A Paper Just Found Not to be Lost Again

This is one of those posts that one makes so that they don’t loose some information again. You see, I love history and family history. Now I have one family that once you get back in the 1700s is very frustrating. I would like to know why Michael Cowger never wrote down his parents names or his brothers and sisters. Or maybe why the generations between him and me didn’t think to keep that knowledge in the family. Alas and alack, it was all lost and no one, out of many people, has sorted it definitively yet.

You see there are two theories of who his parents are. Both a situation of a spelling change on the last name so can’t just see the name and say, “Oh, that must be.” Alas, I do favor the more logical (to me) line back from there but many favor another line with a less near surname and to me a bit more of a stretch. So for me, Michael remains parentless and what I am sure must be his siblings, remain unattached. So if anyone ever comes across that definitive piece of information and proves my point of view, I will find someway to pay you back infinitively.

So none of that really has to do with this post. You see I have a quarter piece of paper that just came out of a box that lists a George Cowger (as far as I’m concerned must be my Michael’s brother). He lived in the Fort Seybert neighborhood of West Virginia. (Near my Michael.) This is just across the mountains from the Shenandoah Valley where I have several different lines of ancestors in residence at one time. I wonder what they would think if you told them all that two hundred years later they would all be ancestors to a group of people in Illinois?

Ft. Seybert in West Virginia today and west of the Shenandoah Valley.

Ft. Seybert in West Virginia today, west of the Shenandoah Valley. Within this view are the homes of many of my ancestors.

What is on this paper? His property was appraised on 6 November 1788. Among what was appraised are:

8 sheep = $1.33 each

loom = $9.17

flax hackle = $1.67

fulled linen sold – 66¢ a yard

other linen = 25¢

Mark checked this out for me a few years ago and with inflation it was a total of $453. I just tried to see what it would be today but can’t find a calculator that goes back further than 1800.

So some observations. They had sheep so would assume that wool was spun and woven as well. Had flax and spun and wove linen cloth which they had present. Believe that they processed it as well as fulled it by the presence of a hackle. Interesting that a spinning wheel or other implements were not listed as there would be more needed for this production.

Now hopefully, the next time I loose this information, I will remember I recorded it here.

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