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Gjest Richard Hellesen

[#8736] Probate record: interpretation

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Gjest Richard Hellesen

Good day....I have been reading a copy of an original probate record, and would like some assurance (from someone who knows) that I'm reading it correctly. The deceased left an estate amounting to about 892 spd, including a house valued at 850 spd. Various fees deducted 36 spd. Two mortgage holders took, respectively, 600 and 250, with a third in line for 550 spd. which he did not receive. Outstanding taxes took a bit more, leaving a remainder of about 2 1/2 spd. My question is: how thorough an accounting would this be? It appears that the 2 1/2 spd. would be all that would be left to the family, effectively bankrupting them. Was there some other usual allowance (either in money or property) for widow and children that I'm overlooking? Or does this look to you like a complete and accurate record? Sorry that my spotty Norwegian doesn't allow for a clear reading of all the text, but this seems to be the gist. Thanks for any insights. -- RH

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Gjest Jan Oldervoll

I would say that is not at all un unprobable situation.

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Gjest Richard Hellesen

Thank you. I asked because in some American probate records there is an allowance made for widow and/or children--in terms of keeping some money and furnishings--which has a priority over some other creditors. That doesn't seem to be the case in the Trondheim record I'm reading, where presumably everything had to be sold to satisfy the debts. I suppose my next question would be how and when (and if) the Poor Law would assist a bankrupted family, but that's for another time! Thanks again--RH

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Gjest Jan Oldervoll

There has been systems for supporting people unable to support themselves as least the last 300 years, problably longer.

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