Who were they?
Saturday, December 6, 1997
Here are a few questions and some information concerning orphans and Orphan Accounts.
Perhaps some ghotes member or a visitor to this site who is knowledgeable in, or just curious about, orphans and their Accounts in the 18th century would be willing to write an essay on this topic. (Please?)
Meanwhile, here are some comments to start...
FROM HENRY MARTIN:
I'm a bit confused about the orphans accounts and need one of the more knowledgeable Goats to help straighten me out. (that's a big job I know)
Circa 1800, who was considered an orphan? Did it only require the death of one parent or both to be put on the orphans list? Was the size of their inheritance a factor?
I have found the Orphans Accounts to be very helpful in identifying parents, children, approximate death dates, and etc. and have assumed that both parents were deceased in order for the child(ren) to be so listed. However, recent findings have led me to question that assumption and there may be several incorrectly estimated death dates in my files. Can someone help me with this?
FROM WILL BROWN:
My understanding of orphans were that they were fatherless and could be both
fatherless and motherless as well. Mothers would often remarry soon after
they were widowed and since all property of the widow's now belonged to the
new husband, it was not prudent to have the step father in charge of the
orphan's estate, although this was sometimes done. They would not have
orphan's accounts unless they had an estate, athough they probably would be
called an orphan, estate or no estate. In lack of an estate, the orphan would
often be bound out.
FROM: JUDY MARSHALL STELL
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