Thursday, May 8, 2014

The Intestate Estate Record of John Froman - Part 3:
Sale of Real Estate, Accounts, Inventory of Children

This is the last installment of posts specifically about my great-great-grandfather John Froman's Mercer County, Pennsylvania, Orphan's Court file.  You can read Part One:  Administrator's Bond and Inventory and Part Two:  Petition, Exhibits 'A' and 'B', Petitions, Decree if you'd like to read about the file in sequence. My thoughts, comments, and questions are at the end of the post.

On December 16, 1872, Jacob Seyler, administrator of the estate of John Froman, petitioned and received authorization to sell John's two properties:  three (or part of three) acres in West Salem Township, Mercer County; and about 88 acres (100 minus the 12 retained by his widow) in Beaver Township, Crawford County.

Sale of the Real Estate of John Froman
On February 20, 1873, Jacob Seyler reported his actions to the court.  He had given due public notice of the sale as requested by the court and on February 13, 1873, he sold the property by auction.  The record reads,
he did on the 13th day of Feby 1873 upon the premises expose the property herein described as being the undivided half of three acres to public out cry & sold the same to S. W. Mannheimer for the sum of Seventy five dols [sic] he being its highest & that the best price bidder therefor [sic] But that in offering it he found it would not sell separately & therefore the interest of the Estate of John Froman was sold with this by Mary E. Sailer Adm the whole bringing 150 Doles [sic] and the sale was by that means made for a better price than if sold separately....

Account of Jacob Seylor Administrator of Estate of John Froman
The next document, dated March 22, 1876 and June 21, 1876, lists credits out of the assets of the estate, listed by name of payer and credits in dollars and cents.
H. D. Cossitt   medical bill     11.00
Leninger Bros                        46.98
Geo Reznor                             4.00
E L Rose                                10.50
J C Brown                               4.00
C M Wood                                6.00
A J McQuiston                         1.00
D Lininger [?]                         24.64
Ad McQuiston                          5.00
H. Watson                               2.50
M Lech [?]                               7. 68
M. Maxwell                          212.00
Jesse Smith                             5.75
H. Froman                             40.00
Jos Anple [?]                           3.00
Erwin Fell                               5.10
W Maxwell                            28.00
Jacob Seyler                          10.00
Packard & Co                          2.95
Caspar Froman                      75.00
S W Mannheimer                  118.72
Lininger & Duncan                   3.68
Aaron Fell                               7.00
J Morford                                9.50
Casper Froman                      75.00
N Morford                                8.35
E. L Rose                                 5.20

On the same date (March 22, 1876/June 21, 1876), there is this:
The accountant [Jacob Seyler] charge himself as follows:
Account of Sale of Real Estate
in Crawford Co. to C Cashbaum [illegible]                    1300.00
Interest received on Same                                              66.00
Account of Jacob D. Seylor
And again the account statement on June 22 and August 17, 1876:
          Total assets                                                             $1366.00
          Total Credits                                                            $1247.20
          Balance due.            Estate                                       $  118.80

Inventory of Amounts Paid to Children
The final document in the file is dated August 29, 1876 and is a list of John's children along with their birth dates, when they will be of age, and when they were paid (with the amount noted underneath).  At the top is the writing "Inv. M. Froman Est.  Each paid $20.00."  And at the end, "Amt. Aug 29 1876   $118.00.  Divided into 7 shares.  Ono.)

born 18 Jany 63
of age 18 Jany 84
paid 1 Jun 85  -  1.56

born 20 Oct 64
of age 20 Oct 85
paid 20 Oct 85  -  3.00

born 6 Jany 66
of age 5 Jany 87
paid 19 May 87  -  2.66

born 20 Aug 67
of age 20 Aug 88
paid 6 Jun 92  -  owe .91

born 15 Nov 68
of age 15 Nov 89
paid 6 Jun 92  -  .37

born 18 Oct 70
of age 28 Oct 91
paid 6 Jun 92  -  2.32

born 29 Jany 72
of age 29 Jany 93
paid 6 Jun 92  -  3.00

Notes, Thoughts, Questions
  • I don't understand what happened at the sale of John's acreage in West Salem Township.  It seems that half of the three acres went up for sale ("one undivided half deed no improvements" mentioned in Part 2).  If S. W. Mannheimer had already bid on and bought the property, who found that it would not sell separately?  Who owned the other part?  Who was Mary E. Sailer, whose estate did she administer, and how did she get involved in this sale?  Is Sailer another spelling variation of Saylor and could she be a family member?
  • The only mention of the sale of John's property in Crawford County is "Account of Sale of Real Estate in Crawford Co. to C Cashbaum [illegible]  - 1300.00" with interest of $66.00.  (See above.)   Without knowing the date of the sale it would be difficult, but not impossible, to try to find a newspaper announcement (if I don't mind reading through 2 months' worth of newspapers).
  • The term "credit" initially confused me.  My first thought was that it was money due to John, to be given to him at a later date.  Now I understand that it was goods or services that John had purchased/received on credit for which he owed.  In another word, debts.  How did John come to be in the situation of owing so much money and what goods or services did he purchase?  
  • What happened to the administrator's bond mentioned in Part 1?  Did the court retain it or did Jacob Seyler and S. W. Mannheimer get it back?  What happened to the $1600 "bond with sureties" that he was required to give the court (mentioned in Part 2)?  Was that returned to Jacob Seyler?
  • I don't understand the amounts of money for each children.  Had they already received some money?  Was this interest?  Had they borrowed on the money allotted to them?  Next to Tress's name is "owe."  Is the amount owed to her or does she owe that amount back to the court?
  • It is good to finally get a list of all of John and Catherine's children.  Family records did not include Adam and did not have birthdays for all the children.  Not surprisingly, the birthdays may or may not be accurate compared to family records and some census records and obituaries.

I know some of my questions are completely unanswerable but if any of you readers can offer insights into this court file I would be grateful to hear them.  Thanks for following through with this series of posts.

Other posts on this topic:
Of Orphans and Widows
Petition for Guardianship for Theressa Froman
The Intestate Estate Record of John Froman - Part 1:  Administrator's Bond and Inventory
The Intestate Estate Record of John Froman - Part 2:  Petition, Exhibits 'A' and 'B', Petitions, Decree



  1. I thought about you today when I was in a session on probate records at the NGS Conference in Richmond. This series is exactly what the presenter discussed.

  2. Now I wish I'd been there to hear it, Wendy. Who presented and has he/she written a book on the topic? What have I missed in going through this file? Any helpful tips for me?


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