Worldly Possessions…

Josiah Earp, a soldier of the American Revolution, moved from Maryland to North Carolina to Kentucky. He died in Pulaski County, KY November 25, 1844 at the age of 83.

The final statement from his pension file is a report from the Executor of his estate, George Randal, stating that Josiah died and left no widow & was survived by the following children: Singleton Earp, Allin Earp, Eleanor Randal & Jemima Randal. (The Randal name is spelled Randolph in some records)

The surviving children listed in the statement are Singleton Earp (1802-1886), my GGGG Grandfather; “Allin” or James Allen (1796-1862), who moved to Arkansas; Eleanor (1800-1860), the wife of George Randal; and Jemima (1786-1853), wife of James Randal. Other sources I found through the years also listed a daughter, Drucilla (1784-1878) wife of Thomas Clark, Phillip Hawker (1797-1860) and Anna (1804-before 1835) wife of John Herrin. I’m not sure if all of the dates are correct for these children. However, it is unclear why Phillip H. & Drucilla were not listed as survivors of Josiah in the statement from George Randal.

As far as I know, Josiah did not have a will, but there was a record of his estate filed with the court by George Randolph. It is thought that Josiah did not own land, so his estate was simply his worldly possessions.

First, George submitted an inventory & assessment of the estate:

JosiahEarpInventory

At the time of his death, Josiah owned 1 sorrel mare, 6 pewter plates & 1 dish, 1 table, 2 bottles, 1 tea canister, 1 chest, 1 coffee mill, 1 pot, 1 oven & lid, 1 pair of pot hooks, 4 chairs, 1 trunk & 1 smoothing iron. The value of the estate was $39.62 1/2.

So then there was the “estate sale.” And on February 17, 1845, George Randolph once again filed a statement with the court:

JosiahEarpSale1JosiahEarpSale2

So Josiah Earp’s personal property sold for a total of $39.31 1/4.

Several of the names on the list of buyers are familiar—Josiah’s son, Singleton Earp, and sons-in-law Thomas Clark, James Randolph and George Randolph. Balis Randolph was the son of George & Eleanor. William Randolph was the son of James & Jemima.

Looking at the inventory assessment and the sale records I noticed that some items were valued with a half cent. I didn’t know the US had half cents. Turns out the 1/2 cent coin was minted from 1793 to 1857.

Regardless, Josiah Earp left only a few items as his worldly possessions & these items ended up in the hands of family members. I wonder if any have survived in the family through the generations.

Incidentally, with inflation, Josiah’s worldly possessions would be worth about $1,202 today.

© MJM 2017

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