1847 Mexican War Deaths from Switzerland County, Indiana

The following is a transcription from
“Indiana, Wills and Probate Records, 1798-1999,” Ancestry.com (http://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=9045 : accessed 11 Aug 2017); Switzerland > Probate Order Book, 1841-1843; Probate Order Book, 1843-1849; Probate Order Book, 1849-1853 > image 281, p. 340.

August 1847 Term

Be it remembered that on this 10th day of August 1847 Come Jane Terry and Exhibited Satisfictory proof before the Probate Court for the County of Switzerland in the State of Indiana by the affidavits of John Gray and William Gray that She Jane Terry is the mother of William Terry who was a private in Company D Commanded by Captain Scott Carter in the third Regiment of Indiana foot Volunteers Commanded by Colonel James H. Lane, and who died while in the line of his duty in the service of the United States at Metamoris in Mexico in the month of November 1847[1846] That said William Terry left no widow, Child or Children or father.

In the matter of the Death of Wilson Huston.
Be it remembered that on the 10th day of Augt 1847 Come William W Huston and Exhibited Satisfectory proof before the Probate Court of Switzerland County in the State of Indiana now sitting, by the affidavit of William Price and Jesse Teats. That said William W. Huston is the fath[er] of Wilson Houston who was a private in Company D Commanded by Captain Scott Carter, in the 3rd Regiment of Indiana foot Volunteers Commanded by Colonel James H Lane, and who was killed in the Battle of Buena Vesta in Mexico on the 23rd day of February 1847 that the said Wilson Huston left no Widow or Children.

In the matter of the Death of Edward Detraz.
Be it remembered that on the 10th day of Augt 1847 John Detraz Exhibited satisfectory proof before the Probate Court for the County of Switzerland County in the State of Indiana, by the affidavit of Benjamin Detraz, & George Kysler. That said John Detraz is the father of Edward Detraz, in the 3rd Regiment of Indiana foot Volunteers Commanded by Colenl James H Lane and who died while in the line of his duty in the service of the United States at Saltillo in Mexico on or about the 21st day of March 1847 that said Edward Detraz left no widow or Children.

1845 Will of John Mendenhall – Switzerland County, Indiana

The following is a transcription from:
“Indiana, Wills and Probate Records, 1798-1999,” Ancestry (http://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=9045 : accessed 7 Aug 2017); Switzerland > Probate Order Book, 1841-1843; Probate Order Book, 1843-1849; Probate Order Book, 1849-1853 > image 165, 1843-1849, p. 111-112.

May Term 1845

Ira Mendenhall, Miles Mendenhall, John W. Malin, Ira N. Malin, Joseph Malin Jr., Julius Dufour and Ann E. Dufour late Ann E. Malin his wife, and Martha E. Mendenhall by Jos. C. Eggleston her Guardian ad litem vs. Martha B. Mendenhall} application to Establish a Will

Comes said Martha B. Mendenhall the person named as Executor of John Mendenhall Dec’d and offers for Probate as and for the last will and Testament of said John Mendenhall Dec’d the following will and Codicil viz: “Vevay Ind. January 1st. 1835

In the name of God, Amen. I John Mendenhall considering the uncertainty, of this mortal life, and being of sound mind &c blessed be Almighty God for the same I do make and publish this my last will and testament, in manner and form following that is to say First, I give and bequeath unto my beloved wife Martha B. Mendenhall, the house & lot No. 64 all appurtenances thereunto belongin, during her widohood then all the real estate I do bequeath to my Daughter Martha Elisabeth Mendenhall, and lastly as to all the rest, residue and remainder of my personal Estate goods & chattels of kind and nature soever, I give and bequeath the same to my said beloved wife Martha B. Mendenhall, whom I hereby appoint sole executrix of this my last will and testament, hereby revoking all former wills by me made, in witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this the first day of January in the year of our Lord Eighteen Hundred and Thirty five.

[signed] John Mendenhall {Seal}

I John Mendenhall do this Second day of Jan 1835 make and publish this codicil to my last will and testament, in manner following (that is to say) I give to Liza a black woman, a home on my premises and to her suffishency of food reament & loding if sick to be taken care off (that is to say) as long she lives , on these conditions, if she is willing to stay or live with the family so long, But if she, of her own will makes choise of any other home, and moves off, and leaves the above said premises, then the above said obligation to void and no further effect, as witness my hand & seal this seccond day of January Eighteen Hundred & thirty five

[signed] Jno Mendenhall {Seal}

I John Mendenhall do this Third day of January 1835 make and publis this codicil to my last will and testament in manner following that is to say I give Lyzaes Son Greenup his freedom on those Conditions, that is the said Greenup is to serve and be at the disposel of his Mistress during her naturel lifetime if so be that said Martha B Mendenhall should deceased previous two the year of our Lord one thousand Eight hundred and forty seven he said Greenup is to remain as the servent of my daughter Martha B Mendenhall from the day of her mother death to the and of the year 1847 as above stated, Then after the said term the said Greenup is to be set at liberty, and made free of and from all all of my heirs Administrators &c. In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and Seal this third day of January eighteen hundred and thirty five

[signed] Jno Mendenhall {Seal}

I, John Mendenhall do this fourth day of Janr. 1835 make and publish this codicil my last will and testament in manner following, That is to say I give and bequeath to my son Ira Mendenhall, the sum of Fifty I give and bequeath to my son Miles Mendenhall ten dollars I give and bequeath to my Grandchildren Malins to say the sum of five dollars to each one that is to say John Malin 5, Ira Malin 5, Joseph Malin 5, Ann E Malin 5 which said several Legasies or sums of money I will and order shall be paid to the said respective legatees within (that is to say, my two suns, one year after my deceased, And those several sums of money paid to my other legatees within three years after my Decease and lastly is my desire that this my present codicil be annexed to and made a part of my last will and testament to all intents and purposes In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this fourth day January in the year of our Lord &c One thousand eight hundred thirty five.

[signed] Jno Mendenhall

And thereupon come said plaintiff and object to the Probate of said paper as and for the last will and testament of said John Mendenhall dec’d and make and file the following allegation against the validity or proof of said supposed will here insert therein. And it appearing to the Court that said plaintiffs are all the Children or their decendants of said John Mendenhall deced, and the persons interested in the Estate which was of said John Mendenhall decd and by agreement said Joseph C Eggleston is appointed Guardian ad litem of said Martha E Mendenhall who is a minor under the age of 21 years, and the Court now here proceed to hear the proofs and allegations of said parties without the intervention of a Jury which is waved. And the Court after hearing the testimony and due deliberation had thereon, do find and adjudge that said writing produced is not the last will and testament of siad John Mendenhall decd and do therefore refuse to admit the same to Probate as such, and from said Judgment said Martha B Mendenhall prayes an appeal to the Switzerland Circuit Court which is granted, by her entering into Bond in the sum of Fifty dollars with security to be approved by the Clerk within the time prescribed by law, conditioned as the law directs.

1835 Estate of John Alfred – Switzerland County, Indiana

The following is a transcription from:
“Indiana, Wills and Probate Records, 1798-1999,” Ancestry.com (http://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=9045 : accessed 7 July 2017); Switzerland > Probate Order Book, Vol 1, 1814-1824, 1831-1837 and 1837-1841 > image 289, 1831-1837, page 262, Estate of John Alfred.

1835 Estate of John Alfred

February 1835 Term

Estate of John Alfred, deceased.}
Nancy Alfred, Admrx.}

The Court being fulling advised and informed that said Nancy Alfred who was heretofore appointed to Administer the Estate of John Alfred Decd, is likely to prove insolvent; She having failed to render a full and just account of the Estate entrusted to her, and being now confined to bed having recently ben [sic] delivered of a bastard Child. Therfore [sic] it is ordered and decreed by the court now here, that the Letters of Admn. heretofore granted to the said Nancy be and the same is hereby revoked. And it is further ordered that Letters of Administration de bonis non be granted unto Enos Littlefield of said County on his entering into bond in the sum of five hundred Dollars with James W Cole his security.

1833 Switzerland County, Indiana Probate Court Rules

The following is a transcription of the 1833 probate court rules from Switzerland County, Indiana
“Indiana, Wills and Probate Records, 1798-1999,” Ancestry.com (http://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=9045 : accessed 26 June 2017); Switzerland > Probate Order Book, Vol 1, 1814-1824, 1831-1837 and 1837-1841 > image 221, 1831-1837, p. 127.

May Term 1833

The Court now adopts the following rules for the government of this Court which is ordered to be spread on the words, to wit,

  1. All attorneys are to be sworn faithfully and impartially to perform and discharge the duties of an attorney of this Court &c.
  2. At the meeting of the Court on Each day, all the officers &c. will be expected to be present to attend to their several duties when called on, and it shall be the duty of the sheriff on each meeting of the court to call all the attornies [sic] attending the same in an audible voice
  3. The minutes of the preceding day must be read every morning by the Clerk before any business are taken up, the attorneys concerned, are requisted [sic] to attend and see that the enteries [sic] are correctly made by the Clerk.
  4. Motions must be made as soon as the minutes are read and signed on each day of the term, and onley [sic] one attorney will be allowed to argue motions on each side, unless the Court, under peculiar Circumstances should wish to hear Others.
  5. In all cases the attorney holding the affirmation shall have the opening and closing of the question.
  6. The Clerk will Docket litigated cases first in order, and each day of the term not incompatable [sic] with the laws and attornies [sic] in making motions will be heard in order according to their seniority.
  7. The Causes on the docket will be called and tried in the order in which they stand, unless for good cause shewn & case may be passed over or Continued by Consent.
  8. In Chancery cases councel will furnish the Court with epitome of each case the points and brief of the authorities they rely on, with references to evidence in support of the several points material to be examined, when required, and will in all cases, write the decrees and submitt [sic] them to the Court for approval or correction.
  9. When Counsel is addressing the Court or a Jury the opposing Counsel must be silent, In addressing the court the attorney will rise to his feet in his place and when he has closed his address he will immediatly [sic] resume his seat, and remain silent untill [sic] his oponent [sic] has closed his remarks, and while one attorney is speaking the others must keep their seates [sic].
  10. While one attorney is examining a witness the opposing counsel will not be allowed to interrupt him by cross examining the witness, but will wait untill [sic] he is told that the examination of the witness in Chief is ended.
  11. On the first day of each term, the Court will meet at eleven of the clock on each suceeding [sic] day at nine of the Clock.

1832 Guardianship of William and Mary Ann Evertt

The guardianship below reminds us of two things when looking at probate records.

  1. Children did not have to be orphans for a guardian to be appointed for them.
  2. Probate records can tell us important details about the lives of our ancestors.

“Indiana, Wills and Probate Records, 1798-1999,” Ancestry.com (http://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=9045 : accessed 23 Jun 2017); Switzerland > Probate Order Book, Vol 1, 1814-1824, 1831-1837 and 1837-1847 > image 202; 1831-1837, p. 88.

November 1832 Term of the Switzerland County, Indiana Circuit Court

Now here comes William Evertt and makes report to this Court that he will be seventeen years of age on the 27th day of May 1833. That his father William Evertt left this county not to return as he believes leaving the said William entirely destitute of the means of support, and to the mercy of the world &c and prays the Court to appoint James Froman guardian of his person and Estate until he shall arrive at the age of 21 years on said Fromans giving bond according to law Whereupon the said James Froman is by the Court appointed guardian of the person & Estate of the said William Evertt according to the prair [prayer] of the petitioner on his entering into bond with security to be approved by the Clerk in the Sum of Fifty dollars conditioned as the law directs within fifteen days after the rising of this Court.

Now here Comes David Fallis and files his petition praying to be appointed guardian of the person and estate of Mary Ann Evertt until she shall arrive at full age she being abandoned by her parents and left without means of support. She will be fourteen years of age shortly. Thereupon the said Mary Ann comes and consents to said Appointment. And the Court now appoints the said David Fallis guardian of the said Mary Ann until she arrives at the age of eighteen years according to this prayer Then he entering into bond in the sum of fifty Dollars with Security to be approved by the Clerk of this Court within fifteen days after the rising of this Court conditioned as the law directs.

Guardianship of Pomp – 1831

From the May 1831 Term of the Switzerland County, Indiana Probate Court.

The following is a transcription from:
“Indiana, Wills and Probate Records, 1798-1999,” Ancestry.com (http://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=9045 : accessed 19 June 2017); Switzerland > Probate Order Book, Vol 1, 1814-1824, 1831-1837 and 1837-1841 > image 161, 1831-1837, p. 7.

Comes Thomas Armstrong and prays that Charles Henderson of Switzerland County be and he is hereby appointed Guardian of the Person and property or estate of Pomp a boy of color aged about seventeen years, who was brought to Vevay by a certain Jacob R Evertson late of Vevay, said Pomp is said to be a native of the state of New York. On said Charles Henderson entering into bond and security as the law directs with Thomas Armstrong his security in the sum of one hundred dollars within ten days after rising of this court.

Find more Switzerland County Probate Records.

1814 Divorce of Nancy and Benjamin Whitford

Early Indiana divorces may have been granted by the Indiana General Assembly and recorded as private laws. The divorce of Nancy and Benjamin Whitford of Dearborn County, Indiana in 1814 is one example. Due to the Dearborn County Courthouse fire in March 1826 that destroyed all of the county’s records, this marriage and divorce are preserved within the state’s records. Discover more laws in the Historic Indiana Law Project.

Ewbank, Louis B. and Dorothy L. Riker, editors. The Laws of Indiana Territory, 1809-1816. Indianapols : Indiana Historical Bureau, 1934.

Fifth General Assembly of the State of Indiana, First Session, 1814.

Page 727

AN ACT for the relief of Nancy Whitford.

Whereas it has been represented to this Legislature, That  Nancy Whitford, of Dearborn County, in this Territory, was formerly married to one Benjamin Whitford, who not only refused to provide food and apparel for her, but likewise deserted her—And whereas it has likewise been represented that the said  Nancy Whitford, but now Nancy Ives, being herself deserted by her husband Benjamin Whitford, and being in a forlorn and distressed situation, and being informed of the said Benjamin Whitford’s having contracted a second marriage, she was induced to contract on her part a marriage, with one Nehemiah Ives, and as some doubts have arisen with respect to the legality of her marriage with the said Nehemiah Ives, Therefore

Be it enacted by the Legislative Council & House of Representatives, and it is hereby enacted by the authority of the same, That the said Nancy shall from the said Benjamin be and she is hereby divorced from the bands of matrimony contracted between them; and the marriage which  was contracted by the said  Nancy with the said  Nehemiah is hereby legalized to all intents and purposes, and shall be so taken & esteemed, as well within as without all courts of Judicature, & Tribunals whatsoever—any law, usage or custom to the contrary hereof notwithstanding.

Approved 2d September 1814

Mother-in-Law as Administratrix

John D. Colt or Coult, of Switzerland County, Indiana, died in 1829. Since he did not leave a will, his widow, Frances Colt, had the right to administer his estate. Frances renounced the administration and requested that her mother, Ann Hacket be appointed administrator. Ann was granted the letters of administration and filed her bond on 2 November 1829 for $400 with John Gibbons as her securities.

 

At the estate sale on 6 February 1830, Ann was the only purchaser listed.

“Indiana, Wills and Probate Records, 1798-1999,” digital images, Ancestry.com (http://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=9045 : accessed 13 June 2017); Switzerland > Probate Record Vol A, 1827-1834 > image 184, p. 347, Estate of John D. Colt.

Historic Indiana Law Project

Laws help us understand what our ancestors could do legally and the consequences of their illegal activities. Laws give us additional details about our ancestors lives. We may find that our ancestor served on a jury. The laws of the time tell us how old a person had to be , if they had to own land, or if they could be female to serve on a jury. Laws also tell us reasons why a person could be excused from jury duty.

Because laws are so important to genealogy, I’ve added a new project to my Indiana’s Gore website. The Historic Indiana Law Project allows you to find digital copies of published Indiana laws for each session of the General Assembly. Currently the project includes links through 1852 (if available). Additional years will be added over time.

The project also includes lists of the laws to aid in finding amendments and repeals to previous laws.

In the future, links will be also be added for the Journals of the Indiana House of Representatives and Senate. These journals provide the minutes of each session and may include additional details about laws that were passed as well as bills that failed.

Please let me know if you find any additional digitized Indiana laws books so I can add them to the project or if you have any comments.

Lectures at FGS 2017

The 2017 Federation of Genealogical Societies Conference is August 30 to September 2 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The conference is a great way to take you genealogy skills to the next level with a wide variety of topics and speakers.

I will be giving 2 lectures on “Society Day” on August 30:

  • 11:00 AM – Creating Quality Databases for Your Society Website – Discover ideas for online databases for your society’s members and tips and tricks for creating them.
  • 3:30 PM – Creating a County Record Guide – Put your society’s knowledge into a printed or online guide to help members and nonmembers find records in your area.

These lectures are based on the tips and tricks that I have learned while building my Indiana’s Gore website. That site provides research guides for the region of southeastern Indiana known as the “Gore” and databases for records for Dearborn, Ohio, and Switzerland Counties in Indiana.

Register by July 1st to save $40.