transcriber: In this will and the related papers Z.W. Benton was also
referred to as Z. B. Benton in the statement made by his father A.Y.
petition of Mrs. Sarah E. Benton by her attorney J. S. Bankston shows
that Z.W. Benton a resident of said county on the 11th day of
November 1893 departed this life owning valuable real & personal
property in Said State having on the 4th day of Nov. 1893
duly made a nuncupative will which your petitioner claims was made
according to law, said will being attached to this petition and marked
exhibit “A”. Your petitioner alleges that Said will was reduced to
writing within thirty days after the speaking of the same by Z.W. Benton
and is now herewith offered for probate within Six months after the
death of Z.W. Benton: that the next of kin having a greater interest
assigns them as legatees. One Mrs. Mary E. Coble, his sister, and his
brothers, Schofield Benton and A.Y. Benton Jr. and A.Y. Benton Sr. and
your petitioner desiring to prove said will as other wills are proved in
solemn form prays that the usual may issue to said A.Y. Benton and Mrs.
Mary E. Coble and that a Guardian ad-litem be appointed for Scofield
Benton and A.Y. Benton as minors and that citation issue to him
requiring them to be and appear at the January Term 1894 of the court of
the Ordinary of said County to hear the proof of said nuncupative will
and contest the same if they desire to do so.
Atty. J. S. Bankston
appearing to the court in the matter of the probate of the nuncupative
will of Z.W. Benton by Sarah E. Benton, that A.Y. Benton and Mrs. Mary
E. Coble and S.H.D. Barnes Guardian ad-litem of Schofield Benton and
A.Y. Benton as both minors and all heirs at law necessary to be cited,
having a greater interest as heirs at law, share as legatees to be duly
cited, to be and appear at the regular Term in Jan. 1894, of the court
of Ordinary for the County aforesaid and hear the proof of said will,
and the contest the same if they desire so to do: that the witnesses
required by law, to said will has all proved in open court this day what
were present at the making of Said Will: that they were being as present
bidden by said Z.W. Benton to hear witness that Such was his will as now
presented to this court: that the said will was made in the last
sickness of Z.W. Benton in the house of his habitation in said county;
and to bring further proof that within thirty days after his speaking of
said will of Z.W. Benton the same was reduced to writing here in open
court, and marked Exhibit “A” And it appears that the person so cited do
offer no valid objection by caveat against said paper, which is now
propounded in open court as Z.W. Benton’s last will, it is therefore
ordered by the court that the same be admitted to record as Z.W.
Benton’s Nuncupative Will, the said witnesses having shown that said
will was voluntarily executed by said Z.W. Benton when of sound mind and
memory and was executed according to law.
day of January 1894
came A. Y. Benton who on oath says that he was present with Mrs. Sarah
E. Benton and Mary Eliza Coble and others at the bedside of Z. B.
Benton, the son of A. Y. Benton and Sarah E. Benton, when said Z.B.
Benton, my son aged 20 years and six months, and some days. Knowing he
was afflicted of consumption or some other incurable disease, and
feeling that he was going to die very shortly, expressed himself as
follows in Substance, Mama, I want you to have my property, I have
always said I wanted you to have what I had, when I lived, and when I
die it must belong to you. I, A. Y. Benton heard this Boy say the above
words or words to that effect, I A.Y. Benton Say on oath that the above
mentioned Z. B. Benton was of sound mind and disposing memory, and made
that his will and that I believe on oath that he knew he would shortly
die and I further state and swear that this statement of his will was
made on the 4th day of November 1893, Deponant borrowed from
J.S. Bankston, a Georgia Form “Book” and that said form book was wanted
by my son Z.B. Benton to draw a will in favor of his mother, Mrs. Sarah
E. Benton, but he was too weak and put it off and was never able
thereafter to draw any will except as aforesaid, a verbal will, the Said
Z.B. Benton without having made a written will died on November 11th,
1893, one week after the aforesaid circumstances. I further state that
to me his plainly expressed will and desire that all his property to
bequeathed to his mother said Sarah E. Benton. This was his last illness
only one week before he died.
and subscribed before me
November 17th 1893
came Sarah E. Benton and Mary E. Coble, who on oath say that they know
the above and foregoing affidavit to be true, because they were present
and heard the words to wit: Mama, I want you to have what I had when I
lived and when I die it must belong to you” I have always Said that I
wanted you to have my property when I died.” We further Swear that to
the best of Knowledge and belief the said Z.B. Benton was of Sound mind
and memory and knew what he was doing, And that he was in his last
illness, and that he was in his mother’s house where he had lived for 9
years previous to his death. We further swear that according to he best
of Knowledge and belief that Said Z.W. Benton deceased owned in his own
right the following property to Wit: 1/5 Interest in Brick building in
town of Abbeville in Wilcox County GA, also 1/3 interest in stock of
Goods in said building at this time, also one mule and Buggy, and 1 cow
and calf and lot of Hogs, marked over Bit in one ear underbit in the
and Subscribed before me
of November 1893
came A.Y. Benton, who on oath Says that the above Affidavit made by
Sarah E. Benton and Mary E. Coble is true he being present and that he
knows that in intent of the words used by Z.W. Benton were intended to
be his Will.
and dated this Nov. 17th 1893
We and each
of Swear that we have Sworn to the within affidavit in the presences of
each other and that we have signed same in presences of each other and
that we saw each other sign same.
and subscribed before me
November 17th 1893
ad-litem of Schofield Benton and A.Y. Benton as minor you are hereby
notified that a Nuncupative will of Z.W. Benton late of Said county
deceased has been propounded to me by J.S. Bankson attorney for Mrs.
Sarah E. Benton and the same will probated by me at my office, on the
first Monday in January 1894 unless cause be shown why it should not be.
my hand and official signature
day of Nov. 1893
committee of friends to examine the books of the said county officers by
the Grand Jury of Sept. term of Superior Court 1895 find the book
correct and (illegible word) kept.