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Erie County (PA) Genealogy

Last Will of William Francis

Contributed by Cheryl Bills

The material below has been transcribed and submitted by site visitor Cheryl Bills. It is the Last Will and Testament of William Francis of Girard Township who died in early 1878. Any comments or questions concerning this material may be sent directly to Cheryl Bills.


No. 4058

Estate of William Francis

B-680 Application for Letters of Administration

Estate of Wm Francis, deceased. Filed Feb 12, 1878

Erie County

Personally came R. N. Francis who being duly sworn according to law doth depose and say that Wm Francis deceased, died testate on the 5th day of February A.D. 1878 at 11 o’clock p.m. and at the time of his decease he was a resident of the County of Erie residing in the Township of Girard, County of Erie, and State of Pennsylvania.

Sworn and subscribed before me this

12th day of Feb A.D. 1878

Daniel Long, Register                                                                                    R. N. Francis

Erie County

Girard, Erie County, PA

In consequence of ill health I decline to act as the Executor of the will and estate of Wm Francis, dec. Stated this 19th day of Feb 1878.

                                                                                                            James McClelland 

You, Ransom N. Francis do swear that as Executor named in the last will and testament (the other executor being deleted) of William Francis, deceased, you will and truly administer the goods and chattels, rights and credits of the said deceased, according to law, and diligently and faithfully regard, and well and truly comply with the provisions of the law relating to collateral inheritances.

Sworn and subscribed before me this 12th day of February A.D. 1878.

                                                                                                            R.N. Francis

Daniel Long, Register




William Francis, Dec’d

Registered Feb 12th, 1878

Will Book F page 140

Daniel Long, Register

Tax and Fees Paid $6.50

In view of the uncertainty of life and my advanced age, I, William Francis, of the township of Girard in the county of Erie do make and ordain this my last will and testament hereby revoking and making null and void all other wills by me at any time heretofore made.

And first I direct that all of my just debts, funeral expenses, and expenses of settling my estate be fully paid.

I give and bequeath to my beloved wife, Damaris Francis, the entire use and control of all my property, real, personal, and mixed during the full time of her natural life (with the understanding that one half of all my personal property belongs to my son, Ransom N. Francis, by arrangement and agreement heretofore made with him and to which arrangement the above bequest to my wife is subject.) My said wife to have whatsoever money and government bonds I may have after my funeral charges are paid.

And as ... all my real estate which consists of about ninety-one acres and a home in which I reside in Girard township and about fifty-two acres and allowance in Franklin township adjoining lands of Len ??Levi Howard and others Subject to the life of estate of my said wife above given.

I give, devise, and bequeath unto my son, Ransom N. Francis, with the understanding that he is to take care of and support myself and my said wife, during both of our natural lives and that he pays the following children to wit:

Samuel Francis

Dorcas, wife of Hezekiah Coburn

David B. Francis

Walter Francis

Hannah, wife of Ivory Hawkins

Russel Francis

Melvina, wife of William Gordon

Cynthia, wife of John Gordon

Shepherd Francis

The sum of two hundred and seventy-six dollars and twenty-five cents each. To each of the same, his or her, or their heirs and assigns forever to be paid to them within five years after the decease of myself and my said wife

And as to all of my personal property which may be remaining after the death of myself and my said wife, I give to my son

William Francis          fifty dollars; to my son,

Stephen Francis          seventy-five dollars

The balance of said personal property to be divided equally between all my children named in this will, except that my son Ransom N. Shall have twice as much as either of the other children.

And lastly, I nominate and appoint my said son, Ransom N. Francis and James McClelland to be the executors of this my last will and testament and I further direct that the sum of one hundred and seventy-five dollars which I advanced to my son Russel Francis shall be taken out of from the above sum willed to him and the sum of one hundred dollars which I advanced to my daughter, Cynthia, I direct shall in like manner be deducted from the above sum willed to her.

                                                                                                                                    Wm Francis

Signed, Sealed and Delivered

by the above William Francis

to be his last will and testament

in the presence of us this 7th

day of October 1867 and at

his bequest we have heretofore

subscribed our names as


            C.F. Rockwell

            Henry Ball

Erie County

This day before me, Daniel Long, Register for the Probate of Wills and Granting Letters of Administration, in and for the County aforesaid, personally came C.F. Rockwell and Henry Ball the subscribing witnesses to the annexed will, who being duly sworn according to law that they were present and saw and heard Wm Francis pronounce and declare the foregoing instrument of writing to be and as and for his last will and testament, and that at the time of so doing, he was of sound mind, memory, and understanding, to the best of their knowledge and belief.

Sworn and subscribed before me this 12th day of Feb. A.D. 1878.                Henry Ball

                                                                                                                        C.F. Rockwell

Daniel Long, Register

Erie County, Pa,

This day, before me, Henry Ball, Justice of the Peace, for said County, personally came J.E. Smith and Lyman Smith and J.P. Silverthorn who being duly sworn according to law, do depose and say that at the request of the Executor of William Francis, late of Said County, deceased, they will well and truly, and without prejudice or partiality, value and appraise the goods, chattels and credits which were of the said deceased, as set forth in the inventory hereunto annexed, and in all respects perform their duties as such appraisers to the best of their skill and judgment.

                                                                                                J. E. Smith

                                                                                                J. P. Silverthorn

                                                                                                Lyman Smith

Sworn and subscribed to me this

28th day of February A.D. 1878

Henry Ball





of the Estate of

William Francis, deceased

Filed March 7, 1878











A true and perfect inventory and just appraisement of all and singular goods and chattels, rights and credits which were of William Francis, late of Girard in the county of Erie, Pennsylvania, at the time of his death, to-wit:


Inventory and Appraisement of the Personal Property.


One Work Horse 


One four year old colt


Four cows


Four calves


Interest in stock wintered for L. Smith


Five head young cattle


Seven sheep


A quantity of corn in ear


A quantity of oats

 8.12 ½

A quantity of Timothy seed


A quantity of buckwheat


Sundry’s in Corne House


One Lumber Waggon


One Skeleton Waggon


One pair Bobsleighs


Contence of back yard Lumber, Kettle, etc.

 4.62 ½

Two Piggs


Eight Hens


Contents of tool House Plows dragg etc.


One Spring Waggon


Forks, spools, hoes and contents of horse barn


One set double harnesses


One Snkez (?) Horse Rake


One Snkez (?) Cultivator


One quantity straw


Contents of shop


Robes, Blankets, etc.


One mowing machine


One yoke oxen


Thirteen 3/4 ton hay


One wood machine


Contents of well shed


Quantity of pork


Quantity of potatoes


Sundrys in Cellar

   2.62 ½

Contents of close room


One Beaureau

  1.62 ½

One Bedroom Set


One Bedroom Set

10.18 ½

One Bedroom Set


Contents of pantry


Contents of kitchen, stove, etc. 

 15.12 ½

One Stove, pipe, etc.


Contents of chamber


A quantity of wheat









We, the undersigned, do hereby certify that the aforegoing is a correct inventory of the property as appraised by us.


Witness our hands and seals this 28th day of February A.D. 1878


                                                                                    J. E. Smith

                                                                                    J. P. Silverthorn

                                                                                    Lyman Smith





Account of

Ransom N. Francis

Executor of

William Francis, Deceased

Filed May 8, 1880

Fees, $8.00 paid

Account of Ransom N. Francis, Executor of the last will and testament of William Francis late of Girard Township of Erie County.


Accountant charges himself as follows to wit:


Accountant and decedent were the joint-owners at the death of Wm Francis of certain personal property appraised at the sum of $1113.88. There were certain debts jointly incurred by accountant and decedent in his life time which accountant as surviving owner or partner has been compelled to pay and for which accountant claims credit to wit-----


Whole amount at which partnership property was appraised                         $1113.88


Amount paid by accountant as surviving partner to wit:

Paid in November                   1:________________                          2.45

                                                2. John Vith                                        5.37

                                                3. W. C. Batcheler                              6.43

                                                4. Henry Box                                      25.75

                                                5. C. F. Rockwell                               217.45

                                                6. J. Guilliford & Co                           9.61

                                                7. A. R. Smith                                     50.27

                                                8. J. Bender & Co                               3.00

                                                9. M. Randall & Co.                           1.90

                                                10. S. G. Francis                                  3.30

                                                11. P.D. Flower                                   9.50

                                                12. Jacob Kibbler                                2.00

                                                13. D.B. Francis                                  15.43

                                                14. Minick VanBushkirk                     6.65

                                                15. VanCamp & Godfrey                    1.90

                                                16. Lyman Smith                                 50.00

                                                17. Jos. Barker                                     65.61

                                                18. Smith Woolsey                              22.90

                                                19. C. C. Clark                                     10.00




Amount left after payment of debts                                                                 604.44

One half of which belongs to decedents estate                                                $302.22





Accountant asks allowances for the following payment made on account of paid estate.




            Paid Daniel Long, Register                            No. 201            6.50

            Paid J. P. Silverthorn estate appraisers            211            3.00

            Paid Henry Ball expenses proving will           221            3.00

            Paid Frank Watson                                          231            2.00

            Paid Josiah Nece (?) Coffin                            241            42.00

            H. D. Myers company account which was

            submitted from statement on the first pages

            of this account the sum of $4.09

            One half of which charged to decedents estate 251            2.04

            Accountant has expended in traveling expenses

            in settlement of estate &                                                3.25

            Accountant charges for services                                              27.84

            Paid J. E. & F. Woodruff                                 261             10.00

            Paid John C, Kent to .... this account               Paid               8.00


Accountant asks allowances for the following amounts paid to legates under the will.


            Paid:   Stephen Francis                                   271              75.00

                        William Francis                                   28..              50.00

                        R. N. Francis assignee of the interests

                        of Russel Francis, Shepherd Francis,

                        M. Gordon, and Cynthia M. Gordon

                        in the personal estate of the decedent  291              21.08

            Samuel Francis, his interest in personal estate 301              5.28

            David B. Francis, “ ”                      311              5.28

            Stephen Francis “ ”                     321              5.28

            Walter Francis “ ” 331               5.28

            Wm Francis “ ” 341               5.28

            Hannah Hawkins “ ” 351               5.28

            Dorcas Coburn “ ”                      361              5.28

            R.N. Francis his share under the will of the

            decedent of personal estate                              37                10.55






Statement of payments and releases made to the accountant of the legacies specifically charged upon the Real Estate devised to the accountant.



Paid                Samuel Francis                                   38                    276.25

                        Dorcas Francis                                    39                    276.25

                        David B. Francis                                 40                    276.25

                        Walter Francis                                    41                    276.25

                        Hannah Hawkins                                42                    276.25

                        Russell Francis                                   43                    276.25

                        Melvina Gordon                                 44                    276.25

                        Cynthia Gordon                                  45                    276.25

                        Sheppard Francis                                46                    276.25




Erie County


This day, before me, John C. Hilton, Register for the Probate of Wills and granting Letters of Administration in and for the County aforesaid, personally cane Ransom N. Francis the above named Executor of William Francis’s dec’d, who being duly sworn according to the law, doth depose and say that the account as above stated is just and true, to the best of his knowledge and belief.


                                                                                                R. N. Francis

Sworn and subscribed this 8th day of May, A.D. 1880


                                                                                          John C. Hilton, Register







This page was originally created on  Thursday, January 20, 2005 .

This page was last updated on  Saturday, February 3, 2007 .

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