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A Collection of Newfoundland Wills (S)
Mary Stretton

NOTE: by Susan Snelgrove
Caps and punctuation have been added to aid in reading of this document.

Research Notes: According to Encyclopedia of Nfld & Labrador - Reverend John Stretton, born Limerick, Ireland. In 1763 Stretton was converted to Methodism by Mrs. Eliza Bennis, a Wesleyan evangelist in Waterford. Carrying on a mercantile trade with Newfoundland, he decided in 1770 to emigrate, settling first in Carbonear, later in Harbour Grace, where he married Mary Parsons. Very well known minister, successor to Lawrence Coughlan, the first Wesleyan minister in Nfld. In a letter from John Stretton to Eliza Bennis, dated Nov. 14, 1773, Harbour Grace:

"I have now to inform you, that I have married a native of this land since I wrote last, she is blessed with many accomplishments, that would even grace an European, but the chief is, that she fears God and walks in his ways."

From HG Anglican parish Records, John Stretton was born 1744 and died Oct 2, 1817. Mary Stretton was born 1743 and was buried January 18, 1831.


Will of Mary Stretton
from Newfoundland will books volume 1 pages 126 & 128 probate year 1831.

In re Mary (Parsons) Stretton       deceased

In the name of God Amen. I Mary Stretton of Harbor Grace in the Island of Newfoundland Widow, being from weight of years in an infirm state of body but of perfect soundness of mind and not knowing how soon my heavenly Father may see good to call me to my eternal home revoking all others do declare this my last will & testament. I commit my soul into the hands of that God who gave it having thro' his infinite mercy and thro' faith in Christ a sure & certain hope of a joyful resurrection. My just debts being first paid I give and bequeath to my esteem'd friend and relative Mrs. Rachael McKie wife of Peter McKie Esq. Of st. John's that part of my plantation situate on the South bounds running in a direct line East & West at the half distance betwixt the brow of the garden & the cite of where the old Meeting house formerly stood.
To Sarah Pike daughter of John Pike of Carbonear that part of the said plantation on the north bounds now occupied by Wm. Mulcahy as tenant, together with the house thereon, but which or the rents or issues thereof shall be held by my executors in trust for the use & benefit of the said Sarah Pike in such manner as they shall see fit until she arrives at the age of twenty one years & in case of her previous death the same shall revert to my executors in trust for the same intents & purposes as the remaining part of the said Plantation is held by them. The residue & remainder of my plantation and the erections thereon, together with all other my lands, goods, chattels & effects not otherwise disposed of in this my will & testament I give to Josiah Parkin    Chas. Parsons & Mary Parsons in trust for the intents & purposes hereinafter mentioned viz that the same or rents issues & profits thereof be devoted to the support of the Gospel amongst the Wesleyan Methodists of the Harbor Grace Mission so long as they continue their Ministry and the Worship of God at Harbor Grace when that shall cease for the support of indigent widows & the education of poor children reserving to my old & faithful servant Mary Jure the use & possession (during her natural life or so long as she remains a widow) of that part of the house consisting of the kitchen, the old room above, the two small Bedrooms & the half of the cellar, also the Cow house, the Meadow- & the North East & North West corners of the garden running in a line with and including the large apple tree & to the South West corner of the house & from the South east corner of the house running in a line with and including the old Damson Tree, spruce Tree & the half of the well also such articles of household utensils as my executors shall deem necessary to her comfort so long as she remains in possession of the said part of the Premises, but in case of the said Mary Jure leaving the said Premises to reside elsewhere then the whole of the aforesaid property to revert to the aforesaid Josiah Parkin    Chas. Parsons & Mary Parsons in trust for the before mentioned intents & purposes they paying out of the said part of premises &c. or the rents profits or issues thereof the yearly sum of eight pounds to the said Mary Jure during her natural life or so long as she remains a Widow. I also give to the aforementioned Mary Jure my old Red Cow a bed one pair of Blankets one sheet and one Quilt. I also give to the aforementioned Sarah Pike my wedding ring, purple silk gown, my own bed bedstead & bedding viz one sheet two blankets one Counterpane, two pillow cases one Bolster case two towels & my light cold striped cotton gown, also a small round table, a looking glass & my large chest, reserved to my executors in like manner as the former, also the young cow.

I give to my brother Chas. Parsons a pair of silver sleeve buttons & to his wife Susannah Parsons my large table cloth.
To my brother Jonathan a pair of silver shoe buckles & to his wife Susan Parsons my black velvet gown.
To my nephews sons of Chas. Parsons I give as follows viz.
to Henry a Mahogany Tea Caddy & one Brass Candlestick,
To Stretton one arm chair & six stained chairs the double leaved painted table & desk,
To Chas. My Mahogany writing desk,
To Jon'n three vol. Wesleys notes on the Bible.
To my nieces daughters of Chas. Parsons I give as follows, viz.
To Susannah Parkin my gold diamond set ring & spice box,
To Julia a small black portmanteau,
To Louisa the looking glasses in the small room.
To my nephew William, son of Jon'n Parsons, two backed and four Windsor chairs the small square painted table & one Brass candlestick.
To my nieces daughters of Jon'n Parsons I give as follows,
Mary wife of Wm. Parsons a cable laid god ring,
To Emma a counterpane,
to Ann a chest with drawers,
To Rachael a bed quilt and to Mrs. Roe a Plaid.
To my niece & executrix Mary Parsons my Blue silk petticoat, Cloth cloak & painted knife box
To Mrs. Patience Lilly a black silk gown and quilted petticoat and the spare bed.
To Mrs. Churchill a spotted cotton gown.
To Josiah Parkin my executor my books not already disposed of, which however he will lend at his discretion to my relatives and friends.

To such of my relatives as are not already named I empower my executors if they shall see it needful to give some small token of remembrance out of such of the household utensils or my clothes as are not already personally disposed of & from which source also my funeral expenses are to be paid, but which I request may be as plain and at as little expense as can be consistently with decency.
Finally I do hereby appoint & nominate Josiah Parkin, Chas. Parsons & Mary Parsons to be the executors & executrix of this my last will & testament.
This my last will & testament being my own free & voluntary act signed and sealed by me in the presence of the undersigned. Mary Stretton (LS) Patience Lilly.   Jonathan Parsons,    Josiah Parkin, Witnesses.


Josiah Parkin of Harbor Grace, Esquire maketh oath and saith that he was present and did see Mary Stretton, late of Harbor Grace aforesaid, widow, deceased, the Testatrix above named sign, seal and publish and declare the foregoing as for her last Will and Testament, and that the same was executed some time in the month of September of the year one thousand eight hundred and twenty five. And the deponent further saith that the said Testatrix at the time of publishing her said last Will and Testament was of perfect sound mind, memory and understanding avoiding? to the best of his knowledge and belief.

Sworn before me this 8th July 1831.
Josiah Parkin.

C. D. Archibald, Ch:Cl:& Regr.: Sup: Court.

I hereby certify that the foregoing pages three hundred and fifty three, fifty four, and fifty five, and fifty six contain a true and correct copy of the last Will of Mary Stretton as the same appears to have been proved before the Chief Clerk and Registrar of the Supreme Court and Probate thereof granted to the Executors and Executrix on the eighth day of July one thousand eight hundred and thirty one, and the same is hereby actually Registered by me this day.

Given under my hand at the Registrar of Deeds Office Harbor Grace this Sixteenth day of July one thousand eight hundred and third one 1831.
John St. John, Registrar
Fee 1:15:0 Real property valued at under 350:0.0



Note: The wills in those will books are NOT actual wills. They are hand-written copies of a, "last will and testament," written by the court clerk, after the death of the testator, when the executor presented them to the court for probate. The court clerk didn't list the signatures at the bottom, he (or she) just put them in the book in whatever order they were in, on the original document, no spacing most of the time, no punctuation. The originals were kept by the executor.

We who have typed these wills, have made every effort to include all the errors that were on the microfilm, in order to avoid destroying the integrity of the originals, where ever they may be.

Contributed & Transcribed by Susan Snelgrove, Uxbridge, ON November 16, 2001

Page Revised by Ivy F. Benoit (January 8, 2003)

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