Josiah Fuller of Newton, Commonwealth of Massachusetts, USA
Petition before the Probate Court, 28 May 1821

Middlesex County Probate Court
Reference: Case Number 8776
Final Probate, 16 Aug, 1836, County of Middlesex,
Commonwealth of Massachusetts, USA

(Born 18 Sept. 1785   -    Died 21 Apr. 1838)
(Josiah5, Josiah4, Josiah3, Jeremiah2, John1of Newton)

Transcribed by Wayne L. Fuller, May 2016

 

An initial petition was heard by the Hon. Samuel P.P. Fay Esq. Judge of Probate for the County of Middlesex claiming that Josiah Fuller Jr. was incapable of taking care of himself was made 28 May, 1821; the court proceedings are summarized below.

1821

May 28, “The undersigned Overseers of the Poor for the town of Newton request an inquisition be made and a guardian appointed because Josiah Fuller has become a Lunatic person and incapable of taking care of himself. We therefore request that an inquest be be held and a Guardian be appointed ….” [Signed] Matthias Collins, Nathan Pettre, Ezra Fuller.

May 29, “By virtue of the Law in the Commonwealth in such cases you are invited to make an Inquisition…. You are hereby cited to appear before me at 10:00 clock tomorrow in Cambridge.” [signed] Samuel P.P. Fay, J. Prob

May 30, “We have made an inquisition regarding the application and do adjudge that the said Josiah Fuller is incapable of taking care of himself.” [Signed] “Selectmen for Newton;” Reuben Stone, Matthias Collins, Nathan Pettre, Ezra Fuller, Thomas Harvey.

June 1, “It is decreed that some suitable person or persons be appointed guardian pursuant to the Law…..” “Benjamin Fuller of Newton giving bond with sufficient sureties for the due performance thereof is a suitable person, as the law dictates.”  [signed] Sam’l Fay J. Prob

June 1, “The Condition of the Obligation is such that the above bonded Benjamin Fuller may this day be assigned and appointed by the said Judge, to be Guardian of Josiah Fuller Jr. of said Newton, gentleman, who is adjudged, by the Inquisition of Selectmen of the said Town to be a Lunatic person & incapable of taking care of himself.”

“NOW, therefore, if the said Benjamin shall and do well and faithfully take care as well of the person as estate, both real and personal, of the said Josiah Fuller Jr. and make, or cause to be made, a true and perfect Inventory of the said estate, and the same do exhibit into the Register’s office of Probate for the said County of Middlesex; and well and truly perform and discharge the trust and office of Guardian unto said Josiah Fuller Junior and that in and by all things according to law; and shall render a just and true account of his Guardianship.”   Benjamin Fuller of Newton appeared before the court and was assigned and appointed by the Judge to be Guardian of Josiah Fuller.  ”Signed, sealed and delivered in the presence of:” [signed] Joseph Stone, William Alden, Benjamin Fuller, Josiah Fuller [likely his father] and Matthias Collins. [Note: In 1821, Josiah’s four children were aged: 11, 10, 8 and 6 years]

June 21, “To Matthias Collins, Joseph Stone & Aaron Barker (blacksmith);  YOU are hereby appointed and empowered, as three suitable persons to take an inventory of all the estate whereof Josiah Fuller Jr. of Newton…..” [signed] S. Fay Judge

June 26, Benjamin Fuller testified that he inserted three weeks successively in the newspaper printed by Benjamin Russell at Boston beginning on the sixth say of June a notice that he was appointed Guardian of Josiah Fuller and all persons, indebted as of June 1, 1821 to the said estate, are called upon to make payment to Benjamin Fuller, Guardian.

June 26, “An inventory of the estate of Josiah Fuller, appraised upon oath by us duly appointed is hereby submitted;

Real Estate
The homestead of said Josiah situated in said Newton containing
45 acres with buildings thereon, with the encumbrance of
Widows right of Dower ………………………………………………………………………….$2300.00
4 acers of woodland in said town called the Ross lot ……………………………………..200.00
10 acers of woodland called the Ward lot ……………………………………………………..110.00
4 acers of woodland called the Smith lot….…………………………………………………..240.00
20 acres of woodland called the Cutter lot…………………………………………………….160.00
6 acres of woodland called the Lilly pond lot…………………………………………………180.00
Two Pews on the lower floor in the Rev, Willm Greenoughs Meeting house ……..50.00

Total ………………………………………………………………….……………………………….$3240.00

 

Personal Estate

Two pages of small household items are listed …………………………………………….341.03

One promissory note signed by Josiah Fuller dated March the 18, 1818
Payable in nine years with interest for $500 ……….………………………………………500.00
One Ditto signed by Josiah Fuller beginning date August 12, 1820
with interest for $109.93 ……………………………………………………………………………109.93
Interest 5.71………………………………………………………………………………………………….5.71
One promissory note signed by Jeremiah Allen for $175.00 bearing………………..175.00
date 12 of August 1819 with int. Interest $19.57………………………………………………19.57
One other note signed by Jeremiah Allen for $32.15 bearing date …………………….32.15
August 12 1819 with interest…… Interest $3.59 ……………………………………………….3.59
One promissory note signed by Josiah Fuller for $11.00 bearing date ……………….11.00
Jan[uary], 27 1919 with interest ……. Interest ………………………………………………….1.59
One Ditto signed by Joseph Stone for $10.43 bearing date ……………………………..10.43
the 16 of Sept 1814 with interest ……… Interest ……………………………………………….2.35
One Ditto signed by Aaron Barker for $24 bearing date ………………………………….24.00
of the 31 March 1819 with interest ……..Interest ………………………………………………3.17
One Ditto signed by Ben[jamin] Fuller for $6.00 bearing …………………………………6.00
date Nov 1, 1817 with interest …… Interest ………………………………………………………1.31
One Ditto signed by Jackson Durant for $3.12 bearing ……………………………………..3.12
date of 9 April 1816 with interest …….Interest ……………………………………………………97
One Ditto signed by Seth Davis for $1.71 bearing ……………………………….……………..1.71
date Dec 20, 1817 with interest ………… Interest ……………………………….….…………….34

[Total]     ………………………………………………………………………………………………$1252.77
Newton, June 23, 1821″  [Signed] Matthias Collins, Joseph Stone, Aaron Barker

June 26, The above inventory presented to the court and the court accepted and ordered it to be recorded:  Samuel P.P. Fay J. Prob.

June 26, Benjamin Fuller made petition to the court that the personal estate of Josiah Fuller be sold at a public sale.

June 26, “…..You are therefore hereby directed to make sale of same at public sale giving public notice of the time and place of the sale of seven days at least previous thereto…. and account on oath with the said Judge for the proceeds thereof…….. of such and make return thereof with your doing herein, together with a true and perfect account of said sale…..;” [signed] Judge Samuel Fay.

Aug 21, Several pages of inventory of Sold Personal Property at a value of about $233 [not listed here] were presented and accepted by the court.

1823

Apr 2, Benjamin Fuller presented the court accounts for cash received $2563.48 ….several pages including sale of wood, rent for the farm rent for the 4 acre lot, interest on bonds held by various people in the community …. this was accepted and recorded by the court.

May 20, Benjamin Fuller presented the court accounts for cash paid out of the estate $2311.15, leaving cash on hand of $252.33 …… this was accepted and recorded by the court.

May 20, Declaration: “I Josiah Fuller, father of the named Lunatic hereby certify that I have examined the forgoing am[ount] and am satisfied that the same is just and right.” [signed] Josiah Fuller

“We Selectmen of Newton have examined the foregoing account of Benjamin Fuller as he is Guardian of Josiah Fuller Jr. a Lunatic and in our opinion the same is just and right and ought to be allowed.”  [signed] Mathias Collins, Ezra Fuller, James Fuller “{Selectmen of Newton}”. This was accepted by the court.

1829

Oct 6, Benjamin Fuller, guardian accounted for each detailed cash payment to and from him with a balance of cash in hand at this date of $2158.61. There is a listing of cash received from many sources including sale of wood, rent from the farm and land; also included one item “sale of sundry articles of furniture received from his father’s estate- $50.”

[NOTE: It appears that Josiah III, the lunatic, was given property from his father’s (Josiah II) estate and may have been given the land, two pews and the Tomb in the West Parish Cemetery, Newton which were listed in the father's Will to be given to his son Josiah III – perhaps these items were sold or passed on to his children. It may seem strange that his father, Josiah II left his son Josiah III items in his Will written in 1824 when he knew in 1821 that his son was not capable of taking care of himself, but it appears that is what happened. We assume that Josiah II's Tomb in the West Parish Burying Ground was passed on to Josiah III and on to III's children.]

Benjamin Fuller, Guardian accounted for cash expenditures as of this date $2072.55 leaving cash in hand of $86.06. The following Selectmen of the town of Newton have examined the account of Benjamin Fuller and in our opinion the amount is first and right, is correctly cast, and in our opinion ought to be allowed. [signed – Selectmen of Newton] David Jackson, Elijah Story, Nathaniel Wales.

Nov 10, this cash account was accepted by the court.

1831

Aug 9, Benjamin Fuller presented a petition to the court to sell the Real Estate of Josiah Fuller of Newton, signed by Benjamin Fuller, Benjamin Slack, Joseph Bacon; In the presence of: [signed] John W Slack, Benjamin F. Slack, J.V. Bacon, Caleb S. Fuller.

This was accepted by the court, to dispose of same in such a manner as will produce the greatest advantage to all persons interested therein, and without any sinister views whatsoever.

Petition to the court to sell Eustir Farm by Benjamin Fuller. This was accepted by the court and also by [signature] William G. Fuller [son of Josiah Jr.]  “This may certify that I concent [sic]to the sale.”

1836

Aug 16, Benjamin Fuller presented a petition to the court to account for amounts of money received  aqs his third account totaling $3839.85 which included the sale of the Eustir Farm to Timothy Davis for $2225.00. There are several pages of cash paid out totaling $1408.92, leaving cash in hand of $2430.93. This accounting is signed by the following:

“We the subscribers being the children of Josiah Fuller having arrived at full age hereby certify that we have Examined the foregoing account of Benjamin Fuller his guardian and are satisfied therewith & consent that the same be allowed.”   [signatures]  William G Fuller, Sarah Fuller, Mary Fuller, Josiah Fuller Jr. [IV].

The account was allowed, accepted and recorded by the court per. S.P.P. Fay J. Pro.

Aug 16, The fourth and final cash account was presented to the court. Total cash income $2967.96 and total cash outflows of $793.72 leaving a final cash balance on hand of $2174.23.  A summary of the case made by Judge Fay wherein he stated that all things were done according to the Law and under just and true account on oath of the parties …..and signed [signed] Benjamin Fuller, Joseph Bacon, James Fuller; Witnesses Joseph W. Goddard , Joseph A. R. Zaen, Also James G Fuller, Mary B Fuller (Witnesses to James Fuller[1784-1850]).

 

[Note:] In 1836 the age of Josiah’s children would have been: William G, 26 yrs; Sarah 25 yrs; Anna May 23 yrs; Josiah IV 21 yrs. Also we assume upon windup of these court proceedings that these children would have received the money shown above ($2174.23) plus any remaining assets not found in any sale documents filed with the court, which could include:

As per the court documents above, Real Estate listed on the assets of from Josiah III  not sold:
4 acres of woodland in said town called the Ross lot …………………………..200.00
10 acres of woodland called the Ward lot …………………………………………..110.00
4 acres of woodland called the Smith lot….…………………………………………240.00
20 acres of woodland called the Cutter lot………………………………………….160.00
6 acres of woodland called the Lilly pond lot………………………………………180.00
Two Pews on the lower floor in the
Rev. Willm Greenoughs Meeting house ……………………………………………50.00

Total ………………………………………………………………….…..……………………$940.00

 

As per the probate records of Col. Josiah II (their grandfather willed to their father
but did not show up as being sold by the guardian):
7 Acres of land in Newton …………………………………………………………………….no value given
Josiah II’s Tomb in the burying ground in West Parish of Newton …………..no value given

[Note:] Josiah III, the lunatic, died April 21, 1838 in Weston, Middlesex, Massachusetts at the age of 52 according to the Centennial & Columbian Index of Obituaries. He died in Weston, “formerly of Newton” without a Will and with no assets and the probate court, case reference #8779, was assigned to his son William G. Fuller as administrator of the estate. There is no indication where he was buried, perhaps in his father’s tomb in the West Parish Burying Ground in Newton; however to date we have found no indication of that.

 

Source:

New England Historic Genealogical Society, Middlesex County, MA: Probate File Papers, 1648-1871.   New England Historic Genealogical Society, online database, 2014.  From records supplied by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Archives, Boston, MA, USA.