Wills of the Biggs Family

This page revised 7/17/2001

Richard Bachelor of Lower Norfolk County in ye Southerne branch of Eliz. River... Book 4, f.128, dtd 12 Mch. 1660-1, proved 17 Oct 1682 by Charles Shaw & Biggs...eldest sone John Bachelor...sone Joseph...sone Richard...sone Edward...Wife Ann... daughter Alice... daughter Edy...Charles Shaw... Mathew Caswell...wife Ann Bachelor Extx...Wit: Francis Sayer, Thomas Bigg. By mk., Charles Shaw, by mke...s/Richard Bachelor & Seale [much abbreviated abstract}. (McINTOSH, Brief Abstarct of Lower Norfolk County and Norfolk County Wills, 1637-1710, passim p.84)

Jabez Bigg... Book 5, f.188... dtd. 18 Sept. 1691, proved 17 Jan. 1692/3 by George Whidby & Jno. Jenner... 15 Mch. 1792/3 by Elizabeth Whidby...my body to the ground to bee buried at ye descresion of my father...my Exec... my ffather John Bigg Senr. Both posonall & real...my land...my whole estate...Wit: Thomas Mercer, the mark of George Whidby. John Jennet, his mark. Elizabeth Whidby, her mark. Dorthy Bigg, her mark.. Jabez Bigg and seale. Mark (McINTOSH, Brief Abstarct of Lower Norfolk County and Norfolk County Wills, 1637-1710, passim p.140)

WILL OF JAMES BIGGS 1767
Signed 9/8/1767, proved Dec 1768, Son John BIGGS, son James BIGGS. Wife Berther BIGGS (BERTHA FANSHAW) Children Elizabeth LEGGETT, Eleanor BIGGS, William BIGGS, Robert BIGGS, Caleb BIGGS, Davis BIGGS, Amariah BIGGS.
"I give and bequeath to my well beloved wife, BETHER BIGGS one mare. I also leave her the use of all the rest of my estate during her life or widowhood, and then to be equally divided amongst the rest of my children." Wife BERTHER BIGGS to be whole and sole executrix. Witnessed by William BIGGS (his mark), RICHARD FANSHAW (his mark) and Eleanor BIGGS (her mark) (p45 of Currituck NC Will Book 1)

WILL OF JAMES BIGGS, Signed 6/24/1789 Martin Co Will Book I, pg 152
In the name of God, Amen.
I, JAMES BIGGS, of the Co of Martin and State of NC, being in perfect mind and memory, but very sick, and knowing that it is appointed for man once to die, do give and recommend my soul into the hands of God that gave it, and my body to be buried in a decent Christian manner at the discretion of my executors, and, as touching these worldly things that it hath pleased God to bless me with in this life, I give, dismiss and dispose of the same in the following manner and form:
Item, I lend unto my loving wife, JEMIMA BIGGS, during her natural life and widowhood all the whole of my estate, for the use of her and my children and at the death or marriage of my wife for the whole of my moveable estate to be equally divided between the whole of my children.
Item, I give and bequeath unto my daughter ELIZABETH BIGGS 75 acres of land lying in the Co of Martin on the north side of the Carter's Branch and 70 acres of land in the fork of the Bear Grass Swamp, likewise 133 acres joining of Reddick's line, to her and her heirs forever.
Item, I give unto my daughter MARTHA BIGGS 95 acres of land in the county aforesaid, beginning at a pine near WILLIAM BIGGS' fence, running along a line of marked trees to the back swamp to a pine corner tree about 10 steps off the lower end of the (mass?, map?), thence up said swamp along my old bounded lines, to her and her heirs forever.
Item, I give unto my daughter RHODA BIGGS my plantation beginning at a pine near WILLIAM BIGGS' fence, thence along a line of marked trees to the back swamp to a pine about 10 steps below the (marsh?, mash?), thence down the swamp along my old bounded lines to the first station, to her and her heirs forever.
My will and desire is that the money that Hunter owes me to go for the purchasing of a Negro according to our contract, and that my executors fix a price and that they, my executors, sell as much of my moveable property as shall pay the remainder, and at the death or marriage of my wife, for the Negro to be equally divided among all my children.
I appoint my loving friends JESSE CHERRY and WILLIAM BIGGS, SR., whom I make and ordain as my sole executors of this, my last will and testament, and I do hereby disallow, revoke and disannul all and every other will, beque(st) and testament, legacies and executors by me before in any wise willed or bequeathed, testifying and confirming this and no other to be my last will and testament, in witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this 24th day of June, 1789.
Signed, sealed and published to be my last will and testament.
/s/JAMES BIGGS {seal}
In presence of us subscribers: Kedar Biggs, Joseph Biggs Jr, Jos. Lilley
Martin Co Sep Court [Year, if entered, is missing due to a tear in the page.] (--) the afor(egiven?) instrument of writing was proved to be the last will and testament of Jas Biggs (dec'd?) by Kedar Biggs, a witness thereto. Ordered recorded. Test.: Thos. Hunter, CCt.

Will of John Bigge of Elizabeth River, Norfolk Co. Va (McIntosh, Abstarcts, Bk 6, p77) Will dted Sept 4, 1694, proved March 15,1696 by Joseph Hodges and others: “To my son John Bigg my lawful heir, land including that left me by my son Jabez Bigg, held as a Patent 23 December 1688. Should John Bigg die without heirs, to granson George Whitby. To my son Thomas Bigg, to my daughters Ann Faux, Katherine Mercer, Elizabeth Whitby, Jean Sikes, Phebe Bigg, Dorothy Bigg, each one shilling (twelve pence). To son-in-law Mathew Caswell, grandchild John Hefsold, granchildren, Martha, Francis, William, Jabez, Jean nd Mathew Caswell one shilling each.” (Refs: Norfolk Co., D.B.5, p. 219; Court Orders Norfolk, Co., May 13,1703) (Genealogies of Virginia Families, Refs: Court Orders, Norfolk Co., VA, 19 Nov., 1695; Court Orders, Norfolk Co., VA May 13, 1703; Norfolk Co. Order Bk. Nov. 1739)Will of John Bigge of Elizabeth River, Norfolk Co. Va (McIntosh, Abstarcts, Bk 6, p77) Will dted Sept 4, 1694, proved March 15,1696 by Joseph Hodges and others: “To my son John Bigg my lawful heir, land including that left me by my son Jabez Bigg, held as a Patent 23 December 1688. Should John Bigg die without heirs, to granson George Whitby. To my son Thomas Bigg, to my daughters Ann Faux, Katherine Mercer, Elizabeth Whitby, Jean Sikes, Phebe Bigg, Dorothy Bigg, each one shilling (twelve pence). To son-in-law Mathew Caswell, grandchild John Hefsold, granchildren, Martha, Francis, William, Jabez, Jean nd Mathew Caswell one shilling each.” (Refs: Norfolk Co., D.B.5, p. 219; Court Orders Norfolk, Co., May 13,1703) (Genealogies of Virginia Families, Refs: Court Orders, Norfolk Co., VA, 19 Nov., 1695; Court Orders, Norfolk Co., VA May 13, 1703; Norfolk Co. Order Bk. Nov. 1739)

“19th March 1697 - I John Bigg of Elizabeth River in the County of Norfolk in Virginia being often sick & Weak in body, but now of good and P[er]fect Memory... minding to putt in Order al and singuler my Estate both reall & p[er]sonall to the intent there should by Noe Stryfe for the same after my Decease...Desire & pray my Children & all Others to bee Contented with my last Will & Testam’ without any trouble, buissines, or vexation of any of them against the Other, for any of my Said Estate; as they will answare for the same before the Judgmt Seat of God...I... bequeath to my Son John Bigg (Whom I doe hereby...apoynt to bee my Sole Only and absolute & lawfull heire..all my estate both reall & p[er]sonall Except Such leagacyes hereafter Mensoned...I Give him my said Son John Bigg; all my land I am Now pesessed off (vizt) my Manner plantacon, and all the land belonging to the Same...Including a Small p[ar]cell of land that George Whidbey lives upon by my p[er]mission dureing My life; allsoe the Land wch my Son Jabez held in his lifetime by Pattent bareing Date the 23d Day of Aprill 1688 Wth Said Land is allsoe my p[ro]per Right; all which with the land I hold Now by my Owne Patent baring date the 21th Day of Aprill Ano Dom[ini] 1690; I give to my Said son Jno Bigg...as is Expressied in the Pattent aforesaid, To have & to hold the said Plantacon...unot the Said John Bigg my Son, and the heires of his body... The heires Male first to take place & soe in Order, but if my Said Son John Shall Dye Without Issue... then my land with the Apurtenances, to my Grand son John Whidbey...and for lack of Such Issue to my Grand Son George Whidby...then to descend to the rest of my Duaghter Elizabeth’s children...& for lack of Such Issue, thento my Duaghter katherin Mercer’s Children, and theire heires, the Male first alwayes to take place, and for want thereof the ffemale & theire heires And for lack of Such Issue, to the Next right heires of mee the Said John Bigg, the ffather forever; Butt if my Son John Bigg have Children...or in defect thereof, My Grand Son John Whiteby or for lack therof the Said Geroge Whitebey in defect therof any of the heire Afore Menconed...are at their owne liberty to give the Said land to which they like best of theire Children Either Male of female; Butt if my Son John Bigg have lawfull Issue & Dye intestate, then my land aforesaide to fall & Descend to his Children whether male of female, the Male first...the Meaning is that if the Male Die the female to take place [Note: a dozen words heavily corssed out here.] I Give & bequeath to my Son Thomas Bigg, My Daughters Ann Faux, Katherin Mercer, Elizabeth Whitby, Joane Sykes, Pheebe Bigg, Dorothy Bigg to Each of them I give twelve pence or One Shilling lawfull Money of England or the vallue ther of...Item I doe allsoe Give unto my son in law Mathew Caswell & My Grand Children John Hassold & Martha, Ffrancis, William, Jabez, Jean & Mathew Caswell to Each of them One twelve pence of One shilling Sterl[ing]...all the aforesaid legacyes to bee paid in Six Monthes after my Decesase...And this to bee the full Share...for Each of those p[er]sons, above Names...And the reason why I give them...Noe More,is for theire Disobendience [sic], and Other material matters best Knowne to my Self [the line was Raced before Signing] Item I doe hereby...Appoynt my Son John Bigg to bee my...Onley Executor...And to take full...posession after my Decease of all my Estate...to the use of himself and his lawfull Issue hee paying those Legacys afore bequeathed, and if my Son John Should die before proof of this Will, his wife to Act as Executorix but On the behalf of his Lawfull Issue in Wittness Where of I the Said John Bigg have Subscribed this my last Will & Testamt wth my Own hand...this 4th Day of Sept ano Dom[ini] 1694 John Bigg & Seale...in the p[re]sence of us John Portlock Tho. Nash Tho; Etheridge Joseph Hodgis Wm Maund Wm (his mark) Etheridg, Rebecka (her mark) Hodgis ‘and many Others’ Proved in Court 15h March 1696/7 by the Oathes of Joseph Hodgis Jno Portlock Tho: Nash & Thomas Etheridge & is Ordered to bee recorded Mala[chi] Thruston Cl Cur” (Norfolk co., Va. Will Book 6: p.77 [Transcription by David L. Kent]) (Comment: This is a most important will. In it, John’ Biggs names his three sons: John, Thomas and Jabez (deceased). he names his six duaghters: Ann Falke, Katherine Mercer, Elizabeth Whitby, Jeane Sikes, Phebe Bigg, Dorothy Bigg. He names his two grandsons: John Whitby and George Whitby. He mentions his grandchildren by Katherine Mrcer, but does not name them. He mentions his son-in-law Mathew Caswell. Since John Biggs’ will did not mention his wife, Johan, she is presumed dead by 1694.)

WILL OF JOSEPH BIGGS, SR, undated
Recorded in 1798 in Martin Co (NC) Will Book 1, p352
In the name of God, Amen
I, JOSEPH BIGGS, Sr, of the State of NC and Co of Martin, being weak in body but in perfect mind, sense and memory, and calling to mind that it is appointed for all men once to die, do make and ordain this to be my last will and testament in manner and form following, viz:
First, I recommend my soul into the hands of that God Who first gave it, and my body to be buried in a decent Christian like manner at the discretion of my executors hereinafter mentioned.
Item, I give and bequeath unto my beloved wife, SARAH BIGGS, all the property of every kind that is now in being and has never been disposed of that I had by my said wife, SARAH, likewise I give her one small bull yearling, one sow and pigs, and one ewe and lamb to her and her heirs forever.
Item, I give and bequeath unto my son JAMES BIGGS' 2 daughters 5 shillings apiece, to them and to their heirs.
Item, my will and desire is that all the remainder of my property of every kind and denomination be equally divided between my other 5 children, viz: Kedar Biggs, William Biggs, Joseph Biggs, Salley Ward and Mourning Cherry, to them and to their heirs forever.
Lastly, I nominate and appoint my sons WILLIAM BIGGS and JOSEPH BIGGS executors to this, my last will and testament, and hereby revoke and disannul all other wills which have been before made by me, and acknowledge this to be my last will and testament.
/s/JOSEPH BIGGS {seal}
Signed, sealed and delivered in presence of: John Ferrill, Mary Price

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