Tag Archives: transcriptions

My Path to Certification – Issue No. 3

Since bringing home so many land deeds last week, I began the task of transcribing them. Out of seventy plus deeds, nine are completed. While doing this is important for the sake of my research (for my comprehension), transcribing the deeds serves a secondary purpose as well. For the Board of Certified Genealogists’ portfolio, items 3 and 4 (Document Work) consist of transcribing and abstracting a document, as well as constructing a research question, analysis, and formulating a research plan. There are no limitations on what type of document one chooses to transcribe and abstract, but two of the most common types of documents are wills and land deeds. The first time one transcribes a document should not be for the portfolio. Practice is required!

I consider myself a fairly competent transcriber, especially after deciphering my grandparents’ handwriting over the course of the WWII project. But transcribing wills and deeds requires an additional set of skills. Because these are legal documents, having a familiarity with legal terms is a must. Learning to recognize unfamiliar terms in a clerk’s chicken scratch can be difficult. Even though I have only transcribed nine deeds so far, I am very familiar with the terms “hereditaments” and “appurtenances” at this point. After a while the boilerplate language becomes predictable and easier to transcribe. Again, this is where I stress practice!

The Genealogy Standards address transcriptions in a couple of places. Standard 32: Transcribing, Abstracting, and Quoting Principles goes into great detail as to what is expected in a transcription, including “…when quoting and transcribing, genealogists render wording, spelling, numbering, abbreviations, superscripts, and similar features exactly as they appear in the original.” Doing this can be difficult with auto correct in a word processing program. Most of us cringe at misspelled words, phonetic challenges, and inconsistent spellings. However, when doing a transcription, it is vitally important to keep everything the same. I am reminded of the song from the second act of Hamilton when Angelica frets over the placement of a comma in one of Alexander’s letters because it changes the meaning of the phrase. This is why we must retain accuracy in transcriptions. For example, an incorrectly placed comma may create two children in a will when there is only one. (John, William vs. John William)

The book Professional Genealogy edited by Elizabeth Shown Mills has a chapter on transcribing and abstracting documents. Chapter 16 provides a variety of examples and forms, including wills, land deeds, and estate inventories. I highly recommend this chapter for anyone attempting transcriptions or abstracts. In fact, the book lays open on the floor by my desk as I work on my transcriptions.

Until next week! Sadly my summer vacation is almost over as I must return to the classroom very, very soon. August 1st—my self-imposed date for mailing in my preliminary application form to the Board for Certification of Genealogists is rapidly approaching as well!

Things I do in my spare time…I knit. I am almost done with a sweater for this fall. I should have it completed by next week.

My newest, soon-to-be finished, sweater, 2017

©2017 Deborah Sweeney
Post originally found: https://genealogylady.net/2017/07/25/my-path-to-certification-issue-no-3/

Inventory Sale of Dorsey Hogland

Dorsey Hoagland of Nelson County, Kentucky died intestate around 1836. He did not write a will. However, he did have a sizeable estate which was disposed by his administrators. Some of the estate’s property was sold for cash, while some was set aside for the widow and heirs. The following represents items that were sold from the estate. Besides farm animals and farming equipment, Dorsey owned a couple stills, shoemaking equipment and cooper’s timber. One can infer quite a lot from Dorsey’s possessions. Did he make whiskey? Was he a shoemaker by trade?

Hoagland, Dorsey - Appraisement (Nelson Book 2, p.157)

Nelson County, Kentucky Probate Book H/2: 157-158

Dorsey Hogland Sale of Inventory
Nelson County, Kentucky
Probate vol H/2: 156-157
Sale 21st and 22nd of July 1836; Filed 9 January 1837

A list of sales of the property belonging to the estate of Dorsey Hoglan decᵈ which was sold on the 21st and 22nd days of July 1836.

Mary Hogland One book case 1.25
Same One clock 11.00
Same One small square table 1.12 ½
Same One bedstead & furniture 4.25
Same Two looking glasses “ .87½
Same Two waiters 1.43¾
Same One bed bedstead & furniture 5.62½
Same One trunk “.37½
Same One bed bedstead & furniture 6.93¾
Same One lot of Bed clothes 9.37½
Same One bed bedstead & furniture 6.93¾
Same One side saddle 10.50
Same One side saddle & [?] 1.19 [? written over]
Same One cupboard & furniture 8.80½
Same One desk 3.25
Same One large tallboy [?] table 1.37½
Same One coffee mill “.37½
Same 3 tin buckets [?] coffee [?] 1.56¼
Same Two pair hand irons 2.12½
Same Two smoothing irons “.81¼
Same One large chest “.06¼
Same One square table “.68¾
Same Eight Windsor chairs 2.43¾
Same One set common do [ditto chairs] 2.06¼
Same Four kettles 6.12¼
Same One copper stew kettle 3.06¼
Same One copper tea kettle 2.12¼
Same One pair of small [?] “.93¾
Same One pot and Bale 1.06¼
Same One do [ditto]     do [ditto] “.56¼
Same One large oven & coal “.25
Same One small do [ditto] do[ditto] “.31¼
Same One pan and lead “.68¾
Same One shovel [?] and ladle “.25
Same Two pot …[?] “.75
Same Sifters [?], reggier [?] & trays “.37½
Same One small Carey plow “.87½
Same One shovel do [ditto] “.43¾
Same One axe “.68¾
Same One hoe “.56½
Same One single tree and clevis [?] “.56½
Same One red cow 14.12½
Same One Brindle Heiffer 8.12½
Same One red & white do [ditto] 7.75
Same One roan mare 23.26¼
Same One flax brake “.12½
Same One cross oak flooring planks 5.25
Same One wooden tooth harrow “.25
Same Two collar & one [?] of [?] 3.93¼
Same One blind bridle & cutting box 1.56¼
Same Two large still Tubs “.50
Same Five hogs 1st choice 26.12½
Same 7 do [ditto] 4th choice 10.50
Same Two Augers “.25
Same One wheat pan & sive 8.50
Same Eleven open tubs .25
Samᴵ D. Hardy One black steer 14.00
Same One red & white spotted do [ditto] 13.75
Same One red do [ditto] 15.87½
Geo. W. Caldwill One Rifle Gun & shot rounds 16.00
Same One Bay mare & colt 59.00
Martin Hogland One keg & some powder 1.56¼
Same One lot of old Iron 2.00
Same One Iron wedge “.43¾
Same One Tight barrel “.37½
Same One pair [?]ple Irons 1.06¼
Same 1 wagon feed Tough & Tar bucket 71.00
Same One set of hind Geer 9.00
Same One lot of old Geer 2.00
Same One pair of stretchers 1.56¼
Same One old man’s saddle “.18¾
Same Six corks[?] of hay in the meadow 5.00
Same One Keg and some Tar “.75
Same One Iron pitch fork “.31¼
James Philips One lot of poplar planks 4.50
Same Four hogs 2nd choice 23.06¼
Same 6 do [ditto] 3 choice 18.00
Same 7 do [ditto] 5 do [ditto] 12.12½
Same 7 do [ditto] 6th do [ditto] 11.00
Same One lot of poplar planks 1.06½
Same One do [ditto] do [ditto] do [ditto] 6.06¼
Harsy Robey One lot of lasts & shoe maker tools 1.75
Same Four open tubs 1.12½
Same One skillet “.18¾
Same One lot of shingles 7.12½
John Shepleigh One spider & lead “.75
same One flax hackle 1.18¼
same One man’s saddle 6.00
Same One cross cut pair 2.00
Thomas Aud One red male heiffer $12.06¼
Elisha Miller Four yearling calves $19.25
Wᵐ Congrove 23 head of sheep 33.25
Henderson Hibbs 4 old Irons “.50
Same One axe & one hoe “.62½
Same One lot of oats in field 5.81¼
Wᵐ Hardy One pair large slatyards [?]/paid 2.06¼
Rezin Shopsaco [?] 7 old open tubs /paid 1.60
Barbara Hogland One pot and lead “.43¼
Same One tea kettle “.56¼
William Ashlock One spider and lead [?] “.93¾
Murry Ash One frying pan /paid “.63½
William Taylor One large Carey plow / paid 3.81¼
Matthew Kurts One shovel plow (paid) “.87½
Jonathan Hibbs One shovel (paid) “.62½
Henry Fleming One sprouting hoe paid “.75
Levi Magruder One Broad axe (paid) “.50
Joseph F. Greathouse One lot of cooper’s timber pᵈ .43¾
Henry Jones One drawing knife & [?] pᵈ “.25
Isaac Osbourn Two stills and all
the aparatus thereunto belonging 76.00
Conrod Kurts One lot cooper’s timber paid 1.06¼
Same One hammer paid “.18¾
John Hogland One hand saw & axe & [?] knife pᵈ 1.81¼
[?] same One grind stone “.56¼
Aquilla Hagan One chissel paid “.43¾
James Hogland Three wooden pitch forks “.12½
Same One hammer [?] scythe “.06¼
Same One Dutch scythe & hayings “.52
Nelson Hibbs One Grind stone paid “.12[?]

G. C. Hogland Admʳ
Mary Hogland Admrix
P. B. Samuels CUNR [?]

At a County Court held for Nelson County on the 9th day of January 1837. This list of sales of the estate of Dorsey Hogland decᵈ was returned to the Court and ordered to record.

Attest Nathᴵ Wickliffe, Clk

The image is from FamilySearch. While I was able to read a good portion of the items on the list, there were a few items that I could not determine. Any suggestions are welcome!

©2014 transcription by Deborah Sweeney
Post originally found:  https://genealogylady.net/2014/10/13/inventory-sale-of-dorsey-hogland/

Will of Elias Harding

The other day I transcribed the will of James B[ecraft] Harding. I am one of his descendants through my grandmother Gladys. James’ daughter Ruth (by his first marriage to Verlinda Wilcoxon) married Charles F. Harding, in Montgomery County, Maryland on 14 October 1818. I have yet to figure out how Charles fits into the Harding family of Montgomery County, Maryland. On the death certificate of Ruth and Charles’ daughter Cassandra (Harding) Lawhead, her parents were recorded as Elias Harting and Ruth Wilcox. Obviously the informant for the death certificate confused some of the family names. I suspect that Charles F. Harding was related to Elias Harding in some way. I am working my way through the Harding wills and other legal documents in Montgomery County to see if I can figure out how the extended family fits together.

Will of Elias Harding
Montgomery County, Maryland
Will book D: 295-297
Written 10 November 1799; filed 10 March 1800 

In the Name of God Amen I Elias Harding of Montgomery County and State of Maryland being sick and weak in body but of sound mind memory and understanding praised be the Lord for his mercy do make and ordain this my last Will and Testament in manner and form following that is to say, First I commend my soul into Almighty God who gave it me hoping through the merits of my redeemer Jesus Christ to obtain full remission of my manifold transgressions, and my body to the Grave to be decently intered at the discretion of my Executors hereafter named and as for all the Worldly Estate wherewith it hat pleased God to bless me I dispose thereof in manner following – First my will and desire is that all my Just debts and funeral Expences be first paid by my Executors. Secondly I give and bequeath unto my son Edward Harding One Negro Boy named Enos to him his heirs and assigns for ever – Thirdly I give and bequeath unto my son Josiah Harding one Negro named Ben to him his heirs and assigns for ever – Fourthly I give and bequeath unto my son Nathan Harding one Negro named Davy to him his heirs and assigns for ever – Fifthly I give and bequeath unto my son John Harding one Negro named Ezeheel to him his heirs and assigns for ever – Sixthly I give and bequeath unto my Grand son Thomas Noble Harwood Harding son of John Harding one Negro boy named Scipio (or Scip) his heirs and assigns for ever – and my Will and desire is that the same Negro be kept by my said son John Harding until my said Grand son Thomas Noble Harwood Harding shall arrive to the age of eighteen years at which period my will and desire is that my said Grand son shall be put in possession of said Negro Scipio or Scip to act and do with him as he may think most beneficient for himself with out the constraint of any person whatever and in case my

[page 2] said Grand son Thomas Noble Harwood Harding should decease before he arrives to the age of eighteen years as aforesaid my will is that the said Negro be legally and impartially appraised and an equal distribution of his Value be made between the brothers and sisters of my said Grand son which shall then survive him share and share alike. Seventhly I give and bequeath unto my beloved wife Elizabeth Harding during her life or widowhood, all my Real and personal Estate of every  kind and nature whatever save and except the before mentioned bequests and at the decease or marriage I give and bequeath unto my son John Harding his heirs and assigns for ever one hundred and fifty acres of Land part of the tract I live on called forrest to be laid out on the West side of my said Tract of Land called Forrest and to extend Eastwardly till a course run from the North side south degrees a Cross the said Tract shall include the said one hundred and fifty acres of Land and Improvements in which I now dwell with all other the appurtenances thereon, I give and bequeath unto my son Nathan Harding his heirs and assigns for ever all the remaining part of my said Tract of Land called Forrest being the East side of it and on which my son John Harding now swells – And as to my personal Estate bequeathed to my wife during her lie or widowhood my Will is that at her decease or marriage my Executors sell so much of it as will amount to forty pounds current money of Maryland as now commonly passing which said sum of Forty pounds I give and bequeath unto my four Grand children the Children of my deceased son Walter Harding Namely Elias Harding, Philip Harding, Mary Drane wife of Thomas O. Drane and Elizabeth Williams wife of Benjamin Williams to each of them respectively separately and Severally the sum of ten pounds like money to be paid them and each of them by my Executors and in case either of my said four Grand children shall die before the receipt of the said ten pounds my will is that the Legacy of the deceased go to the legal representative or representatives of the deceased if any, if none, the said Legacy of the deceased shall be divided between the survivors of them or their heirs, share and share alike. Also my Will is that after full payment of the before mentioned Legacies that all the residue and remaining part of my personal Estate devised to my loving wife Elizabeth as aforesaid and at her decease or marriage to be equally divided between my son Edward, my son Josiah, the legal representatives of my son Basil being four children (to wit) Mary, Sarah, Elizabeth and Walter, that is for the said four children of my son Basil

[page 3] to share only one fifth part of the aforesaid remaining part of my personal Estate. My daughter Elizabeth Perry, wife of Erasmus Perry and Deborah Wheeler wife of John Hanson Wheeler, and in case of the decease of either of my said sons or Daughters or either of the four Children of my deceased son Basil my Will is that the shares of any such Deceased shall go to his, her or their legal representatives, And lastly I do hereby nominate and appoint my two sons Edward Harding and John Harding Joint Executors of this my last Will and Testament hereby revoking making null and void all former wills and wills by me heretofore made ratifying and confirming this only to to be my last Will and Testament. In Witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this tenth day of November one Thousand seven hundred and ninety nine – Elias Harding [seal]

Signed Sealed Published and declared by the
Above named Elias Harding as and for his last
Will and Testament in the presence of us who
Have hereunto subscribed our names as witness thereto in the presence of the said Testator and at his request and in the presence of each other –

Alexʳ Whitaker, Walter Williams, Hugh s. Dunn –

Montgomery County Scᵗ On the 10th day of March 1800 then came Alexander Whitaker, Walter Williams and Hugh S. Dunn the three subscribing witnesses to the within last Will and Testament of Elias Haridng late of said County deceased and made Oath on the Holy Evangely of Almighty God, that the signature of Elias Harding signed at the foot of the within Will was done in their presents and that they heard him publish pronounce and declare the same to be his last will and Testament and at the time of his so doing he was to the best of their apprehension of sound and deposing mind memory and understanding and that they respectively subscribed their names as witnesses to the Will in the presence and at the request of the Testator and in the presence of each other –

Certified by Samᴵ Turner Regʳ

©2014 transcription by Deborah Sweeney
Post originally found: https://genealogylady.net/2014/10/08/will-of-elias-harding/