Jacob Will’s will

The following is from “Background of Adams County,” by B. F. MacPherson, No. 184 – Jacob and Elizabeth (Shriver) Will. This article originally appeared in The Gettysburg Times, Saturday, March 29, 1941.

The will of Jacob Will is to be found in the local courthouse, Will Book “B” — Page 206 — No. 484. In this document he mentions the following members of his family:

  1. Wife — Elizabeth Shriver “is to have the profits of my mill and lands.”
  2. Brother — Andrew Shriver “is to live with my wife and be maintained by her so long as she shall live.”
  3. Son — George Will.
  4. Daughter — Rachel Will.
  5. Daughter — Elizabeth Will.
  6. Daughter — Catherine Will.
  7. Daughter — Sarah Will.
  8. Son — David Will.
  9. Son — Andrew Will.
  10. Granddaughters — “Eve Shriver and Mary Hoopert, daughters to my daughter Mary Hoopert.”
  11. Granddaughters — Sarah and Evelina Will.
  12. Son – Jacob Will.

Jacob Will’s will was written April 13, 1812, and entered into probate on November 12, 1812. Andrew Shriver and George Will were named executors, while R. McIlhenny, John Echrode, and Jacob Eckert added their names as witnesses.

Andrew Will, the son of Jacob Will and Elizabeth (Shriver) Will, was married to the widow Clemens (maiden name McSherry) of Littlestown. Another son, David Will, never married. Mary, one of the daughters of Jacob and Elizabeth (Shriver) Will, married Adam Rupert of Hanover, Pennsylvania.


A letter of attorney

I transcribed this from a photocopy found in the Will family file at the ACHS in December, 2008.

No. 16

Letter of Attorney

John Will to Andrew Shriver

Adams County

John Will came before me and one of the justices of the peace for said county and acknowledged the within letter of attorney as & for his act & deed that the same may be recorded in testimony whereof I have herewith set my hand and seal the 8th day of May 1800.

Adam Winroth

To all people to whom these presents shall or may come, I, John Will, late of York County and the state of Penna but now of the state of Virginia send greeting. Whereas two warrants was granted to me out of the Land Office of Pennsylvania for two separate pieces of land in Germany township (being then in the County of York) but now in the County of Adams — the said warrant bearing a date the seventeenth day of June AD 1794 and whereas the said land is since sold to Joseph Lohr and is said to contain about seventeen acres — and I the said John Will engaged to deliver to the said Joseph Lohr a patent or patents for the same upon he the said Joseph Lohr paying the office fees for the same, and whereas it is surmised (?) some other Claim may interfere with said land or some part thereof xca; Know ye that I the said John Will living at a great distance and for other good causes I have ordained constitutes and appointed and by these presents do I constitute ordain and appoint my trusty friend Andrew Shriver of Heidelberg township and County of Adams my true and lawful attorney for me in my name and to my use to apply to the Land Office of Penna and to have the said land patented, and when patented the same to convey to the said Joseph Lohr in fee — simple agreeable to my agreement with him the said Joseph Lohr, and further I do hereby empower my said attorney in case the right to the said lands should be disputed or any part thereof that then my said attorney shall have my right therein tried either before a board of property or court of law as the case may require, and as soon as the office (?) shall be known if determined in my favor, then to convey the same to the said Joseph Lohr as aforesaid. But & if the same be determined against my right, then my said attorney to settle and adjust the same with the said Joseph Lohr agreeable to a bond given by me to the said Joseph Lohr for that purpose, hereby, granting and giving my said attorney in all cases respecting the lands aforesaid my said proven and lawful attorney to do & perform all and every thing necessary to be done in the premises by venture of these presents — fully ratifying and holding from whatsoever my said attorney shall do or cause lawfully to be done in the premises — and I promise to reimburse all costs and charges which my attorney shall be at in performing the trust aforesaid and also allow him for his time & trouble whatever is reasonable. In testimony whereof I have to set my hand and seal the 8th day of May AD 1800 sealed and delivered in our presence.

R.M. McIlhinny

John McIlhinny

/s/ John Will


  1. John Will was about 60 years old in 1800. We believe that John and his younger brother George moved to Shenandoah County, Virginia, prior to 1785.
  2. Andrew Shriver mentioned here is almost certainly Andrew, the son of Andrew Shriver the immigrant, born 1749 in Heidelberg township. The elder Andrew Shriver died in 1797. Note that John’s brother Jacob Will married the elder Andrew’s daugther Elisabetha (Elizabeth).
  3. Joseph Lohr, mentioned above, is possibly the Joseph Lohr who was born 1759 in Pennsylvania, died 1837 in Emmitsburg, Maryland, and was son of George and Mary Margaretha Lohr. If this is the same Joseph, he is related to the Lohr family that settled in the Shenandoah Valley in Rockingham County in the late 1700s.