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LV. If all the executors named in any last will, Estate comshall refuse to undertake the executorship, or being re

e. mitted to shequired to give security, shall refuse to give, or be una- his power & ble to procure the same, and no person will apply for duty. administration with the will annexed: Or if no person will apply for administration of the goods and challels of any intestate, it shall be lawful for the general court, or other court having jurisdiction of such probat or administration as herein before mentioned, after the expiration of three months from the death of the testator or intestate, to order the sheriff of the county, city, or corporation, to take the estate into his possession, and make sale of so much thereof by public auction, is the payment of debts shall make necessary, or as shall be perishable, or be directed by.will to be sold: And all sales and conveyances, bona fide made by the sheriff or his deputies, in consequence of such order, shall be as effectual to the purchasers, as if they had been made by the testator or intestate in his life time. The estate shall be sold upon such credit; as the court shall direct, and upon public notice previously given, the purchasers giving bond and good security for payment according to the limited time of credit. The sheriff may sue, if necessary, for the recovery of debts, or of goods and chattels, and shall make a true and perfect inventory of the whole estate, and an account of sales, and shall return the same, together with the bonds, to the court by whom he was ordered to sell, without delay, who shall first direct the payment of such debts as shall be proved before them, and proportion the assets amongst the creditors, without regard to the dignity of debts, where there shall not be sufficient to pay the whole; and then order the surplus, if any, to the legatees or next of kin to the decedent, according to the directions of the will, or of this act. Whereupon the sheriff, or deputy, shall assign the bonds, and deliver the estate remaining unsold, to the creditors, or others, according to such order, retaining nevertheless his commissions, which shall be the same upon the estate by him sold, as is allowed for goods taken in execution: and where the whole estate is not sold, he shall moreover he allowed his resonable expences and disburseinents in the care of the part unsold.

LVI. All sales and conveyances of lands heretofore Sales by sh bona fide made by a sheriff, onder an order of court, iffs confirmed


where the lands had been devised to be sold, and the executor had refused to act, are hereby confirmed and made effectual against all persons claiming under the testator.

LVII. This act shall commence and be in force from and after the first day of Jandary, one thousand seven hundred and eighty-seven.

From Rev.
Bills of 1779.
ch. XXII.

An act for regulating coveyances. Conveyances I. BE it enacted by the General Assembly, That no of lands, to be estate of inheritance, or freehold, or for a term of more by deed.

than five years in lands or tenements, shall be conveyed from one to another unless the conveyance be declared by writing, sealed and delivered; nor shall such conveyance be good against a purchaser, for valuable consideration, not having notice thereof, or any creditor, unless the same writing be acknowledged by the party or parties who shall bave sealed and delivered it, or be proved by three witnesses to be his, her, or

their act, before the general court, or before the court When and of that county, city, or corporation, in which the land where record conveyed, or some part thereof, lieth, or in the manner ed.

herein after directed, within eight months after the time of sealing and delivering, and be lodged with the clerk of such court, to be there recorded. No covenant

or agreement made in consideration of marriage shall Marriage con be good against a purchaser, for valuable consideratracts.

tion, not having notice thereof, or any creditor, unless the same covenant or agreement be acknowledged by the party bound thereby, or be proved by three witnesses to be his, her, or their act; if land be charged before the general court, or the court of that county in wbich the land or part thereof lieth, or if personal estale only be settled, or covenanted, or agreed to be paid or settled, besore the court of that county in which such

* Erroniously numbered XLll in the original.

nt of

party shall dwell, or in the manner hereinafter directed, within eight months after the covenant or agreement made and be lodged with the clerk of such court, to be there recorded. If the party who shall sign and seal any such writing reside not in Virginia, the acknow Proof of ledgment by such party, or the proof by the number of deeds out of witnesses requisite, of the sealing and delivering of the the state,how

" and when to writing, before any court of law, or the mayor, or 0- be recorded. ther chief magistrate of any city, town or corporation of the county in which the party shall dwell, certified by such court, or mayor, or chief magistrate, in the manner such acts are usually authenticated by them, and offered to the proper court to be recorded, within eighteen months after the sealing and delivering, shall be as effectual as if it had been in the last mentioned court. When husband and wife shall have sealed and delivered Wife's relin. a writing, purporting to be a conveyance of any estate or le

or dower, how interest, if she appear in court, and being examined taken in the privily, and apart from her husband, by one of the state. judges thereof, shall declare to him that she did freely and willingly seal and deliver the said writing, to be then shewn and explained to her, and wishes not to retract it, and shall, before the said court, acknowledge the said writing, again shewn to her, to be her act, or if before two justices of the peace of that county in which she dwelleth, if her dwelling be in the United States of America, who may be empowered by commission to be issued by the clerk of the court wherein the writing ought to be recorded, to examine her privily, and take her acknowledgment, the wife being examined privily and apart from her husband, by those commissioners, shall declare that she willingly signed and sealed the said writing, to be then shewn and explained to her, by them, and consenteth that it may be recorded; and the said commissioners shall return with the commission, and thereunto annexed, a certificate. under their hands and seals, of such privy examination by them, and of such declaration made, and consent yielded by her, in either case the said writing acknowledged also by the husband, or proved by witnesses to be his act, and recorded, together with such her privy examination and acknowledgment before the court, or together with such commission and certificate, shall not only be sufficient to convey or release any right of dower thereby intended to be conveyed or released, but be as effectual


be recorder

for every other purpose as if she were an uumarried Relinquish woman. If the dwelling of the wise be not in the Uniment of dow ted States of America, the commission to examine her er how taken out of the privily aud take her acknowledgment, shall be directed

to any two judges or justices of any court of law, or to the mayor, or other chief magistrate of any city, town, or corporation of the county in which the wife shall dwell, and may be executed by them in the same manner as a commission directed to two justices in the United States of America; and the certificate of the judges or justices of such court, or the certificate of such mayor or chief magistrale, authenticated in the form, and with the solemnity by them used in other acis, shall be as effectual as the like certificate

of the justices in the United States of America. Deeds of re- The clerk of every court shall record all writings aclinquishment knowledged, or proved before such court, or certified of dower to

ed to have been acknowledged or proved, in manier be

fore prescribed, together with the commissions for privily examining and taking the acknowledgments of married women, and all endorsements on such wrilings, and plots, schedules, and other papers thereto anvexed, by entering them, word for word, in well

bound books, to be carefully preserved, and afterwards Originals to herb.deliv. re-deliver them to the parties entitled 10, them; and ered to par. shall moreover make a docket of all such writings, ties.

containing the dates thereof, and of the acknowledge

ments and probats, the names, sur-names, and addiMemorials to tions of the parties thereto, in alphabetical order, and be transmit. ted to clerk the quantities and situations of land, numbers and of general names of slaves, and decriptions of personal estate court. conveyed thereby; and the clerk of every county court

shall iransmit suck docket made by him to the clerk of the general court, in every April and October term,

to be recorded by him. Every estate in lands or Fee tail con- slaves, which on the seventh day of October, in the verted into

year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and simple.

seventy-six, was an estate in fee tail, shall be deemed from that time to have been, and from thence forward to continue, an estate in fee simple; and every ostale in lands, which since bath been limited, or hereafter shall be limited, so that as the law aforetime was, such estate would have been an estate tail, shall also be

deemed to have been and to continue an estate in fee of conditions simple: And all estales, which before the said seventh

day of October, one thousand seven hundred and se- at common venty-six, by the law, if it remained unaltered, would law. have been estates in fee tail, and which now, by virtue of this act, are and will be estates in fee simple, shall from that time and henceforth be discharged of the conditions annexed thereto by the common law, restraining alienations before the donee shall have issues, so that the donees or persons in whom the conditional fees vested, or shall vest, had, and shall have, the same power over the same estates as if they were pure and absolute fees. Every estate in lands which shall

Words of hereafier be granted, conveyed or devised to one, al- perpetuity, though other words beretofore necessary to transfer an unnecessary, estate of inheritance be not added, shall be deemed a fee simple, if a less estate be not limited by express words, or do not appear to have been granted, conveyed or devised, by construction or operation of law. Where an estale hath been or shall be by any convey. Remainders. ance limited in remainder to the son or daughter, or to the use of the son or daughter of any person, to be begotten, such son or daughter, born after the decease of his or her father, shall take the estate in the same manner as if he or she had been born in the life time of the father, although no estale shall have been conveyed to support the contingent remainder after his death. By deed of bargain and sale, or by deeds of lease and release, or by covenant, to stand seized to use, or deed operating by way of covenant, to stand seized to use, the possession of the bargainer, releaser, or covenanter, shall be deemed heretofore to have been, and hereafter to be transferred, to the bargainee, releasee, or person entitled to the use, for the estate or interest which such person liath or shall have in the use, as perfectly as if such bargainee, releasee, or person en. titled to the use, had been enfeoffed with livery of sei. zio of the land intended to be conveyed by such deed or covenant. Estates of every kind, holden or pos Trusts. sessed in trust, shall be subject to like debts and charges of the persons 10 whose use or for whose benefit they were, or shall be respectively holden or possessed, as they would have been subject to if those persons had owned the like interest in the things holden or possessed, as they own or shall own in the uses or trusts

thereof. Where any person to whose use, or in trust Usch, . for whose benefit, another is or shall be seized of lands,

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