LAST WILL AND TESTAMENT OF JOHN MITCHELL
OF WADSWORTH MILL IN TODMORDEN
(memo written at the top of the will says: “One witness”)
This is the last will and testament of me JOHN MITCHELL of Wadsworth Mill in the Township of Todmorden and Walsden, labourer.
I give and bequeath unto my beloved wife SALLY the sum of ten pounds to be paid to her at the end of six months next after she shall give notice to my executors to pay her the same, and I direct that in the meantime she shall have interest upon the same after the rate of three pounds and ten shillings per cent per annum.
I also give unto my said wife my silver watch and the best of my clothes.
As to all the rest, residue and remainder of my estate and effects whatsoever, I give devise and bequeath the same unto my friends MARTIN MITCHELL, inn keeper, and JOHN WOODHEAD, clogger, both near Wadsworth Mill aforesaid, upon trust nevertheless that they, their executors, administrators and assigns do and shall permit and suffer SUSANNAH the wife of SAMUEL HOLT of Wadsworth Mill aforesaid to take and receive the rents, interest and profits thereof during the term of her natural life, and also such part of the principal as she may require for the maintenance of herself and the said SAMUEL HOLT, and upon the death of the said SUSANNAH HOLT upon trust to pay and apply such part of the interest, rents and profits aforesaid and also such part of the principal as they may deem requisite in the maintenance of the said SAMUEL HOLT, and upon the death of the survivor of them the said SUSANNAH and SAMUEL HOLT upon trust to ay the same as the said SUSANNAH HOLT shall, by her last will and testament, direct or appoint. In default of such direction or appointment, upon trust to pay and divide the same unto and equally amongst the next of kin of the said SUSANNAH HOLT.
And hereby revoking all former wills, I declare this only to be my last will and testament and do thereof appoint the said MARTIN MITCHELL and JOHN WOODHEAD executors, and do declare that they shall each be answerable by their own acts only and for such losses only as shall happen through their wilful neglect. In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this ninth day of November One Thousand Eight Hundred and Thirty Six.
Signed John Mitchell
The 29th day of May 1837 JOHN WOODHEAD one of the executors was sworn in common form … the personal estate and effects of the testator were under the value of £100. The testator died the 26th day of November 1836.
In the Consistory Court of Chester upon Friday the 20th day of October 1837
Appeared personally JOHN WOODHEAD of Bridge End in the County of Lancaster, and being sworn upon the Holy Gospels maketh oath as follows: that he knew and was well acquainted with JOHN MITCHELL late of Wadsworth Mill in the Township of Todmorden and Walsden, labourer, deceased, and with his character and manner of handwriting having frequently seen him write and subscribe his name, and having now with care and attention, viewed and perused the paper writing hereto annexed bearing date the 9th November 1836 purporting to be and contain the last will and testament of the said JOHN MITCHELL deceased, signed thus: “John Mitchell”, he verily and in his conscience believes the letters or words “John Mitchell” set and subscribed at the foot or bottom of the said paper writing to be of the proper handwriting of the John Mitchell deceased and of no other person whomsoever.
Sworn at Littleborough in the County of Lancaster
Probate issued 28th October 1837
(note: this is a very sad will. John appears to have been a very young man when he died. The Susannah Holt mentioned in the will seems to be his mother)