Last Will and Testament of Benjamine Merriman
of New York
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The People of the State of New York
By the grace of God Free and Independent

To all to whom these presents shall come or may concern, Greeting:
Know ye that we having examined the records and files in the office of the surrogate of the county of New York do find a certain record of the probate proceedings in the matter of proving the last will and testament of
Benjamine W. Merriam deceased said will having been duly admitted to probate as a will of real and personal property on this fourteenth day of May in the year one thousand eight hundred and eighty four there remaining in the words and figures following to wit:

Be it remembered that heretofore to wit on the Second day of May in the year One Thousand eight hundred and Eighty four
Henry E. Merriam designated as an Executor in the last will and testament of Benjamine W. Merriam late of the county of New York deceased appeared in open court before Daniel Rollins Surrogate of the county of New York and made application to have the last will and testament which related to both real and personal property proved.  And in such application the surrogate did ascertain by satisfactory evidence  ?? over the only heirs and next of kin of said deceased and their respective places of residence and said surrogate did there from issue a citation directed to said only heirs and next of kin by their respective names stating their places of residence requiring them to appear before said Surrogate at his office in the city of New York on the Fourteenth day of May then next to attend the probate of said will and afterward to wit: on the said fourteenth day of May in the year one thousand eight hundred and eighty four satisfactory evidence by affidavit was adduced and presented to said Surrogate of the service of said citation in the mode prescribed by law is being ascertained on the said day or before any proceedings were taken upon the probate of said will that one of the parties cited was a minor having a general guardian residing in the State of New York, John L. Shirley was appointed a special guardian in due form of the law to take care of his interest in the matter of proving said will by an order duly entered for that purpose by said Surrogate.  And said special guardian having duly appeared and on that day no one appearing to oppose the probate of said will such proceedings were thereupon had afterward that said Surrogate took the proofs of said will as hereinafter set forth and upon this Fourteenth day of May in the year one thousand eight hundred and eighty four he adjudged said will to be a valid will of real and personal property and proofs thereof to be sufficient which said last will and testament and proofs are as follows that is to say:

In the name of God Amen:
I
Benjamine W. Merriam being of sound and disposing mind, memory and understanding and mindful of the uncertainty of human life do make publish and declare this to be my Last Will and Testament as follows:

First: I order and direct that all my just debts and funeral expenses and the charges attending the proof and execution of this my will to be fully paid by my executors as soon as conveniently may be after my decease.

Second: I give and bequeath unto my son
Henry E. Merriam the sum of twenty thousand (20,000) dollars.  I give and bequeath unto my nephew Edward A. Lawrence the sum of five hundred (500) dollars.

Third:  I give and bequeath to the “Young Men’s Christian Association of the City of New York”,  “The New York City Tract Society”, the “Deaf and Dumb Asylum”,  the “Protestant Help Orphan Asylum”, the “Colored Orphan Asylum”, the American Society for the “Prevention of Cruelty to Animals”,  the “Association for  Ameliorating the condition of the Poor of New York, and the Trustees of the general Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in the United States of America for the use of the Fund for Disabled Ministers and their families each the sum of Five Hundred (500) dollars.
In care either of the forgoing societies should not be incorporated at the time of my decease then I give and bequeath the sum of money specified above to be given to such society to the Treasurer of such Society for the uses and purposes thereof.

Fourth:  All the rest residue and remainder of all my estate real and personal whatsoever and wheresoever situated the same may be, I order and direct my said executors to divide into as many shares as I shall have children living at the time of my decease and children who shall have died leaving issue, I order and direct them to convey, assign, transfer and pay over to my said son
Harry or Henry in case he shall survive me one of said equal shares in full.  I order and direct them to convey assign transfer and pay over unto each daughter of mine then living one half part of one of said equal shared to and for her sole and separate use free from the control of her husband if any she shall have.  I order and direct them to pay over to the trustees hereinafter named the remaining half of the share of each of said daughters to be held by such Trustee under the trusts and for the uses and purposes hereinafter expressed.

In case my grandson
William Merriam Crane shall survive me, I order and direct them to pay over to the trustee hereinafter named for said grandson one half of one of said shares and I order and direct them to pay over to the Trustees of my daughter Adeliza or her children the remaining half of such share.
I order and desire them to divide the shares of any child of mine who shall have died leaving issue unto as many shares as the one so dying shall leave descendants him or her surviving and to pay over to the Trustees hereinafter named the entire share so divided.
I have taken from the share of the child of my said daughter
Caroline and added it to the share of my daughter Adeliza in order that my grandchildren may receive equal shares from my estate so far as I am able to adjust matters.

Fifth: I hereby nominate constitute and appoint Trustees as follows:  As Trustees for my daughter
Adeliza F. Sahler, my friend J. H. Lane and my son Henry E. Merriam as trustee for my daughter Maria? Brush? and for my grandson William Merriam Crane my friend Everett P. Wheeler is trustee for my daughter Ann L. my son-in-law W. N. Crane and my son in law D. D. Sahler as trustees for my daughters Sarah W. my son Henry E. Merriam and J. H. Lane.

I order and direct that the said Trustees shall have and hold the said one half shares of the daughters herein before directed to be part of my executors to such Trustee in trust to receive the rents issues income and profits of such share and to apply the same to the use of such daughter during her natural life and upon the decease of each daughter leaving issue her surviving I order and direct the said share (Trustee or Trustees to divide the said) unto as many parts as such daughter shall leave issue her surviving to pay over the shares to the children of age and to hold the shares of the minors in severalty during their anmority?? To receive and apply the income on the trust hereinbefore provided for such minor  children and to pay such shares to such minors on their arrival at age.  And in case of the death of either of the said daughters leaving issue then I nominate constitute and appoint the trustee or trustees of such children and to receive the shares of the issue from my said Executor to hold the said shares to receive and apply the income during minority and to pay such shares to such minors on their arrival at age.  And upon the decease of each daughter or of any grandchildren having a share who shall die during minority without issue I order and direct the said Trustee or Trustees to distribute the said shares among her heir at law or next of heir in the same manner as if she had owned the same and had died intestate a resident of the state of New York.
I hereby authorize said Trustees to invest and reinvest the shares or their proceeds in bond and mortgage or real estate in stocks and bonds or securities of the United States and of the States of New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Michigan and Illinois.

Sixth:  I hereby nominate, constitute and appoint my son
Henry E. Merriam my daughter Adeliza F. Sahler and my son in law William S? Crane executors and executrix of this my last will and testament and I direct authorize and empower them and the survivors or successors of them to sell and dispose of my estate real and personal at such times in such manner and on such terms as they may deem advantageous to my estate and to invest and reinvest the proceeds thereof.
In witness whereof I have hereunto subscribed my name and affixed my seal this twenty ninth day of June in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and eighty one.
B. W. Merriam (L. S.)

Subscribed sealed, published and declared by the above named testator as and for his Last Will and Testament in the presence of us who at his request in his presence and in the presence of each other have here unto subscribed our names as witnesses the day and year last above written and page two between the 11th and 12th line of the fourth paragraphs the words “half part of one” were interlined before the execution hereof.  In the fifth clause
J. H. Lane and my son Henry E. Merriam written over an erasure. Thomas G. Ritch Stamford, Ct.
Wm. Henry Arnou?x, Gramercy Pk. Hotel, New York

Surrogates Court
County of New York
In the matter of proving the Last Will and Testament of
Benjamine W. Merriam
Deceased as a will of Real and Personal Property
County of New York
Examination of witnesses sworn and examined in the above entitled matters to wit: 
Thomas G. Ritch of Stamford Connecticut being duly sworn as witness in the above entitled matter and examined on behalf of the applicant to prove said will says:  I was well acquainted with Benjamine W. Merriam now deceased.  I known the above named deceased for ten years before his death.  The subscription of the name of said decedent to the instrument now shown to me and offered for probate at his last will and testament and bearing date the twenty ninth day of June in the year one thousand and eight hundred and eighty one was made by the decedent at the City of New York in the presence of myself and Wm. Henry Ar???ux the other subscribing witness.  At the time of such subscription the said decedent declared the said instrument so subscribed by him to be his last will and testament and  I therefore signed my name as witness at the end of said instrument at the request of said decedent and in his presence.  The said decedent at the time of so executing said instrument was upward of the age of twenty one years and of sound mind memory and understanding and not under any restraint or in any respect incompetent to devise real estate.  I also saw Wm. Henry Ar???ux the other attesting witness sign his name as a witness at the end of said will and knew that he did so at the request of said decedent and in his presence.  Thomas G. Ritch.
Sworn this 14th day of May 1884,
Charles H. Beckett, assistant to Surrogate, New York County} Before me.  
Surrogate Court}
County of New York}
In the matter of proving the last will and testament of}
Benjamine W.  Merriam, Deceased as a will of Real and } County of New York
Personal Property

Examination of witnesses sworn and examined in the above entitled matter to wit: Wm. Henry Arnoux? of New York City being duly sworn as a witness in the above entitled matter and examined on behalf of the applicant to prove said will says:  I was well acquainted with
Benjamine W. Merriam now deceased.  I knew the above named decedent for upon and of ten years before his death.  The subscription of the name of said decedent to the instrument was shown to me and offered for probate as his last will and testament and bearing date the twenty-ninth day of June in the year one thousand and eight hundred and eighty-one was made by decedent at the city of New York in the presence of myself and Thomas G. Ritch, the other subscribing witness.   At the time of such subscription the said decedent declared the said instrument so subscribed by him to be his last will and testament and I thereupon signed my name as a witness at the end of said instrument at the request of said decedent and in his presence.  The said decedent at the time of so executing said instrument was upwards of the age of twenty one years and of sound mind, memory and understanding and not under any restraint or in any respect incompetent to devise real estate.  I also saw said Thomas G. Ritch the other attesting witness sign his name as a witness at the end of said will and knew that he did so at the request of said decedent and in his presence.  Wm. Henry Arnoux
Sworn this 14th day of May 1885, before one
Charles H. Beckett
Assistant to Surrogate
New York County.

In the matter of proving} At a Surrogate court held in and for the county of
The last Will and Testament} New York at the Surrogate office in the city of New York
Of
Benjamine W. Merriam} on the Fourteenth day of May in the year 1884.
Deceased}

Present
Daniel G. Rollins, Esq. Surrogate.
The citation in this matter having been duly issued served and returned such proceedings were thereupon had that the proofs were duly taken and the allegations of the parties appearing having been heard, and the probate of said will not having been contested it is decided ordered adjudged and decreed that the instrument offered for probate in this matter is the last Will and Testament of the said testator and as such is valid as a will of real and personal property and the same is hereby admitted to probate as a will of real and personal property and that letters testamentary be issued thereunto the the Executor who may qualify thereunto and that
John Shirley the Special Guardian appointed for the infants herein be and he hereby is allowed the sum of Ten Dollars as and for his costs herein.
David G. Rollins Surrogate

The People of the State of New York}
By the Grace of God Free and Independent}
To all whom these shall come or whom they may concern, Send Greeting, Know ye that at the County of New York on the Fourteenth day of May in the year of our Lord one thousand and eight hundred and eighty four before
Daniel G. Rollins, Esq. Surrogate of our said county the Last Will and Testament of Benjamine W. Merriam deceased was proved and is now approved and allowed by us and the said Benjamine W. Merriam being at the time of his death a resident of the county of New York by means whereof the proving and registering said will and the granting Administration of all and singular the goods chattels and credits of the said Testator and also the auditing allowing and final discharging the account thereof doth belong unto us the Administration of all and ???? ?ular the good chattels and credits of the said deceased and any way concerning his will is granted unto Henry E. Merriam, William H. Crane both of New York City, Executors and Adeliza F. Sahler also of said city Executrix in the said will named they being first duly sworn will faithfully and honestly to discharge the duties of such executors and executrix.

In Witness thereof We have caused the Seal of Office of our said Surrogate to be hereunto annexed Witness
Daniel G. Rollins, Esq. Surrogate of our said county at the city of New York the 14th day of May in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and eighty four and of our independence the one hundred and eighth.
Ansburn M. Dickinson
Clerk of the Surrogates Court
(L. S.)
All which we have caused by these presents to be exemplified and the seal of our said Surrogates court to be hereunto affixed.  Witness
Daniel G. Rollins, Surrogate at the city of New York seventeenth day of August in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and eighty seven or our independence the one hundred and twelfth.
Ansburn M. Dickenson
Clerk of the Surrogates Court
SEAL

I
Daniel G. Rollins Surrogate of the said county and sole presiding Magistrate of the Surrogates Court do hereby certify that Ansburn M. Dickinson whose name is subscribed to the preceding exemplification is the clerk of the said Surrogates Court of the County of New York and that full faith and credit are due to his official acts.  I further certify that the seal affixed to the exemplification is the seal of our said Surrogates court and that the attestation thereof is in due form and according to the form of attestation used in this state.
Dated. New York August 17, 1887
Daniel G. Rollins, Surrogate

State of New York}
City and county of New York} Seal

I
Asburn M. Dickinson clerk of the Surrogates Court of the County of New York do hereby certify that Daniel G. Rollins whose name is subscribed to the preceding certificate is the sole presiding Magistrate of the Surrogates Court of the County of New York, duly elected, sworn and qualified and that the signature of said Magistrate to said certificate is genuine.  In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and affixed the seal of the said court this 17th day of August 1887.
Ansburn M. Dickinson
Clerk of the Surrogates Court
SEAL

State of Iowa
Clinton County
I
William Kreim clerk of the District Court in and for said County do hereby certify that on this day at the September  Term A. D. 1887 of said Court the will and instrument in writing hereunto annexed and bearing date in the 29th day of June 1887 was duly proved before and allowed by said court as and for the last will and testament of the real and personal estate of Benjamine W. Merriam late of New York deceased and was by said Court ordered to be recorded as such will and testament.  In witness whereof I have hereunto at my hand and affixed the seal of the court at my office in Clinton in said County this 13th day of Sept. A. D. 1887.
Seal –
William Kreim, Clerk