Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Tombstone Tuesday: Nancy Jane (Chase) Wolfe

I've recently started spending more time reading other people's genealogy blogs, and I've noticed some memes I'd like to use for inspiration. One of these is "Tombstone Tuesday". Since I have uploaded almost 4100 photos (so far) to Find a Grave, I have plenty of content for sharing photos of tombstones!

For my first entry, here's the grave of my g-g-g-grandmother, Nancy Jane (Chase) Wolfe. I took this photo in July of 2005 while I was on vacation in Southwestern Pennsylvania where my dad's family lived for generations, looking for family graves. At the time, I had barely learned Nancy's name and didn't have a clue where to look for her and her husband's graves.

On our way to see the graves of my McDaid relatives who are buried at West Finley Cemetery in Washington County, we stopped at Windy Gap Cemetery which was on the way. I had read a partial transcript that showed that the sister of my g-g-grandfather, Samuel McDaid, whose name was Mary Jane, had been buried there in 1852, so I wanted to see if there was a marker. As I walked thru the gate, I saw the stone you see here. It reads:
Nancy.Wife ofLUTHER WOLFEDIEDJuly 30, 1873Aged 63 years11 Mos & 16 ds.

You can't imagine how excited I was. In fact, hers was the very first grave I entered on F-a-G. It turns out it was more than serendipitous that I found her grave then. In August of this year, I was able to visit again, and the stone had degraded so much that I'm not sure I would have recognized the name on the stone. Luckily on that day in 2005, the stone was in good enough condition and the light fell just right on the face for me to read the inscription!

I don't know a lot about Nancy beyond the basics. She was the daughter of Barnabas and Elizabeth (Carroll) Chase, born August 14, 1809, and died July 30, 1873. She married Luther Wolfe, and they had 7 children, including my g-g-grandmother, Mary Elizabeth (Wolfe) McDaid. You can see Nancy Wolfe's info on Rootsweb WorldConnect HERE. Something I found very interesting about her is the fact that she's the only female ancestor I've found so far who had a will of her own. I wish I knew more about her. Here's a transcript:

Will of Nancy Wolf

(Washington County, PA, Willbook #10, page 161)

Know all men by these presents that I Nancy Wolf of West Finley Township in the County of Washington and state Pennsylvania widow being in ill health but of sound and disposing mind and memory do make and publish this my last will and testament hereby revoking all former wills by me at any time heretofore made.

And as to my worldly Estate, and all My property personal or mixed of which I shall die siezed and possessed or to which I shall be entitled at the time of my decease I devise bequeath and dispose. There of inasmuch following to wit. First my will is that all my just debts and funeral expenses shall by my Executor hereinafter named be paid out of my Estate as soon after my decease as shall by him be found convenient-- I give and bequeath to my daughter Sarah A. Potter one of my best milk cows her choice, also my bay mare, and the one half of my bed clothes and bedding; The other half of my bed clothes and beding I give to the children of my deceased daughter Jane Milligan. I will and bequeath to my soninlaw Samuel McDaid one hundred dollars; My will is that all the rest of myproperty be sold by my Executor and after the payment of all legal exhenses of the settlement of my estate that the ballance of the money be divided between my daughter Sarah A. Potter and the children of my deceased daughter Jane Milligan; the one half to my daughter Sarah A. Potter, the other to the children of Jane Milligan deceased-- My son Christopher C. Wolf and my daughter Elisabeth McDaid have received all that I intend them to have.

And Lastly I do nominate and appoint J. W. Milligan to be the Executor of this my last will and testament subscribed my name and affixed my seal this fifth day of November in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and seventy two.

signed sealed published and declared by Nancy Wolf as and for her last will and testament in the presences of us, who at her request and in her presence the presence of each other have subscribed our names as witnesses hereto

William S. Irey
Arthur Sprowl

Commonwealth of Penna.
County of Washington s.s.

Be it Remembered that upon This 2d day of Aug. 1873 before me A.O. Day Register for the Probate of wills and granting Letters of administration within and for said county came William S. Irey & Arthur sprowls the subscribing witnesses to the forgoing attached will of Nancy Wolf deceased who after being duly qualified according to law depose and say, That They were present at the execution of said will, saw the testatrix sign the same heard her publish it as and for her last will and testament, that they at her request in her presence and in the presence of each other subscribed their names ____ as witnesses, William S. Irey Arthur Sprowls sworn and subscribed before A.O. Day Register
And were Aug 2, 1873 As being adjudged that the said will has been duly heard Letters are issued to J. W. Milligan who was duly qualified. A.O. Day Regr.

1 comment:

  1. Y'know, I would have guessed from the condition that the marker was at least a century older than that. Good thing you were able to identify it. I'm used to looking at markers that are either from 1960-present or recreated (e.g. Tombstone AZ - can't possibly be the original wooden markers!).

    4100! Wow! I set out to photograph one row once, and ended up deciding it was too much work!


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