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William Darwin of Louisa: Jr. or Senior?
Posted by: Tim Darwin Grana Date: August 31, 2001 at 05:31:28
  of 336

Dear Fellow Searchers: After some absence, I am revising text of 'Origin of Darwins', which we hope to make available at a website early next year. We hope to include facsimiles of original documents, including the 1746 Hardy to Darwin land deed that names two William Darwins, Junior and Senior. Most researchers appear to assume that 'Junior' is the William Darwin born 1706 who later marries Jane Wilkerson, and 'Senior' is his father, married to a 'Jean' but about whom nothing more is known. However, we still believe that 'Senior' is in fact the William born 1706, that 'Jean' is Jane (Wilkerson) Darwin, and William 'Junior' is their son William who was born in 1742 (but who probably subsequntly died in childhood). In other words, the document is a life estate deed, probably to protect the land from creditors and avoid inheritance tax. Revised text of 'Origins' will discuss this view more fully, but in the meantime, we would be delighted to hear from anyone with other views -- and most especially any further documents! It would be wonderful to establish with some certainty if the father of William born 1706 had parents named 'William and Jean', or if this has been a red herring from misunderstanding the 1746 deed.


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