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John Kidd vs. Elizabeth Kidd: Chancery Cause, Prince Edward County

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The Separate answer of John Toney, one of the executors of Moses Kidd decd to a bill of complaint, exhibited against himself and others, in the honorable the high court of Chancery for the Richmond district by John Kidd, William Kidd, Benjamin Boatright and others. This respondent saving and reserving to himself, all and all manner of benefit for exceptions to the many errors, and untruths in the said complainants bill contained for answer saith, that it is true that Moses Kidd, departed this life some time in the year 1798, but it is not true that this defendant with others after his death produced a will that was unduly executed and fraudulently obtained from the said Moses, and procured the same to be put on record. That at the time of the date of the will in the bill mentioned the said Moses Kidd sent for this defendant, and requested him to write the said will as it now appears, to attest it with the other subscribing witnesses, and to take it into this defendants possession for safe keeping, this defendant acted according to the request of the said Moses Kidd and not otherwise. That after the return of the said Moses Kidd from a Tour in the Militia service, he and this defendant were near Neighbours, and frequently visited at the house of each other, that the said Moses never during his life applied to this defendant to deliver up the will aforesaid, nor did he ever direct this defendant to destroy the same. That the said Moses Kidd was a man at times addicted to drunkeness, in which Situation he would publickly and frequently call out to this defendant, and enquire what this defendant had done with his will, that this defendant frequently answered him correctly that it was safe in his keeping, from whence he the said Moses might take it whenever he chose, at other times when worried with such drunken applications, this defendant may have answered, that he had not seen it for a long time and it might be lost, and the said Moses Kidd might make another, but that the said Moses was always always satisfied to the safe keeping of the Will. Whenever he made a serious application, tho' drunk, that the said Moses Kidd never mentioned seriously to this defendant, that he had a mind to make any alteration in the said will but once, which happened but a few years before his death, That this defendant then told the said Moses Kidd that he might make any alteration he wished, or an entire new one if he chose, and his estate was at his own disposal, and that if the said Moses Kidd would come over to this defendant's house he would make such alterations or write such new will as the said Moses should direct, but that the said Moses never came to direct any alterations and altho frequently afterwards at this defendant's house never again mentioned the subject of alteration, from which this defendant concluded that as the said Moses had no children by his wife, he intended to let his will remain as it was, and so it did remain without fraud or imposition as far as this defendant knows or believes until his death after which it was recorded in the county court of Buckingham, and this defendant and William Wilkinson became executors as stated in the bill. This defendant denies ever assuring the said Moses Kidd that the said Will was destroyed. This defendant denies all fraud &c and prays hence to the be dismissed with his costs &c &c. John Toney

Buckingham County, to wit This 1st January 1803, John Toney make oath before me a justice of the peace for the county aforesaid to the truth of the foregoing answer according to law. Daniel Bagby

The deposition of John Williams taken before us at the house of Benjamin Pollard in the Town of New Canton, agreeable to notice to be read in a Suit depending in the high court of Chancery for the Richmond district between John Kidd and others Complts and Elizabeth Kidd wife of Moses Kidd deceased and John toney and William Wilkinson executors of the said Moses Kidd defendants. The deponent being first sworn saith that some [illegible] several years before the death of Moses Kidd, he the said Moses Kidd invited John Toney to call in at this deponent's house on his return from a Muster in the neighbourhood, which the said Toney did, and informed this deponent that he was requested to