Monday, August 1, 2016

Amanuensis Monday - 1895 Will of Elling Erickson Natvig (1820-1896) of Cottage Grove, Wisconsin

Genea-blogger John Newmark (who writes the excellent  TransylvanianDutch blog) started a Monday blog theme years ago called "Amanuensis Monday."  John offers this definition for "amanuensis:" 

"A person employed to write what another dictates or to copy what has been written by another."

The subject today is the will of Elling Erickson Natvig (1820-1896) of Cottage Grove, Dane County, Wisconsin:

[Note:  There is some overlap between these three images]

The transcription of this will is (transcribed line by line):

[image 1091]

In the name of God, Amen. I the under-
signed Elling Erickson Natvig, of the
town of cottage Grove in the County of Dane
and State of Wisconsin, being of sound
mind and memory and mindful of
the uncertainties of human life do
here by make publish and declare
this my last will and testament in
manner following to wit:

1st After the payment of my just and lawful
debts, funeral expenses and expense of last
illness I give devise and bequeath to
my beloved wife Anna Natvig the
use and enjoyment of all property of
which I shall die seized be it personal
or real estate as long as she shall live
and survive me.

2nd I give devise and bequeath of the
remainder of my estate which shall re-
main after the death of my said wife
unto my daughter Anna Leland,
wife of T.S. Leland of London Dane
County, Wisconsin the sum of
Three Hundred Dollars ($300$).

3rd I give devise and bequeath further
out of such remainder unto my
Britha Johnson, wife of Thomas Johnson
of Valton Sauk County Wisconsin

[image 1092]

the sum of One Hundred Dollars

4th I further give, devise and bequeath
out of such said remainder unto
my daughter Eli Teigen, widow after
Lars Teigen, of Sogndals Praxtigjeld
Bergens Stoft Norway Europe the
sum of One Hundred Dollars

5th I further give, devise and bequeath
out of such aforesaid remainder
unto my grandchildren Oscar,
Adolph, Gyda and Alexander children
of my deceased daughter Ragnhilda in
her life time wife of T.O. Hegg now of
Madison Dane County Wisconsin
the sum of One Hundred Dollars
($100$) to be divided among them my said
grandchildren equally share and share

[image 1093]

6th It is my will and desire that if my
estate shall not amount after the payment
of my said debts and after the uses
thereof by my said wife to a sum equal
to the sum total of all of said bequests
then each of my said devises shall
take thereof in same proportion as
his or her bequest shall bear to the
whole amount so remaining and
that if my estate shall exceed the same
total of said bequests then each shall
take of such excess a sum equal in
Proportion to the amount of his or her be-
quest to the whole amount of said bequests

7th I appoint and nominate Thomas
Johnson of Sauk County Wisconsin
and T.S. Leland of London Dane
County Wisconsin executors of this
my last will and testament.
I hereby revoke and annul all
former wills by me maid.
In witness where of I have hereunto
set my hand and seal this 2nd
day of September AD 1895 in presence
of the witnesses here subscribing.
                    Elling Erickson X Natvig {seal}
The above instrument of 3 pages legal cab
was on the 2nd day of September 1895 signed, sealed
published and declared by Elling Erickson Natvig
to be his last will and testament in presence of us who at his request
and in his presence and in the presence of each other have
signed our names hereto as attending witnesses
William Nelson of Deerfield Dane Co., Wis.
Isabel Dykesten of Deerfield Dane Co., Wis.
Bertha Anderson of Deerfield Dane Co., Wis.

The source citation for this will is:

Dane County, Wisconsin, Dane County Probate Records, "Dane County Probate Records, Box 159 - 160," Box 160, images 1076-1108 of 1335, Estate of Elling Erickson Natvig, images 1091-1093, will of Elling Erickson Natvig, 1895; in "Wisconsin, Wills and Probates, 1800-1987," digital images, ( accessed 10 September 2015).

This is a very simple will, bequeathing all property to his wife, Anna, until her death; bequeathing $300 to his daughter Anna Leland (wife of T.S. Leland) of London, Wisconsin; $100 to daughter Britha Johnson (wife of Thomas Johnson) of Sauk County, Wisconsin; $100 to his daughter Eli Teigen (wife of Lars Teigen) in Sogndal in Norway; and $100 to the four children of Ragnhilda Hegg (wife of T.O. Hegg) - Oscar, Adolph, Gyda and Alexander of Madison, Wisconsin.  After his wife Anna dies, the remainder of the estate goes to his daughter, Anna Leland.

Two of his sons-in-law, T.S. Leland and Thomas Johnson, were named executors, but Thomas Johnson wrote a letter refusing the role - the letter is in the probate papers.

Elling Eriksen was born 12 October 1820 in Eskestrand, Sogndal, Sogn og Fjordane, Norway, and married Anna Elligsdatter (1812-1901) on 19 November 1845 in Sogndal.  They had four children, all born in Ovretun, Sogndal, Sogn og Fjordane, Norway:

*  Christina Ellingsdatter (1846-????)
*  Solfest Ellingsen (1847-????)
*  Erik Ellingsen (1850-????)
*  Anna Ellingsdatter (1853-1911)

Only one of those four children are named in the will - the youngest daughter, Anna Leland.  There is evidence that all four children were living in 1880, and that at least two of the other children - Christina and Solfest - were living in 1900.

When the law was passed that Scandinavian families had to pick a surname and pass that surname, rather than a patronymic name, on to their children, Elling Eriksen apparently chose the surname Natvig, which is a farm name, perhaps located in Sogndal.  This usually occurred during the 1870s in the United States.

Who are the other three daughters named in the will by Elling Erickson Natvig?  That is the mystery I will try to unravel in the next week or so here on Genea-Musings.  

Elling Eriksen Natvig and his wife, Anna Ellingsdatter Natvig, are my wife's second great-grandparents.  Persons who have one or both of these persons in their ancestry would be Linda's 3rd cousins (if in the same generation) - close enough for DNA matches to appear if the cousins have tested their autosomal DNA.


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1 comment:

Linda Stufflebean said...

Scandinavian records are excellent. Have you jumped into Norwegian records yet? I have no one from Norway that I know of, but have learned quite a bit about navigating Danish and Swedish records. I do pretty well reading them even though I don't speak either language. Most of them, until you get back to 1800 and earlier, were just columns of data, organized by type of vital record. Earlier church books, though, have items in chronological order, regardless of type of record.