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Old documents

(12 Posts)
Urmstongran Tue 01-Oct-19 16:42:07

We’ve just been over to see my second dad and he showed us the old rent book for the house his father later bought, which he then inherited. (He is now in his late 80’s)

The rent book shows (in ink and beautiful cursive writing) that the annual sum of £3 and 10 shillings was paid in 1911. Apparently it was split into bi-annual payments.

The house, in the West Highlands was eventually bought by his father in 1925. It was such an interesting read.

Any other old documents kept by other GNetters?

Chestnut Tue 01-Oct-19 16:54:33

I bought a flat in a Victorian house and the original house conveyance documents from 1877 were stored in a box. Very large sheets of stiff parchment (difficult to unfold) and beautifully handwritten in proper ink. The wording was very long and detailed and perfectly lined up, and goodness knows how long it took the poor guy to write it. I think I would find that level of handwriting physically impossible even when I was younger! To be honest, it felt like an honour to hold the document as it was such a work of art.

MamaCaz Tue 01-Oct-19 17:01:43

My mum has the inventory for the sale of a relative's home and belongings - the belongings included a wooden leg!

Liz46 Tue 01-Oct-19 17:09:10

My aunt recently died, aged 95. The rarely threw anything away and my cousin found the beautifully written accounts of a 'dad's army' from Kent. My daughter took them and contacted museums. She has managed to find one in Kent that have said they would take them.

EllanVannin Tue 01-Oct-19 17:09:34

Yes I have some very old deeds which had belonged to a cotton merchant in the 1800's. They were given to my H and I by the solicitor who was dealing with the late family home when we took it over from my late SiL .
It was a Victorian villa overlooking the sea. If my memory serves me right without digging out the information, the property cost the owner £11,000 which was a heck of a lot in the mid-1800's. I even have an old parchment plan of one of the properties my late SiL owned. So interesting.

The row of these unique houses/villas features often in the local history of the area.

M0nica Tue 01-Oct-19 18:02:38

DH's grandfather was an antiques dealer in a Tudor house in a town in Bucks. I have the indenture signed and sealed when it changed hands in the mid 17th century.

My MiL borrowed it from her brothers who took over the shop when their father retired so that I could transcribe it, she told me to keep it, as she was worried her brothers did not realise its importance and the wife of one in particular would just throw it away.

I also have the certificate that my great grandfather was given when he became a freeman of the City of London. It dates to the late 1970s. Unlike today, when to be given the Freedom of the City is a an honour.

In the 1870s, everyone who was employed by the City Corporation was automatically made a Freeman. My great grandfather, an Irish immigrant, was employed as a general labourer.

Septimia Tue 01-Oct-19 18:11:01

I have some letters sent home from Madeira and South Africa by great-great uncles, also some sent by a great uncle from the front in WWI.

I also have the Maths exercise book in which my 3rd great uncle wrote his school work. He was about 6 at the time and was doing really complicated calculations in rods, perches, chains etc.

Old documents give fascinating insights to life in the past.

Grammaretto Tue 01-Oct-19 18:12:51

We have the parchment deeds for this house somewhere
They came in extremely useful some years ago when developers next door were breaking down our boundary stone wall.
I caught them and stopped the bulldozer but the foreman told me it was his land, When he showed me the crude map/plan he was working with I said wait a minute, I went indoors and luckily found the original deeds and map showing whose land it was.
They did reinstate the wall, badly, and have departed to cause problems elsewhere no doubt.

HettyMaud Tue 01-Oct-19 18:14:08

I would urge anyone who has old documents to give them to your local museum. Then you can be sure they will be valued.

LondonGranny Tue 01-Oct-19 18:16:48

On the documents front, just old ration books. What I do hang onto is long dead relatives address books and letters from a close friend who died too young. Handwriting is so personal and precious.

M0nica Tue 01-Oct-19 18:17:01

The property indenture will be going to the Buks County archive. The Freedom of the City of London is in the family archive, which is going to my son, who shares my antiquarian interests.

kittylester Tue 01-Oct-19 18:24:44

We live in a converted Victorian Board School. We have the transfer deed for the field on which it is built from the farmer to the board and the various donations from village worthies.