Valley of the Shadow
The Eve of War
Fall 1859–Spring 1861

Letters & Diaries

Augusta County Court Will Book #37 page 276
Henry Kenneday

Beleiving[sic] my days on earth to be few and fast passing away, I, Henry Kenneday, being of Sound mind and disposing[?] memory, do make this my last will and testament, revoking all other. It is my will and desire that all my just debts shall be paid out of any moneys due me, and my money that may arise out of the property mentioned hereinafter. Then I will and bequeath to my dearly beloved wife Elizabeth Kenneday, the third of all that I have left, during her lifetime, and I will and desire that she shall have the negro woman, Martha and her children during her life. I give her the bay mare, Betty, bridle and saddle, two cows and 6 sheep, and I direct that she shall have her home in the house in which I now live.

To my son Henry Kenneday, I give and bequeath the negro boy George, for his kind attention to me in my illness. He shall have also one Hundred and Sixty acres of land, beginning at a point on Grove's line South of the Orchard then running west to Robertson's line at such a point as to cut off one hundred and sixty acres for him next to William Cullen's farm, including all the buildings. He shall have moreover, two horses Barney and Bob, and the harness for the two wheel horses, the plantation wagon, 1 two horse plow, 1 harrow, 1 shovel plow, 1 double plow and Single trees, 2 cows, 5 hogs, 6 sheep and 1 bed.

It is my will that the balance of my negroes except George and Martha and her children be sold, and out of money arising from said sale, I will and bequeath two thousand dollars to the children of my daughter Polly Coiner dec'd to be divided equally between them as they arrive at the age of twenty-one years. The balance of the money arising from the sale of said negroes if there be any, shall be equally divided among all my children.

It is my wish that Polly's boys Christian, Livingston, and Peter Coiner shall have a home at this house unless they go to trades, and in that case they will have their home where they work; and if they remain with Henry he shall furnish them with a home, and clothing for their services. I direct that Henry and her mother shall have grain enough to support the family and feed the horses until another crop is raised, and also as much hay, as he may need. The balance of my land lying South of the land that I have to Henry, shall be equally divided between my Sally Coiner and my son John Kennedy, according to value and timber, so that neither gets the advantage of the other.

After the death of my wife, I direct that Martha and her children and all the other property left to her shall be sold and the money divided equally among all my children.

To my son Peter Kenneday, I have given one hundred and twenty acres of land, on which he now lives.

To my son John Kenneday, I give also 6 sheep--Henry Sally and John shall bear equally the care of their mother, I appoint my sons Peter and John Kennedy my executors of this my last will and testament.

Sept. 27, 1859 Henry Kennedy Senr. (signed)

Signed in the presence of us both and at his request witnessed by us--

Saml. Kennedy Jr. (signed) Philip Coiner (signed)