(William is a 4 x great grandfather of mine) A surprisingly long will for one which seems to have had a very simple intent - that everything should go to his widow during her life time and then be equally divided between their children. William wrote his will surprisingly early - not just was he still in good health, but aged only about 62. With Elizabeth aged only 55, there was a real possibility that had he died soon after writing it she would have remarried, but unusually he does not specify that his money etc. should only be for her use while she remained a widow. He also does not actually state that any money for his children should go their offspring if they pre-deceased their mother, but this was clearly his intent as he specified that if they left no lawful offspring then their share should be divided between their siblings. All of William and Elizabeth's 12 children were living when William wrote his will, and only one died in the 15 years between the will being written and William's death, although two more died in the 16 years that then elapsed before their mother's death. All 3 of these left children to inherit their share, though in the case of William, the first of William and Elizabeth's children to die (in 1862), only 3 of his 9 children survived their father, and only one of those 3 their grandmother. Appointing his widow as his sole executrix, despite the fact that writing his will when in good health meant it was by no means certain she would outlive him, William also appointed 2 friends as trustees "for carrying this my last Will and Testament into effect", although the details suggest that most of what was being asked of them was after the death Elizabeth, if, as happened, she should outlive William. However, one trustee, Edward Farr, died before William, and the other, Andrew Lamble, before Elizabeth. (more about both friends after the will)
In the name of God Amen. I William Bartlett Hambling of Blackawton in the parish of Blackawton in the County of Devon Gunsmith being in good health and of sound and disposing mind memory and understanding blessed be God for the same do make publish and declare this my last Will and Testament in manner and form following that is to say I give and bequeath all my Monies and Securities for Monies Goods Chattles and Personal Property of every nature and kind whatsoever of which I may be possessed at the time of my decease unto my Wife Elizabeth Hambling to and for her own absolute use and benefit for and during the term of her natural life Also I give and bequeath unto my said Wife Elizabeth Hambling all that my Freehold Houses Smiths Shop Orchard Herb Garden and Appurtenances thereunto belonging situate at Millcombe  in the aforesaid parish of Blackawton and in the tenure or occupation of John Cole  and others as tenants to me. Also I give and bequeath unto my said Wife Elizabeth Hambling all that my Freehold House and Shops at Blackawton with all the Appurtenances thereunto belonging or appurtaining situate in the Village and parish of Blackawton aforesaid and now in my own occupation To hold the aforesaid Houses and Lands and every part thereof to my said Wife Elizabeth Hambling and her assigns for and during the term of her natural life And from and after the decease of said Wife Elizabeth Hambling then I declare and direct that my Trustees hereinafter mentioned or the survivor of them his executors administrators or assigns do and shall as soon after the decease of my Wife Elizabeth Hambling as they or he shall thing [sic] fit to sell and absolutely dispose of my said Freehold Houses Lands and Property aforesaid either by public auction or private contract and either altogather or in parcels to any person or persons who may be willing to purchase and will give the most money for the same And I direct that my said Trustees and the survivor of them his executors administrators or assigns shall stand possessed of the money to arise from the sale or sales of my said Real Property In trust in the first place to reimburse themselves all costs and expences attending the execution of the trust hereby created and the overplus (if any) to be equally divided between all my children already born or which shall be born hereafter in equal share and proportions and to be paid and payable to them respectively as soon after as shall be convenient And in case anyone or more of my said children shall die without leaving lawful issue living at the time of his her or their death Then I direct that the share or shares of the Child or Children so dying aforesaid shall belong to and be equally divided between the survivors share and share alike And I hereby direct that all receipts of my said Trustees hereinafter named and the survivor of them his executors administrators or assigns for any money to be paid to them or him under the trust of this my Will shall be good and effectual discharge for the same and that the persons paying the same shall not be bound to see to the application thereof or be answerable for any misapplication or nonapplication of the same Provided always and I hereby further declare and direct that the Trustees hereinafter mentioned their executors administrators and assigns shall be charged and chargeable only for such money as they respectively shall actually receive by virtue of the trusts notwithstanding his or their giving or signing or joining in giving or signing any receipt or receipts for the same of conformity and that any one or more of them shall not be answerable for the neglects or defaults of the other or others of them nor for involuntary losses but each of them only for his own acts receipts and defaults respectively and that they or either of them shall not be answerable for any loss or damage which may happen to the said Trust Property in the execution of the trusts or in relation thereto unless the same shall happen by or through his or their own wilful neglect or default repectively And I hereby nominate and appoint my kind Friends Edward Farr  of Buckland Tout Saints in the said County Yeoman and Andrew Pillage Lamble  of Blackawton Yeoman in the aforesaid County to be the Trustees for carrying this my last Will and Testament into effect. And lastly I hereby nominate constitute and appoint my said Wife Elizabeth Hambling the sole Executrix of this my last Will and Testament And I hereby revoke and make void all former and other Wills by me at any time heretofore made and I declare this only to be my last Will and Testament In witness whereof I the said William Bartlett Hambling the Testator have to this my last Will and Testament written on two sheets of paper set my hand and seal (to wit) my hand to the first sheet thereof and my hand and seal to this second and last sheet this eighteenth day of October in the year of our Lord One thousand eight hundred and forty nine. William B Hambling (seal) Signed sealed published and declared by the said William Bartlett Hambling the Testator as and for the last Will and Testament in the presence of us who at his request in his presence and in the presence of each other have subscribed our names as Witnesses thereto – Thos. Cutmore – Ellen Stone
Proved at Exeter the 29th day of October 1864 by the Oath of Elizabeth Hambling Widow, the Relict the sole Executor to whom Administration was granted The Testator William Bartlett Hambling was late of Blackawton in the County of Devon Gunsmith and died on the 24th day of February 1864 at Blackawton aforesaid. Under £100 (J. C. Kellock, Solr., Totnes) etc copy of the original Will of William Bartlett Hambling deceased.