Liberty County Will — John Lambert

African-Americans Mentioned: Toney
Slaveholder: John Lambert
Year: 1785
Location: Liberty County, Georgia

Will Summary (published 1964)

John Lambert of Liberty County. Last Will and Testament dated September 29, 1785, probated January 22, 1787. Devises 60L in money each to Rev. William Gourley and Rev. William Henderson of S.C. [South Carolina]. Silver watch is given to W. Joseph Donnom. Testator cancels the notes due him by Joseph Bee and William James O’Bear [could also be O’Hear or O’Hearn]. He gives to Midway Church one silver tankard and two communion cups, same to be bought and given the church. Gives to friend Rev. Archibald Simpson two [unnamed] men slaves in S.C. [South Carolina] and cattle. Balance of estate to be kept together and income from it applied to religious and charitable purposes particularly by Midway Church and the intended Sunbury Academy. Directs his slaves to be taken care of and their needs administered to. Executors: Rev. Abial Holmes, John Elliott, Gideon Dowse, Thomas Sumner, William Quarterman and Thomas Baker. Witnesses: James Girardeau, William Baker, John Andrew. Will probated on testimony of William Baker, January 22, 1787.

Slave names left out of the original summary:

Additions: “My will and desire is that the fellow Toney be

continued driver while he behaves well, may be allowed the privilege of raising a few hogs among the rest or be found some meat and something distinguishable in clothes or a few guineas per annum, according to merit, and the rest of my slaves to be treated with as much levity as may be consistent with reasonable service and for their more comfortable living my will is that as soon as may be a small stock of cattle be bought and also that if it can be admitted they may have meat and rice & rum two or three times a year and besides good clothing in the winter that they also have summer clothes of oznabrig [type of cloth] or the like, and I recommend that the Minister for the time being may visit them occasionally and give them some spiritual advice.

NOTE: The entire John Lambert will is transcribed online at the Liberty County Historical Society, along with notes on his parentage (source: Sweet Land of Liberty, by Robert Groover):

Find the original (complete) will online at:

“Georgia Probate Records, 1742-1990,” images, FamilySearch ( : 20 May 2014), Liberty > Wills, appraisements and bonds 1790-1850 vol B > image 66 of 689; county probate courthouses, Georgia.

1964 Summaries From: “Georgia Court-House Records – Liberty County,” 1964 quarterly issues of The Georgia Genealogical Magazine, Folks Huxford, Editor. Published Under the Auspices of The Wiregrass Georgia Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution.

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