10th August 1888
Last Will of William Neilson
Husband of Elizabeth MacAdams, widower of Margaret Cassin
From records of Notary Cyprien Labreque
Transcribed from the Original
The tenth day of August in the year one thousand eight hundred and eighty eight, before us, Cyprien Labrèque and Pierre Édouard Émile Bélanger, Notaries Public for the Province of Quebec, personally came and appeared William Neilson of the Parish of St. Gabriel of Valcartier, in the County of Quebec, Esquire, Yeoman, who being in good bodily health and sound of mind and understanding as to us appeared by his manner and conversation, declared unto us the said Notaries that he desired to make his last will and testament which he hath requested us, the said Notaries, in the presence of the said Pierre Édouard Émile Bélanger, our confrère, have taken down as dictated to us by the said William Neilson word for word and as follows, namely:
The said Testator doth recommend his soul unto Almighty God and direct that his body be committed to the earth with decent and Christian burial at the discretion of his Executors hereinafter named and secondly as to the worldly estate with which it has pleased God to bless him, the said Testator doth give and devise, direct and dispose in respect thereof as follows, that is to say:
The said Testator doth hereby give and bequeath to his beloved wife Elizabeth MacAdams, the sum of twenty three thousand dollars of lawful money of Canada to be paid and raised out of his property and estate freely, to be possessed and enjoyed by her en pleine & entière propriété, from the day of his decease and for ever & also all and every sum or amount of money, that my said wife may or might have deposited at any bank or banks at Quebec or elsewhere in her name, which said sum or sums shall be her own & entire property, on the express condition that the said Elizabeth MacAdams, his said wife shall renounce to the communauté de biens that now exist between his said wife and himself, there being no marriage contract between them; and if she does not renounce to the said communauté, then & in that case the said Testator doth hereby order and direct that the said sum of twenty three thousand dollars and the said sums herein about mentioned which shall or might be deposited in her name at any bank or elsewhere hereby bequeathed to her, shall and will belong and revert to his children, male and female, issued of his marriage with the late Margaret Cassin, his first wife deceased, share and share alike from the day of his decease for ever.
The said Testator doth hereby also give and bequeath to his said wife Elizabeth MacAdams a part of the land one hundred and thirty one of the cadastral plan of the Parish of St. Gabriel of Valcartier, County of Quebec, in the Third Concession North East of the River Jacques Cartier, containing two acres in superficies, bounded as follows: on the North East and North West by the said lot one hundred and thirty one occupied by Mrs. K. Temple Fairchild, and on the South East and South West by the lot one hundred and thirty two occupied by Charles Stuart Wolff with the buildings thereon erected, circumstances and dependencies, together with the household furniture, goods, moveable effects, instruments of agriculture, horses, cows, sheep, and poultry, and all and every thing appertaining and belonging to the said Testator by her freely to be possessed and enjoyed en pleine et entière propriété from the day of his decease and forever.
The said testator declares that he has sold to Robert Ross, that certain lot or parcel of land, situated and being at the place called Belvedere in the Banlieu of the said City of Quebec & known as being the lot number seventy two (72) on the cadastral plan & Book of Reference for the Parish of St. Jean Baptiste de Québec for the price or sum of one thousand four hundred dollars as it appears by Deed of Sale passed before Mtre. P.E. Émile Bélanger, Notary Public, dated at Quebec the fourth day of April one thousand eight hundred and eighty seven and registered at Quebec under No. 75782. That the said Testator has given to his said wife Elizabeth MacAdams the said sum of one thousand four hundred dollars paid for price of sale of the said above described lot, and that he dispenses his said wife to return to his estate or the said Communauté de biens , the said sum of one thousand four hundred dollars, willing on the contrary that the said Elizabeth MacAdams shall use & enjoy the said sum en pleine & entière propriété.
And as to the rest and residue of his property and estate moveable and immoveable of what nature soever and in what place so ever it may be situated after paying all expenses that may or might be sustained in recovering property or any other expenses that may occur, the said Testator doth hereby give, ordain & direct that it be divided as hereinafter directed amongst all his said children issued of his marriage with the said Margaret Cassin, share and share alike; hereby instituting them his said children, his universal residuary legatees.
And the said testator doth hereby declare that in as much as his said children have already received from him, in lands money, and effects, namely -
His daughter Isabel Neilson, wife of Charles Stuart Wolff has received from him in land, money, and effects to the amount of two thousand one hundred and eighty dollars.
His daughter Agnes Janet Neilson, wife of John Billings has received from him in money and effects to the amount of one thousand one hundred and eighty dollars.
His son Cornelius Neilson has received from him in money and effects to the amount of two thousand and six hundred dollars.
His son Samuel Neilson has received from him in money and effects to the amount of two thousand seven hundred and ninety dollars.
His daughter Maria Ursula Hubert Neilson now widow of the late Hopper Ireland, junior, has received from him in lands and effects to the amount of two thousand five hundred & fifteen dollars.
His daughter Margaret Neilson, wife of John Reynolds, has received from him in money and effects to the amount of one thousand dollars.
His late daughter Elizabeth Laura Neilson, wife of Robert Ross, junior, has received from him in money and effects to the amount of six hundred and eighty six dollars.
And the said Testator doth hereby will and ordain that those of his said children who, as it appears as above mentioned, have received less than the others shall first take from the residue of his estate & property, an amount sufficient to equalize their shares with that of their brothers and sisters, as well as with the children issued of the marriage of the said Elizabeth Laura Neilson wife of the said Robert Ross, junior, and this being done, he doth hereby will and ordain that the then residue of his estate and property be equally divided among all his children as well a with the children of the said Elizabeth Laura Neilson wife of the said Robert Ross in such a manner that all his said children as well as the children issued of the marriage of Elizabeth Laura Neilson wife of the said Robert Ross, will be equally benefited by him, share and share alike.
And the said Testator doth hereby ordain and direct that in the event of the death of any of his said children before his decease, then and in that case the share of such of them that may die before the said Testator shall and will go and belong to the children issued of the marriage of any of his said sons and daughters that may die before the said Testator. The said Testator will and ordain that all his said children universal residuary legatees comply with all and every clauses & disposals of this his last will and testament, and moreover will and ordain that the one or those of his said residuary legatees who would refuse to comply with the said clauses & disposals of this his last will and testament or would refuse to execute one or more of his wills be, ipso facto excluded from his said estate & have no right to claim the legacy or legacies herein above bequeathed to him or them.
And for the execution of the present will and testament the said Testator doth hereby constitute and appoint his said wife Elizabeth MacAdams, Executrix, Cornelius Neilson, his son, and John MacAdams, Machinist, of the City of New York, United States, his Executors giving them power to prolong and carry the execution of this his said last will and testament beyond the term allowed by law, and until his views and intentions shall have been fully executed, hereby revoking all former wills, testaments & codicils that he may have made at any time heretofore by him, declaring the present to be his only true last will and testament.
This done and dictated word for word and published and declared by the said Testator as well for his last will and testament to and in the presence of us the said Notaries in the said City of Quebec under the number five thousand eight hundred & fifty one of the minutes of the said Cyprien Labrèque, Notary.
In faith and testimony whereof the said Testator hath signed his name and signature in the presence of us the said Notaries who have signed in his presence and in the presence of each other, these presents having been first duly read according to law.
Four marginal notes are good. Forty nine words erased are null.
William Neilson, his signature;
P.E. Émile Bélanger, N.P., his signature;
C. Labrèque, N.P., his signature
NOTE: Elizabeth MacAdams renounces [as specified in Paragraph 3 of the will] the Communauté de biens between her and her husband, William Neilson in the Notarial Act Number 2575 of the records of Notary P.E. Émile Bélanger dated September 9, 1895. She states no children issued of the marriage with William Neilson.
[Translated and transcribed by Gerry Neville]
Notes by Patricia Balkcom: William died in 1895, seven years after writing this will. His wife, Elizabeth MacAdams was about 25 years younger and he knew that she would probably outlive him by several years. He therefore set this will up to insure that his children from his first marriage would enjoy some of the fruits of his estate. William and his wife, Margaret Cassin, had 10 children. Two died as young children. His daughter, Laura, who he mentions in the will died in 1873 at the age of 27. Isabel, also mentioned in the will, died a few months before William. There was another son – William, born 1848, who is not mentioned in the will. It is possible that he died young also as he is not in the 1861 Census with the family.