We are going to feature a transcription of the 1763 will of Joseph Daby of Stow, Massachusetts, in a series of posts. Daby’s will contains some interesting sections and we’re hoping that the transcription of it is informative. As the series originally runs we’ll leave the sections blank did not immediately come to me and discuss any corrections and the like in future posts—along with a discussion of how those were made and arrived at. It’s hoped that the discussion of that analysis will be helpful to readers instead of just including a “finished” transcription. Sometimes it is the process that matters as much as the final result, especially for those who are learning.

I’ve decided in this post to not use superscript for those items that use it in the text of the document simply to facilitate display and editing.

[begin transcription]

In the Name of God Amen this fourth day of April Anne Dom. One Thousand Seven Hundred and Sixty and three I Joseph Daby of Stow In ye County of Midx. In ye Province of the Massachussets  Bay in New=England Gentm. Being [—] of my Mortality and the State of my Family Requiring a Settlement I Constitute and appoint this to be my Last Will and Testament Principally I Recommend my Soul to God In hope of mercy thro. ye Merits of Jesus Christ and my Body to ye Earth to be buried In Decent Christian Burial at the Expense and Disposition of my Exer here after appointed

Imprimis I give to Eunice my beloved Wife one third part of my personal unmovable Estate forever and ye use of one third part of my Real Estate for life unless She Chuses the provision which I have herein here after made for her Viz. a constant & Decent maintainance at bed and board Suitable to her [age?] and quality[—–] Washing & Lodging Nursing

[end of transcription…for now]




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