Monday, January 14, 2013

Amanuensis Monday - Kilpatrick-Owens Indenture 1888

On his TransylvanianDutch blog, John Newmark defines an amanuensis as “a person employed to write out what another dictates or to copy what has been written by another.” For more information about this daily blogging prompt, see John’s post Amanuensis – Why?.

I have amassed quite a collection of scans of handwritten documents related to my ancestors—primarily marriage records, deeds, and wills. As I have been transcribing these documents, it occurred to me that most of these documents were not actually written by my ancestors, but rather dictated to someone else, and then transcribed by a clerk into official records.

Today I'm publishing the transcription of an indenture between Emily C. Kilpatrick and H.T. Owens (one of my paternal 2nd great-grandfathers) recorded in Bienville Parish, Louisiana, in 1888. The seller, Emily Coleman (Morgan) Kilpatrick was the mother of William Thomas Kilpatrick, husband of my paternal great-grand-aunt Mary Ann Spurlock.

The actual date of the sale of this property is unclear. The indenture says it was sold 22 December 1888, but the clerk's statement at the bottom says it was recorded 15 October 1888. Perhaps it was sold in December 1887 and not recorded until October of the following year. There is no way to know when the sale took place without having the actual original deed.

“State of Louisiana   )
Parish of Bienville     )

This Indenter [sic] maid [sic] and entered into on this the 22nd day of December one thousand Eight hundred and eighty eight between Emily C. Kilpatrick of the first part and H. T. Owens of the second part in witness whereof I the said Emily C. Kilpatrick for and in consideration of the sum of Two hundred and fifty Dollars the receipt of which is hereby acknowledged before the sealing and signing of these presents I the said Emily C. Kilpatrick has this day bargained and sold unto the [said] H. T. Owens, all my rights, titles and interest in and unto the following described lands to wit. The South West qua[r]ter of the South East qua[r]ter and the North East qua[r]ter of the South West qua[r]ter and the west half of the North West qua[r]ter of the south east qua[r]ter Section five Township No. Eighteen of Range No. five West containing one hundred acres more or less to have and to hold the ab[?] bargained premises and I the said Emily C. Kilpatrick do warrant and forever defend [?] titles and claims from myself my heirs executors administrators and all other persons unto the said H.T. Owens his heirs, executors and administrators to have and to hold the above bargained premises with all [?] teniments {?] and appartainances In witness whair [sic] of I do hereunto set my hand  and seal in the presence of these witnesses.
                                                                                    Emily C. Kilpatrick
Attest  Isaac Miller                                                    H. T. Owens
            M. A. Miller

I hereby certify the above and foregoing is a true and correct record of original deed This Oct 15th 1888.
                                                                                    J C Thuss
                                                                                    Dy CDC & Ex Of Recorder[?]”

Source: Bienville Parish, Louisiana, Conveyance Records, 1848-1900, AA: 704, Kilpatrick-Owens indenture, 15 Oct 1888; FHL microfilm 266,016.

© 2013 Denise Spurlock


  1. Whenever I transcribe an old document, I thank all those computer geeks who have made life so much easier for us.

    1. Me, too! The old handwriting is hard enough to read and then when you have ink blots and other marks, sometimes it's almost impossible!