WILLIAMSBURG, April 11, 1777.
To be sold, agreeable to the last Will and Testament of the Hon. William Byrd, Esq; deceased, at Westover, in Charles City County, about 25 miles below Richmond Town, on the 24th of April next, 100 Virginia born SLAVES, well clothed, among whom are many very fine Tradesmen, Colliers, Forgermen, Carpenters, Shoemakers, an exceeding good Cook, Washer Women, and Dairy Maids; also some very elegant FURNITURE and Plate, and Part of the Stocks of Horses, Cattle, and Sheep, and some very valuable high blooded Horses. The Sale will be for ready Money, but those who have Demands against the Estate, by Judgments, or protected Bills of Exchange, will be allowed the same in Payment of any purchase they may make.---All those who are indebted to the Estate, are requested to make Payment as soon as possible, and those who have any Demands against it to make them known, together with the Grounds of their respective Debts to The EXECUTRIX. N.B. The Executrix has also for Sale, a good Brick Dwelling-House with 4 Rooms on each Floor, situated in the City of Williamsburg, lately occupied by the said William Byrd, Esq; and at present by the Rev. John Bracken. The Dwelling-House has all convenient Outhouses, and several inclosed Lots adjoining; also the very valuable LIBRARY of the said Deceased, consisting of near four Thousand Volumes. The House and Library will be disposed of either by private or public Sale, as may be most agreeable to the Purchasers.
Virginia Gazette (Dixon &Hunter) April 11, 1777
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William Byrd III, 1728- January 1777, held offices in colonial Virginia government and fought in the French and Indian War. He was moderate in his politics and continued loyal to the Crown until Dunmore's proclamation offering freedom to slaves in November 1775. He planned to join the Continental Army. Byrd gambled and spent money freely. A French visitor in Williamsburg remarked that Byrd was "never happy but when he has the box and Dices in hand" and added that Byrd had "reduced himself to the Degree by gameing, that few or nobody will Credit him for Ever so small a sum of money." He committed suicide on the first day of 1776.
Sources: DVB, v2