am posting a copy of the main portion of the 1721 Will of William Phillips (Sr.) Unfortunately, many researchers have used an Abstract of that will from a book by Timberlake which have led to erroneous assumptions regarding the sons of William and Mary Swann Phillips. The following was transcribed from a microfilm copy of the original which was recently located by Debra Anderson. The basic difference between the "Abstract" and the complete will is that the abstract fails so show that while some properties were willed in a normal manner and free to be disposed of as wanted by the legatee, others, possibly to ensure that the property stayed within the family for at least another generation, wass "entailed" This land could not be sold or disposed of by the legatee but only by his (or her) lawful heirs. If there were no heirs of the legatee it went to another sibling and if he had no heirs on to another etc. and finally down to a daughter if all the sons died without issue.
As will be shown at the end of this posting, one property was willed to Matthew and then in turn to Swann and then William and finally dau Mary (who married John Edwards). That porperty was sold in 1745 by John Edwards indicating that all three sons were dead and without issue. (Matthew was not mentioned in his mother's will and was presumably dead by then (1727). The last known record of william, Jr. was in 1738 when he sold the "Hooker" property he inheirtied from his father. That deed was signed by he and his wife SARAH(not a Harriett Horne).
Following the will is a quote from John Anderson Brayton's book on noted families of Surry and Isle of wight Counties. Brayton is a premminent genealogical researcher and author of 8 books on Colonial America.
"I William Phillips of Lawnes Creek parish in the County of Surry being of a reasonable Sound and disposing mind and memory do make this my Last Will and Testament in manner following Viz
First and Principally my Soul to God Almighty the father of Spirits trusting and firmly believing through the Merrits ---etc.--etc. -----
I Give and bequeath and dispose of as followeth)
Item- I Give and bequeath to my son John Phillips the Plantation wheron I now live which was given to my wife by her Father Mathew Swann.
Item- I give and bequeath to my Son William Phillips the Plantation wheron Simon Murphy lately lived which I purchased of James Briggs containing by estimation 300 Acres to him and the heirs of his body lawfully begotten for Ever and for want of such heirs I give my said Plantation aforesaid to my Son Swan Phillips and the heirs of his body Lawfully begotten for Ever and for want of such heirs I give my Plantation aforesaid to my Son Mathew Phillips and to the heirs of his body Lawfully begotten for Ever and if it should so happen that my Sons William, Swann and Mathew should die without such heirs that then I give my said Plantation aforesaid to my Daughter Anne and to the heirs of her body Lawfully begotten for Ever.
Item- I Give and bequeath to my Son William Phillips my Plantation upon the Cypress Swamp which I purchased of William Hooker Containing by estimation two hundred Acres and a Negro woman named Hannah to him and his heirs for Ever.
Item- I Give and bequeath to my son Swan Phillips my Plantation in the Isle of Wight County upon the Suchahanna branch and by me purchased by Mr. William Edwards and to him and his heirs for ever and my Negro boy called Abram to him and his heirs for Ever.
Item- I Give and bequeath to my Son Matthew Phillips my Plantation the Parcell of Land I purchased of Carter Crafford lying on the North Side my spring branch Northerly on Coll. Phillip Ludwells Land and from the head of my spring branch by a line of mark’d Trees to the Path which goes from rich neck to Chipoakes it being the Land which Mathew Swan gave to his Daughter Sarah and now wife to Carter Crafford to the heirs of his body Lawfully begotten for Ever and for want of such heirs I give and bequeath my said tract of land to my son Swan Phillips and to the heirs of his body Lawfully begotten for Ever and for want of such heirs to my Son William Phillips and the heirs of hois body Lawfully begotten for Ever and if it should happen that my Sons Mathew, Swann and William should dye without suv=sh heirs I Give my said parcel of Land aforesaid to my Daughter Mary and to the heirs of her body Lawfully begotten for Ever.
-------- Several bequests of money, furniture, slaves etc . follow the above—
Item- It is my will and desire that my son William enjoy the benefit of his own Labour and have his Estate delivered to him at the age of Sixteen years and that he shall take into his hands his Sister Annies Estate and that my Sons Mathew and Swann receive and enjoy and have the benefit of their Labour at Sixteen years of age and have their Estates delivered to them at the age of Eighteen years.
Item- I Give and bequeath all the rest of my Estate of what nature kind or property soever in Virginia or elsewhere to be Equally divided between my Loving Wife Mary and my four Sons and three Daughters and too hereby nominate, appoint and ordain my Loving Wife Mary and my two Sons William and Swann Executors of this my Last Will and testament In Testimony of all I have hereunto set my hand and Seal this 14th day of February 1720/21
Signed, Sealed published and Delivered
Declared to be the Last Will & Testm’t of the Subscribers
William (W) Phillips (Mark)"
From Brayton's Book
Matthew Phillips, the son of Willam and Mary Swann Phillips was born ca 1710, Surry Co.,VA Under the terms of his father’s 1721 will, Matthew would receive upon the death of his brothers William (Jr.) & Swann Phillips, a tract of 300 acres on Sunken marsh purchased of James Briggs. He also received the land purchased by his father from Carter Crafford on the North side of his Spring Branch bordering Col. Philip Ludwell. This was the “North half” of the Carter Patent (Inherited by Elizabeth Carter Swann from her father) and in turn willed to Sarah Swann Crafford by her father. This tract of 100 acres was sold to William Phillips, (Sr.) in 1707 by Carter and Sarah Swann Crafford. In case Matthew died without heirs the land would devolve first to brother Swann, then to brother William, then to sister Mary Phillips Edwards.
Matthew was not mentioned in the will of his mother, Mary Swann Phillips and we may conclude that he died sometime between the writing of his father’s will in 1721 and that of his mother in 1727, especially since there are no further land records for him in either Surry or Isle of Wight.
Land records will indicate the above 100 acre tract of land passed eventually to Mary Edwards, whose husband , then styled as a resident of Isle of Wight, sold the 100 acres to Thomas Binn.
The following deed pertains to the land which was originally purchased by William Phillips (Sr.) in 1708 from Carter and Sarah (Swann) Crafford. Sarah had inherited this half tract of land from her father Matthew Swann who had purchased it from Robert and Elizabeth (Carter) Crafford in 1684. This tract of land was entailed by William Phillips (Sr.) first to the heirs of Swann Phillips, then to the heirs of his brother William Phillips and finally to daughter Mary and the heirs of her body. This means of course that William Phillips, Jr. had no children.
Surry co.,VA Deed Book 4 p 285 dated and Rec. 17 April 1745
John Edwards of Isle of Wight Co., VA to Thomas Binn of Surry Co., 30 Pounds Current Money, 100A in Southwark Parish bounded by Col Ludwell, the Cartpath that leads to Piney Road and William Holt.
Signed JOHN EDWARDS
I have the full text of the above William Phillips 1720/21 will if any one wants a copy. (Also have a copy of the abstract of the 1779 Southampton Co. will of the John Phillips who married Hannah Fort and who IS NOT the John who was son of William , Sr. above.) Further, it is pretty clear from the tihting records of Surry County 1668 - 1703 that William (who m.Mary Swann) was born ca 1671 (appears in tithing list 1687 (age 16)and was son of John and Ruth Emery/Amory Phillips. John, Wm.'s father, died in 1697 or 98 as Ruth is a widow in the 1699 list. The first time Wm. appears in his own Household is in 1697.