The following is the transcription of pages 502 through 507 in Volume 8 of the Brown County, Ohio Record of Wills book which is the record of the probate proceedings for the Last Will and Testament of my great great grandfather, Franziskus Xavier Haitz. I transcribed it exactly as it is written except for a few periods and commas that I added where the writing might get confusing without them.
It is interesting to note that punctuation was of no great concern and neither was the spelling of names. You will notice that Haitz is spelled several different ways within the document. Heitz was fairly common as it is also seen on Frank's headstone and several other documents that I have collected. However, I have never seen it spelled Haizht nor Haight! Valentine Kubler's name is also spelled differently a couple of times. I can only guess that with all the writing that was required together with the lack of "white out", correct spelling just did not matter!
Nicholas Lang, one of the executors of the will was Frank's brother-in-law. He was married to Elizabeth's sister, Mary. The other executor, Joseph Pfeffer, just happens to be my husband's great-great grandfather. Charles A Linn, the attorney for Frank's family is also related to me. He is my 1st cousin, 4 times removed. His father, Charles Anton Linn, and my three greats-grandfather, Michael Linn, were brothers.
Another thing that I find interesting about this document is the fact that the original will was written in German. Frank had been in the country for about thirty years, more or less, but was presumably more comfortable using his native language. It makes me wonder at what degree, if any, was he proficient in the English language.
There is a question about the residence status of the Haitz family. This document states that he is late of Huntington Township which according to the 1870 census is true, but the family was recorded in the 1880 census as living in Union Township. It is possible, of course, they moved several times. My to-do list now includes looking at land records for Frank.
Volume 8Page 502No. 788 1/2Francis Xavier Haitzwill
Probate Court held at the Court House in Georgetown, Brown County, Ohio before the Hon George P Tyler sole judge of said Court in and for said county on the 13th day of December AD 1886Brown County, ssBe it remembered that heretofore to wit on the 4th day of December 1886 an entry was made on the journal of said Court in the words and figures following to wit:In the matter of the will ofFrancis Xavier Haitz, decdThis day C A Linn filed here a paper writing purporting to be the last will and testament of Francis Xavier Haitz, late of Huntington Township, Brown County, Ohio and application made to probate the same. Ordered by the Court that all the next of kin of said Testator resident of the
state of Ohio have legal notice of the filing and time for hearing the same which time is fixed by the Court for the 13th day of December 1886 at 10 o’clock AM.Said application to probate will in the words and figures following to wit:In the Probate Court Brown County, OhioIn the matter of the will of Francis Xavier Haitz deceased .. To the Honorable the judge of said CourtAnd now comes Charles A Linn and produced for admission to probate in said Court the last will and Testament of Francis Xavier Haitz late a resident of the Township of Huntington in said County, who died on the ____ day of November AD 1886Said Testator died leaving Elizabeth Heitz his widow and the following named persons, all of his next of kin resident in the state of OhioName Degree of Kinship PO AddressElizabeth Heitz daughter Aberdeen, OhioAnna Heitz daughter “ “Frank Heitz son “ “Barbara Heitz daughter “ “George Heitz son “ “John Heitz son “ “Nicholas Heitz son “ “Joseph Heitz son “ “Mary Heitz daughter “ “The State of Ohio Brown County ssThe above named Charles A Linn being first duly sworn says the statement of the foregoing applications are true as he verily believes Charles A LinnSworn to before me and subscribed in my presence this 4 day of December AD 1886George P Tyler Probate JudgeThereupon was the same day that is to say on the 4th day of December 1886 notice to next of kin of said decedent was issued in the words and figures following to witNotice to Next of KinThe State of OhioBrown County SS In Probate CourtIn the matter of the last will and Testament of Francis Xavier Haitz deceased To Elizabeth, Anna, Frank, Barbara, George, John, Nicholas Joseph and Mary Heitz, the children of Francis Xavier Heitz deceased late of Huntington Township Brown County, Ohio You are hereby notified that on the 4” day of December AD 1886 an instrument of writing purporting to be the last Will and Testament of Francis Xavier Haizht late of Huntington Township in said County
deceased was produced in open court and an application to admit the same to probate was on the same day made in said Court Said application will be for hearing before this Court on the 13th day of December AD1886 at 10 o’clock AM. George P Tyler Probate JudgeDated at Georgetown, Ohio this 4th day of December 1886Said will was by Charles A Linn translated in to the English language an is in the words and figures following to witCopy and Translation of the last will and Testament of Francis Xavier Haitz decdIn the name of God AmenI, Francis Xavier Haitz residing on Eagle Creek Brown County Ohio, being of sound mind and memory and in view of the uncertainty of the Frail and Transitory life do make, order publish and declare the following as my last will and Testament. Namely, after all my just debts have been paid, I, grant, devise, and bequeath the residue of my estate real and personal without the least exception to my beloved wife Elizabeth Heitz whose maiden name is Germann. I also make appoint and constitute Joseph Pfeffer Sr. and Nicholas Lang Sr as Executors of this my last will and Testament and revoke all former wills by me madeIn witness whereof I have subscribed my name this 27th day of October in the year one Thousand eight hundred and Eighty six - signed Frank X HaitzThe above Testament is signed by the said Francis Xavier Heitz in our presence and by him in the presence of each of us being completed, is acknowledged and at the same time he published and declared that is his last will and testament and at the request of this Testator and in his presence we have subscribed our names as witnesses and opposite our names our names have written our respective places of Residence signedValentine Kuber Eagle Creek Brown County OhioFrederick Wucher Brown County Ohio Eagle CreekSaid will being written in the german language is in the words and figures following to wit:(This section is the will written in the German language)Page 505The Testimony so taken and reduced to writing filed and ordered to be recorded is in the words and figures following to witThe State of Ohio The Probate CourtBrown County GeoPersonally appeared in open Court, Valentine Kubler and Frederick Wucher the subscribing Witnesses to the last will and Testament of Francis Xavier Haitz late of Huntington Township in said Brown County deceased who being duly sworn according to law, to speak the truth, the whole Truth and nothing but the Truth in relation to the execution of said will, depose and say. That the paper before them bearing date the 27th day of October AD 1886 purporting to be the last will and testament of Francis Xavier Haitz now deceased is the will of said of said (sic) will and at the request of the Testator respectively subscribed their names to the same as witnesses, in his presence; that they saw the said Francis X Haitz deceased sign and Seal said Will
and heard him acknowledge the same to be his last Will and Testament and that the said Francis Xavier Haitz at the time of making signing and sealing said will was of full age of sound mind and memory and not under any restraintValentine KueblerFrederick WucherSworn to and subscribed by said witnesses in open Court this 13” day of December AD 1886George P TylerProbate JudgeOn the 13” day of December 1886 in said notice to next of kin of said deceased testator was returned in to said Court and filed, endorsed as followsThe State of Ohio Brown County ssNicholas Lang Sr. being duly sworn say that on the _____ day of December 1886 he served the written notice by delivering a true copy thereof to the within named Elizabeth, Anna, Frank, Barbara, George John, Nicholas, Joseph and Mary Haitz subscribed in my presence and sworn to before me this 13” day of December 1886 Geo P TylerThe undersigned persons within named hereby acknowledge service of the within notice this 6” day of December AD1886 Lizzie E Haitz, Anna Haitz Barbara Haitz Frank X Haitz George Haitz, John Haitz Nick Haitz Joseph Haitz Mary Haitzon the 13” day of December 1886 the following entry was made on the Journal of said Court to witIn the matter of the will ofFrancis Xavier Haight decdThis day this matter coming on further to be heard on the application heretofore filed here to admit to Probate a paper writing purporting to be the last will and Testament of Francis Xavier Haitz, late of Huntington Township, in the County deceased and it appearing to the satisfaction of the Court that due and legal notice of the filing and time fixed by the Court for hearing the application to probate the same had been given to all the next of kin of said Testator resident of Ohio pursuant to a former order of this court. Thereupon this day came Valentine Kubler and Frederick Wucher the subscribing witnesses to said will who being duly sworn to speak the Truth the whole truth and nothing but the truth testified to the due execution and attestation of said will whereupon the Court finds that the aforesaid instrument of writing in the Last Will and Testament of the said Francis Xavier Haitz deceased That the same was duly executed and attested : and that the said Testator at the time of making signing and sealing said will
was of full age of sound and disposing mind and memory and not under any restraint. It is therefore by the Court ordered that the said will be admitted to Probate and that the same together with the Testimony of the witnesses above named as well as the proceedings had thereon by entered of record in this Court.