State of North Carolina, Wayne County } I, Zilphy Wilson, of the County and State, aforesaid begin of sound mind and memory, but considering the uncertainty of my earthly existence to make and declare this my last Will and Testament in manner and form following, that is to say: — That my Executor hereinafter named shall provide for my body a decent burial, suitable to the wishes of my relations and friends, and pay all funeral expenses together with my just debts out of the first money that may come into his hands as a part or parcel of my estate.
Item 1. I give and bequeath to my daughter Bettie Reid 7 acres of land to be cut off the North East corner of the tract of land on which I now reside for and during her natural life, and after her death to be equally divided between all of her children that she may have now, or may have living at the time of her death, the said Bettie Reid not to have possession of said Land until the debts against my estate are paid.
Item 2. I give devise and bequeath to my son Adam Wilson and my daughter Vicey Wilson, share and share alike all of the tract of Land on which I now live, with the exception of the seven acres given away in Item first of this will, with all the priviledges and appertances thereunto belonging for and during their natural like, should they both have heirs, then they to have their mother & Father part, and should Adam or Vicey only one of them leave heirs, then and in that case I give said land to the surviving heirs of that one to them and their heirs in the fee simple forever.
Item 3. I give and devise unto my son Adam Wilson and Vicy Wilson, share and share alike, all of my Household and Kichen furniture of every description Farming implements of every description, Tools of Mechanics &c &c, Stocks of all kinds, and all the poultry of kind to them and their heirs in fee simple forever.
Item 4. It is my will and I so direct, that my son Adam Wilson to retain possession of the whole of my land at yearly rental of seven hundred lbs. of lint cotton which is to be applied to the payment of the debts against my estate, as soon as said debts are paid, I direct that Bettie Reid be put in possession of the seven acres of land given to her in a former Item of this Will. I also desire that my daughter Bettie Reed become an equal heir in my household and kitchen furniture with my son Adam and daughter Vicey. Changes made in Zilphia Wilson’s Will Oct[?] 4, 1893
Item 5. I give and devise unto William and Jonah Wilson children of William Wilson Sixty dollars to be paid to them when they arrive at lawful age.
Item 6. I give and devise unto Johney, Lominary, Levy, Laronzo Locus, Children Louisa Locus Sixty dollars to be paid to them as they arrive at lawful age.
Item 7. It is my will and so direct that the Legacies mentioned in Items 5 & 6 of this Will be assessed by my son Adam and my Daughter Vicy Wilson, and I direct that they pay to each one of the above mentioned heirs, as they arrive of lawful age their proportionable part of said Legacies with interest on the same from the time the debts of the estate are settled.
Lastly, I hereby constitute and appoint my brother Jonah Williams and my son Adam Wilson Executors to this my last Will and Testament, hereby revoking all the Wills heretofore made by me. Zilphy X Wilson
Signed and sealed in the presence of Fred I. Becton and Thomas Artis, who witnessed the same at her request. /s/ Richard H. Battle, Fred I. Becton
Zilpha Artis Wilson was born about 1828, the first known child of Vicey Artis and Solomon Williams. About 1855, she married John “Jack” Wilson, a free man of color of completely unknown origins. That year, Jack bought 55 acres in Wayne County from Zilpha’s brother Adam Artis and settled his family close to the Artises.
Zilpha and Jack Wilson’s children were William Wilson (1856), Louisa Wilson Locus (1858), Elizabeth “Betty” Wilson Reid (1864-1947), John Adam Wilson (1865-1916) and Vicey Wilson (1869).
Zilpha Wilson’s will was proved 17 December 1902 and recorded at page 421 of Will Book 2, Wayne County Superior Court.