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October 1997


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"B.A. Stone" <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Thu, 2 Oct 1997 18:04:32 -0500
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I have done considerable deed research at the Genesee County Clerk's
office and routinely run into this quote. The assistant County Clerk
explained that wives were questioned separately about their willingness
to sell/buy property to help ensure that the decision was jointly made.
Women had far fewer financial resources (at least during the 1802-1910s,
the period covering my research interests), and there was a public
interest in seeing to it that a male did not bankrupt the family and
then desert, leaving the rest of the family destitute.

Hope this helps.

Mark LoRusso wrote:
> Does anyone familiar with deed research know the history of the
> following phrase which may appear at the end of indentures for land
> sales by a husband and wife? "...And the said (wife) being by me
> (Commissioner of Deeds) privately examined apart from said husband
> acknowledged that she executed the said deed freely without any fear or
> compulsion of her said husband..."  Wondered when this language came
> into use in the nineteenth century and how widespread was it.