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January 28, 2019 / Joanne Yeck

Buckingham Notables: The Allens of Hunts Creek, Part X

Mary Ballard (Allen) Chambers (1797–1849).

The Fall 2018 Issue of Central Virginia Heritage includes three Allen family wills transcribed by Jean L. Cooper. These wills inspired “The Allens of Hunts Creek.”

Need to catch up? Click here: Buckingham Notables: The Allens of Hunts Creek, Part I

 

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The third and final will was written on February 14, 1824 by another William Allen. The nephew of William Hunt Allen, his parents were George Hunt and Mary (Ballard) Allen of Buckingham County. Born on April 5, 1771, this William Allen married his cousin Nancy Allen, the daughter of Samuel and Mary (Mimms) Allen. Dying in middle age, he left a widow with children yet to rear and educate.

Allen’s first desire was that his estate stay whole as long as his wife remained unmarried. She was given her choice of a horse, a feather bed and furniture, and allotted five hundred dollars. It would be a very long time before the estate was divided, for Nancy Allen did not die until June 18, 1855, at which point she was living with some of her children in Tennessee.

William Allen directed that the land he inherited from William Hunt Allen be sold and the proceeds divided among his sons, as William Hunt Allen had directed. Additionally, William Allen owned between 500 and 600 acres adjoining that tract, which he also wished to be sold.

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As sometimes was the case in the healthier climates in Virginia, this William Allen owned more slaves than were necessary to cultivate his plantation. The excess labor, he wished to be hired out (a common practice at that time), hopefully producing additional income for his widow and his minor children.

According to Allen family genealogist Rev. Richard Fenton Wicker, Jr., William and Nancy (Allen) Allen had twelve children, their births ranging from 1797 through 1819. The youngest was born only five years before his father’s death. Allen’s will directed that his minor children be educated as though he were alive. When they came of age, if they needed assistance from his estate, he wished that they receive gifts equal to those he had already given to his adult children.

Coming next: Buckingham Notables: The Allens of Hunts Creek, Part XI

 

 

 

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