praised be God) do make and ordain my last will and testament in manner following: First I commend my soul into the hands of God my Creator hoping through the merits of Jesus Christ my most gracious Redeemer to obtain everlasting life; and my body to the earth whence it came to be decently buried at the discretion of my executor hereafter named; and as touching that real and personal estate wherewith it has pleased God Almighty to bless me in this life, I give and bequeath the same as follows: vizt. I give and devise unto My Daughter REBECCA the now wife of RICHARD LOCKE and her heirs all those my lands lying and being in the Parish of Wargrave in the County of Berks purchased of John Smith. ITEM; I give to my said daughter Rebecca Locke the sum of three score and ten pounds. ITEM; I give to my daughter MARIE now the wife of JOHN DEANE the sum of one hundred and fifty pounds of lawful money. ITEM; I give to my daughter FRANCES the now wife of RICHARD WINCH the like sum of one hundred and fifty pounds of like lawful money which respective sums given to my said daughters respectively my will is shall be paid within six months next after my decease and that if either or any of my said daughters do die before their said respective legacies be paid then I will and appoint that the portion of such dying daughter shall be paid to the surviving child or children of such dying daughter. ITEM; I give unto my kinswoman REBECCAH MILLETT twenty pounds and to my Sons in Law RICHARD LEE, JOHN LEE and NATHANIEL WINCH and to my Daughters in Law REBECCAH BEARD, JOANE BURNEINGHAM and ELIZABETH FOORD twenty shillings apiece as a remembrance of my love. ITEM; I give to my Brother GEORGE LAWRENCE forty shillings. ITEM; I give to the poor of the Parish of Bray forty shillings to be distributed at the discretion of my executor and overseers hereafter named within one month next after my decease. ITEM; I give to my maidservant Katherine Higgs twenty shillings. ITEM: I give to my manservant William Bindfield six shillings eight pence. ITEM; I do hereby devise and appoint my several goods hereafter mentioned to be and remain as standards and heirlooms within the messuage wherein I now dwell and to devolve and come with the inheritance of the said messuage unto my Grandchild WILLIAM GROVE vizt. the table and form and oast cupboard in the hall, the table and six joined stools in the parlour the bedstead in the chamber next the parlour below stairs the furnace brass in the brew house and the bedstead and a little table in the chamber over the parlour. ITEM; I give to the said William Grove my Grandchild and his heirs the eight acres of arable land in Bray which was my father’s. ITEM; I do ordain and appoint my Son-in-Law JOHN GROVE my sole executor of this my last will and testament and the better to enable him to pay the legacies hereby given and to pay such money as is due to my Grandchild REBECCAH GROVE I do give and devise unto the said John Grove my Son in Law and his heirs all that my meadow ground in the Parish of Bray which I purchased of Bartholemew Montague to the end he may sell the same and with the monies thereby raised help pay my said legacies. ITEM; I do give and devise all those my lands sometimes parcel of Brockenhurst als. Brockcasse Farm lately purchased by me of Edward Hatch and William Trumbull Esquire unto my Grandchild JOHN GROVE Son of my said Son in Law John Grove and to his heirs and assigns for ever provided nevertheless and my will and desire is that my Executor shall take the profits of the said land last mentioned until his said Son shall or may attain his age of one and twenty years the better to enable my said Executor to pay the said legacies. ITEM; I give unto my said Grandchild John Grove and his heirs the house in the occupation of John Cotton and the lands thereto belonging called Assart lands and the slip of ground and half acre of arable land lying in the frith in Bray and also the reversion of that acre of Assart land which my said Brother George now holds for his life; and also my grounds called Noake Redding containing about twelve acres in Bray aforesaid. And lastly I do particularly recommend the tuition education and government of my Grandchildren William Grove Rebecca Grove and John Grove to my Son in Law John Grove and I do charge and heartily desire him to see them brought up and instructed in all honest and religious education and nurture and to preserve and improve their estate both real and personal for them in the best and most conscientious manner he can and to advise and assist them in all things till they shall be able to govern themselves and their estates to which end I do also hereby require charge and advise my said Grandchildren that they do earnestly apply themselves in all due obedience to such religious examples and instructions as shall be showed and taught them and that they attempt not any matter of concernment rashly or unadvisedly but that in their marriages and other settlements they consult and take advice of the said John Grove or some other sober or discrete friends. And I do desire my loving brothers ROBERT LAWRENCE and RICHARD LAWRENCE to be overseers of this my last will entreating them in all things to see it duly performed and for their pains I give them ten shillings apiece; and renouncing all other wills I do publish this to be my last will and testament in testimony whereof to this my last will and testament contained in two sheets of paper I have set my hand and seal the day and year first above written – John Lawrence – signed sealed and published in the presence of John Whitfield, John Powney, Richard Lawrence, Richard Yieldall
Proved 6 May 1658 by John Grove Son in Law and sole Executor
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