Chancery Depositions (PRO C5/418/146 Buttolph Cowland Pigg and Dove v Hatley and Crowe)

17.11.1662 (Monday 17 November 1662)

document 16700176

complaint of Jn Buttolph of Earls Colne in Essex son and heir of Zach Buttolph and wife Eliz late of Great Badfield Essex deceased Hen Cowland son and heir of Cowland late of Much Waltham deceased and wife Ann Jn Pigg son and heir of Jn Pigg late of Newport in Essex deceased and wife Kath and Wm Dove son and heir of Wm Dove of Henham in Essex deceased and Joan his wife which said Eliz Buttolph Ann Cowland Kath Pigg and Joan Dove were sisters and coheirs of Jane Hatley late the wife of one Wm Hatley and heretofore the wife of one Jn Pearson of White Colne in Essex deceased Jn Pearson being in his lifetime seised about fourteen years since in fee by copy of court roll according to the custom of the manor of White Colne in Essex of and in one messuage and tenement called Crackbones otherwise Jennings together with one barn stable and an oat mill thereto belonging of the yearly value of 5li and having no issue of his own and intending to provide for the future maintenance of Jane his wife and to give the same to her and her heirs in case he died without issue and to that purpose at a court held for the manor surrendered the same to the uses in his last will expressed which he often declared he would give to his wife and her heirs and accordingly he did make his last will in writing and therein and thereby did devise and bequeath the premises and every part and parcel thereof to Jane his then wife for life if she survived him and after her decease to the uses of such child or children as she Jane should be conceived with at the time of the death of him Jn Pearson and to the heirs of such child but if it should happen that she Jane should not be with child at the time of his death that then the same should remain to the right heirs of Jane forever as in and by the will and surrender is made by Jn Pearson if the orators could produce the same reference being had there more fully and at large it may appear and the orators further show that Jn Pearson having so made his will and surrender shortly after to wit about thirteen years since died at the time of whose death she Jane was not conceived with child by and after whose death the premises by virtue of the will and surrender descended and came of right the same ought to descend and come to Jane Pearson subject to the limitations and she Jane was accordingly admitted tenant according to custom of the manor and during the time of her life quietly enjoyed the same and at her death the same ought to have descended and come to the orators in coparency as eldest sons of the sisters of the said Jane according to the uses of the will but so it is that Jane having since the death of Jn Pearson intermarried and taken to husband Wm Hatley of Great Badfield in Essex carpenter and she Jane his wife being since dead he Wm Hatley by combination and confederacy to and with one Rich Sharp of Finchfield in the said county carpenter and Giles Crow of     they the confederates do now pretend that Jane in her lifetime did surrender the same to the uses of her last will and she by her last will dated =.=.165= did devise and bequeath the same to Wm Hatley and his heirs and that he by virtue thereof has entered in and has sold or leased the same to the said other confederates or one of them for a great number of years whereas in truth Jane made no such will or surrender or if she did the same was made contrary to her intent and desire and she was compelled thereto by the threats of Wm Hatley her husband neither had she any power to do the same being made during her coverture with Wm Hatley if any such there be and at such time when she Jane was not of a disposing mind or memory nor understood or knew what she did the said Wm Hatley by combination as aforesaid having got into his hands and custody not only the last will of Jn Pearson but also all other deeds writings evidences and copies of court roll concerning the same which they refused to discover do now not only refuse to permit the examinants to enjoy the premises but do also utterly refuse to give them a sight of the will of Jn Pearson or to make probate thereof or to permit the orators or any of them to have copies or any copy thereof of the pretended will of Jane by which means now# are altogether unable to commence any action at common law for the same not knowing the date nor contents of Jn Pearson's will or other writings and are remedy less save in equity in this court in tender consideration whereof and to the end that Wm Hatley Rich Sharp and Giles Crow and other confederates when discovered who know all the premises to be true may on their corporal oaths set forth the same and discover whether the said Jn Pearson did not make such a will in writing or to what effect the same was and where and in whose custody the same does now remain and what date the same bears and may also be enforced to bring the same into this court and the deeds and evidences and writings and copies of court roll that they or any of them had whether Jane made any will or surrender whether she was not forced by compulsion and threat at a time when she understood not what she did and was not of sound and disposing memory and what date the same bears and who witnessed it and what age such witnesses were at the time of the sealing of the pretended will and that the will should be produced in the court ask for subpoena to be brought against Wm Hatley Rich Sharp and Giles Crow (note at the side of the page) this bill was amended and the defendant Giles Crow made party by order of 23.5.1663