Notes for JOSEPH SUMNER:
Rendered active service during the Revolutionary War as a soldier in the militia ofEdgecombe Co., NC. as
shown in the NC Army Accounts now in the dept of Archives in Raliegh, NC. Vol. 9, p. 30 folio 1.
1790 Census - Edgecomb Co., NC - Battleboro Area : John Sumner, Joseph Sumner, Hartwell Philips, Joseph Philips,
Benjamine Philips, Sara Philips and others.
May 1795- Edgecombe Co., NC - LWT (Last Will & Testimony) of Joseph SUMNER was proved by Williamson BARNES.
Jacob BATTLE, one of the Executors qualified & took out letters
JOSEPH JR. wrote his will 7 December 1793, and it was proved May term, 1795, in Edgecomb County, also. He
named his wife Martha and the following children Duke William (named earlier in his grandfather’s will), William, Tobias,
Joseph, EXUM and Jacob. Witnesses to this will were Jacob Battle, Nathan (Barnett?) and Williamson Barnes.
Will of JOSEPH SUMNER JR.
This will is recorded in Edgecomb County “wills, 1758-1830, volume IX, page 58. A photostatic copy was obtained from the North Carolina Archives, Raleigh, North Carolina, by Christine Sumner,
September 3, 1976. In the name of God, I Joseph Sumner of the County of Edgecomb and state of North Carolina, being Sick and
weak in Body but of Sound Mind and Memory, thanks be to God, and knowing that it is appointed for all Men to die, do make
and ordain this my last Will and Testament, and Dispose of my Estate in the following Manner, and Form (viz)
First I lend unto my loving Wife Martha Sumner three hundred acres of Land lying
between Beach (Runn?) Swamp and the Purchase Patent Line, including the Plantation whereon I now live, which I lend to her
during the Time She remains my Widow. I also lend to her during her Widowhood, one Negro Woman, named (Judoff?) and one Boy
Named Jim; I give unto my loving Wife one Negro Woman named Seal, and one Boy named Luke to her and her heirs forever. I also
give her one mare called Soup, th a Saddle & Bridle, and one Horse called Damon, and my Riding Chare and Harness, three
cows and calves, six Ewes and lambs, three Sows and Piggs, one four (Grass?) Steer, two Beds and Furniture & Bedsteads,
two Chests, haifa Dozen Knives and forks, half a Dozen Pewter Plates, two Basons, two Dishes, one large Iron Pott and hooks
and Rack one Flax & one Wollen Wheel and Buch other Part of my houshold Furniture and Plantation Utensills, as my Executors
hereafter named Shall think Proper for her Support; also I give unto my beloved Wife the fourth Part of my Cotton and Flax
and Corn and Meat for her Familys use andone Half of my Wheat, as also CornFoddow, etc., to SupportherStock.Itis my Will andDesire
that all my Land, except what I have lent my Wife, be rented out by My Executors untill my Son Duke
William Sumner arrives to lawful age or if not living, the next (best?) and then to be Equally divided as near as may
be between my five sons, viz; Duke William Sumner, Tobias Bumner, Joseph Sumner, EXUM Sumner and Jacob
Sumner; Provided that if my Wife Should die or Marry before that Time it is my Desire, that the Land I have lent her
be also Divided. It is also my Will and Desire that my Executors Sell all my Estate except Land and Negroes and what I have
given and lent to my Wife, and I hereby empower my (SQ?) Executors to Sell at their own Discretion without the assistance
of the Sheriff, it is also my Will and Desire that my Execut (hire?) out my Negroes untill my aforesaid son Duke William,
shall arrive to Lawful Age or if not living my next oldest child, and then the Negroes, together with the (Hire?) and rent
of the Land and all my other Estate after being sold, paying my Just Debts, and Raising, Schooling and Supporting my Children,
be Equally divided as near as may be between my Sons & Daughters (viz) Duke William Sumner, Tobias
Sumner, Joseph Sumner, EXUM Sumner, and Jacob Sumner and Sarah Sumner Provide that if my Wife should Die or Marry before
the aforesaid Time that the Negroes I have lent her be also divided it is also my (wish?) and Desire that my Executors should
rent out my Land and hire out my Negroes at their Discretion;
Lastly I do appoint my Friends, Etheldred Philips, Jacob Battle and Demsey Battle Executors of this my last
will and Testament Revoking all other Wills by me made. In witness whereof I have hereunto set my Hand & Seal this
7th Day of December 1793.
Joseph Sumner (Seal)
Signed Sealed Published & Declared in Presents of
Williamson Barnes X
Jacob Battle qualified
Edgecomb County May Term 1795. The within will was duly proved in open court by the Oath of Williamson Barnes
an Subscribing Witness thereunto. . The Executor was at the same time Qualified and the will ordered to be recorded. Test Edward Hall C. C.
County, North Carolina, August Court, 1795, Joseph Sumner, deceased. Inventory taken by Jacob Battle, executor. September
1, 1795. Accounts of sales by the executor, June 23, August 8, September 22, November22 and December17, 1795 and April 9,
1796,February Court 1797.
Expenses were paid for Jacob Sumner, Duke William Sumner, Tobias Sumner, EXUM Sumner and Salley Sumner. Said
Joseph Sumner, deceased, was guardian to the estate of West Pope.
Martha Sumner was paid for boarding and part clothing six white children and two black ones, February court
1797. Account current with the exr. ,February Court 1798. Additional account current with the exr. Items were purchased for
Jacob, Sally, Joseph, Exum, Duke Wm. and Tobias Sumner.
Funeral expenses were paid for the burial of son Joseph, February Court 1799. Account current with the exr.,
November Court 1799. Account current with the exr., November Court 1799.
Division of personal estate among the children of said decd., namely, Duke W. Sumner, Tobias Sumner, Salley
Sumner, Exum Sumner and Jacob Sumner, December 30, 1799, August Court 1800. Account current with Jacob Battle, exr., November
Joseph Sumner, deceased. Inventory taken by Joseph Sumner, exr., April 18, 1785,May Court 1785. Account current
with Joseph Sumner, Junr., exr., February Court 1787.
Notes for MARTHA PHILLIPS: Court Minutes Edgecomb Co., NC -
L WT of Elizabeth BARNES proved by Martha SUMNER & Abesha HORN took out letters & returned Inventory.
Court Minutes Edgecomb Co., NC MAY, 1797:
LWT of John SUMNER proved by Penelope BATTLE & Martha SUMNER, subscribing witnesses. Jacob BATTLE one
of the Executors qualified and took out letters.
She went to Davidson Co., TN, with some of her children, after her husband died (1795) in NC. She remarried
She died a very wealthy woman.
Martha Williams, receipts received of Churchill Lanier, Admr. of Simon Williams, deceased, the sum of six
hundred and nineteen & 66/100, etc. April Term 1855, Davidson County, Tennessee.
Page 344 of this same book
Page 372. The above settlement was made by me with Churchhill Lanier, adm. the 3rd day of January 1854. F.R. Cheatham, Clerk.
She had 6 Sumner Children.
(DAR National No. 193125).
When Sarah Catharine (Parks) Sumner, wife of James Exum Sumner Sr., died she left her old trunk to Emmett
Sumner who later moved to Amarillo, Texas. The old trunk was full of old letters and papers dating back to the 1 800s. We
are thankful to Emmett for sharing these old letters, from them we have gleaned the names of James Exum’s brothers and
Contained in the old trunk was the original will of Martha Philips-Sumner-Williams
Last Will and Testament of MARTHA WILLIAMS
The last will and testament of Martha Williams in the name of God Amen!
I, Martha Williams of the County of Davidson and State of Tennessee being in a low state of health but of
a sound mind and disposing memory do make and publish this as my last will and testament revoking all others by me heretofore
made, Visl st It is my will that all my just debts and burial expenses including an enclosure around my grave and such other
things as may be deemed proper and necessary about the same be first paid out of any monies that I may leave or out of the
first that shall come to the hands of my executors
2nd. It is my will that all my land together with my stock of every kind, my household and kitchen furniture
and farming utensils and crop of every kind that I may leave on hand be sold by my executors on such terms as they may deem
best and the proceeds to be equally divided among all my grandchildren share and share alike.
3rd. I will to my grandson Jacob S. (s/b Jacob B.. -BBM) Sumner the following slaves, viz--Aaron, Daniel,
Nancy and Sally and their future increase now in his possession..
4th. I will to my grandson James E. Sumner the following slaves viz--Henry, Anna, Harriet and Nelson and
their increase now in his possession.
5th. I will to my grand daughter Eliza P. Sumner the following slaves viz--Patty, Anthony, son of Patty,
John, Levi and Frank and their increase now in her possession and also Mose now in my possession for and during her natural
life and at her death to her children if she shall leave any, but if she shall leave none of the said slaves are to go to
her brothers and sisters of their lawful h- eirs
6th. I will to my grand daughter Martha Ann Lather, my slaves Celia, Ben, Sam and Jessie and their increase
now in her possession and also Edna and increase now in my possession for and during her natural life and at her death to
her children and in case she dies without children the same is to go to her brothers and sisters or their lawful heirs--
7th. I will to Grand daughter Jane Love the following Claves viz Judy, Biddy, Pompey, Henry and Randall now
in her possession and their increase and also Milberry now in her possession and their increase and also Milberry now in my
possession and increase for and during her natural life and at her death to her children and if she shall die without children
then the same is to go to her brothers and sisters and their lawful heirs.
8th. I will to my Grand daughter Maria Hinton, my slaves Sterling and Betsy now in her possession and their
increase and also Ellen now in my possession and increase for and during her natural life and at her death to her children
and if she shall leave no children then to her brothers and sisters or their lawful heirs
9th. I will to my Grand Daughter Susan Williams my slaves Hannah, Penny, Bob and Cherry now in her possession
and increase and also Jane now in my possession and increase for and during her natural life and at her death to her children
and if she shall die without children the same shall go to her brothers and sisters or their lawful heirs.
10th. I will the residue of my property consisting of slaves Cherry, Lucy, Sam, Lizette, Nalinda, Rhoda,
Davy, George, Bias, Peter, James, Taylor and Jordan and any money or other things not hereuntofore specially
bequeathed to be equally divided among my seven grandchildren viz
1. Jacob B. Sumner
2. JamesE. Sumner
3. ElizaP. Sumner
4. Jane Love
6. Martha A. Lather
7. Susan Williams
portions falling to my Granddaughters Eliza P. Sumner, Susan Williams, Jane Love and Mariah Hinton to be subject to the same restrictions as contained
in items 5,6, 7, 8, 9, of this my will and that all the property above given to my said Grand Daughters shall be to their
sole and separate use and free from the debts of their husbands.
11th. It is my will that a division of my property as above set forth shall take place as soon after my death
as possible. I do hereby ordain and appoint Jacob B. Sumner and James E. Sumner executors of this my last will and testament
and it is my will that they be not required to give security Given under my hand and seal this the 17th Day of April 1855.
Martha X Williams (Seal) Test }William D. Philips }S. S. Hall
A true copy attest T. (F?) R. Chattam? Cheatam?) Clerk
On the outside of the third page “Martha Williams, Copy of Will, fee $1
More About JOSEPH SUMNER and MARTHA PHILIPS:
Marriage: 1777, Edgecombe Co., NC
Children of JOSEPH SUMNER and MARTHA PHILIPS are:
i. DUKE WILLIAM5 SUMNER, b. 27 Apr 1778,
Edgecombe, NC; d. 15 May 1844.
ii. JOSEPH JOHN SUMNER, b. 14 Aug 1780, Edgecomb
Co., NC; d. 28 Dec 1813, LA
iii. TOBIAS BUMNER SUMNER, b. 1782, Edgecombe
Notes for TOBIAS BUMNER SUMNER:
May have died young - no further information on him.
iv. JACOB BATTLE SUMNER, b. 1786, Edgecombe Co.,
v. EXUM PHILIP SUMNER, b. 1787, Edgecombe
Co.,NC; d.Bet 1852- 1953.