Will of Evert Wendell, Jr. - 1690

In the name of the Lord, Amen. Know all men whom it may concern that on the twenty-fourth of November, at New Albany, in the year sixteen hundred and ninety, being in the second year of the reign of William and Mary, king and queen of Great Britain, the worthy Mr. Evert Wendel, trader residing here, hale and sound of body, walking and standing, having the full use and possession of his mind, memory and speech as outwardly appears, considering the reality of life and the unforeseen hour of death, temporal effects granted him by Almighty God, and that without the persuasion, inducement or misleading of anyone, but of his own free will and motion, commending first and foremost his soul to the gracious keeping of the Most High, and his body to a Christian burial, hereby nominated, constitutes and appoints his respected wife Elizabeth his sole and universal heir of all his estate and goods, lying here in New York, in England, Holland, or elsewhere, as well real as personal, movable as unmovable, nothing whatsoever reserved and excepted[.]

However it may be named; not willing that she shall be called upon to deliver an inventory or statement to either child or children by them procreated, to wit, Susanna, Robert, Ephriam, the first aged about nine years, the second about seven and the third two years, or by those likewise whom they may hereafter procreate together, or during their minority by blood relations, guardians, the honorable orphan masters, constables, the court of this city and county or any high or low court or judge, or any other authority of whatsoever nature or quality it may be, much less to give security or bond, inasmuch as he although excludes and debars the same, notwithstanding certain laws, customs or custom may otherwise direct, which laws and usage's he desires shall herein be inapplicable and of no effect, as he appoints his aforesaid wife executrix and administratrix of the whole of his aforesaid estate and goods during the time of her widowhood.

But, if she again marries, he wills that the just half of his estate (as it then be found) shall be set aside for the behoof of the child or children then surviving; and in order that all things may be arranged orderly the testator appoints as guardians of his child or children his brother Mr. Johannes Wendel and Mr. Jan Herverdingh, residing at New York, and whatever she may agree upon with them shall be valid under proper security and bond that neither her nor the child's or children's just half shall diminish all things.

Likewise, the testator deliberately binds himself, in case he should marry again after his aforesaid wife's death, to set aside a like and similar portion for the behoof of his child or children, over which the aforesaid guardians, shall have the same supervision and as much to say as if the testator had died first and his wife had entered again into the married, state, with the express understanding that the eldest son shall first of all receive four pounds money of this province, and then all the children shall share a like; and if a minor shall die, his portion shall be shared equally by the other child or children;

All that is hereinbefore written the testator declares to be his testamentary disposition and last will, which he desires to have effect from the least to the weightiest article, whether as testament, codicil, gift in anticipation of death or among the living, or any other bequest of whatever name and nature; notwithstanding that all the formalities of the laws of this government may not be herein observed, desiring that the utmost benefit may be received herefrom; and in witness of the truth hereof he has signed and sealed this with his own hand on the 24th of November 1690, at New Albany as aforesaid.


Will printed in Abstract of Wills volume 4, pp. 143-45. Spellings and punctuation retained. Paragraphing supplied to ease the pain of reading a verbose legal document no doubt formed by an obviously unredeemed seventeenth-century pettifogger!

Transformed by JP

Home | Site Index | Navigation | Email | New York State Museum

first posted: 2/10/03