A copy of the actual will was found by cousin Vonette in a genealogy written by cousin Gomez Shelton, which I then transcribed.
THANKS Vonette !
In the name of God, A Men.I, JOHN YATES of the county of Pittsylvania and Colony of Virginia, being sick and weak in Body but of Sound and Perfect Memory, I do first Give my Soul to God and my body to be buried in a Decent Manner at the Discretion of my Executors hereafter Named and now I dispose of my Worldly Estate as follows to wit: First I leave unto my beloved wife ELIZABETH YATES during her life all my Estate Real and personal Estate and after her Decease the Negroes and land to ? be divided as follows: Viz I Give unto my Eldest son JOHN YATES and his Heirs a part of my Land Whereon I now Live beginning at my Corner Tree on Hughes Creek and taking the full North of the Land up Dan River to a branch at the Lower end of my plantation and a Nero Man Named Bob Item - I Give unto my Son GEORGE YATES and his Heirs another part of the Land whereon I now Dwell Beginning Where my Son John's Land ends and Runing north the said branch to the bank line ? ? a part of a Survey ? Made adjoining where I now Dwell and Extending up to THOMAS WATTS line but the Lane on the River is to extend upwards to a branch that the runs below GIBSON's Plantation and with the said branch to the bank line and a Negro Man Named L*** and all my Smiths Tools. Item - I Give ? ? unto my Son ELIJAH YATES and his Heirs forever all the Remaining of the Tract of Land Where on I now Dwell beginning at the branch below GIBSON's and Runing up the River encluding all the Remainder of the ? Tracts where on I Now Dwell and a Negro Boy Named TILER and a Nero Girl Named JUDITH Item I Give unto my Daughter HANNAH SHELTON Wife of WILLIAM SHELTON and her Heirs two Negroes Names big CATE and her daughter CHLOE Item I Give unto my Daughter ANN GIBSON and her Heirs One Negro Girl - Named EASTHER Likewise, I give unto her and her Heirs forever all the Remainder of a Tract of Land Where on She Now Dwells in Adjoining a Made Line between her and the plantation Where THOMAS WATTS lives allowing One Hundred Acres to the plantation where THOMAS WATTS lived Item I Give unto my Daughter MARTHA WATTS and her Heirs the One Hundred Acres of Land Whereon She Lived and all the Stock of Horses, Cattle, Hogs and Sheep all my Household Furniture and a Negro Woman Called LITTLE CATE to be Divided among my Children at the Discretion of my Wife on or before her Decease also Appointing Wife ELIZABETH YATES and WILLIAM SHELTON Executrixs of this my Last Will and Testament Revoking and Annulling all Other Wills and this onli to be taken for my Last Will As Witness my hand and Seal this twenty fourth Day of October in the Year 1777. Seal& acknowledged in} his & presence of } JOHN X YATES } mark GEORGE CROSS? ? ? THOMAS X WRIGHT At a Court held for Pittsylvania County the 23d Day of April 1778 The Within Last Will and Testament of JOHN YATES Dec'd was exhibited into Court by ELISABETH YATE and WILLIAM SHELTON Executrix and executor Therein Named and proved by the oaths of two of the Witnesses thereto and Ordered to be Recorded and on the Motion of the said Executrix and Ex** Who Made Oath According to Law Certificate is Granted there for obtaining a probate there of in due form of Law Giving ? Whereupon they Together With JOHN WILSON their Security entered into Bond and Acknowledged the ? Assending to Law *** WILL TUNSTALL (?)