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Will of Robert Monk of Hartley, farmer (1817)

In the name of God, Amen.  I Robert Monk of Hartley in the county of Kent, farmer, being of sound mind, memory and understanding, do make and ordai this to be contain my last will and testament in manner and form following, that is to say:

First, I direct all my just debts and funeral and testamentary expenses to be paid and satisfied with all convenient speed after my decease.

Also, I give and bequeath unto my dear wife Mercy Monk, the sum of £50 sterling, to be paid to her within 1 month after my death.  Also I give and bequeath unto my said wife, such part of my household furniture that she may think property to select and choose to the amount or value of the sum of £100 according to a fair appraisement to be made thereof, but in case my said wife shall think proper to have the said sum of £100 in money in lieu of such furniture, then I do hereby give and bequeath to her the said sum of £100 instead of such furniture the same to be paid to her within 1 moth from the time of her declining to tke the furniture as aforesaid.  And I do hereby direct that my said wife shall take her option of the said household furniture or money within 3 months after my death.  Also I do hereby direct that my said wife shallshare the ????? and occupation of the best chamber and best parlour in my dwelling house at Hartley aforesaid during the remainder of my lease therein, without her paying any rent for the same, in case she shall so long remain my widow and shall choose and live in and enjoy the same and during such time I direct that she my said wife and her servants and friends shall have free passage through the common parlour and kitchen of my said dwelling house to and from her said apartments.  

Also I give and bequeath unto Owen Parsons of Hartley, aforesaid, the husband of my niece Sarah Moyce Parsons and John Cooper of Fawkham in the county of Kent, farmer, and the survivor of them and the executors or administrators of such survivor, the sum of £2,500 in Navy 5 per cent annuities and the sum of £500 in 3 per cent consolidated bank annuities upon the trusts following, that is to say upon trust to pay or otherwise to authorise and empower my said dear wife Mercy Monk to receive and take the interest and dividends arising from the said two several sums of £2,500 Navy 5% annuities, and £500 3% Consolidated Bank Annuities for and during the term of her natural life to and for her own sole and separate use and benefit.  And I do hereby declare that in case the said Mercy Monk shall intermarry with another husband after my decease, the said interest and dividends shall in no wise be subject or liable to the debts, control, intermeddling or engagements of any such future husband, but in that event, I direct my said trustees to pay the same into the proper hands of her, the said Mercy Monk, or to any person whom she shall nominate and appoint to receive the same and that her receipt alone, whether she shall be sole or couvert or the receipt of the person or persons so to be nominated by her to receive the same shall be the only good and effectual receipt and discharge to my said trustees for the same, to the intent that the same may be for the sole and exclusive use and benefit of the said Mercy Monk independent of any such husband.  

And upon further trust from and after the decease of my said wife Mercy Monk, that they my said trustees do and shall pay to my wife's niece Elizabeth French, wife of Thomas French heretofore Elizabeth Parsons, spinster, the interest and dividends arising from the sum of £400 part of the said sum of £2,500 5% Navy Annuities, for and during the term of her natural life to and for her own sole and separate use and benefit, and I do hereby declare that the same interest and dividends shall in no wise by subject or liable to the debts , control, intermeddling or engagements of the said Thomas French, or any other husband with whom she may intermarry, but that my said trustees to pay the same into the proper hands of her, the said Elizabeth French or to any person or persons or to any person whom she shall nominate and appoint to receive the same and that her receipt alone, whether she shall be sole or couvert or the receipt of the person or persons so to be nominated by her to receive the same shall be the only good and effectual receipt and discharge to my said trustees for the same, to the intent that the same may be for the sole and exclusive use and benefit of the said Elizabeth French independent of any such husband.  And from and after the decease of my said wife and the said Elizabeth French, which shall last happen, I direct my said trustees to assign and transfer the said sum of £400 5% Navy Annuities to the child or children of the said Elizabeth French in such parts and proportions, manner and form as she shall in and by her last will and testament direct or appoint.  And in default of such direction or apportionment, then to assign and transfer the same unto and equally between such children if more than one, or if only one then to such only child, to and form their, his or her use and benefit.  But in case the said Elizabeth French shall die without having any such child or children, then I diret my said trustees, from and after the decease of my said wife and the said Elizabeth French, which shall last happen, to assign and transfer the said sum of £400 5% Navy Annuities to my great niece, Sarah Parsons, the daughter of my niece Sarah Moyse Parsons, to and for her own use and benefit, but in case the said Sarah Parsons should then be dead, leaving issue then to assign and transfer the same unto such issue equally between them, if more than one, and in case the said Sarah Parsons shoudl then be death without issue, then to transfer the same to my niece, th said Sarah Moyse Parsons, should she be thn living, but should she also have departed this life, then to transfer the same to her children equally between them, or should there be only one child, then to such only child to and for their, his or her own use and benefit.

And upon further trust from and after the decease of my said wife, Mercy Monk, that they my said trustees do and shall assign and transfer the remainder of the said sums of £2,5o00 Navy 5% annuities, and £500 3% consolidated annuities to the persons and in the manner following, that is to say.  I give and bequeath to my trustees, the aforesaid Owen Parsons and John Cooper and the survivor of them and the executors and administrators of such survivor, from and after the decease of my said wife, the sum of £2,050 part of the Navy 5% Annuities upon trust to pay the interest and dividends thereof to Lucy French, the wife of my brother in law William French for her life, for her sole and separate use and benefit, independent of any husband.  And from and after the death of the said Lucy French, to pay and transfer the said principal sum of £2,050 unto and equally between the said Thomas French, and William French, Robert French, David French and Harriett French, the 5 children of the said Lucy French or to such of them as shall then be living.  Provided that shoudl any of them be then dead leaving issue, such issue shall have and be entitled to the part or share that his or her parent should have been entitled to, if living.  

Also I give and bequeath to William Parsons, the infant son of William Parsons, late of Farningham in the county of Kent, deceased, the sum of £100 of the said Navy 5% Annuities, to be transferred to him on the death of my said wife, if he shall then have attained his age of 21 years, or if he shall then be under the said age, the same to be transferred to him so soon as he shall atttain the same age, and the interest and dividends thereof to be in the mean time applied for his benefit.  But in case the said William Parsons the infat shall die before the said sum of £100 shall become transferrable to him as aforesaid, I then give and bequeath the same to the children of the aforesaid Owen Parsons.  

Also I give and bequeath to the aforesaid Sarah Parsons, the infant daughter of my niece Sarah Moyse Parsons and the said Owen Parsons her husband, the sum of £500, other part of the said Navy 5% Annuities.  And in case the said Sarah Parsons shall not have attained her age of 21 years at the time of the death of my said wife, then I direct my said trustees to receive the interest and dividends arising from the same sum of £500 Navy 5% Annuities until the said Sarah Parsons shall attain her said age, and lay out and invest the same in increase and accumulation of the said principal sum, and when and so soon as she shall attain her said age of 21 years, then to assign and transfer to her the said sum of £500 Navy 5% Annuities and all accumulations thereof as aforesaid.  And in case the said Sarah Parsons shall die under the age of 21 years, leaving lawful issue, then to assign and transfer the same su to such issue, but should she die under the sid age without leaving lawful issue, then to transfer and assign the same unto and equally between all the other children of the said Sarah Moyse Parsons, if more than one, or if only one, then to such only child.  Provided always tht if the said Sarah Parsons shall die in the lifetime of my said wife, leaving lawful issue, then I direct my said trustees to assign and transfer the said £500 to such issue.  

Also I give and bequeath to Elizabeth Parsons the other infant daughter of my said niece Sarah Moyse Parsons and the said Owen Parsons her husband, the sum of £500 other part of the said Navy 5% Annuities in such the same manner in every respect payable at such times and have above direted in relatio to the like sum of £500 of said annuities bequeathed to the aforesaid Sarah Parsons.  And in case of the death of the said Elizabeth Parsons under the age of 21 years without issue, then to transfer the same unto an equally between all the other children of the said Sarah Moyse Parsons, if more than one, or if only one then to such only child.  Provided always taht if the said Elizabeth Parsons shall die in the lifetime of my said wife, leaving lawful issue, then I direct my said trustees to assign and transfer the said sum of £500 to such issue

And I do also will and direct my said trustees from and after the death of my sadi wife to pay the interest and dividends of the sum of £300 further part of the aforesaid £2,500 Navy 5% Annuities, to my aforesaid niece Sarah Moyce Parsons, for and during the term of her natural life, to her own sole use and benefit, independent of any husband with whom she may be intermarried, and not to be subject to his debts or control.  And from and after the death of my said wife and ???? ???? give and transfer the said sum of £300 to the aforesaid Sarah Parsons, the daughter of the said Sarah Moyce Parsons, to and for her own use and benefit, in case she shall then have attained her age of 21 years, but in case she shall thn be under the sai age, then to assign and transfer the same to her on her attaining the said age, and in the mean time to let the interest and dividend therefor accumulate in increase of the principal sum.  But in case the said Sarah Parsons shall die in the lifetime of my said wife or niece leaving lawful issue, then that they my said trustees shall on the death of the survivor of them, my said wife and niece, assign and transfer the same to such issue.  In case the said Sarah Parsons shall die in the lifetime of them, my said wife and niece with leaving lawful issue, then I direct my said trustees to assign and transfer the said sum of £300 on the death of the survivor of them, my said wife and niece into and equally between all the other children of my said niece Sarah Moyse Parsons, if more than one, or if only one, then to such only child, to and for their, his or her use and benefit.

And as to the residue of the said £2,500 Navy 5% Annuities, I direct the same to sink into the residue of my estate from and after the decease of my said wife Mercy Monk, I direct my said trustees to pay to my said niece Sarah Moyce Parsons the interest and dividends arising from the said sum of £500 3% Consolidated Bank Annuities, for and during the term of her natural life to and for her own, sole ???? use and benefit and I do hereby declare that the same interest and dividends shall in no way be subject or liable to the debts, control, intermeddling or engagements of thes aid Owen Parsons her present or any future husband, but that my said trustees shall pay the same into the proper hands of her, my said niece or to any person or persons whom she shall nominate and appoint to receive the same, and that her receipt alone, whether she shall be sole or couvert, or the receipt of the person or persons so to be nominated by her to receive the same, shall be the only good and effectual receipt and discharge to my said trustees for the same, to the intent that the same ay be for the sole and exclusive benefit of my said niece independent of any husband.  And from and after the decease of my said wife and my said niece which shall last happen, then I direct my said trustees to assign and transfer the said sum of £500 to the child or children of my said neice Sarah Moyce Parsons in such parts and proportions at such times and in such manner and form as my said niece shall in and by her last will and testament direct or appoint, and in default of such direction or appointment, then to assign and transfer the same unto and equally between such children if more than one, or if only one, then to such only child and for their, his or her use and benefit.  But in case my said neice Sarah Moyce Parsons shall die without leaving any such child or children, then I direct my said trustees from and after the decease of my said wife, the said Sarah Moyce Parsons, which shall last happen to assign and transfer the said sum of £500 unto such person or persons and in such proportions as my said neice Sarah Moyse Parsons shall in and by her last will and testament give and bequeath the same.  And in case the said Sarah Moyce Parsons shall die making any will, then that they, my said trustees shall assign and transfer the same to the next of kin of the said Sarah Moyse Parsons in a due course of administration.  And I do hereby empower my said niece Sarah Moyse Parsons to make and execute her will for the purpose of disposing of the said sum of £500 3% Consolidated Bank Annuities as aforesaid, notwithstanding any courverture she may be under.  Provided always and I do hereby will and direct that my said niece Sarah Moyse Parsons shall have full liberty, and I do hereby empower her, whether she shall be sole of couvert at any time during her life, subsequent to the death of my said wife, to give and dispose of the whole or any part of the said sum of £500 3% Consolidated Annuities to such one or ????? of her child or children lawfully begotten, as she may think proper for or towards his, her, their advancement in the world.  I do hereby direct my said trutees to assig and transfer the same accordingly.

Also I give and bequeath unto my aforesaid trustees Owen Parsons and John Cooper the sum of £00 Navy 5% Annuities further part of the 5% Annuities now standing in my name in the books of the Governor and Company of the Bank of England, upon trust to pay the interest and dividend thereof to the aforesaid Elizabeth French, formerly Parsons for her sold and separate use and benefit for her life, independent of any husband whom she may be intermarried, and from and after her decease upon further trust to assign and transfer the said sume of £300 to and amongst the child or children of the said Elizabeth French formerly Parsons, in such shares and proportions, as she shall by her will direct.  But in case she shall die without making any will, then to transfer and assign the same unto and equally among all the said children, or if there shall be only one child, to such only child.  But in case the said Elizabeth French formerly Parsons shall die without leaving any child, then I will and direct my said trustees to assign and transer the said sum of £300 Navy 5% Annuities to my aforesaid great niece, the aforesaid Sarah Parsons, the daughter of my neice Sarah Moyse Parsons, to and for her own use and benefit, in case she shall then have attained her age of 21 years.  But in case she shall then be under the age, then to assign and transfer the same to her on her attaining the said age, and in the meantime to let the interest and dividends thereof accumulate in increase of the principal.  But in case that the said Sarah Parsons shall die in the lifetime of the said Elizabeth French, leaving lawful issue, then that they my said trustees shall on the death of the said Elizabeth French without leaving children as aforesaid, assign and transfer to such issue.  And in the said Sarah Parsons shall die in the lifetime of the said Elizabeth French without leaving lawful issue, then that they my said trustees shall from and after the death of the said Elizabeth French without children as aforesaid, pay the interest and dividends of the said sum of £300 to my said niece Sarah Moyce Parsons for her life, independent of any husband and from and after her death to assign and transfer the said principal sum of £300 to and among al lthe children of her Sarah Moyce Parsons if more than one in equal shares, or if only one, then to such only child to and for their, his or her own use and benefit.  

Provided also and I do hereby will and direct that in case it shall happen I shall not at my death be possessed of so much to or as the said three sums of £2,500 Navy 5% Annuities, £300 Navy 5% Annuities and £500 3% Consolidated Bank Annuities standing in my name in the books of the Governor and Company of the Bank of England, then I do hereby direct my executor hereinafter named withing 3 months after my death to invest in the purchase of the said two stocks in the names of my said trustees so much money as will make up the said three sums of £2,500 Navy 5% Annuities, £300 Navy 5% annuities and £500 3% Consolidated Bank Annuities.  

And whereas I sometimes since purchased of Mr David Read one moiety of a certain freehold estate, consisting of 3 cottages with the land and appurtenances thereunto belonging, situate at Shorne Ridgeway in the county of Kent.  And my said nephew in law Thomas French purchased the other moiety thereof.  Now I do hereby give and devise all that my moiety of the said 3 freehold cottages with their appurtenances from and immediately after my decease unto the said Thomas French, his heirs and assigns forever.  

Also I give and bequeath unto my beloved sister Margaret Sharp, and my friend James Sharp, her husband, the sum of £50 between them for mourning.  

Also I give and bequeath unto my brother in law William French and Lucy French, his wife, the like sum of £50 between them for mourning.

Also I give and bequeath unto my sister in law Anne Monk widow, the sum of £5 for mourning.

Also I give and bequeath unto my brother in law William Parsons and Ann his wife, the sum of £50 between them for mourning.

And subject to the payment of my just debts, funeral and testamentary expenses and the aforesaid legacies, I give and bequeath all that my leasehold farm called New House, situate and being at Hartley aforesaid, and now in my occupation for and during the residue of the term of the said lease under which I hold the same which shall be unexpired at the time of my death.  And also all my farming live and dead stock and crops and implements in husbandry and all the rest, residue and remainder of my real and personal estate whatsoever and wheresoever, and of what nature, ???? or quality soever, uto the said Owen Parsons the husband of my said niece Sarah Moyce Parsons to hold to him, the said Owen Parsons, his heirs, executors, administrators and assigns forever, to and for his and their own use and benefit.  And I do hereby make, nominate and appoint the said Owen Parsons sole executor of this my will, and revoking all former and other wills by me heretofore made, I do declare this only to be and contain my last will and testament.

In witness whereof I the said Robert Monk have to this my said will contained in 10 sheets of paper, put my hand and seal, that is to say my hand to the nine sheets thereof and my hand and seal to this the tenth and last sheet thereof.  This 15th day of October in the Year of Our Lord 1815.  

(S) Robert Monk
Signed, sealed, published and declared by the said Robert Monk to be his last will and testament in the presence of us, who in his presence at his request and in the presence of each other, have hereunto subscribed our names as witnesses.
(S) Philip Pinden (S) John Ascitor (S) James Sharp

Proved at London 21.3.1817 by Owen Parsons.


Will of Mercy Monk of  Hartley, widow (1829)

The Monks were tenants of the former New House Farm at the south end of Church Road from about 1797 to 1816. The next parish rating list of 1818 lists his son in law Owen Parsons as the occupier of the farm.  Under the terms of Richard's will it can be assumed that Mercy was still living at New House Farm.

This is the last will and testament of me Mercy Monk of Hartley near Dartford in the county of Kent, widow.

I give, devise and bequeath all my estate and effects of what nature and kind soever, unto my dear niece Elizabeth French widow (of Thomas French, late of Shorne in the said county of Kent, deceased).  And I request that my funeral be conducted in the same manner of that of my late dear husband.  And I direct that my body should be buried in the churchyard of Cobham as near as possible to his remains.  And hereby revoking and annuling all and will and wills by me at any time heretofore made, do hereby publish and declare this only to be my last will and testament.  And I do hereby constitute and appoint the said Elizabeth French, sole executrix thereof..

Witness my hand and seal this 13th day of September 1825.

The mark of Mercy Monk (X). Witnesses Thomas William Hulkes (S), William French (S), David French (S).

Proved at London 14 August 1829.


The family of Robert Monk

The various family groups are set out below.  The numbers in brackets denote the generation with (1) being the oldest.

To summarise Robert Monk was born at Farningham in 1753.  He married Sarah Cave at Cobham in 1780 where they lived.  From the parish rate book, he moved to New House Farm, Hartley with his 2nd wife Mercy Skinner in 1797.  He died in 1817 and was buried in the family vault at Farningham.

Robert seems to have had no surviving children.  His heir was his brother John's daughter Sarah Moyce Monk.  She married Owen Parsons from Rochester in 1805.  They had 2 children.  She died in 1828 and is too buried at Farningham.  Owen married again in 1832, this time to Mary Ann Bensted, daughter of William Bensted of Hartley Court.  We don't have the exact date of birth for Mary Ann, because there is a gap in the Halstow register at this time.

Robert was clearly the wealthiest of his family, as is evidenced by the number of relations who named children after him and his wives!

(1) John and Margaret Monk
(2) John Monk (christened Farningham 3.9.1749) married Sarah Ward at Cudham 12.10.1771
(3) Elizabeth Monk (christened Gravesend 14.4.1772)
(3) Sarah Moyce Monk (christened Gravesend 11.9.1773, buried Farningham 6.5.1828).  Married Owen Parsons at Southwark (21.2.1805)
see note 2 below for family of Owen Parsons
(4) Sarah Parsons (Christened Hartley 14.7.1805)
(4) Elizabeth Parsons (Christened Farningham 20.3.1814, married Edward Harvey Reeves of Farningham)
(3) Rebecca Monk (christened Gravesend 25.11.1778)
(3) John Monk (christened Gravesend 17.7.1782)
(3) William George Monk (christened Gravesend 13.5.1787)
(3) George Monk (christened Gravesend 15.5.1791)
(2) George Monk (christened Farningham 24.2.1750)
(2) Mary Monk (christened Farningham 9.2.1752)
(2) Robert Monk (christened Farningham 16.9.1753, buried Cobham 24.2.1817).  Married (1) Sarah Cave (Cobham 27.7.1780) (2) Mercy Skinner (abt Sept 1788)
see note 1 below for family of Sarah Cave
(3) Sarah Monk (Christened Cobham 22.4.1783)
(3) Robert (Christened Cobham 30.10.1785, buried Cobham 15.5.1786)
(3) Margaret (Christened Cobham 13.3.1787, buried Cobham 7.5.1787)
(2) Margaret Monk (christened Farningham 21.3.1756) married James Sharp at Farningham 17.2.1780
(2) Thomas Monk (christened Farningham 30.11.1760)

Note 1

(1) John Cave and unknown wife
(2) John Cave (christened Gravesend 15.2.1748, bur 25.7.1750)
(2) Sarah Cave (christened Gravesend 29.6.1753, buried Cobham 15.3.1787) married Robert Monk (see below)
(2) Susan Cave (christened Gravesend 31.7.1754)
(2) Lucy Cave (christened Gravesend 23.1.1756) = William French (Cobham 1782)
(3) William French (christened Shorne 27.7.1783)
(3) Thomas French (christened Shorne 18.7.1784)
(3) Sarah French (christened Shorne 29.6.1786)
(3) Mary Ann French (christened Shorne 30.9.1787)
(3) William French (christened Shorne 21.12.1788)
(3) Robert French (christened Shorne 13.2.1791)
(3) Lucy French (christened Shorne 24.2.1793)
(3) Mercy French (christened Shorne 3.4.1795)
(3) David French (christened Shorne 30.10.1796)
(3) Harriott Elizabeth French (christened Shorne 1.12.1799)
(2) John Cave (christened Gravesend 7.12.1757)

Note 2

(1) William and Ann Parsons
(2) William (christened St Nicholas Rochester 12.5.1779, son of William & Ann) and Sarah Parsons
(3) Ann (born Farningham 30.10.1809)
(3) William (born  Farningham 20.3.1811)
(3) Robert Monk Parsons (christened Farningham 1.5.1813)
(2) John Parsons (christened St Nicholas Rochester 16.4.1781)
(2) Owen Parsons (christened Strood 22.4.1781, d Billet Farm, Ash 9.4.1842, buried Farningham) married (1) Sarah Moyce Monk (see above) (2) Mary Ann Bensted (Hartley 3.1.1832)
see note 3 below for family of Mary Ann Bensted

Note 3

(1) Thomas and Mary Bensted
(2) William Bensted (christened Faversham 13.1.1761, d Hartley 30.3.1836) married Elizabeth Thornton (see will of her father William 1816)
(3) Mary Ann Bensted (born Halstow 1786, d Hartley 11.11.1864) married Owen Parsons (see above)
(3) William Bensted (born Halstow 1788, d Hartley 17.4.1867)
(2) Robert Bensted (christened Faversham 13.1.1762)
(2) Elizabeth Bensted (christened Faversham 12.9.1770)
(2) Mary Ann Bensted (mentioned in Thomas's will 1782)
(2) Thomas Bensted (mentioned in Thomas's will 1782)




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