Inspirational Message

Inspirational Message

Friday, August 29, 2014

John Brittain Probate

On my recent trip to the Missouri State Archives in Jefferson City, I found an entry in the probate index for John Brittain.
Brittian, John 007135 Dec'd YR1843 00001308 0A14A/A347 *D8 A-11,B/9 112
The year is correct so I was sure this was who I was looking for.  The Probate Case File number is 1308.  I checked the Green County book of microfilm for that number and found it in film number C7894.  I downloaded the images to my flash drive and uploaded them to my laptop when I returned home.

The case is that of the Guardianship of John William Brittain, minor, son of the late Ophelia Brittain.
The date on this document is August 1928!
Not what I expected to find so obviously the index has an error in it.  

 The guardian is James Peck who has moved to Tulsa County, Oklahoma.  The judge is threatening to revoke the guardianship since Mr. Peck is no longer living in Missouri and has not filed an annual settlement.

I did a quick search on FamilySearch and found this family in the 1920 census.  John W. Brittain is 9 years old so this would indicate that Ophelia died shortly after?  The first entry in the probate case file states that John William Brittain is less than 14 years old which would make it 1924.  The guardianship is dated Aug 1928.  And the final settlement is 1929.  I didn't download all of the receipts in this file.
Here is the entry for the 1920 census:
Name: Ophelia Brittain
Titles and Terms: Event Type: Census
Event Year: 1920
Event Place: Springfield Ward 4, Greene, Missouri, United States
District: 35
Gender: Female
Age: 50
Marital Status: Married
Race: White
Race (Original): White
Can Read: Yes
Can Write: Yes
Relationship to Head of Household: Wife
Relationship to Head of Household (Original): Wife
Own or Rent: Birth Year (Estimated): 1870
Birthplace: Missouri
Immigration Year: Father's Birthplace: Missouri
Mother's Birthplace: Tennessee
Sheet Number and Letter: 5A
Household ID: 121
Line Number: 49
Affiliate Name: The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration (NARA)
Affiliate Publication Number: T625
GS Film number: 1820915
Digital Folder Number: 004312402
Image Number: 00647

Household         Role             Gender Age Birthplace
William J Brittain Head         M 56 Missouri
Ophelia Brittain         Wife                 F 50 Missouri
Hugh F Brittain         Son                 M 19 Missouri
Anna Brittian         Daughter         F 15 Missouri
Bessie Brittian         Daughter         F 12 Missouri
John W Brittian         Son                 M 9 Missouri

Citing this Record:
"United States Census, 1920," index and images, <i>FamilySearch</i> ( : accessed 30 Aug 2014), Ophelia Brittain in household of William J Brittain, Springfield Ward 4, Greene, Missouri, United States; citing sheet 5A, family 121, NARA microfilm publication T625, FHL microfilm 1820915.

Neither Ophelia nor William are in the 1930 census. In 1940, John W is using the name William and is married and living in Springfield, Greene County, MO.  He is also listed in the SSDI.

The photo below was posted on FindAGrave in 2005.

Name: John W Brittain
Name (Original): BRITTAIN JOHN W
Event Type: Military Service
Event Date: 28 Apr 1945
Term of Enlistment: Enlistment for the duration of the War or other emergency, plus six months, subject to the discretion of the President or otherwise according to law
Event Place: Ft Leavenworth, Kansas, United States
Residence Place: Race: White
Citizenship Status: citizen
Birth Year: 1910
Birthplace: MISSOURI
Education Level: 2 years of high school
Civilian Occupation: Skilled painters, construction and maintenance
Marital Status: Married
Military Rank: Private
Army Branch: No branch assignment
Army Component: Selectees (Enlisted Men)
Source Reference: Civil Life
Serial Number: 37768644
Affiliate Publication Title: Electronic Army Serial Number Merged File, ca. 1938-1946
Affiliate ARC Identifier: 1263923
Box Film Number: 12616.27

Citing this Record:
"United States World War II Army Enlistment Records, 1938-1946," index, <i>FamilySearch</i> ( : accessed 30 Aug 2014), John W Brittain, enlisted 28 Apr 1945, Ft Leavenworth, Kansas, United States; citing "Electronic Army Serial Number Merged File, ca. 1938-1946," database, <i>The National Archives: Access to Archival Databases (AAD)</i> ( : National Archives and Records Administration, 2002).
I am guessing there is a connection between the two John Britains.

I received a copy of a page with the heading "Greene County, Missouri Probate Records: Wills, Minutes, Bonds, Letters of Administration 1833-1871 compiled by Marsha Hoffman Rising." The information on this typed page states it is transcribed from Minute Book A 1843-1848.  John Britain had five sons who were bound out following his death: George W., Lafayette, Thomas J., James M. and Hugh.  Royal Hazelton was appointed administrator of the estate.   All of the sons were bound out until the age of 21.  George W to Royal Hazelton, Lafayette to Thomas Hazelton, Thomas J. and James M. to Henry Small, and Hugh to Isaac Redfearn.  Hugh was ordered to be bound to Thomas Hazelton five months later and in 1846 Thomas J. was released from his bond to Royal Hazelton.

I don't know of a connection between these families other than the men being of good esteem in Greene county.  I need to figure out why a 1928 Guardianship is in an 1843 Probate Case file.

This is one mystery that needs to be solved!

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