Part 538s – Smith Robertson Genealogy – 1796 William Smith – Last Will and Testament – The Logie Connection!

27 June 2011

Good Hot Evening,

In the heat of the day, with the lack of the precious commodity of air-conditioning, I have been able to stumble upon a prize Document. This Indenture is the Last Will and Testament of William Smith.

Is this William Smith a connection to my ggg-grandfather James Smith? That I cannot answer… but there are a number of answers that are revealed from the script of this 1796 Last Will and Testament.

In the body of the Will is the reference “As for all the rest and Residue of my Estate and Effects of whatsoever nature or kind I give and bequeath the same to my dear Brother James Smith living at Logie in Scotland…” James Smith! Brother! Living at Logie in Scotland! This is a connection that I have been searching for, the detail that will connect Smiths of Logie, Scotland to Grenada.

I introduced in Part 178s a James Smith, a Weaver from Logie in Scotland who in 1803 is searching for information regarding his brother William Smith’s estate. Accordingly it is written that the brother William Smith was a Merchant in Grenada.

This looks to be the Last Will and Testament of the “lost” brother, William. As the LWT was written on 1 December 1796 and sworn to on 3 December 1796, it would appear that William Smith passed away sometime between the 1st and the 3rd. The Saint George Parish Death Registration, in Part 440s1491 Mr. William Smith, Merchant; was buried on the 2nd day of Decbr. 1796” is the next confirmation.

Examining William Smith’s 1796 Last Will and Testament there does not appear to be any mention of any direct family inheritance, that is, the only immediate relative that is mentioned in the text of the Will is his brother James Smith of Logie. There are notices of bequests to others but I cannot conclude that there are any gifts given to any direct relative save that to his brother.

In the 7 June 1803 entry of the Power of Attorney by James Smith, the Weaver of Logie, it is indicated that “Whereas William Smith of the Island of Grenada Merchant died lately without iʃsue and whereas James Smith late of St. Georges in the same Island according to the best of my Information died sometime before the said William Smith…”. (See Part 178s.) This means, of course, that I need to now search and find any documentation that may lead me to William Smith’s nephew James, son of James Smith the Weaver of Logie.

William Smith’s Last Will and Testament was found in the 1796 Grenada Registers of Records, Volume F, pages 329 – 331. The same copy is downloaded from the microfilm FHL [1563320]. Here are the images –

My transcription –
Entered 6th December 1796.
In the Name of God Amen I William Smith of the Town of
Saint George in the said Island Merchant do make this my last Will and Testament
in manner and form following (to wit) First I desire that all my just Debts to be fully
paid and satisfied Item I give and bequeath unto Felicité Boisfermé free Mulatre∫s
my House keeper the five Negroes hereinafter named Viz, Sam, Romeo, Jack, John, Tweed



and Sally and also the Sum of Sixty Joes in Cash as a Reward for her constant
Care and Attention towards me. Item I give and bequeath the Sum of twenty
Joes in Cash to Betsy Bridgwater Housekeeper to Mr. George Campbell of this
Town. Item I desire my Executors hereinafter named to make free and manumit
as soon as po∫sible my Negro Slave Dick and for the Expence to be paid out of my
Estate. As for all the rest and Residue of my Estate and Effects of whatsoever
nature or kind I give and bequeath the same to my dear Brother James Smith
living at Logie in Scotland And for the Execution of this my Will I request my
William Stiel William Shaw George Campbell and George Henry Horsley
to take upon themselves that trouble and I hereby appoint the said William
Stiell William Shaw George Campbell and George Henry Horsley Executors of this
my last Will In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and Seal this first
day of December On thousand ∫even hundred and ninety Six.

Wm. Smith (LS)
Signed ∫ealed published and declared }
by the said Testator William Smith as }
and for his last Will in the presence of us }
Alex Cockburn __ R Mitchelson __ Edward Nichols
Before His Honor Alexander Houston Esquire Lieutenant
Governor and Commander in Chief in and over the Island of
Grenada and it’s Dependencies Chancellor Ordinary and Vice
Admiral of the same.

Personally appeared Edward Nicholls of the Town of Saint George Mariner one of
the subscribing Witne∫ses to the within Paper Writing purporting to be the Will of William
Smith late of the said Town Merchant deceased, who being duly sworn on the holy Evan
gelists of Almighty God maketh Oath and ∫aith that he was present with Alexander
Cockburn and Robert Mitchelson the other subscribing Witne∫ses thereto and did see
the said William Smith the Testator sign and ∫eal the same and also heard him publish
and declare the same as and for his last Will and Testament. And the Deponent
further Saith that in Testimony of such Execution as aforesaid the said Alexander
Cockburn Robert Mitchelson and the Deponent did in the presence of the said Testator
at his request and in the presence of each other severally subscribe their Names as
Witne∫ses to the said Will. And the Deponent lastly saith that at the time the said


Testator so executed his said Will as aforesaid he was to the best of this Deponents
Judgment and belief of sound and disposing Mind Memory and Understanding
Edward Nichols
Sworn to before me }
this third day of }
December 1796 }

Alexander Houstoun

And as a part of the Item gifted in the will are "Joes". I had to find out what a "Joe" is/was? It appears that it is a slang term for a Johannes, a Portuguese coin. At about the time some of the currencies used in Grenada and the Windward Islands included a Spanish doubloon which passed for $16 and a half joannes or joes for $8. (From The Shipmaster's Assistant and Commercial Digest by Joseph Blunt, 1851, New York.) That resolves that issue.

And now to search for the son and nephew James Smith. Could this be a connection to ggg-grandfather James?




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