Estate Inventory – 1788

At the age of 18, Horton Howard was the executor of the estate of his grandmother, Frances Horton. His inventory of the estate lists many items that were utilitarian in their day, including 1 watering pot, 4 tin pans, 1 pair of shears, 2 grind stones, 1 Hachet [sic], 4 hoes, and 1 lantern.

Some items have long since gone out of style or use – 4 chamber pots, 1 sidesaddle, 2 wheat riddles (strainers or separators), 1 churn, and 1 old riding chair. The riding chair was a small carriage with 2 large wheels, carrying a sitting chair mounted on a small sleigh-like platform. Carriages were taxed by the number of wheels, the riding chair could be pulled by a single horse, and this carriage was easier to drive over narrow and bumpy country roads.

There are also many items indicating comfort and an appreciation of the finer things in life. 9 Queen China cups and saucers, 1 punch strainer, 8 blue & white bowls, 2 looking glasses, 26 sitting chairs and 2 wine glasses.


Only 2 wine glasses?  And 26 sitting chairs? I’m intrigued by the juxtaposition of 26 chairs and only 2 wine glasses.  Can we assume she once had more and didn’t bother replacing them as she grew old? Or did she hold large meetings at which serving wine was not appropriate?


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