Maine, Kennebec County Probate Estates Files (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page
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|This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.|
Access the records: Maine, Kennebec County Probate Estates Files, 1779-1915 .
This collection contains probate estate files from the register's office in Augusta.
|You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Maine, Kennebec County Probate Estates Files, 1779-1915.|
Probate records include petitions, inventories, accounts, decrees and other court documents. Information in entries may include:
- Name of testator or deceased
- Names of heirs such as spouse, children, and other relatives or friends
- Name of executor, administrator, or guardian
- Names of witnesses
- Residence of testator
- Document and recording dates (Used to approximate event dates, i.e. a will is often written near time of death)
How to Use the Record
To begin your search it is helpful to know:
- The name of the deceased
- Identifying information such as the approximate death and place or probate date
Search the Collection
To search the collection:
⇒Select the "Browse" link in the initial search page
⇒Select the "Document Type" link which takes you to the images.
Look at each image comparing the information with what you already know about your ancestors to determine if the image relates to them. You may need to look at several images and compare the information about the individuals listed in those images to your ancestors to make this determination. Keep in mind:
- There may be more than one person in the records with the same name.
- You may not be sure of your own ancestor’s name.
- Your ancestor may have used different names or variations of their name throughout their life.
Using the Information
When you have located your ancestor’s record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors. Add this new information to your records of each family. For example:
- Use probate records to identify heirs and relatives.
- Use the document (such as the will) or the recording dates to approximate a death date.
- Use the information in the probate record to substitute for civil birth and death records since the probates exist for an earlier time period.
- You may be able to use the probate record to learn about land transactions.
- Use the birth date or age along with the residence or place of birth of the deceased to locate census, church, and land records.
- Use the occupations listed to find other types of records such as employment records or military records.
Tips to Keep in Mind
- Compile the entries for every person who has the same surname as the deceased; this is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual.
- Continue to search the records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives who may have also died in the same county. This can help you identify other generations of your family or even the second marriage of a parent. Repeat this process for each new generation you identify.
- Probate records often have information about adoptions or guardianship of any minor children and dependents. Be aware that the spouse named may not be the parent of the children listed.
- The records may omit the names of deceased family members and those who have previously received an inheritance.
- When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
- There is also some variation in the information given from one record to another record.
- The death date, residence, and other facts that were current at the time of the probate proceeding are quite reliable, though there is still a chance of misinformation.
Unable to Find Your Ancestor?
- Check for variant spellings of the surnames.
- Check for an index. Local genealoical and historical societies often have indexes to local records.
- Search the indexes and records of nearby counties.
|Don't overlook FHL Keyword Maine, Kennebec items in the FamilySearch Library Catalog. For other libraries (local and national) or to gain access to items of interest, see the wiki article Maine Archives and Libraries. For additional information about this county see the wiki article Kennebec County, Maine.|
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Contributions to This Article
|We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. Guidelines are available to help you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide. If you would like to get more involved join the WikiProject FamilySearch Records.|
Citations for This Collection
When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information; that is, cite your sources. This will help people find the record again and evaluate the reliability of the source. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records. Citations are available for the collection as a whole and each record or image individually.
- "Maine, Kennebec County Probate Estates Files, 1779-1915" Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2013. Citing Probate Court. Kennebec County Courthouse, Augusta.
|The citation for an image is available on each image in this collection by clicking Show Citation at the bottom left of the image screen. You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for titleimage.|
- This page was last modified on 13 January 2015, at 20:26.
- This page has been accessed 1,933 times.
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