Monday, October 11, 2010

Amanuensis Monday - William Taylor

I thought it'd be good to follow John Newmark's example in his blog, Transylvanian Dutch.  For him, Monday is Amanuensis Monday.  He says, 
"A person employed to write what another dictates or to copy what has been written by another."
In July we were able to visit Fairfield, Illinois, and the Wayne County Courthouse.  There we found estate papers for William Taylor (1828-1897), who was my husband's great-great Grandfather.  I have attempted to transcribe two of the documents found in the packet [we especially struggled with the list of household items; and I apologize in advance for any errors].  Both of these pages were printed forms, and for clarity, I have formatted the printed text in brown, and the written text in italicized black.  Comments within brackets were added by me.


Petition of Elizabeth Taylor
In the matter of the Estate of William Taylor
deceased, for letters of Administration.

To the Hon. Wm G. Bonham Judge of the County Court of Wayne County, in the State of Illinois:
The Petition of the undersigned Elizabeth Taylor respectfully represents that William Taylor late of the County of Wayne aforesaid, departed this life at his home in said County, on or about the 15th day of June A.D. 1897 leaving no last will and testament as far as your petitioner knows or believes.
And this Petition further shows that the said William Taylor died, seized and possessed of Real and Personal Estate, consisting chiefly of 2 Mares & Colts 3 Cows 1 Calf 1 Sow and pigs 1 Wagon Plows Harrow Mower Colt Furniture & etc.
all of said personal estate being estimated to be worth about Four Hundred Dollars.  No real estate. 
That said deceased left surviving him Elizabeth Taylor his widow, and Melissa Ward wife of WHWard Viola Ingram wife of Ed. Ingram Clara Scott wife of Robert Scott Millie Taylor and Homer H. Taylor his children as heirs.  That your petitioner (being Mdm of said deceased,) and believing that the said estate should be immediately administered, as well for the proper management of said Estate as for the proper collection of the assets, by virtue of her right under the Statue she therefore pray that you Honor will grant Letters of Administration to her in the premises, upon her taking the oath prescribed by the Statue, and entering into bond in such sum and with securities, as may be approved by your Honor.
[signed] Elizabeth Taylor

Wayne County,         ss.     Elizabeth Taylor

being duly sworn, deposes and says that the facts averred in the above petition are true, according to the best of h__ knowledge, information and belief.
Sworn to and subscribed before me
a notary Public
Clerk of the County Court of Wayne County, this 9
day of August A.D. 1897
[signed] CBBarnhill Clerk
Notary public

[signed] Elizabeth Taylor


Estate of William Taylor Deceased.
County of Wayne          
                                            SS.    I, Elizabeth Taylor Widow of William Taylor deceased, do hereby relinquish all my claim to the following articles mentioned in the "Appraisers' estimate of specific property," allowed me for my family, to-wit:

The Family Pictures and the Wearing Apparel, Jewels, and
Ornaments of the widow and minor children...
Schoool [sic] Books and Family Library ............ 100.00
One Sewing Machine...
Necessary Beds, Bedsteads and Bedding for Widow and family  
The Stoves and Pipe used in the family, with the necessary
Cooking Utensils...
Household and Kitchen Furniture....................... 100.00
..... Milch [sic] Cow and Cal [sic]    (being one for every four
members of the family)...
..... Sheep and Fleeces, (being two for each member
of the family)...
One Horse, Saddle and Bridle...
Provisions for widow and family for one year...
Food for the Stock above specified for six months...
Fuel for the widow and family for three months...
Other Property......................................................100.00

TOTAL ....................................... 745.50

The aggregate value of which, as estimated, is ............. Dollars ($....), and in lieu of the same I desire to retain the following articles named in the "Appraisement Bill of Personal Property" of said ................ deceased, viz:

ARTICLES.            VALUE.
                   DOLLS. CTS.
1 Hay Rack                .05
Old Iron                  .05
1 Hay Rake               5.00
1 Broad Saw              9.00
7 Shoats                15.00
1 Bay Filley [sic]      20.00
1 [?]Sucking Colt       18.00
1 Yellow Mare           15.00
1 Cart                   1.50
1 Grain Cradle            .20
1 Bundle wire            1.00
1 [maybe spreader]        .10
1 Post Auger              .15
2 Pitch Forks             .30
1 Riding Plow            3.00
1 Black Cow and Calf    30.00
1 Bay Mare              45.00
1 Beuro [sic]            4.00
1 Confert [sic]          4.00
1  "                     2.00
5 Chairs                 2.00
1 Center Table           1.00
1 Organ                 10.00
1 Beuro [sic]            1.00
1 Stand Table             .50
3 Rocking Chairs         3.00
6 Chairs                 1.00
1 Clock                  1.00
1 Buck saw                .08
1 Barrell [sic]           .10
1 Iron Kettle             .25
1 Wheel Barrow            .20
Old Iron                  .10
1 Grind Stone             .25
1 Wagon                 10.00
1 Shovel                  .25
1 Sled                    .25
1 Double Trus             .25
1 Mower                  6.00
1 Plow                    .25
1 Shovel Plow             .50
1 Breaking Plow          1.00
1 Harrow                 1.50
1 Rolling Cutter          .10
1 Stove                  2.00
1  "                      .50
1 "                      3.00
1 Sewing Machine         2.00
1 Table                  2.00
1 Sofa                   1.50
Dishes                   2.00


The total value of which, as appraised, is $227.15 Dollars, and the balance, Five Hundred Eighteen & .35 Dollars, ($ 518.35) I prefer to have in money.
Witness my hand and seal, this 3rd day of November A.D. 1897
[Signed] Elizabeth Taylor

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