Monday, September 20, 2010

When We Were English, Part XIX

by Glenn N. Holliman

The Will of William Holyman (1550 - 1623) of Tring, Part II
Still Looking for John Holyman of Tring....

In the index of wills in the Hertfordshire Archives in Hertford, England, I found and copied the last words of William Holyman, son of Leonard Holyman (1520 - 1573). Bear in mind, I was looking for the John Holyman, the reported ancestor of the American Hollimans. While this will does not disclose our elusive direct ancestor, this document does reveal information on the lives and times of our distant cousins, uncles and aunts when we Hollimans were English. Click twice to enlarge. The document is divided into two parts due to my scanner only taking part at a time.

What does it say? As no expert, here is my attempt to transcribe the writing form of early 1600s English script.

"The ___ and twentieth day of July Anno Domi 1623 ___ In the Name of God Amen. I, William Holyman of Great (in the parish of Great Tring) being poor in body, but in good and perfect memory, thanks be to God, do make my will and testament in manner and form as followeth,

First, I bequeath my soul into the hands of the Almighty God, who gave it and my body to be buried in the church yard of Tring.

My will is that Grace Holyman, my wife, shall have on half acre of land lying between my house __ for ___ (rest?) of her life. Also I do give to my wife all f___ ___ ___ ___ that ___ of ___. ___ my son William ___ ___ ___ out also my wish is to my wife ___ ___ to her rest the __ hay upon ___ hill; and the glebe land in ma___ field and one of the ___ of the first three years of the field lease. Also I give to my daughter, Hanna, the next ___ years profit of the lease; also I give to my daughter, 'Saiva' or 'Eva', the next three years profit of the ___. Also I give to my daughter, 'Grace' the next ___ profit of ___. I give to my daughter, 'Saffon', the next ___ years profit of the ___. Also I give to my daughter Mary the ___ ___ ___ profit of the ___. Also I give the ___ three ___ of the ___. Unto the ___ my wife ___ ___ if it ___ ___ ___. If any of my children happen to die before they received their portion, then it shall remain amongst the ___. All this ___ of my ___ I give to my wife ___ I make my executor. Also I appoint for administrators (?) William Holyman my father and John Romsy of ___ ___.

The Mark of William Holyman, submitted"

My opinion? Here we have described a yeoman farmer living in Tring, to be buried in Tring and farming fields just outside of Tring. He has few worldly goods other than a lease hold on the land.

And to our disappointment, no son named John Holyman.

So the search for the elusive John Holyman continues....

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