3. JOHN PLEDGE Jr.2,5,7 was born about 1675 in Virginia.5 He died before 1720 at the age of 45.4
[Marriage date is an estimate from births of children. However, I believe these dates to also be estimates and I think the birth order is unknown.]
John Pledge is on the Henrico Co Quit Rent Rolls in 1704 with 100 acres [this would appear to be the 100 acres he sold to Nicholas Perkins in 1709]
HENRICO CO VA DEEDS 1706-1737;
p.19/181 1 Sep 1709 John Pledge sold to Nicholas Perkins Sr, land in Henrico Parish on the North side the James up Four Mile Creek, adj sd Perkins and John Cannon. 50 acres descended to me as heir of my father John Pledge, dec'd, and another 50 acres was purchased of sd. Cannon. Wit: Wm. Frogmorton, Noel Burton, John Pleasant. Dorothy, wife of John Pledge, relinquished dower rights.
In 1715, John Pledge purchased land from a neighbor, Joseph Pleasant. From Henrico Land Office Book 10, p.87:
6 Jun 1715. Joseph Pleasants, Henrico Parish & county, Gentleman, to John Pledge of same, planter for 30£, 300 acres north side James River; adj John Redford's line, part of patent granted to Pleasants on 13 Nov 1713.
Henrico Record 1714-18, p.87
John Pledge wrote his will 22 Nov 1720. Items to daughters Agnes Pledge, Martha Pledge, Judith Pledge, Ann Pledge, and Mary now wife of John Johnson. Also daughter Tabitha Pledge. Wife to give what she can spare to my two grandchildren born of my daughter Elizabeth Straing, dec'd, now living with me. To son in law John Johnson, 100 acres off the upper side of land where I live in consideration of looking after my son John Pledge for life. The rest of my land, 200 acres, to my son William Pledge, but wife to enjoy plantation for her life. All the rest to my wife, who is to be executrix. Wit: Mary Hutchens, Hester Childers, Tabitha Childers, Joseph Pleasants. Recorded 6 Mar 1721.
John Pledge's will was recorded March 6, 1720 in Henrico Co. (Weisiger Pt1, 167):
Will of John Pledge. To daughters Agnes Pledge, Martha Pledge, Judith Pledge, Anne Pledge and Mary, now wife of John Johnson, each, items, also to daughter Tabitha Pledge, items.
Wife to give what she can conveniently spare to my two grandchildren born of my daughter Elizabeth Strainge, dec'd, now living with me.
To son-in-law John Johnson, 100 acres to be taken off the upper side of land where I live, in consideration of his looking after my son John Pledge for life.
The rest of my land I live on, 200 acres, to my son William Pledge, but loving wife Dorothy to enjoy the plantation for life.
All the rest to wife, who is to be executrix
Dated 22 Nov. 1720
Wit: Mary Hutchens, Hester Childers, Tabitha Childers, Joseph Pleasants
Recorded 6 March 1720 (Weisiger, PI, 167)
Henrico Co Court, p. 76
6 Mar 1721 Dorothy Pledge presents the will of John Pledge which is proved by Hester Childers & Joseph Pleasants (a Quaker). Dorothy refused to be executrix and was granted administration with John Redford and Joseph Pleasants. Security: Amos Lead, James Nowlin, Thomas Wadly and & Roger Carol to appraise the estate. On petition of Dorothy Pledge, so much of her husband's will as applies to her is declared null and void.
Henrico Co Court, p.107
3 Jul 1721 Dorothy Pledge presents the inventory of John Pledge.
It isn't particularly surprising that a woman of this time period would refuse to be the sole executor; most were illiterate and Dorothy did sign with her mark. She may have very well felt unequal to the task alone. John Redford & Joseph Pleasants were neighbors and no doubt trusted friends. The fact that she refused the bequests of her husband's will has been cited as perhaps she was of Indian descent and was afraid her property could be seized. I disagree with this interpretation. A widow was entitled under the law to refuse the husband's will. If she agreed to the provisions and bequests of the will, she was also responsible for any debts of the estate. If she refused the will, she was still entitled to her 1/3 dower under the law and that dower was distributed before any debts were deducted from the estate. It's possible for the widow to be better off by refusing a seemingly generous will. The Pleasants family had a number of females named Dorothy - I would speculate Dorothy could have either have been nee Pleasants [hence Joseph Pleasants could have been her brother], or she could have had an earlier marriage to a Pleasant. Other surnames suggested for Dorothy are Redford and Milner - all of these families closely associated - neither of those families seem to use the given name Dorothy.
JOHN PLEDGE Jr. and DOROTHY [PLEDGE] were married about 1696.5 DOROTHY [PLEDGE] was born about 1676.5 She died before March 1733 at the age of 57 in Goochland County, Virginia.5
The Will of Thomas Carter of St. James Parish, Henrico was witnessed on 2 Nov 1726 by Thomas Edwards, William Pledge, and Dorothy (herXmark) Pledge. Recorded 21 Jun 1738.
GOOCHLAND WILLS & DEEDS 1736-1742, Benj B. Weisiger III 1984, p.19
Her surname is sometimes seen as Milner and Redford. From the "Milner Family Genealogy Forum" posted 21 Oct 2000:
According to the book "Those Southern Milners", a Dorothy Milner was born to Luke and Mary Milner on Feb 16 1736 in Richmond County, Va. The book also states that there are no marriage records of a Dorothy Milner being married in Richmond County. The supposition is that she may have died prior to her father's death because she is not mentioned in his will at time of probate in 1746.
JOHN PLEDGE Jr. and DOROTHY [PLEDGE] had the following children:
|John PLEDGE III2 was born about 1698 in Virginia.5 |
John Johnson, husband of John's sister Mary, was given 100 acres for the responsibility of caring for John Pledge for the rest of his life. John could simply have been a small child but the will doesn't say "until he comes of age" but says for life. He was no doubt in ill health or suffered an affliction of some sort.
|Elizabeth PLEDGE2 was born (date unknown). |
By the time of the writing of her father's will in Nov of 1720, Elizabeth had married a Mr. Straing, had two children and had died. The children were living with their grandparents, John & Dorothy Pledge.
|Agnes PLEDGE was born about 1702 in Virginia.5|
|Martha PLEDGE was born about 1704 in Virginia.5|
|Judith PLEDGE was born about 1706 in Virginia.5|
|Ann PLEDGE was born about 1708 in Virginia.5|
|Tabitha PLEDGE2 was born (date unknown). |
I have no proof of this marriage of Tabitha - either the date, or the marriage, is wrong:
said to have married John Creasy ca 1708 in Goochland.
John Creasy's birth is suggested as 1675, making him perhaps a generation older than Tabitha. She was one of the last named children in John Pledge's will - the suggestion is that she was one of the youngest - none of John Pledge's children were likely born prior to about 1698. If indeed Tabitha was born about 1680 which is indicated in most online databases without a source, she was more likely John Pledge's sister, not his daughter. Some databases place her marriage as early as 1702 and have children born the next year.
I did find one database that contained an earlier John Creasy who also married a Tabitha - but I have no way of checking it's accuracy.