Court records are seriously confusing. Worded to be almost purposefully confusing. Add on some illegible cursive writing copied from microfiche, and you have a huge mess and a headache in the making. In this case, I am not sure I will get much further without making the effort to do some cluster research. I also need more information on what was going on locally at the time in order to situate my people.
If you read the Family Drama Part 1 post, then you know I uncovered a series of court documents related to the Wainscott family. This isn’t a family that I researched much yet and I don’t have much information. If the research I have so far is correct then William C. Wainscott is my 4th GGF. I have question marks around Richard’s name since I am not sure that he is William’s father. I use this short-hand to remind myself of what I need to verify as well as alert people who may see my tree that I am not claiming the information as the gospel.
A few other things to point out on the family tree.
- Sarah Hamlin was William’s second wife and the one from which I descend. His first wife was Martha Wimberly who died in 1845 (I suspect in childbirth, but this not confirmed.) around the time that many of these court proceedings were taking place.
- I believe the John Wimberly listed in the land deal in Document 2 is probably Martha’s father or brother.
- Alexander Scarborough (another 4 GGF) was called as a witness in one of the proceedings which means there was a large extended family group involved in this incident.
- Still unanswered questions on who Mary/Polly was. Hoping that as I fill in other parts of the tree these relationships will begin to make sense.
Post 1 contained court records from 1845. I was able to request earlier records from the Henry County Archive and Genealogy Library (seriously need to take a week away from work and camp out here). These new documents expand the world a little but don’t answer all my questions. Eventually it will all come together into a less disjointed narrative.
1841 Holland, George H. vs Richard Wainscott
- The Wainscott court documents begin in 1841 with Richard Wainscott being ordered by the court to pay George Holland $112.72 for debt and damages. No record of how the debt was incurred or what the damages were. It looks as though the sheriff has permission to take ‘goods and chattels, lands and tenements’ to meet this debt.
- Who was George Holland?
1843 State vs Wainscott, Richard & William C. Wainscott: Victim, Robert G. Tucker
- I don’t think these records are labeled correctly as they are related to a land deal and not the riot/affray case.
- Who was Robert Tucker?
- Stack of papers with different dates listed. The first set of documents is for a loan and a land deal. An indenture was made July 30, 1842 between William Wainscott and John Wimberly.
- More deciphering of cursive writing—The language says Wainscott was “desirous of obtaining an accommodation in security from John Wimberly for the sum of $56.65 and to enable him to do so the said John Wimberly have stood my father Richard Wainscott security for the aforesaid sum payable to James Okly (?) dated about this the 14 day of July 1842 and payable 18 months after date and the said William Wainscott being desirous to secure the said John Wimberly against all Responsibility as security of the note aforesaid.”
- If my transcription is correct then I just found proof that Richard was William’s father. Yay!
- So is he borrowing money to pay off someone else? Ugh. Old law terms! Cursive! I am not sure.
- The document then continues as a land deal: “…William Wainscott as will for the consideration of having his said security from the payout of the not aforesaid as the sum of one dollar to him in hand paid by the said John Wimberly at and before the dealings and xxx xxx is duly acknowledge hath granted bargained(?) sold and transferred unto the said Joh Wimberly certain property one tract of sculpted(?) land in xxx transferred from said xxx to me one grey mare two two year old xxx thirty head of young hogs provided monthly(?) that if the said William Wainscott shall will and truly pay or cause to be paid unto the said James Okly…”
- The last page is the deed recording the land sale.
1845 State vs Tucker, Robert G, Richard Wainscott, William C. Wainscott & Joseph Hamlin
- Grand jury document that is cut off before the sentence is listed. There is a second sheet that says that Richard Wainscott, William Wainscott, and Joseph Hamlin were directed to have their badges taken from them. Badges?
- Another document stating that Richard Tucker appeared before the State with $250 to file his charges against the three men.
- A summons document showing that my other 4th GGF was being called as a witness against the 3 men.
- Lastly, what may be a bonds document. Saying the 3 men are each indebted to the state in the sum of $100 each and to a man names Robert Owen(?) but this would be void if they appeared in front of the court on the appointed date to answer for the riot/affray charges.
If you’ve read this far, then you know I still have much work to do to figure out what happened and how all these people were connected. It’s exciting to be back into the research, but still so much to do. Next step is to come up with a research plan that is a little more organized and to fill in the blanks in my tree. Filling out the tree with the missing people will help me to find some of the missing connections. Newspaper articles? Many more places I haven’t looked yet. More to come!
Let me know if you are researching anything similar or have 1840s legal knowledge.