Thursday, November 4, 2010

Day 136

For those of you that waited up last night for the blog, my apologies. The internet was uncooperative. However, I did write and post the blog for yesterday this morning.

This morning it was off to the county court house and down to the basement vault for probate records. Both John Holloway and George Atkinson had long wills - 5-6 pages each. They were detailed about the disposition of their property and were very fair with all children. John Holloway designated about 20 slaves by name to be distributed amongst family members. He specifically requested that mothers and children not be separated during any future sales or exchanges. John's wife Ann received full control of all his property for her lifetime. If she remarried, she was still to receive 1/3 of everything. Obviously this was a strong, long-lived marriage.

George Atkinson's will made several interesting decisions. He forgave all debts that his brothers or children had incurred with him. He wanted everyone to start evenly for the distribution of assets. He also decided that he was not pleased with the old cemetery at the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. He made provision for the graves of all relations interred there to be moved to the plots purchased at the new Fernwood City Cemetery. He also called for marble monuments to be built and a sturdy fence to surround the area. Interesting. There were 2 codicils to the will. The second one revoked the 3 individuals originally set to serve as his executors (2 sons and a son-in-law) and gave the power to his eldest son John C. Atkinson. I don't know if there was a rift in the family or ?????

I also have the will from James H. Letcher. He disposes most all of his property to the Presbyterian church and his son Oscar G. Letcher. He mentions a nephew and James Letcher Taylor but makes no mention of his son Edward's (our GG grandfather) children or grand children. He sounds like a stern character. Wonder what the schism was in that family.

I then spent several hours in the historical society. Nothing much new but some odds and ends. Mid-afternoon, I took in the Audubon museum. They did have a painting of a turkey which said it was painted in Louisiana. I don't know what happened to the turkey he painted at the Holloway home - maybe it is in the hands of relatives.

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