m. 26 Aug 1665
Facts and Events
. Dr. Thomas signed his will at Norwich CT 4 Sep 1759, and he had died by 18 Dec. 1759 when an inventory of his estate commenced. He owned three lots, 30 acres with house and barn evaluated at 206 pounds, 11 acres (apparently suitable for a house) evaluated at 65 pounds, and 8 acres of woodland evaluated at 20 pounds. His movables were inventoried at 34 pounds and he was due debts of 12 pounds: he owed debts of about 41 pounds. Dr. Thomas was 84 years old, and apparently lived by borrowing for some time. In his will Dr Thomas forgave all debts owed to him by his sons-in-law Samuel Crandol and John Beckwith, and he bequeathed five pounds each to his daughters Sarah Crandol and Jane Beckwith, to be paid by his son Thomas. He bequeathed the lot of 11 acres to his daughter Bathsheba Armstrong and her husband Silas under these terms: that so much of its value as equaled debts owed to Silas by Dr. Thomas go to Silas, and the residue of its value go to Bathsheba. Dr. Thomas bequeathed to his wife Sarah enjoyment of “one third part of all my real estate in to (sic) Norwich during her natural life; I also give to my sd wife one third part of my personal estate in New England to be at her disposal forever.” (This preceded the bequest to the daughters and to Silas Armstrong.) The next two items are best quoted directly: “I give and bequeath unto my said son Thomas Wordin & to his heirs & assigns for ever all of rest of my real estate in sd Norwich, he allowing to his mother as above willed to her, and paying to his two sisters above named (viz) Sarah and Jane as above willed to them. As to ye residue of my personal estate I give and bequeath ye same to my sd son Thomas and three daughters above named to be equally divided between them my sd son & three daughters.”
One presumes that some arrangements were made to pay the debts of about 41 pounds, and expenses of about 3 pounds, without selling nearly every item of personal property, from money owed to Dr Thomas to household items worth less than a shilling each. Seemingly, all four children named in the will lived at Norwich. Only one, Thomas Jr., definitely received a substantial inheritance, in real estate. How substantial was the bequest to Silas and Bathsheba Armstrong depends upon however much they had loaned to Dr. Thomas in his advanced age to keep his home operating. Considering the circumstances, it would not be unreasonable if other children, not living at Norwich, had been omitted from this will, especially if Dr. Thomas had had children by a first wife before marrying Sarah Butler when he was 33 years old.