There are many sources that indicate Francis Small was named for his famous kinsman, Francis Champernoun. There is however, no basis for this assertion, as the Will of Frances Champernoun below indicates the likelihood that Francis was older than Francis Small, but by only about 25 years, hardly a famous individual at that age.
Edward Small, Francis' father was born in Bideford, the Champernowne/Champernoun family came from Dartington, Devonshire. Not a close proximity for these families.
The Elizabeth Small listed as his maid servant in his will could be either Edward's wife, Elizabeth Stuart, or son Francis' wife, Elizabeth Leighton, but she is listed as Small in the Will, and why would either be a maid servant in the Champernoun household when they clearly were elsewhere with their husbands. There is therefore, no source that can be quoted to indicate this connection found to date.
Small researchers have attempted to trace lineage through the Champernoun family, and to my knowledge, no one has been able to make any connection to the family other than the fact that Francis below did indeed have a maid servant named Elizabeth Small. Therefore, this "family tradition" has no basis in history. What is more likely, an Elizabeth Small, maidservant of Francis Champernoun was an indentured servant to him, and who paid her passage to New England; and is not connected to the Francis Small line in Maine directly.
Will of Francis Champernoun
In the name of God Amen I ffrancis Champernown Gentleman. Inhabitant of ye Island comonly called by the
name of Champernouns Island in ye township of Kittery in ye Province of Maine in New England/ being weak of body
but of Sound and perfect Memory, doe make & ordaine this my last Will & Testament In manner & form
following: Vizt Imprs I comit my Soul to God hoping by his Mercy through ye Merrits of Jesus Christ to enjoy life
Eternall And my body to ye earth to be Decently buried in Such manner as my Executris hereafter named Shall think
fit. And as for my temporall Estate and goods with which it hath pleased God to Endew me/ after my Just Debts
and ffunerall Charges are paid/ I give & bequeath as ffolloweth/ Item/ I make ordain and constitute my welbeloved
wife Mary Champernoune full and Sole Executris of this my last will & Testament.
Item. I giue bequeath & confirm unto my sd Executrix the one halfe part of ye sd Champernouns Island which I now possess to her my sd Executrix for ever, which I have already given by Deed under my hand and Seal to my sd Executrix.
Item I giue and bequeath & confirm unto my Son in Law Humphrey Elliot & Elizabeth his now wife And their heires for ever the other part of my sd Island, which I have alredy giuen by Deed under my hand and Seal to ye sd Humphrey & Elizabeth his wife/ Item I giue and bequeath unto my Son in Law Robert Cutt my daughter in Law Bridget Scriven my daughter in Law Mary Cutt and my daughter in Law Sarah Cutt, and to their heires for ever all that part of three hundred Acres of Land belonging unto me lying between Crokets Neck and ye land formerly belonging unto Hugh Gunnison on ye Estern Side of Spruce Creek to be Equally Devided between ye sd Robert Bridget Mary & Sarah Except what I have not before the making of this my last will and Testament disposed of to any other person And alsoe Excepting thirty Acres of land in this my last will & Testament hereunder giuen to Elizabeth Small.
Item/ I giue & bequeath unto Elizabeth Small my Servant Maid and to her heires for ever, in behalfe of what I formerly promised her. Thirty Acres of Land at Spruce Creek which sd thirty Acres of land part of ye aforesd three hundred Acres, it is my will shall be first laid out by my Executrix and my ouerseers here under named And alsoe I doe guive and bequeath unto ye sd Elizabeth Small, ten pounds to be paid to her in Cattle & ten pounds in goods which is in Lieu of what I promised her.
Item I giue and bequeath unto my Son in Law Richard Cutt the Sum of fiue pounds to be paid by my Executrix
Item, in respect of ye great affection that I bear unto my Grand Child Champernoun Elliot Son of Humphrey Elliot
I doe by these presents Adopt declare & make the sd Champernoun Elliot my heire Giuing to him ye sd Champernoun all ye Lands of Right belonging unto me or that may belong unto me, either in old England or in New England not by me already disposed of And doe by this my last Will and Testament Appoint and constitute him ye sd Champernoun my Executr of all my estate that either is or may be of Right belonging or be due unto me in old England from any pson, And ye same to have & enjoy to him ye sd Champernoun and his heires for ever.
Item/ I doe hereby Constitute Robert Mason Esqr John Hincks Esqr Majr John Davis of York and Robert Elliot of Great Island Merchant my Louing ffriends to be overseers of this my last Will and Testament And desire they may Se the same performed and be Assistant to my sd Executrix.
Lastly I doe declare and publish this to be my last Will and Testament Annulling and making void all former & other Wills and Testaments/ In witness whereof I haue hereunto put my hand and Seal this Sixteenth day of Novembr in ye year of our Lord God one thousand Six Hundred & Eighty Six Anoq Reg Regis Jacobi Secundi Secundo.
Signed Sealed deliuered ffrancis Champernoun (his
and published to be the last seal)
will & Testament of ffrancis
Champernoun Gent in ye prests of us/
Francis Champernowne was born ca 1599 in Dartington, Devonshire
Francis Small/Smalley was born 1625 in Bideford
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