On July 10th, 1788, Jonathan Godwin received two patents from the State of North Carolina for 46 and 47 acres each of land lying in Sampson County on the East side of the Little Cohera River and the East side of the Black Mingo River.
When Jonathan Godwin died in 1791, his widow, Rachel, was allowed to keep his estate in her possession. No mention, however, was made of what was contained in his estate. In 1792 Richard Godwin took an inventory of Jonathan's estate which included only one tract of land containing 50 acres. You can view the contents of his estate in The Distribution of Jonathan Godwin's Estate, part 1. No description of the land included in the inventory was provided. If Jonathan Godwin received two tracts of land, each approximately 50 acres from the State of North Carolina in 1788, but only one tract appeared in his estate records, then what happened to the other 50 acre tract of land he received from the State?
It appears as if one tract of land that was granted to Jonathan Godwin by the State in 1788 was sold by Nathan Godwin in 1795 to John Dormand. Rachel and Dred Godwin were co-signers on the deed. Nathan and Dred Godwin were probably sons of Rachel and Jonathan Godwin and this tract of land was probably the 50 acres of land that was left in Rachel's possession after the death of her husband in 1791 and probably the same 50 acres of land that was mentioned in Jonathan's estate inventory. The tract of land described below was the one that was located on the East side of the Little Cohara (River) on the Mill Branch. (Click each image to make them bigger - Transcripts below)
State of North Carolina, Sampson County Deeds
Nathan Godwin and others to John Dormond, 14 Dec 1795
This Indenture made this 14th day of December one thousand seven hundred and Ninety Five Between Nathan Godwin Junior of Sampson County of the one part and John Dormond of the same County at the other part and State of North Carolina Witnesseth that the said Nathan Godwin for and in consideration of the sum of Seven pounds to him in hand paid By the said John Dormond at and before the unsealing and delivery of these presents the Receipt whereof I as hereby acknowledge myself to be fully satisfied contented and paid Hath given granted bargained and sold unto the said John Dormond his heirs and assigns forever. One parcell or tract of land containing by estimation forty six acres of land be the same more or less it lying in Sampson County on the East side of Little Cohara and on the Mill Branch. Beginning at a pine near the corner of a pond thence South 55 West 86 poles to a Red Oak thence South 35 East 86 poles to a pine thence North 55 East 86 poles to a Stake thence to the Beginning. It being a parcell of land granted to Jonathan Godwin by patent bearing date July one thousand seven hundred and Eighty Eight in the thirteenth year of our Independence to have and to hold the said piece or parcell of land aforesaid with all woods, waters, house, orchards, gardens, advantages, privileages, and appertanances thereto belonging to him the said John Dormond his heirs and assigns forever the said Nathan Godwin for himself his heirs and assigns doth promise and agree to and with the said John Dormond his heirs and assigns forever that the said Nathan Godwin hath in himself rightful power to give grant sell and deliver and convey the said piece of land unto the said John Dormond his heirs and assigns forever and the said Nathan Godwin and my heirs will forever warrant secure and defend the just right and title to the above said tract and parcell of land and priviliges unto the said John Dormond his heirs and assigns forever against all lawful claims of any person _____ and all ____ of my kind whatsoever.
In witness whereof I the said Nathan Godwin doth hereby hereunto set my hand and affixed my seal the day and year first and before written.
Signed sealed and delivered in the presence of:
Nathan Godwin (seal)
Dred Godwin (his mark) (& seal)
Rachel Godwin (seal)
State of North Carolina
Sampson County November Term One thousand Seven hundred and Ninety six then was the within deed from Nathan Godwin and others to John Dormond was proved in open court and ordered to be registered
Hardy Holmes, clk
State of North Carolina
Sampson County Registered in the Registers office at the aforesaid county this the nineteenth day of January anna domino 1798
O. Holmes Regr
There are several important pieces of information included in this deed:
1) There are three signatures on the deed - Nathan, Dred, and Rachel Godwin; I believe this is significant and provides evidence that Dred and Nathan Godwin were sons of Rachel and Jonathan Godwin
2) This land was located on the East Side of the Little Cohara on the Mill Branch and contains 46 acres. This is the exact description given of one of the tracts of land that Jonathan Godwin received from the State in 1788.
3) This land was granted to Jonathan by patent bearing date July 1788, thus further confirming that this is the same tract of land Jonathan received from the State in 1788.
We still do not know what happened to the other tract of land that Jonathan received from the State in 1788. My next step is to look through the Sampson County deeds to see if it was bought of sold. Because Rachel was his widow and Nathan and Dred were presumed to be sons of Jonathan, I started by looking at deeds carried out by them.
I will discuss this process in Part 3.
The Sampson County deeds are all online now at the Sampson County Register of Deeds. They can be downloaded for free! Check it out!
The Distribution of Jonathan Godwin's Estate, Part 2
The Distribution of Jonathan Godwin's Estate, Part 3