Fritz and the in-laws…

My 3xgreat Uncle Fredrick (Fritz) Isserstedt, jr. was the only son of Fredrick and Wilhelmena Isserstedt. He was born in Gotha, Germany on the 8th of March in 1852. And was only 3 years old when the family made  their 49 day voyage over the Atlantic Ocean to America on the ship ‘Elise Rühke.’

When he was 29 years old Fritz married Phoebe Coon in Sheboygan County, Wisconsin, where the Isserstedts had established their new home. A few years later, in 1886, Fritz and Phoebe ‘purchased’ land from Phoebe’s parents Benjamin and Philena Coon. But this wasn’t just a simple transfer of money for property, there were some interesting stipulations with this purchase.

This indenture made this 5th day of Feb. 1886 between Benjamin Orrin Coon and Philena R. Coon his wife all of Sheboygan County Wisconsin parties of the first part and F. J. Isserstedt of said County party of the second part. 

…..on the following terms and conditions to wit: 

The said F. J. Isserstedt shall furnish one half of all seed neccessary to be used on the said premises the said Benjamin Orrin Coon the other half each to furnish one half of the cows to be kept on the farm the said F. J. Isserstdt to turn over one half of the proceeds of the farm at the end of each season to Benjamin Orrin Coon as the consideration for this conveyance made to him of the said premises and in case said Benjamin Orrin Coon shall die before his wife does, then said Isserstedt or his heirs or assigns shall turn over to the wife of said Coon the one half of the said proceeds during the term of her natural life.  

It is further agreed between the parties that when it is necessary to have new machinery or farm implements on the farm each is to furnish one half of the expense of such new machinery or farm implements.

The said party of the first part shall furnish a good able bodied man to work on the farm eight months in the years commencing about March 14 of each year each party shall furnish one half of the trains or teams necessary to do the work on the farm. 

The party of the first part and his wife shall have the privilege of residing in the dwelling house from on said described premises and in case a new house shall be [built on the?] premises by the parties of the second part the first part shall have the privilege of residing in such new house in suitable manner to be provided for them by the parties of the second part during the terms of their natural lives.

It is further agreed between the parties that a failure to perform any of the conditions of the foregoing agreement shall under this conveyance absolutely void and the party of the second part shall become a tenant at sufferance of the parties of the first part in case this agreement beomes void as aforesaid and be liable to be recorded as such tenant. 

So instead of giving the in-laws money for the property, they made a deal to work the land together with each couple doing their part to share in the profits and expenses as long as the in-laws can continue to live on the land and even move in to any new digs built on the property, if they so desire.

Another example of land records doing more than just showing a transfer of property, here you find some interesting family dynamics. (See documents below.)

Digital image of deed.1


Sheboygan County Wisconsin, Register of Deeds; Deeds (1839-1886) and index to deeds (1839-1888); Warranty deeds, v. 53 1883-1884 Deeds, v. 54 1883-1887   –  FHL film #1,392,913 – vol. 36, page 453 [image 1213]:


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To John…

I ran across this image while researching my Rosa and Cross families from Niagara County, New York. I thought that it was fitting to share.

John Brooks my 4xgreat grandfather died in Niagara County in 1815 during the war of 1812. There most likely was no transportation of his body back home to his family, it would have been extremely difficult. It is doubtful that there was a headstone or permanent marker for him either. I have certainly not run across one in my cemetery searches.

But I did find a lovely memorial for those unnamed soldiers who died in the Fort Niagara area during the War of 1812. While the memorial mentions those who died in action or of wounds, and John died of an illness, I still consider this for him. After all, he did put his life on the line for his country and survived a bloody battle. It is not his fault he died of an illness, which could have been contracted because of wounds he received in the line of duty.

This image was found at the findagrave website. It is from the Old Fort Niagara Cemetery.