Monday, March 7, 2011

Amanuensis Monday: George Schwalls' Petition

"Georgia                |    To the Hon. Ordinary of
Johnson County   |      Said County

The petition of George Scholls shares that he is the father of Lincella, George, Lewis Mary Charles and Martha Schwalls who are all minors and children of your petitioner by Linacolia Schwalls his former wife your petitioner being the natural guardian of his said children further shows that there will be coming to each of his said children from their mothers estate a small sum of money or land to the value of Thirty Dollars each.  Therefore your petitioner prays your honor a grant unto him letters of Guardianship of the property of his said minor children and your petitioner will ever pray and ___.
                                                    George Schwalls

Ordinarys Court, September Five 1887...
Upon hearing the above petition of George Schwalls as natural guardian of Lincealia, George Lewis Mary Charles and Martha Schwalls minor children of your petitioner it is hereby ordered by the Court that letters of Guardianship do issue and be granted to the said George Schwalls for his Six minor children before mentioned in terms of the law by his entering into bond of six hundred dollars as required by law.

This Sept 5th 1887..                                                                    J M Hightower

I spent quite awhile trying to transcribe this document.  The handwriting is horrible.  However, by studying it carefully, I ended up figuring out all words except one. 

George Schwalls was one of my maternal great-grandfathers.  His first wife, Lincelia Claxton Schwalls, passed away in 1882.  I have no idea why he waited five years after her death to file this petition.  George migrated to this country from Germany or Bavaria in the 1850's, and it is interesting to me how he hard he tried to follow the laws and customs of his new country.  I have found his name in the Johnson County court records many more times than the Tapleys, who at this time had been in the country 200 years or more. 

I also think this is a good example of how the correct spelling of names was not so important back then.

"An Amanuensis is a person employed to write what another dictates or to copy what has been written by another. Amanuensis Monday is a daily blogging theme which encourages the family historian to transcribe family letters, journals, audiotapes, and other historical artifacts. Not only do the documents contain genealogical information, the words breathe life into kin - some we never met - others we see a time in their life before we knew them."

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