Petition #21384748


The petitioners seek an accounting of inheritance and the revocation of a marriage contract. In 1818, Mary Cooke’s granduncle, Col. John Glaze, died possessed of an estate worth $100,000. According to his last will and testament, one twelfth of his estate was to be given to each of this three grandnieces; Mary was bequeathed about $18,000. Two of the said grandnieces have since died, and Mary’s portion of the estate was transferred to her guardian and father, Sims Lequeux. The Cookes are uncertain whether the money was invested “in the purchase of negros, or in the payment of his debts.” Sims has died and is survived by his daughter the said Mary and his widow Harriet Lequeux. Mary Cooke asserts that she has been “afflicted with exceedingly ill health” and “never ventured to question” the state of her legacy. After the death of Sims, Harriet and David Gaillard assumed control of the Lequeux estate and “took possession of said negros,” selling some of the slaves. Neither Harriet nor David offered any account of their actions to Mary. In 1846, Mary married John Cooke; before said marriage, Harriet Lequeux encouraged the couple to execute a marriage contract, which essentially deprived Mary of her inheritance; the couple agreed without realizing the implications of their actions. Gaillard now refuses to pay Mary "an allowance" from said trust unless ordered “to do so by the Court.” The Cookes therefore pray said marriage contract be set aside and the defendants be ordered to account for their actions.

Result: Granted.

22 people are documented within petition 21384748

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Citation information

Repository: South Carolina Department of Archives and History, Columbia, South Carolina