Transcribed from Livingston County, Kentucky Will Book C, page 19. This will has to take the prize as the most interesting one to be found in Livingston County.
In the name of God Amen I Blount Hodge of Smithland Livingston County, Kentucky being of sound mind and disposing memory though 70 years of age the 28 day of May & cannot live long at best & further feeling it to be my bounden duty as an honest & honorable man in the sight of God, do make and declare this to be my last will and testiment, hereby revoking and destroying all former Wills heretofore made by me.
First: I will and devise to Ellen Tanner mother of Charley Hodge Dec’d Thirty nine acres of land lying and being in Pope County Illinois, valued at $300, the same land on which she now lives and for a more particular description of said land see deed of same from Charley Hodge to me recorded in Pope County Clerk’s office.
Secondly: I will and devise to my son Gus. Hodge of New Orleans one undivided half part of the Marion Robertson farm in Marshall County Ky. Deeded to me by said Robertson & wife containing 186 1/2 acres the whole tract valued at $3000.
Thirdly: I devise to my son J.C. Hodge five dollars heretofore having given to him absolutely about four thousand dollars in Notes and real estate see Judge Bennett & A. Birdwell. Now the above devise is all of my estate real or personal he ever shall inherit except a full plain and radcal [sic] change in all his habits associations & dealings in every respect and I here acknowledge that I have no hope that there will any change for the better but shall look for the event and I have this day rec’d information that he is now fixing up plans to thwart and destroy this will & I do hope to God the County court of Livingston County will scout all such subterfuges if any should be attempted.
Fourthly: I will and devise to Almira Wynder the house and lott whereon I am now living including all the house hold & Kitchen furniture also the red frame house and lott on which it stands on the corner of Mill [and] Charlotte streets fronting 50 feet on Mill and running back One hundred feet to the Church lott then to Charlott also the double frame house where Henry Green & Andy Miles lives, and the entire lott under fence where it stands on Adair Street these Several devises to Almira Wynder in the aggregate amounts to $5360.
Fifthly: I will and devise to Lucy Wynder a colored girl that lives with me and is a daughter of Almira Wynder the frame Looney house & lott 45 feet front on Charlott Street running with Mrs. Bates line 200 feet towards the river valued at $300. Also a lott on Main Street opposite J.W. Richardson residence sold to me by Mrs. E. Looney valued at $50. Also 63 acres of land joining the land sold to Doctor Jones being to remmant[?] of the Joseph T. Allyn land this I value at $3.00 per acre. My executors hereafter named will sell all this d_vise the first good chance and appropriate the money in Schooling Lucy which will be the best.
Sixthly: I will and bequeath to Almira Hodge jr. and Lillian St. Clair Hodge, both of which are my children and daughters of Almira Wynder, to belong to them jointly my Cooper farm on Tennessee River containing 7 or 8 hundred acres & perhaps more if it is run properly in this County which I value at 8 or 10 thousand dollars but it is my wish that my executors R.S. Boyd & A. Birdwell sell the Cooper place for the best price as soon as convenient on a good long credit as my said Executors may deem necessary to obtain as much as possible and then invest the proceeds of same in good and secure Bonds, and collect the interest and apply to the education of said children. Also I will and devise to Almira Hodge the Stable lot 100 by 200 feet on the corner of level & Charlott Street valued at $100. Also I devise the proceeds of the 177 acres of land bought of John Davis and sold to Wm. Vance & McClane. I devise she sall [sic] have the proceeds of said sale when collected valued at $1200.
Seventhly: I will & devise to Lillian St. Clair Hodge daughter of Almyra Wynder the Brick house & lott on the corner of Mill & Front Street[,] being 50 feet front by 200 back and is part of lot No. 7 which I value at $2000.
Eighthly: I desire that my personal property not devised in this Will, be sold and all the cash notes collected and the land notes collected, and if any of the land sold should have to be bought or fall back to my estate I desire the same to be resold by my Executors to the best advantage they having full power to make Deeds &c. Also I will and desire that all the money collected on notes or land notes or for land resold if any, and ater pay [sic] my just debts and expenses in carry [sic] this will fully out be equally divided 1/3 each to Almira Wynder Almira Hodge & Lillian St. Clair Hodge.
Lastly: I hereby impower and authorise my Executors R.S. Boyd & A. Birdwell to sell & convey & confirm a sale to any or all of said property devised to Almira Wynder & her 3 daughters whenever it becomes necessary as she may have to leave here, & pay the proceeds of said sales whenever in the Judgment of my said Executors it is for the best or should be deemed necessary, and should such a course be deem[?] & necessary & my Executors think it best, then in that case they will pay Almira Wyder her part to do with as she please, but be sure & Keep the children vested in good securities & to [be] used for their schooling & support.
Finally: I hereby appoint my special friends R.S. Boyd & A. Birdwell my Executors to carry this my last will and testament into effect and request the County Court of Livingston County to not require Security of them but permit them to qualify uppon their own personal bond & I wish my executors to be paid two hundred dollars each when all the services are performed which can soon be done.
In addition to the above I have this day to say that there has been an attempt to take my life with Stricnine & I now think I Know the parties that were engaged in it & I think they will produce a fraudulent Will or try evry _ evice to _estroy this. I make this will in Justice to my word and conscience before God & man. [signed] Blount Hodge.
Signed and acknowledged by Bount Hodge as and for his last will and testament in our presents at his request this 13th August 1874. [signed] Ben P. Cissell, J.K. Huey, W.D. Greer, Thos. C. Leech, W.H. Sander, Jno. W. Lockett, R.S. Boyd, J.K. Hendrick, R.W. Martin, A. Birdwell, J.R. Hooks, Willie Marble.
Codicil: I, Blount Hodge of Smithland, Livingston County Kentucky being of sound mind and disposing memory do hereby make publish and declare this codicil to my last will and testament, and hereby make it as a part of my said will, that said will being the one connected herewith and dated the 15th day of August 1874. In my said Will by the third clause thereof I devised to my son J.C. Hodge Five dollars in addition to the property which I had given him before, and I stated in said clause that the above devise is all of my estate rent or personal he ever shall inherit except “certain” change valued therein took place.
Now to avoid any question on this subject and for good reasons I hereby declare that the said Five dollars is all of my estate which I intend or devise my said son to have making no exception whatever.
There is some property which I have acquired since my last will was written now I hereby will and desire that my executors herein after named, do sell the same and any other property real or personal which I may own at time of y death not disposed of in the foregoing Will and appoint[?] such terms as they may deem best, and that the proceeds be equally divided between Elmira Mynder & her two children Elmira Hodge & Lilliam St. Clare Hodge, but the interest of said two infants to be invested in bonds or appropriated by my executors in educating & maintaining them as my executors may deed best.
In view of the fact that one of my executors appointed in my will aforesaid viz: Anthony Birdwell has recently died and the other one R.S. Boyd lives remote from Smithland I do hereby nominat constitute and appoint my two friends John L. Vick and W.D. Green as the executors of my last will and testament & of this codicil thereto in the place of Birdwell & Boyd and hereby give them every right power and authority that said Anthony Birdwell & R.S. Boyd were given by said will and full and complete power to carry out out [sic] my said will & codicil thereto in all respects and to make and execute deeds to the property they are authorised to sell, and in the event that either one of them cannot or fails to quality and act as my said executor then I hereby empower the other one to act and carry out sais will & condicil into effect and request the County Court of Livingston County not to require security of my said executors but permit them to qualify uppon their own personal bond. I wish my executors to be issued for their services when performed by them three hundred dollars each. Signed and acknowledged by Bounty Hodge as and for a codicil to his last will and testament this November 27th 1874. [signed] Blount Hodge.
Witnesses: W.D. Greer, John L. Vick, W.H. Sanders, H.H. Duley.
Produced in open Court and proven to be the last will of said Decedent by the oaths of T.C. Leech and R.S. Boyd two subscribing witnesses thereto and other testimoney and said Codicil was fully proven by the oaths of H.H. Duley, W.H. Sanders, and John L. Vick, subscribing witnesses thereto and other testimony and said will was approved by the court as the last will and testament of Blount Hodge Deceased and said Codicil was approved by the Court as a codicil to said Will and ordered to be recorded. 9 March 1877. [signed] John L. Vick Clerk.