Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Tombstone Tuesday: Edward Dorsey Cole





Edward Dorsey Cole, the son of Horace and Martha A. Cole, was born in Prince William County on October 10, 1843.  He lived in the county until he was 18 years of age, when he joined the 15th Virginia Cavalry during the Civil War.  He eventually settled in Fredericksburg, Virginia and became a prominent citizen there.

Here's a classic example of a home town boy making good.   

Fredericksburg Daily Star
25 August 1917, pg. 3, col. 3

COL. E. D. COLE DEAD - Passed Away Suddenly at buffalo Lithia Springs.  Prominent Citizen and Confederate Veteran - Body Will Be Brought Here Sunday.  Col. Edward Dorsey Cole, one of Fredericksburg's most prominent and progressive citizens, died at Buffalo Lithia Springs, Saturday at noon, from an attack of acute indigestion and apoplexy, aged 74 years.  The deceased was born in Prince William county, where he lived until he was 18 years old, his parents being Mr. Horace Cole and Mrs. Martha A. Cole.  At 18 he entered the Confederate army in 15th regiment Va. Cavalry.  Later he was detailed as a courier for Gen. J. E. B. Stuart until the latter's death, when he joined Col. John S. Mosby's command, and remained with it until the end of the war.  After the war Col. Cole came to Fredericksburg and secured employment with Southern Express Company.  He married his cousin, Miss Alice Cole, daughter of the late Counsellor Cole, after which he returned to Prince William and engaged in farming for two years. He then returned to Fredericksburg and formed a co-partnership with Mr. Richard G. Swift in produce business at the stand on Commerce Street which he now owns and is occupied by the firm of E. L. Jones.  This firm continued until the death of Mr. Swift when it was dissolved and Col. Cole conducted the business of selling lumber and building supplies under the firm style of E. D. Cole most successfully for over 40 years and from which he retired some three years ago.  Col. Cole was ever active in every movement that he thought tended to the advancement of Fredericksburg.  He served continuously in the City Council for 28 years and was its president for four years.  He was a deacon in the Baptist church, chairman of the public property committee of the church and one of its most efficient working members.  He had been president of the Fair Society, and was a director at the time of his death, a State proxy of the R., F. & P.R.R. for years and a stockholder in the Princess Anne Hotel and other institutions looking to building up of the city.  Col. Cole as a vice-president and a director of the Farmers and Merchants State Bank.  He has been remarkably successful all through his career and leaves a large estate.  Col. Cole will be greatly missed in the community.  The deceased is survived by his wife, Mrs. Alice Cole, and by two daughters, Mrs. W. L. Brannan and Mrs. J. B. Rawlings.  The body will be brought here Sunday when the funeral arrangements will be made.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Deeds in Prince William County

Did you know that deeds and other land records for PWCo are complete from 1865 to the present day?  They are available at the office of the Clerk of the Circuit Court at the PWCo Judicial Center (Room 306, 9311 Lee Avenue, Manassas, Virginia 20110).

Researching land records before 1865, however, can be a bit tricky.  The Clerk's Office in Brentsville was looted and vandalized during the Civil War.  From 1731 until 1865, approximately 15 deed books are known to be missing and 11 others have pages that are damaged or missing entirely.

RELIC has copies of surviving deeds on microfilm.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Will: William Tyler Senior


WILLIAM TYLER SENIOR Will
Prince William County Will Book L., pg. 9
14 Sep 1816; proved 04 Nov 1816

I WILLIAM TYLER SENIOR of the county of Prince William do make the following my last will and testament as follows.  It is my will and desire that my estate consisting of lands, negroes & stock should be kept together and worked and managed as it has been heretofore by myself for the term of six years from the first day of next January and the proceeds of the crops to be applied to the payment of all my just debts & the support and education of my children.  It is my desire that my Executors herein after named or their survivors shall keep regular accounts for what each child has from the estate towards their board, cloathing and education and at the general distribution to let each childs account be deducted out of their part of my estate, if at the expiration of the above mentioned six years my executors or a majority of them should think it more for the interest of the estate for it to be kept still longer together.  I hereby empower them to keep it together and undivided for the further space of two years longer and then to divide it equally among my children living at the time, and if any of my said children should marry & die before the division of the estate & leaves children, that their child or children should have their father or mothers part.  It is further my will intention and desire that my executors should have full power and authority to sell the whole or part of either of the two tracts of land I purchased of ELISHA EVANS, and the Estate of the late RICHARD BRENT on cedar run if they in their judgment should think it for the advantage of my children or if my debts should make it necessary at any time before the general division of my property takes place; when the period arrives which my executors fixes on for a division of my property among my children, it is my will and desire that the negroes should be equally divided, and that they my executors shall use their discretion and judgment in the division of the lands that then belongs to the estate (that is to say) they may either lay off in equal proportions or sell them for the best price they can get and divide the money among my children or their heirs.  It is also my will & intention that when the general division of my property takes place that the whole of the stock & crop then on the estate should be sold and the proceeds equally divided as the other property is divided.  It is also my will and desire that if at any time before the division takes place my executors or a majority of them shall have full power to purchase any property either real or personal which they may think will benefit the estate, and any property so purchased is to be considered in the same situation as the property I die possessed of and lastly I constitute and appoint my friend JOHN LINTON, WILLIAM LINTON, WILLIAM TYLER, JUNR., & JOHN WEBB TYLER executors to this my last will.  It is my will and desire that the above named JOHN LINTON should be the principal and governing executor and his advise to be followed by the other executors.  In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand & affixed my seal this 14th day of September 1816.

WM. TYLER  {seal}

Signed, sealed & acknowledged in presence of
NATH. GRAY, JAMES W. WALLACE, GUSTAVUS B. TYLER

This my codicil to my will.  It is my wish and desire that my Executors furnish my servant JAMES with a horse the value of fifty dollars and that he be annually decently dressed.  It is also my wish and desire that my racing jockey club engagements be this fall complied with and forever after dissolved.  September the 26, 1816.

WM. TYLER

Witness,
JAMES W. WALLACE, GEO. G. TYLER

At a Court of Quarterly Sessions held for Prince William County Nov. 6, 1816.

This last will and testament of WM. TYLER decd. was returned to the Court and being proved by the oath of GUSTAVUS B. TYLER is ordered to be certified, and at a Court held by adjournment for Prince William County Decembr. 3rd 1816, this last will and testament of WM. TYLER decd. was fully proved by the oaths of NATHANIAL GRAY and JAMES W. WALLACE and ordered to be recorded.  And on the same day a codicil to the Court in the last will and testament of the said WILLIAM TYLER decd. was presented to the court and being proved by the oath of JAMES W. WALLACE is ordered to be recorded, and WILLIAM LINGON one of the Exors. Named in the last will and testament of WM. TYLER decd. came into court and made oath to sd. Will and codicil thereto and having taken the oath of an Exor. and performed what is usual in such case certificate is granted him for obtaining a probate thereof in due form/

Teste, PHIL. D. DAWE

Online Resources: Land Records


The Prince William County Clerk of Circuit Court Land Records Management System (LRMS) is an online database to help the general public locate a recorded document from a computer terminal.  It's a great option for anyone who might not otherwise be able to visit the Courthouse in person.

Searching the index is free, but if the user wants to view or print a document there is a fee of $0.50 per image and an Internet Convenience Fee of $2.00 at the time of purchase.  (If you accidentally view/print the wrong image, you will still be charged the fee.  There is no refund.)
I've found the LRMS to be quite helpful in surname searches or when I don't have the book/page number of a Deed that I'm looking for.

Indexes and Images available on LRMS for Prince William County and the cities of Manassas and Manassas Park include, but are not limited to:

Deeds and Related Land Records - Indexes and images from Jan. 1, 1918 to present.

Fiduciaries (Wills, Probate, List of Heirs) - Indexes and images from Jan. 3, 1981 to present.

Marriage licenses – Indexes only from Jan. 1, 1981 to present.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Event: Researching Land Titles

What:  Researching Land Titles and the History of your Home, given by Don Wilson of RELIC

Where:  Brentsville Courthouse Historic Center

When:  Saturday, June 18th at 1:00 pm

FREE!

For anyone interested in learning more about their property, with tips on where and how to look for information.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Will: Thomas Mount

Here's yet another example of why Chancery cases are a rich source of genealogical/historical information.  The following Will of Thomas Mount is copied in Fauquier County, VA's Chancery Case No. 1836-013 (online at the Library of Virginia Chancery Collection).  According to the staff at RELIC, this Will does NOT appear on the Prince William County Will Indexes!



Will of Thomas Mount
Prince William County, VA
No Will Book known
Copied in Fauquier County, VA Chancery Case 1836-013 (LVA)

I Thomas C. Mount of County of Prince William being of sound mind but infirm health do make this my last will and testament.  I desire that all my just debts be paid out of my Estate and the balance both real and personal I give to my sister Elizabeth W. G. Mount and I do also appoint Elizabeth W. G. Mount, Executrix of my Estate this 8th day of January 1828.

Thos. C. Mount

At a Court held for P.Wm. County this 1st day of September 1828.  This last will and testament of Thos. C. Mount, decd., was presented to the Court and it appearing to the Court, from their inspection and the evidence of two witnesses that the same will is in the hand writing of the said Thomas C. Mount, said will is admitted to record, and Elizabeth W. G. Mount the Executrix named in the last will and testament of Thos. C. Mount, decd. Came into Court and made oath to the same as according to law, and having taken the oath of an Executrix and performing what is usual in such cases Certificate is granted her for obtaining a probate thereof in due form.

Teste.
P. D. Dawe

A Copy
Teste.
P. D. Dawe

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Tombstone Tuesday: Jane (Milstead?) Cole

Tombstone Tuesday is an ongoing series inspired by Geneabloggers.com that I thought might be a nice addition to this blog.  


Our Beloved
Mother
JANE COLE
Born 
In Prince Wm. Co. Va.
March 18, 1818
Died
May 16, 1890
aged 74 years, 1 month, and 28 days

Jane Cole is my 3rd great-grandmother.  She married Lawrence Cole, a prominent landowner in Independent Hill, sometime before 1835.  I have yet to find the details of their marriage and am uncertain of her maiden name, but she is listed as "Jane Milstead" on the death record of her son, James Lawrence Cole, who died in Prince William County in 1914.

Jane (Milstead?) Cole is buried in the family cemetery beside her husband on Joplin Road in Independent Hill, VA.

Will: Mary Mount

MARY MOUNT Will
Prince William County Will Book M, p. 499
October 4, 1826; Probate July 2, 1827

I Mary Mount of the County of Prince William and State of Virginia being in delicate health and being advised by my Physicians that it is important to my health to visit the southern country and whereas owing to the peculiar manner in which my Father William Mount devised his Estate to his children it is doubtful whether my Brother Thomas C. Mount administrator of my Father's Estate will be justified advancing me a sufficient quantity of money to carry me to the southern country and whereas also William Byrne owe the securities of my brother by reason of such an act may become liable as security of my brother for such malfeasance as administrator.  Now I Mary Mount, being anxious to secure said William Byrne against such liability as also to return to my brother Thomas C. Mount any money he may advance to carry me to the south do make this my last will and testament in manner and form following that is to say  I give to William Byrne of Fauquier County State of Virginia all my rights title and interest in and to the Personal Estate devised by my Father William Mount to secure him against any liability as the security of my brother Thomas C. Mount and if by reason of any malfeasance of my brother as administrator of my Father it should take my brothers interest in my Father's Estate and my portion of the personal property also to make William Byrne safe as security aforesaid it is my will and desire that he should have it, but if he the said William Byrne should not suffer by reason of his being security as aforesaid or if his hability should not consume the whole of my interest in order to save him harmless as security aforesaid, then it is my will and desire that my brother Thomas C. Mount should have as much of my estate as will satisfy him for the amount advanced to carry me to the south and the balance of my estate if any there should be after indemnifying said William Byrne as security and my brother Thomas C. Mount for the advancements made to me I desire may be given equally to all my brothers and sisters.  In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and affixed my seal this 4th day of October in the year of our Lord Eighteen hundred and Twenty six.

Mary Mount {seal}

Signed and sealed and Published as the last will and testament of Mary Mount in presence of us,
Thomas Foster,
Charles Hunton

At a court held for Prince William County July 2nd 1827.  This last will and testament of Mary Mount deceased was presented to the Court and being proved by the oaths of Thomas Foster, and Charles Hunton, is admitted to record.

Teste. P. D. Dawe

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Website: LDS Research Wiki

In addition to being a marvelous site offering access to free information, Familysearch.org now offers an excellent research wiki.  Their PWCo Wiki includes links to resources organized by categories and subcategories, very similar to the popular (and most excellent) Cyndislist.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Prince William County GenWeb

The Prince William County GenWeb page has a new look and a new coordinator, Ray Gurganus. 

It is a part of the US GenWeb Project which is run by volunteers and offers genealogical information free of charge.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Will: Thomas Thornton

THOMAS THORNTON Will
Prince William County Will Book L, pg. 48
07 Jun 1817; proved 07 Jul 1817

In the name of the most high, amen, I THOMAS THORNTON do make this my last will and testament hereby revoking and annulling every other disposition of my property.  Item I devise and bequeath all my real and personal estate of what kind soever, unto my beloved wife JANE CARR THORNTON to be held and enjoyed during her natural life, and after her death my said estate of whatever kind to be equally divided between my sons THOMAS THORNTON and JAMES B. C. P. THORNTON, to have and to hold to them and their heirs forever; It is my desire that THOMAS THORNTON my son may be permitted to take out letters of administration upon my estate without giving bond and security as the Law directs whom I hereby constitute my sole executor of this my last will and testament.  In testimony of which I have hereunto set my hand and affixed my seal this 7th of Jun 1817.

THOS. THORNTON  {seal}

Signed and seal in the presence of
WM. HEWEITT, GEO. SMITH, ZEBULOW HANKEY, ROB GRAHAM

At a Court held for Prince William County July 7th 1817.  This last will and testament of THOS. THORNTON decd. was presented to the Court and being proved by the oaths of ZEBULON HANKEY and ROB. GRAHAM is ordered to be recorded, and THOMAS THORNTON the Exor. named in the last will and testament of THOS. THORNTON decd. came into Court and made oath to the same according to Law and having taken the oath of an Exor. and performed what is usual in such cases certificate is granted him for obtaining a probate thereof in due form.

Teste, PHIL. D. DAWE