Georgia, Sumter County


In the name, as well as the trust in the Love and fear of God – Amen.  I, William J. Pennington, of said state and County, from the call now made of me by my country to go forth in the defense of its rights and everything held sacred by a free born Citizen, and being freely sensible of the casualties of ware, and also the precariousness of natural life even under ordinary circumstance, deem it right and proper, both as respects myself and my family, that I should make sound disposition of the property with which a Kind Provider has so benignantly blessed me.


Item First – I desire and direct that my body be buried in a Christian like manner suitable to my circumstances and condition – Humbly trusting my soul may return to its Giver to enjoy that rest which remaineth to the people of God, when religion has been my chief joy in life, and which I hope through faith in Christ, may be my complete comfort in death.


Item Second – I desire and direct that all my just debts be paid by my Executotrs, hereinafter named, without unnecessary delay.


Item Third – I desire and direct that my Estate after my death be all kept together and a farm regularly carried on, under the control of my Executors, hereinafter named; and that my Mother and My Wife (provided my Wife does not marry before my third son, John M(adison) Pennington arrives at the age of twenty one ears), together with all my children, to be supported out of my Estate, and all the children educated prudentially and practically, and as nearly alike as the facilities and their capacities and aptitude for receiving learning allow.  But should my Wife marry again prior to the above specified time __Why, in that event, it is my desire and directive that my Executors hereinafter named, so order and direct that she (my Wife Martha C Pennington) receive nothing more from my Estate, either as support or otherwise.


Item Fourth – I give and bequeath to my Beloved Mother,  Elizabeth Pennington, a reasonable support during her natural life, to be raised of any part of my Estate at the sound direction of my Executors, hereinafter named, and that only as she may need it.


Item Fifth – It is my will and desire and I hereby instruct my hereinafter named Executors that if my Mother Elizabeth Pennington is still living at the time when John M Pennington, my third son will be of the age of twenty one years, in the event he lives to that time, that five of the most valuable Negros then belonging to my Estate be set apart, where service to my Mother aforesaid shall be  entitled, or a sufficiency thereof, for reasonable support from then forward to the end of her life; and also to bury her in a Christian like style; and then that the above mentioned Negros to be equally divided among my children or their orphans, just in the same way that I desire all my Estate remaining divided, found in the following, that  is to say, the Sixth Item.


Item Sixth – It is my will and desire that at the time when my third son may be twenty one years of age, or shortly thereafter, that all my Estate, the division of which is not otherwise provided for may be equally distributed between my Wife and all her children which she already has or may subsequently have by me.


Item Seventh – I constitute and appoint my worthy neighbor and kind friend, John R. Battle, Executor  in this my last will and testament, until my eldest son, Andrew J., arrives at the age of twenty one years, and in the event that the aforesaid son may not live ‘till twenty one years, then I constitute and appoint the aforesaid John R. Battle, Executor, as aforesaid, until my second son, John L. Pennington arrives at age in the same manner as Andrew J., and in the event of his death, as in said Andrew J., the said John R. Battle appointed until the time my third son, William M Pennington may arrive at the age of twenty one years.  And I furthermore constitute and desire and appoint my three oldest sons, Andrew J., John L., and William M. Pennington Executors to this my last will and testament.  This August 27, 1863.


                                                                                    William J. Pennington

Signed, sealed, declaired (sic) and published by William J. Pennington as his last will and testament of us the subscribing who subscribed our names hereto in the presence of said Testator and in the presence of each other.


This August 27th 1863                                                            W. E. Hodges

                                                                                    C. O. Brown

                                                                                    S. A. Price

                                                                                    Anna Hodges

                                                                                    Belle Hodges

                                                                        Q         Robert J. Hodges



Georgia                                   Court of Ordinary for said County

Sumter County           Personally appeared in open Court, Clara O. Brown, Sarah A. Price, Robert J.

Hodges, three of the witnesses to the within instrument, who, being duly sworn, depose and say that they

saw William J. Pennington sign, seal, publish and declair (sic) the written instrument as his last will and

testament, voluntarily & freely, without compulsion & (next page not copied0