James Martin Lewis, 1804 Deposition, Greene County, Tennessee

Depositions from the Estate File of William Ridge


State of North Carolina  )

To James DICKSON Robert EDMANSON and Benjamin D. WELLS or Samuel BELL, Esqrs of Davidson Co'ty and State of Tennessee Greeting:

We reposing especial trust and confidence in your fidelity and integrity, do authorise and empower you, or any two of you to cause James Martin LEWIS Esqr to appear before you on such certain day and place as you shall appoint and he being duly sworn, to examine of and concerning such matters and things as he shall know, in a certain matter of controversy in our court of Equity held for the distict of Salisbury, depending between RIDGES ORPHANS by their next friend Jonathan HAINS complaining and William Terrill LEWIS and others defendants as well on behalf of the Compl's as the the Defendants and his deposition so taken in writing under your, or any two of your hands and seals, to return before our Judges of our said court, at Salisbury, on th 19th day of March next, together with this writ.

Witness, Maxwell Chambers, Clerk and master in our said court, at office the 19th day of September Anno Domini 1801 and in the XXVth year of our Independence.

Max. Chambers C.M. Eqy.

State of No Carolina )
Surry County )

Know all men are there present that I William RIDGE of the County of Surry and State of North Carolina for and in consideration of the sum of one hundred and twenty pounds to me in hand paid by Wm T. LEWIS of the County and State before mentioned at and before the __ any of these presents the receipt whereof I do acknowledge that I have bargained and sold confirmed and delivered and do by these presents bargain and __ confirm and deliver two Negroes by Name SALL and NAN of a mullatrish complection unto the said Wm T. LEWIS SALL about thirtien years old and NAN eleaven years oald for and in consideration of the above sum of one hundred and twenty pounds paid to me by said Wm T. LEWIS and further for said Wm T. LEWIS to have and to hold all and singular the said Negroes and every of them by this presents bargained and solde granted and confirmed unto the only propper use and behoof of him the said Wm T. LEWIS his executors administrators or assigns for ever and I the said Wm RIDGE for my self my executors and administrators all and singular the said Negroes I will warrant and for ever defend unto the said Wm T. LEWIS his executors administrators and assigns against me the said Wm Ridge my executors administrators or assigns and against all and every other purson or pursons whatsoever in witness hear of I have hearunto set my hand and affixed my seal this 5th day of May 1780.

Signed sealed and delivered in the presence of

Wm (his X mark) RIDGE (seal)

J M LEWIS

[On the endorsement side of the bill of sale:]
State of North Carolina )
Surry County                )

This day personally appeared Stadge COOK before me the subscribing Justice & makes oath in due form of law that he was at Wm T. LEWIS on the fifth day of May 1780 where he saw Wm RIDGE set & deliver the within mentioned Newgrow for and in consideration of the sum of one hundred & twenty pounds which the sd Wm RIDGE acknowledged the recp't thereof to the sd. Wm T LEWIS above mentioned & further this deponant saith not.

Sworn before me May 14th 1787

Stadge COOK
Zack RAY J.P.

Surry County North Carolina  )

John McCONNALL maketh oath that this is the identical bill of sail alluded to in his deposition in the suite of Wm COOK & Jonathan HAINES against Wm T LEWIS now defending in the County Court of Surry.

Sworn to before viz June 2th 1790

John Mc CONNALL
Zack RAY
O M BENGE
 
 

State of No Carolina   )
Surry County              )

Nov'r Court 1790 This Bill of Sale was proved in open court by the oath of James M LEWIS & ordered to be recorded.

Recorded accordingly

Test, Jos WILLIAMS Clk
by Wm THORNTON Asc
 
 

Green County   )
N Carolina       )

The within Bill of Sale is the identical Bill of Sale that is proven before us at green Court House on the 20th day of March 1790 by Mr. STAGE COOK one of the subscribing witnesses and witness our hands the sale above.

Joseph HARDIN J.P.
David RUSSELL J.P.
 
 

State of Tennessee  )
Davidson County    )

"In obedience to a Commission to us directed from the Hono'ble the Judges of the Superior Court of Law & Equity held for the District of Salisbury and State of North Carolina we have proceded to take the deposition of James Martin LEWIS Esqr at his own house on this 31st day of December 1801 in the County and State afoursaid in a certain matter of controversy in said Court...wherein Jonathan HAINES as the next friend of the orphans of William RIDGE is plaintiff and WM T. LEWIS Wm COOK and others are defendants which being sworn agreeable to law deposeth and sayeth

"That he was at the house of Wm T LEWIS in Surry County North Carolina...on the fifth day of May one thousand seven hundred and eighty when and where he saw William RIDGE execute the alluded Bill of Sail to said Wm T. Lewis in the words following:

State of North Carolina
Surry County

Know all men by these presnts that I Wm RIDGE of the County of Surry and State of North Carolina for and in consideration of the sum of one hundred and twenty pounds to me in hand paid by Wm T. LEWIS of the County and State before mentioned & at and before the sealing and delivering of this presents the receipt whereof I do acknowledge that I have bargined and sold confirmed and delivered and do by these presents bargin and sels confirm and deliver two Negrows by name SALL and NAN of a milattrish complection unto the said Wm T. LEWIS SALL about thirteen years old and NAN about eleaven years old for and in consideration of the above sum of one hundred and twenty pounds paid to me by said Wm T. LEWIS and further for Wm T. LEWIS to have and to hold all and singular the said Negrows and eveary of them by these presents bargained and sold granted and confirmed unto the only propper use and behoof of him the said Wm T. LEWIS his executors administrators or assigns for ever and I the said Wm RIDGE for my self my executors and administrators all and singular the said Negrows I will warrant and for ever defend unto the said Wm T. LEWIS his executors administrators and assigns against me the said Wm RIDGE my executors administrators or assigns and against all and eveary other purson or pursons whatsoever in witness hearof I have hearunto set my hand and affixed by seal this 5th day of May 1780.

Wm (his X mark) RIDGE (seal)

Signed sealed and delviered in presence of

J M LEWIS
Stadge COOK

"Which negrows in the above Bill of Sail alluded to is Two of the negrows now in dispute and this deponant says that on the said 5 th day of May 1780 that he saw Wm RIDGE make his mark to the bill of sail afoursaid for said Negrows and acknowledged it as his act and deed and delivered it to said LEWIS and at the same time delivered one of teh above named Negrows to Wm T. Lewis to wit, NAN

This deponant sayeth that the consideration expressed in the Bill of Sail is one hundred and twenty pounds which was paid by said WmT LEWIS and agreable to the __ contract entered into between Wm T. LEWIS and Wm RIDGE for said LEWIS putting a man into the Continental Servis in the place of said WM RIDGES son Godfre RIDGE which was a delinquent from the nine months servis drafted out of Capt. Salathiel MARTINS Company from Surry County No Carolina and refusing to march when ordered subjected him to serve three years or during the war in the Continental Servis which ____ was found by Wm T. LEWIS and agreable to contract and that Godfre RIDGE afterwards remained at home in peace so fir as related to his being a delinquent.

"This deponant further sayeth that in the latter part of the summer or fall of 1780 Wm T LEWIS was robed by one John GOINS and one Nicholas COMBS and a great many of his papers destroyed and he supposed the Bill of Sail that he had got of WmRIDGE for said two negrows SALL and NAN among the rest as the defendant LEWIS had informed this deponant that his Overseer had gathered up the papers that day scattered on the floor after the Robbers had went of[f] and had put them in bundles and taken them to said LEWIS'S fathers in Wilkes County and that he the said Wm T. LEWIS informed this deponant that he had made a search for said Bill of Sail and had not found it and advised with this deponant what he thought was best to be done about it, and this deponant oppinion was that as Wm RIDGE was said then to have been killed by the Whigs in an action at the Hanging Rock in South Carolina and the wife of said RIDGE lived not fair of[f] and John FIELDER the son in law to said RIDGE and Godfre RIDGE the eldest son of said Wm RIDGE and they well knowing to the first Bill of Sail given to WM T LEWIS by WM RIDGE that it might be well to git a second one from them which the said LEWIS proceeded to do and on the 16th day of January 1781 in the presence of this deponant Winnaford RIDGE wife to WM RIDGE and John FIELDER son in law to said WM RIDGE executed a second bill of sail to said LEWIS for said two negrows now in dispute to wit, SALL and NAN and JOHN FIELDER set Godfre RIDGES name to said Bill of Sail at the request of Godfre RIDGE which bill of sail was given in consequence of Wm T. LEWIS's expecting that he had lost the first and that he this deponant and Capt. Samuel CRUTCHFIELD was the subscribing witnesses there to and no other purson present but the partys James FIELDER and John FIELDERs family.

"This deponant further sayeth that some time after the second Bill of Sail was given that the first was found at this deponant fathers and that he this deponant well knowing of it to be the one that was given by Wm RIDGE to Wm T. LEWIS for SALL and NAN proved the same in Surry County No Carolina at there November Court in the year 1790 which bill of sail was recorded which will __ from the back hearof.

"This deponant sayeth that he had understood that a certain Thomas RIDGE has been call'd upon by Jonathan HAINES to say something respecting the business and that he should have been present when John FIELDER executed the Bill of Sail to Wm T LEWIS this deponant declears that he was not present at neither giving the first nor second and that he the said Thomas RIDGE never had been seen in that part of the Country for many years before the one was given by Wm RIDGE to Wm T LEWIS nor did not come into that part of the country until after the Battle of Kings Mountain which was long after Wm RIDGE was said to have been kill'd and that said Thomas RIDGE bore and Infamous Carricter he pilfered and stold and burnt a pore mans house in Wilkes County by the name of BURCH and took from them nearly all they had -

"This Deponant further sayeth that WmT LEWIS has ever had NAN in his possession from the said year 1780 and to the present date unless absent by his consent SALL mentioned in the before receipt Bill of Sail from Wm RIDGE to WM T LEWIS was not delivered at the time NAN was tho Wm RIDGE obliged himself to deliver her in a five days but went off with the TORYS which prevented him She was then taken off by a Capt. Joseph CLOUD that was in pursuite of the TORYES and said LEWIS did not git her until the winter following but has had her ever since.

"This deponant sayeth there was a notice left at his house some years ago by RICHARD WILBURN signed JONATHAN HAINES saying that he this deponant might attend at the house of WILLIAM MERIDETH as this deponant believes to cross examine the wife of WILLIAM N. COOK STAGE COOK and perhaps others tho this deponant did not think himself authorised besides there was not ten days beteween the time the notice was left and the day the Testamony was to be taken.

"This deponant further sayeth that in the year 1797 he this deponant delivered a notice in writing from Wm T LEWIS on of the present defendants to Jonathan HAINES that he should attend to he best of this deponants recolection on the 8th day of June 1797 at the house of John HOWARDS on Smith River in the State of Virginia in Patrick County to take the deposition of said HOWARD and purhaps others in said suite-- this Deponant says that he did attend at the house of said HOWARDS on the day the notice did express and took the deposition of Captain Samuel CRUTCHFIELD in said suite and that there was upwards of forty days between the times the notice was delivered to HAINES and the day on which the testamony of said CRUTCHFIELD was taken which depostion was taken before Alexander HUNTER and Colo. WALER then acting Justices in said County which this deponant did at the request of WM T LEWIS from a letter that he had received some short time before he delivered said notice to HAINES-- This deponant further says that STAGE COOK was a subscribing witness with himself to the alluded Bill of Sail given by Wm RIDGE to Wm T LEWIS on the 5th day of May 1780 for the before mentioned SALL and NAN and that this deponant does beleave that said COOK signed his name to the probate upon the back of the same taken before ZACH RAY Esqr. and is also well cinvinced that he proved the same when lawfully call'd on before Joseph HARDIN and David RUSSEL Esq'rs as he this deponant has been since present when the deposition of David RUSSEL was taken in said suite and he said RUSSEL swar that said Stage COOK proved the ___ bill of sail before him and Joseph HARDIN freely and voluntarily...

"This deponant says that the words between the forth and fifth lines after the __?__ Bill of Sail in Inserted in his deposition was interlined before he was qualifyed or subcribed to the same and further this deponant sayeth not Sworn to and subscribed before us at the House of said JAMES MARTIN LEWIS Esqrs this 31 day of December 1801

JM LEWIS

Samuel BELL J.P. (SEAL)
James DICKSON J.P. (SEAL)

We do hearby certify that we have taken the deposition of James Martin LEWIS Esq'r at his own house in the County of Davidson and State of Tennessee on this 31st day of December in the year of Our Lord one thousand eight hundred and one in witness whereof we have hear unto set our hands & affxed ourseals this day & date above written.

Samuel Bell J. P (seal)
James DICKSON J. P. (seal)


References Cited

NC State Library and Archives, CR085.508.136, Estate Records, Rowan Co., NC, Folder: William Ridge (1785)

Top of Page

Return to George's Genealogical Research Filing Cabinet


Sincerely, George Baumbach, Email:


1997, 1998, 1999 George A. Baumbach, All Rights Reserved