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Will of Dirck Teunissen van Vechten

In the name of the Lord, Amen. Know all men whom it may concern, that in the year sixteen hundred and eighty-seven, the fourth day of April, being in the second year of the reign of James, king of England, France and Ireland, defender of the faith, sovereign and proprietor of the colony and province of New York, appeared before me, Jan Becker, notary public residing at Albany, admitted by His Excellency the Right Honorable Thomas Dongan, captain general under his majesty aforesaid in the province of NewYork and the dependencies thereof in America, residing at New York aforesaid, the worthy Dirk Teunise van Vechten, residing in the county of Albany in Katskill, on a farm to him belonging, who being now at Albany,sound in body, walking and standing, having full possession and use of his understanding, faculties, memory and speech, as outwardly appears, who, considering the frailty of life and the unforseen hour of death and not wishing to depart hence without firsst having disposed of his temporal effects granted him by the Almighty and that without the persuasion or misleading of any person whomsoever, but of his own motion, deliberately causes the following to be drawn up in manner following: In the first place, commending his soul into the hands of God and his body to a Christian burial and declaring that heretofore he has made no testamentary disposition, he appoints, as he hereby does appoint, his respectes wife, named Jannetie Michiels, his sole and universal heir of all his estate and goods which at his death he shall leave behind, as well fast, lying, standing as movable and immovable property, the furniture and household stuff, claims and credits, nothing whatsoever excepted of whatever nature or kind it may be, with power to do therewith in every manner as the testator in his lifetime might have done, and to this end makes her administratrix and executrix of the aforsaid whole estate and desires that she shall not deliver any appraisal or inventory thereof, much less be obliged to give an surety or bond to the children, to wit, Jannetie aged about twenty-seven years, Weyntie about twenty five years, Michiel about twenty-three years, Neeltie about twenty-two years, Johannes about twenty, Theunis about eighteen, Annetie about sixteen, Fytie about fifteen, Samuel about fourteen, Sara about twelve and Abraham about eight years, nor that during their minority or in case of death their children, blood relations, guardians, the honorable orphan masters, constable or constables, the court of this city or any other authority or authorities, or any supreme or inferior court or judge (saving their respect) shall interfere therein, one and all of which the testator expressly debars and excludes, notwithstanding that some law or laws may direct otherwise, which laws he desires shall not be applied and enforced in this case as long as she remains unmarried. And whereas among the testator's children hereinbefore mentioned there are some who are married and who have received outfits, his wife, having become his widow, whall likewise give the other child or children entering the married state an outfit according to her station and condition from the whole estate, but with the understanding that farms, lands, houses and all their appurtenances may not be sold or alienated by her, but must be occupied or rented by his wife, who is to have the use of the rent or income therefrom. And in case his widow happens to die, then the aforesaid lands shall remain unsold and undivided until the youngest child becomes of age, the same to be meanwhile supported out of the income thereof; and when the children shall all have attained their majority, the aforesaid lands with their appurtenances and all that is fastened by nail and earth shall be appraised by impartial persons, excepting the best horse, which the eldest son shall first of all receive out of the common estate. The aforesaid farm and lands with their appurtenances being so appraised, the children shall equally participate therein, the eldest [son receiving] no more than any of the other children; so also with the movable estate, which shall likewise be divided into equal shares immediately after the mother's death and each son who then shall be unmarried shall first receive for an outfit as much as the married sons have received and each daughter for an outfit as much as the married daughters at their marriage received out of the common estate, always understanding that in the possession of the lands the son or sons shall have the preference over the daughter or daughters and to prevent disputes, the sons shall draw lots among themselves as to who shall possess the aforesaid lands and their appurtenances, with the understanding that those to whom they shall fall, shall give sufficient security for the amount at which they have been appraised (excepting his own part), but before the lots are drawn the children shall in love and friendship agree upon decent and reasonable terms for the payment; but if one or more of the aforesaid children happen to die without leaving lawful issue before the lots are drawn, then the portion of the deceased shall go to the other children and if all the testator's sons die before the lots are drawn without leaving lawful issue, then the daughters shall draw lots therefor in the same way as has hereinbefore been stated with respect to the aforesaid sons.

If the testator's wife desires to marry again, then all the movable goods and effects shall be equally divided into two parts between her and the children (except the best horse out of the common estate as hereinbefore stated), the one half for the testator's wife and the other half for the children, to be divided equally among them, but first of all a portion of the common estate shall be reserved for the outfits of the unmarried children as aforesaid and the portions of those under age shall remain in the care of his wife until their majority, provided that she give sufficient security therefor.

As regards the lands, farms and their appurtanences and all that is fastened by earth and nail, his wife shall occupy or rent the same and during her lifetime receive and enjoy the income thereof, without making any accounting thereof or turning over any part thereof to the testator's child, children, heirs, or any other person whomsoever, but she be holden to keep the building in good repair and honorably to rear and bring up the minor child or children until they become of age without lessening the capital, and after her death the real estate shall be disposed of as aforesaid.

The testator appoints as guardians of his minor children Mr Marte Gerritse van Bergen, Gerrit Teunise, Elias and Enoch Michielsz, either all four together, or two in particular, and if so be that two are far away and one of those nearby should fail by reason of death or otherwise, then the one who is nearest may, if he sees fit, associate another person with him, in order that the minor children may be properly maintained in their rights according to the testator's will. All that is hereinbefore written the testator declares to be his testamentary disposition and last will, desiring that the same shall have effect from the least to the weightiest article thereof, whether as testament, codicil, gift in ancitipation of death or among the living, as may be most suitable, notwithstanding that all the formalities required by law may not have been observed herein, desiring the utmost benefit [of the law] for the maintenance of what is herein written.

Thus done a N. Albany, on the date above written and by the testator signed and sealed in the evening about six o'clock, at the house of his son-in-law Gabriel Thomas.

Dirk Teunise van Vechten (L.S.)

Signed, sealed and delivered in out presence

Gerrit Visbeck
Wouter Albertse

In my presence,

J. Becker, Not. Pub.

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