I John Ball of Russell County and State of Virginia, being sound in mind and of disposing memory, though weak in body and being desirous of dividing and disposing of what wordly estate it hath pleased God to entrust me with I make and and publish this my last will and testament revoking & making void all other heretofore made by me.
1st. I desire that after my death that I be decently buried according to the custom of the country and that my funeral expenses be paid, also all my just debts be paid as soon after my death as possible.
2nd. I desire that my wife Polly keep her house and all her household & kitchen furniture during her natural life and have her support of off my lands not hereafter directed to be sold, that is she is to have sufficiency to support her decent by way of said land during her natural life, and as to the division I desire to make among my several heirs & children and as I have given some of my children some & others little. I do desire to divide the balance of my Estate in such manner to be near equal or at least seemeth right to me.
3rd. I give to my two daughters Polly & Louisa a home at my house with my wife as long as they remain single then to remain there if it is agreeable with my said wife I do also give to them all their bedding, clothing, saddle, which I have given them & 2 cows each & 1 good horse each and the sum of three hundred and fifty dollars worth of land each to be laid off near and around the house where I now live.
4th. I give to my two sons Moses & Jessee the sum of three hundred and fifty dollars each in land to be laid off where they are living and adjoining them.
5th. I give to my daughter Nancy Crabtree the sum of two hundred dollars in money.
6th. I give to my son John T. Ball the sum of two hundred dollars in land or money as he may chose.
7th. I give to my daughter Rebecca Tunnell the sum of one hundred dollars in money & to her son John, the sum of twenty dollars.
8th. I give to the 5 children of my son George the sum of one hundred dollars.
9th. I give to my grandson John the son of my son Moses the sum of twenty five dollars.
10th. I give to my grandson Robert S. Ball his horse and saddle of which I have given him, if he stays with me till he is 18 years old which will be on the 29th day of August next and also the sum of two hundred dollars if he stays till he is 21 years old & if not in proportion for the time he stays from 18-21 he may take the said two hundred dollars in money or land as he may chose.
11th. And for the purpose of enabling my Executor to comply with my will, I direct that my said Executor shall sell all of my property to the highest bidder, as is common, collect all my debts not otherwise disposed of and I direct my said Executor to buy and pay for from Warders, the land where my son Jessee lives, and also the land lying North of my land to the top of the ridge, which land is to belong to my Estate as my other land, & which is partly disposed of, which land is to pay for out of the 1st money that may come into his hands, belonging to my said estate, and further for the purpose of enabling him to pay off these sums together with all these gifts that I have directed to be paid, if there should not be enough money, enough to pay all money claims & gifts, I direct my said Executor to see and convey privately or publicly as may seem best, such amounts of land of off the west end of my land as will be sufficient to pay of all sums remaining all paid.
12th. I direct that all the rest of my Estate, both real and personal together with all that may remain in the hands of my Executor, shall be equally divided among my several children & heirs except my son James & my son William for as I have heretofore given them full share, as I think I shall give them no more at all.
13th. I direct that my son John T. Ball and Thomas W. Davis is to lay off the lots of land to each heir given and also any partition of land that may have to be sold, if the said heirs does not all agree on the lots themselves, and I hereby constitute and appoint my son John T. Ball my Executor to this my last will and testament hoping that he may faithfully discharge his duties in Witness of this my last will and testament I the said John Ball set my hand and seal this the 18th day of March 1854.
John Ball (Seal)
In the presence of attest:
Thomas W. Davis
At a Court held for Russell County at the Courthouse on the 8th day of September 1863. The last will & testament of John Ball deceased was this day produced in court, and proven by the oath of Thomas W. Davis one of the subscribing witnesses thereto.
Teste: G.R. Cowan C.C.
At a Court held for Russell County at the Courthouse on the 6th day of October 1863. The last will and testament of John Ball deceased was again produced in court and futher proved by the oath of Abner Wilson one of the subscribing witnesses thereto and ordered to be recorded.
Teste: G.R. Cowan C.C.