Lately I’ve been starting to dig into other kinds of records instead of just census, immigration, or birth/marriage/death records. Our ancestors left a lot more records behind than we think, such as land records, probate records/wills, church records, voter registration cards, draft cards, etc.
Last week I found the will of my paternal great-great-great grandfather Adam Ooms, dated September 7, 1898. This is a very interesting document and I’ve tried to blow up a part of it and not be too obnoxious with it so you can see it better. At this point in his life, Adam would have been 91 years old, his wife had died two years before, so he probably figured it was time to set things down on paper for what he wanted done with his estate after his passing.
The first item he bequeathed was $100.00 to his housekeeper, and the bed and bedding she used.
I looked it up and $100 in 1898 would be equivalent to $3,109.82 today. Not too shabby.
The second item he bequeathed was his old Holland family Bible to his grandson, Adam Ooms, described as “with brass corners and hooks”. This is really interesting because I’ve never heard of this Bible, nor has my father, and I would sure love to find out where it went to see if there are any family records written in it. However, at this point it would be well over 120 years old and who knows that it hasn’t fallen completely apart. In fact, if it’s from the time he was in Holland and he emigrated in 1849, that would actually make it 171 years old.
The rest of the document pretty much outlines how he wanted the rest of his estate to be bequeathed to his grandchildren. All of his children by this point had already passed away, so this makes sense.
Finally, Adam assigned Herman Teninga and his grandson, Adam Ooms, as executors.
Hope you enjoyed my blog post and come back for more!