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Archive for the ‘McDONALD/MacDONALD SURNAME’ Category

Sometimes when someone does not marry, they really help in the research of a family because they give their estate usually to their siblings, nephews and nieces.  Alexander did just that however, he did not have a will so the estate went into probate because he had money and land.

Alexander's estate

Alexander’s estate

In the above note written by my Aunt Miriam she was correct in stating there were eleven heirs to Alexander’s estate.

In the post “John Barclay’s Two Families” dated April 3, 2010 on this blog, I listed the children both from the 1st and 2nd family of John Barclay the father. I gave a little information about each sibling but didn’t go into each in-depth.

The probate packet of Alexander A. Barclay’s estate consisted of 35 documents. The probate process began sometime in December 1905 and ended April 23, 1907. The total value of the estate was $5500.00. There were two pieces of real estate one in Lakeville, a farm and one in Farmington which consisted of lots. These were sold since no one was interested in the property. There were mining stocks that were distributed and transferred to the heirs.

I found this add for the sale of A.A. Barclay’s lands in the local newspaper.

The Sale Ad of Alexander Barclay's Land in Farmington

The Sale Ad of Alexander Barclay’s Land in Farmington

It reads:  Farm for Sale Cheap: I offer for sale, subject to the approval of the Judge of Probate for Dakota County, Minnesota, 105 acres of farming lands in section 34 township 114, range 20 in Dakota County, State of Minnesota, at $40.00 per acre.  Also the building on the corner of Third and Elma Streets, belonging to the estate of A.A. Barclay – Deceased. Inquir of H.N. Rogers, administrator, Farmington, Minn.  11-45. 

Here is a review of those who were identified as heirs of Alexander’s estate.

Part of the Heirs at Law form for Alexander Barclay's Estate

Part of the Heirs list, Petition for Administration, by Grace McDonald, for Alexander Barclay’s Estate

The first family of John Barclay and Margaret:

1.  John Avery Barclay born about 1836. He was presumed dead according to an affidavit of the sister Sarah Agnes Blinn.  So his portion of the estate would go to his two children:

“John A. Barclay, aged 70 years, not heard from by relatives during the past 30 years, supposed to be dead, who is a brother. In his place John Avery Barclay, son and Sarah Ellen Barclay Sears were awarded a share each as the only surviving children of the first son.”

1) John Avery Barclay born 1867.

2) Sarah Ellen Barclay Sears born 1869.

2.  James A. Barclay born about 1838 died in 1906 during the probate of Alexander’s estate.

“James A. Barclay, aged 68 years, residing at 1444 Stratford Ave., Bridgeport, Conn. who is a brother.”

3.  Sarah Agnes Barclay Blinn born about 1840.

“Sarah Agnes Blinn, aged 66 years residing at 1375 [New] Dalles Ave, Alamirda, Cal., who is a sister. Note: I think they mean Alameda, California.”

4.  Mary J. Barclay Ford born about 1841.

“Mary J. Ford, aged 65 years, residing at Bristol., Conn., who is a sister.”

5.  Alexander Barclay the deceased, would fit here in the ages of the children.

6.  Martha M. Barclay Ford born about 1843.

“Martha M. Ford, aged 65 years residing at Fruitvale, Cal., who is a sister.”

7.  George Angus Barclay born 1844 died 1898. Grace his daughter would be the one to inherit from Alexander.  Grace started out as the Administrator of the estate but because she was pregnant with Miriam at the time she could not attend to the legal process and another person was appointed.

“Grace A. McDonald of the Village of International Falls, in the County of Itasca and the State of Minnesota, respectfully shows that Alexander A. Barclay was a resident of the Village of Farmington in the County of Dakota and State of Minnesota, died on the 9 December, A.D. 1905 at the City of Rochester in the County of Olmsted, State of Minnesota, leaving estate therein and without leaving any last Will and Testament to the knowledge, information or belief of your petitioner. That the name relationship, ages and residences of the heirs of said deceased, as far as known to your petitioner, are as follows….”  

“Grace A. McDonald, aged 28 years, residing at International Falls, Itasca Co., Minn who is a niece (daughter of Geo. A. Barclay brother of deceased).”  Note: Grace was born 1882 so she would be 23 years old.

Here we list the half-siblings from John Barclay’s second marriage to Ellen:

8. Charles Barclay born 1860.

“Charles Barclay, aged 45 years, residing at Shakopee, Minn., who is a half-brother.”

9. William Barclay born 1863

“William Barclay, aged 43 years, residing at Pony, Madison Co., Montana, who is a half-brother.”

10.  Mary E. Barclay Clark born about 1864.

“Mary Clark aged 42 years, residing at Bridger, Carbon Co., Montana, age 42 years, who is a half-sister.”

11. Anna Elizabeth Barclay Carter  born 1870.

“Annie E. Carter, aged 36 years, residing at 2050 11 St. Marinette, Wis, who is a half-sister.”

It cost me a small fortune to obtain the probate file of Alexander Barclay but it was worth it.  I have always known that Alexander would be of great help to me.

In the next posts I will share some of the highlights of Alexander’s probate and discuss in more detail the heirs of his estate and what I know about each of them. I have already shared what I know about Alexander in this blog, so I won’t repeat his story.  Remember these individuals are also George A. Barclay’s siblings and half-siblings.  Did George communicate with his siblings and half-siblings? I have no knowledge of how close to them he was.  I do know about his relationship with Alexander.  Did Amarilla know them, I don’t know. Grace seemed to be aware of her aunts and uncles so maybe there was some communication.

Source: Probate File of Alexander Barclay, Dakota Co., Minnesota, December 1905. Petition for Letters of Administration, 11 January 1906, Submitted by Grace A. McDonald. 

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Grace was pregnant with Miriam at the time of her uncle Alexander’s death. Giving birth in January of 1906. She took action and petitioned the court for the administration of Alexander Barclay’s estate about January 11, 1906. Alexander did not have a will.

farmingtoninternet

Grace was unable to travel because she was pregnant with Miriam.  By the time the testimony was given below was presented she had given birth, so the court was delayed in getting started.  Grace sent Charles W. Stanton as her representative:

Charles W. Stanton called and being duly sworn says (about March 14, 1906)

“My name is Charles W. Stanton.  I am the Attorney-in-Fact for Grace A. McDonald, the same person who made the petition for letters of administration shown me in this matter.  The other instrument shown me is my Power of Attorney executed by Grace. A. McDonald.  She was unable to appear at this hearing on account of delicate health.  On or about February 1st Mrs. McDonald gave birth to a child and has not as yet, regained sufficient strength to warrant a journey from International Falls to Hastings.  The distance according to the present means of travel, being over 700 miles.

I am a resident of the Village of International Falls, Itasca County, Minnesota.  I am well acquainted with Grace A. McDonald, wife of Ronald S. McDonald.  She is also a resident of the Village of International Falls, Itasca County, Minnesota.  I have known her since about the year 1890.  I also became acquainted with George A. Barclay, the father of said Grace A. McDonald about the year 1890.  Grace is now about 25 or 26 years of age.  I was, at that time, visiting in the Pine River, Cass County, this State and have visited there since then many times, at the home of George A. Barclay and his family.  I know from my own knowledge of the family and from information received relative to said family that Grace A. McDonald was a daughter and the only child of George A. McDonald.

 George A. Barclay was shot at Pine River, Cass County, Minnesota some few years ago, and was survived by his wife and daughter, Grace A. Barclay, (who has since been married to said Ronald S. McDonald).  Mrs. Barclay, the widow of said George A. Barclay, has since inter-married with a certain man, and is now Mrs. Daws.  I never heard any mention of their being any other children in their family.  I have never seen any family record of their family, do not know that they kept any such record.  I do not know where Mrs. McDonald was born, although she may have told me. I do not recall now. 

 I know that said George A. Barclay is dead of my own personal knowledge and know that he was killed, as before stated.  He left some estate both real and personal.  I believe the personal property was divided amicably between his wife and daughter after his death.

 I did not know that there was such a person as Alexander A. Barclay prior to the death of George A. Barclay.  I have heard Mrs. McDonald speak of him since.  She also told me of the interest he took in the trial of the alleged murder of Mr. George A. Barclay.  She said the deceased assisted them financially many times during the lifetime of her father and has also assisted her mother since his death by loaning her money.  Mrs. McDonald visited Mr. Alexander A. Barclay, during his lifetime, while she was attending school in St. Paul or Minneapolis.  He (the deceased), visited them many times also, particularly during the trial and investigation of the murder of George A. Barclay.  Of my own personal knowledge, I do not know that the loans of Mr. Alexander Barclay to Mr. George A. Barclay were paid, or whether they were not, but have been informed by Mr. W. A. Gray of Farmington, Minnesota that they were paid in full.  Mr. Gray knew all about the affairs and business connections or transactions of Alexander A. Barclay, with the exception of some mining stock owed by the deceased.  Dr. Rogers of Farmington, knew and was well acquainted with the deceased prior to his death and knew all about the mining stock owned by the deceased at the time of his death, knows what companies they are invested in and also knows the amount invested by the deceased, which was, I believe $2300.00.  I made inquiries of both these men and think they can give and gave all of the necessary information relative to the estate of Alexander A. Barclay, deceased, that was in their possession. 

When I went to Farmington, which was on the 10th day of January, this year, I was not acquainted with anyone, but had a letter of introduction to Mr. George R. Taylor, who is Cashier in the Bank at Farmington.  He told me what he knew of the deceased’s financial and referred me to Mr. Gray and Dr. Rogers, from whom I obtained the information stated in the petition for letters that I made as attorney in fact for Grace A. McDonald, in this matter.  From information obtained from Mr. Gray by me, I believe the value of the personal property is about $2000. and consisted of  a mortgage of $1400; a chattel mortgage on a Blacksmith shop at Farmington, for $300 an another note executed by a party at Pine River for $100, on all of which there is probably some accumulated interest.  There was a check in the Bank of $50., some personal effects, etc., aggregating in all, about $2000.  The present value of the mining stock for investments, I know nothing about a personally, but was informed they are unlisted stock and in my opinion, not worth very much, perhaps about $1000.

I visited the real property owned by the deceased at Farmington, which consists of a house and lot, worth probably $800.00.  The Lakeville farm, I did not see, but it consists of 105 acres of agricultural land, and taking into consideration the answers to inquiries I made about it, it is worth between $4000. and $5000.  I know of no other real property owned by the deceased at the time of death.

George A. Barclay was engaged in Hotel business at Pine River, also the delivery and stable business at one time, but I have never heard anything about the deceased having any interest or partnership in any of the aforesaid business of said George A. Barclay, although he loaned him money at different times, according to Grace A. McDonald.

I know nothing about the other heirs of the deceased, although I have heard Mrs. McDonald speak of them perhaps.  I do not recall anything to the affect now.

The petition for letters asked for the appointment of Dr. H. N. Rogers, and we still desire this appointment.”

This testimony of Mr. Stanton is probably the best piece of information I could have found.  I now feel confident that my research on the Barclay’s is true and good. I wonder what other stories Mr. Stanton or the others may have had to share.  Sigh!

Apparently there were other reasons for delay and Dr. H.J. Rogers was not appointed administrator till about March 13, 1906. The bond was $5,000.

Dr. H.L. Rogers also was called to testify:

Dr. Rogers called, and being duly sworn, says: –

 “I reside at Farmington, Dakota County, Minnesota.  I knew and was well acquainted with Alexander A. Barclay, prior to his death.  I know the real property he owned at Lakeville and Farmington.  The property in Lakeville consisted of a farm of 105 acres of agricultural land and that at Farmington of house and lot.  I knew something of his financial affairs and his personal property to the best of my knowledge, consisted of something like $1800.  In notes, most of which are secured and $50. in certificate of deposit & $1000 shares of mining stock.  I know that Mr. Barclay paid for the mining stock and I am familiar with the kind of stock.  I would not attempt to place a value on this stock, as it is all unlisted stock but will give the Companies and the most of the stock of Mr. Barclay.

Dr. Rogers gives a detailed list of about 7 stocks and their total $2812.50

 In addition to the above the deceased had some “Shamrock” shares…I know of no other personal property belonging to the deceased, except two old trunks, containing cloths, which are of no particular value.  There may be papers of value in those trunks.  The farm implements and farm property owned by deceased, were disposed of sometime prior to his death.  The house and lot at Farmington is worth about $800.00.  His farm is valued at about $50 an acre.

My knowledge of the heirs of the deceased was obtained from him, and through correspondence with his heirs before and since his death.  I have no personal acquaintance with but two of the deceased heirs, viz: Charles Barclay at Shakopee, Minnesota, and Grace A. McDonald at International Falls, Minnesota.

Grace A. McDonald is the only child of George A. Barclay, who was killed a few years ago at Pine River, Minnesota, and who was a brother of Alexander A. Barclay’s.  I am not acquainted with the other heirs of the deceased named in the petition, but from what I have learned believe, that John A. Barclay named in the petition died prior to the death of the deceased, and that John A. Barclay left surviving him two children, who were his only heirs, viz: Sarah Ellen Sears and John Avery Barclay.  I believe John A. Barclay had no other children, except Sarah Ellen and John Avery.

 I know of the deceased death and arranged for his funeral at Farmington, and attended his funeral.  He died at Rochester, Minnesota, December 9th, 1905, at the State Hospital for the Insane.  At my request his remains were prepared for burial at Rochester, and shipped to Farmington, where he was buried.”

You never know what you will find in a probate file.  In this case, I had copies of the packet which I paid a high price for.  I did not have the court clerk books which might shed light on the process of the probate court.

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Amarilla added to her duties as grandmother with another grandchild.

Miriam McDonald about 1909

Miriam McDonald about 1909

This grandchild was Miriam Audrey Amarilla McDonald.  Miriam was born the 15th of January 1906 in International Falls where her parents Grace (Barclay) and R.S. McDonald had moved. She was baptized on February 4, 1906 under the name Maria.  Her godfather was John McDonald and godmother was Mrs. McDonald.  I think the sponsors were R.S.’s brother and wife.

Miriam about 1913

Miriam about 1913

I have no baby pictures of Miriam. Most of the photos start when she was about 3 or 4 years old.

Miriam has been featured in her brother Keith’s blog “The Man Who Lived Airplanes.”  You can find the link to this blog on the right side panel of this blog.  Just put Miriam in the search engine of that blog and you will find lots of articles and pictures of her and her family.  I found about 10 posts.

Miriam is very important, because she was the one that got the writer of this blog and the others interested in the family genealogy.  In about 1967 she sent me six pages of typewritten notes on our family.  Later I was to find more and it eventually became about nine pages.  I am greatly indebted to Miriam for these notes and have shared them on this blog and the one mentioned above.

Miriam about 1940

Miriam about 1940

This photo above is one of my favorites of her.  She never married but had a long good life traveling to many places in the world, teaching ninth grade English for years at Franklin High School in Yakima. She was devoted to her family up to the very end.  Oh, she made the best Pecan pie ever…!

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Pine River News

Besides their interests in Longville about this time, life pretty much went on in Pine River. I am always fascinated with their movements and comings and goings.

1.  Mrs. Dawes opens a millinery store and visits her daughter in Grand Rapids, 22 April 1904.

2.  Mrs. Dawes stepped on a nail, September 1904.

3.  Mrs. Dawes and Mrs. McDonald went to Brainerd with the children, September 1904.

4. J.G. Dawes went to the Twin Cities and returned, Nov. 1904.

5. Masked ball at the Barclay Hall, masks are on sale at the Post Office, Dec. 1904.

Anyone for dancing….!!!

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Among my father, Keith’s possessions, was a postcard picture of a house with some writing on the backside.

Amarillia's House in 1911

Amarillia’s House in 1911

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The writing on the backside of the postcard reads:

“Dear Papa:  I hope you are well. We are all well. Will you please send me or bring me my Rubber Raincoat, Lovingly Vivian.  Addressed to M. R.S. McDonald International Falls, Minn.”

It was about this time in Pine River, in 1904, that J.G. Dawes had the house built.  Now I cannot verify that he was responsible for actively building the house but he seemed to think so years later when he commented about it in an affidavit for another attempt of Amarilla to secure George’s Civil War pension.

This house still stands in Pine River and is lovingly cared for by a local family.

 

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He was formally named Ronald Gordon McDonald which gets him confused with his father Ronald Sandfield McDonald. He was known as Gordon and affectionately as “Uncle Gordy.” Grace gave birth on 3 May 1904. The place of Gordon’s birth has been stated as Grand Rapids, Minnesota but I am not totally convinced.

You will find more information and pictures about the life of Gordon McDonald at my other blog “The Man Who Lived Airplanes,” here is one particular post about him: 

http://macdonellfamily.wordpress.com/2010/07/09/brother-gordy/

In the search box of the other blog mentioned above try, searching on “Gordon,” or “Ronald Gordon.”  We will meet up again with Gordon when he comes to visit his grandmother Amarilla in 1939.

Gordon as a little baby

Gordon as a little baby

This photo below is one of my favorites of my uncle.  It was taken in International Falls probably about 1909 or 1910?

GordonBakerSchlInt'lFalls

 

 

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Amarilla’s daughter Grace gave birth to Leola Vivian on the 12th of May 1902 in the county of Itasca.  It was later decided that she was born in Grand Rapids but I am not totally convinced that it was Grand Rapids.  The delayed birth certificate of my Aunt Leola Vivian was done in 1956 and even though her Uncle Alex, brother to Ronald her father, gave testimony, I am still not sure they lived in Grand Rapids back then.

Vivian born 1902 First daughter of Ronald & Grace

Vivian born 1902 First daughter of Ronald & Grace

Leola Vivian was her formal name but she usually went by Vivian or Vivi.  I wrote about her on my other blog:  The Man Who Lived Airplanes.  That blog is about her baby brother Keith and the paternal side of the family on their father’s side. Starting with the post dated June 5, 2010, Darling Vivian you will find more details and more pictures of Vivian as she was growing up.  Later I post about her school activities, teaching and marriage and maybe a little bit more about her life in future posts.

Vivian was a beautiful little girl. Here is one of the photos featured on the blog mentioned above.

An Oval of Vivian

An Oval with Vivian

Grace, her mother filled out a Baby Book.  I featured that in the post dated “Vivian’s Baby Book!” June 16, 2010. As far as I know it is the only baby book she did for her children. Amarilla is mentioned as being a witness to Vivian’s baby firsts.  She is noted as giving her gifts.

Here is the link to The Man Who Lived Airplanes: http://macdonellfamily.wordpress.com/

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