THE STATE OF SOUTH CAROLINA)
TO THE HONORABLE JUDGES OF THE COURT OF EQUITY OF THE SAID STATE.
Humbly complaining shew unto your Honors, your orator Edward Windam, Executor of the last Will and Testament of Peter Haley, deceased, and James F. Ridgeway and Mary his wife, late time in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and _____ the said Peter Haley died. Seized and possessed in his own right of a considerable real and personal estate, consisting of tow tracts of land containing together two hundred and fifty-five acres or upwards, and two Negroes and a considerable stock of horses, cattle, hogs, and so forth-plantation utensils, household and kitchen furniture, and left a widow, to wit, Mary Haley, and three children, to wit, Esther, Mary, and Peter Timothy Ridgway Haley, all minors. That sometime previous to his death he made and executed his last Will and Testament, Exhibit A. in which he bequeated the use of all his real and personal estate aforesaid to his wife during her life, or while she remained sole and unmarried, for the maintenance of herself and children; and that upon either event, whichever might first happen, he gave and devised all his real and personal estate aforesaid to this three aforesaid, share and share alike; each to receive their respective share or portion as they should become of age or be married. And further, that in the event of either of his children dying without lawful issue, his, her or their portion or portions to descend to his surviving child or children, and that in the event of the death of all of his children their respective portions to descend to the children of one of your orators, Edward Windam, share and share alike. That in his last Will and Testament aforesaid he appointed his wife Mary Haley and one of your orators executrix and executor to the same and guardians to his children. And your orators and oratrix further shew unto your Honors that the said Mary Haley, widow of the said Peter Haley, deceased, has since intermarried with James Acock, and has thereby forfeited all her interest in the said estate under the said Will; and that one of the children aforesaid, to wit, Esther Haley, died before the death of the said peter Haley, but after the execution of the Will, leaving the whole estate real and personal to be equally divided between your oratrix Mary Haley who has since intermarried with one of your orators James. F. Ridgway, and Peter Timothy Ridgway Haley. And your orators and ortrix further shew unto your Honors that shortly after the death of the said Peter Haley, his widow Mary Haley proved the Will in the Court of Ordinary of the district, and took upon herself the duties of an executrix under the said Will, and with the said James Acock aforesaid, has had the entire management of the said estate, until very lately when one of your orators qualified as executor of the said Will. And your orators and oratrix further shew unto your Honors that the said James Acock since his intermarriage with the said Mary Haley has committed frequent and repeated acts of waste and destruction off the personal property of the said estate, having sold four horses, several head of cattle and other property at different times to the amount of between four and five hundred dollars or more, without any legal authority to do so that within a few weeks past he has carried off upwards of twenty head of cattle belonging to the said estate, in addition to the cattle he has disposed of at different times before, and first lodged them in possession of one Gideon Scurry where one of them was killed; and the said James Acock with Gideon Scurry has since drive to the Court House of this district and disposed of the said cattle at private sale to different individuals living near about the same, to wit, to Isaac Norton, Warren Macon, John Hudnal, Thomas Pringle, James Caldwell, and Jeremiah Forehands. That the said James Acock threatens and swears that he will take off one of the Negro boys and two mares and a filly belonging to the said estate, and your orators do verily believe that he will avail himself of the first favorable opportunity to put his threats into execution; and that the personal property generally of the said estate is in great danger of being further wasted, sold, destroyed, or carried off by the said James Acock. And your orators and oratrix further shew unto your Honors that they have applied and called upon the said James Acock to come to an account and settlement with your orators and oratrix for the property belonging to the said estate which he has wasted, sold and converted to his own use, and to pay all which reasonable requests the said James Acock hath hitherto refused and still doth refuse, sometimes pretending that the cattle or part thereof he purchased at the sale of part of the personal property of the said estate in pursuance of the authority of the Ordinary of the District, when in fact, if such authority was given it was without any legal authority to do so, there being no debts due by the deceased, and no authority given by the said Will to sell any part thereof and further that the said James Acock hath not accounted for one cent of the purchase money of any property he may have bid off at the said pretended sale; at other times pretending to have been claims against the estate for board and education of the children of the said Peter Haley, dec'd, when in fact he has advanced nothing for their benefit but what has been derived from the property of the estate.
ALL which acting and doings of the said James Acock are contrary to justice and equity and tend to the great injury of your orators.
In tender consideration whereof, and for as much as your orators and oratrix are remediless at common law, and relievable in this Honorable Court alone.
To the end therefore that the said James Acock and wife may be required to make true, full, and perfect answer, on oath, to all the various allegations contained in this Bill, and that he may be restrained and enjoined under a sufficient penalty from committing any waste or destruction whatever to the personal property of the said estate , so that the rightful heirs may receive their full interest in the same, and all above mentioned pretended sales set aside. And further that the said James Acock and Mary his wife, who has acted as executrix since the death of the said Peter Hale may be compelled to account with your orators and oratrix for all the actings and doing of the said Mary as executrix since the death of the said Peter Haley and pay over to your orators, oratrix whatever may be due in behalf of the said estate and deliver into the possessions of your orator Edward Windam all the property belonging to the said estate which may be in his possession. And that your orator and oratrix James F. Ridgway and wife may receive their share or portion of the real and personal property of the said estate.
May it please you Honors to grant unto your orators and oratrix a writ of injunction to restrain the said James Acock from acts of waste of the property of the said estate and also a Write of ne exeat, and a Writ of subpoena to be directed to the said James Acock and wife and Peter T.R. Haley requiring them to be and appear at the Court of Equity at Sumter Court House and answer to the premises, and shew certain Commissioners therein named to lay off and award to James F. Ridgway and wife their portion of the real and personal property of the said estate, and abide by and perform such Decree therein as your Honors shall see proper to make, and your orators and oratrix will pray and so forth.
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