Maine Wills

1640-1760

 The Will of Nicholas Gowen

 From York County Probate Records, Volume Eight (1705-53)

The Will of Nicholas Gowen

   In the Name of God Amen. The eighth Day of Ianuary in the Year of our Lord One Thousand Seven Hundred & thirty three I Nicholas Gowen of Kittery in the County of York within His Majsts a Province of the Massachusetts Bay in New England Yeoman, being Sick in Body but of good & perfect Memory, Thanks be to Almighty God, and calling to remembrance the uncertain Estate of this transitory Life, and that all flesh must yield to Death when it Shall please God to call; Do make constitute ordain & declare this my last Will & Testament in Manner & Form following, revoking and annulling by these presents all & every Testamt & Testaments Will & Wills heretofore by me made & declared either by Word or Writing, and this to be taken only for my last Will & Testamt and none other. And first being penitent & Sorry from ye bottom of my Heart for my Sins past, most humbly desiring Forgiveness for the Same, I give & commit my Soul unto almighty God my Saviour & Redeemer in whom by the Merits of Iesus Christ I trust & believe assuredly to be Saved & to have full Remission and Forgiveness of all my Sins, and that my Soul with my Body at the General Day of Resurrection Shall rise again with Ioy thrô the Merits of Christ's Death & Passion, possess & inherit ye Kingdom of Heaven, prepared for his Elect & Chosen; And my Body to be buried in a decent christian like manner at the Discretion of my Executors, And now for the Settling of my temporal Estate & Such Goods Chattels & Debts as it hath pleased God far above my Deserts to bestow upon me, I do order give & dispose the Same in Manner & Form following, that is to Say,

   First, I will that all those Debts & Duties as I owe in Right or Conscience to any Manner of person or persons whatsoever Shall be well & truly contented & paid or ordained to be paid within convenient time after my Decease by my Executors hereafter named.

   Item. I give & bequeath unto my well beloved Wife Abigail one half part of my Farm whereon I now live, Vizt Half the planting mowing and Pasture Lands and half the Orchard & half the Buildings thereon to be used & improved as She Shall think fit during her Widowhood I also give her one Yoke of Oxen & half my Cows.

   Item. I give & bequeath to my Son William Gowen all my Lands in Kittery lying on the Eastward Side of Stony Brook, and all the Right Title & Interest that I have or ought to have in any Lands lying on the Eastern Side of Said Brook to him the Said William Gowen during his natural Life, and after his Decease to his two Sons Vizt William & Nicholas in equal Halves to be divided between them, and the Same to descend from them to the next Heir Male of them & each of them respectively and successively to their Heirs Male in Fee Tail forever from Generation to Generation without any other or further Division.

   Item. I give & bequeath unto my Son patrick Gowen a Tract or parcel of Land containing about Ten Acres be it more or less being the Northeast Corner of my Farm whereon I now live bounded on the North by Iohn Heards Land and on the East by Rockey Hill Commons on the West by my Pasture Fence and extending Southward as far as to my Pasture Bars, and from Said Bars up the Hill as the Way or path goes and by the Same to ye Head line next the Commons, which I give to him in manner following Vizt.

   That it Shall be his own Estate during Life, and after his Decease it Shall be to his next Male Heir, and so to descend to the next Heir Male in his Line successively forever; and in Case of failure of Male Heirs in his Line, then The Same Shall descend to my Son James Gowen, and the next Heir Male in his Line from Generation to Generation Successively forever. Unless the Sd James will buy the Same of the Said Patrick then in Such Case Patrick may Sell to James, but to no other than Such as Shall have the Farm whereon I now live.

   Item. I give & bequeath to my Son James Gowen all my Farm whereon I now live (excepting the aforesd Tract of Land given to Patrick and saving my Wife's Dower as aforesd during Life) The Said Farm with the Buildings & appurtenances to him the Iames and to his next Heir Male lawfully begotten, and to descend from him to the next Heir Male in his line from Generation to Generation Successively forever without being divided. And in Case of Failure of Heirs Male in the Said James his Line then the Same Shall descend to the next Heir Male in Law in Feetail Successively forever; Only excepting & reserving the Use & Profits thereof to my Wife during the Minority of the Said James to be disposed of for Payment of Legacys as hereafter to be appointed.

   Item. I give & bequeath unto my three Sons William Patrick & James all my other Lands & Grants of Lands, and all my Rights in the Common & undivided Lands in Kittery & Berwick & in any place or places wheresoever to be equally divided between them to them the Said William Patrick & James their Heirs & assigns, forever.

   Item. I give & bequeath to my Wife Abigail the best Bed & Furniture.

   Item. I give & bequeath to my Son James that yoke of Oxen called his Oxen and half the Cows.

   Item. I give & bequeath to my Wife Abigail & my Son James all ye rest & residue of my Personal Estate of every kind & Quality to be for themselves and for the payment of my Debts and Such Legacies as I give in this my Will, as hereafter mentioned.

   Item. My Will is that my hond Mother Elizabeth Gowen widow Shall be maintained & comfortably Supported in my House & upon the Incomes of my Lands, during her natural Life, by my Wife and my Son James.

   Item. I give & bequeath unto my Daughter Abigail Thompson twenty pounds, and my Will is that my Son William (in Consideration of what I have given him in partnership with his two Brothers as mentioned before in this my Will) Shall pay the Sd twenty pounds to her in any valuable Goods or Lumber of the Produce of the Lands so given to him, and to be at a reasonable or Market price, And at the Market place convenient and within Ten Years after my Decease.

   Item. I give & bequeath unto my Daughter Elizabeth Hart twenty pounds, And my Will is that my Son Patrick (in Consideration of what I have given him in partnership with his two Brothers as mentioned before in this my Will) Shall pay the Said twenty pounds to her in any valuable Goods or Lumber of the produce of the Lands so given to him, and to be at a reasonable or Market price and at the Market place convenient and within Ten Years after my Decease.

   Item. I give & bequeath unto my Daughters Margaret Lord Ester Ross & Anne Thurla to each of them twenty pounds to be paid to them by my Wife Abigail & my Son James in Cattle or other moveable Goods the Produce of the Place where I live at a just Value & within Ten Years after my Decease.

   Item I do hereby nominate & appoint my loving Wife Abigail and my Sons William Gowen Patrick Gowen & James Gowen to be the Executors of this my last Will & Testament.

   In Witness whereof I have hereunto Set my Hand & Seal the Day & year before written.

Signed Sealed pronounced & de-
   clared by the Sd Nicholas
   Gowen to be his last Will &
   Testamt in presence of
   Saml Shorey
   Iohn Frost
   Ioseph Hodsdon
   Noah Emery
Nicholas Gowen (Seal)
   Probated 2 Jany. 1753.

Source: Maine Wills, 1640-1760 (Portland, Me., 1887), p. 686, citing Probate Office, 8, 218.

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