Samuel Yinger 1816 Estate File Narrative
Introduction and Summary
The transcripts for the estate documents of Samuel Yinger were prepared from the original documents which are in the York county archives in York, Pennsylvania.
Samuel Yinger was probably the first born child and son of Martin and Catharine Grove Yinger and, therefore, a grandson of Johann Paul Jünger, the Palatine immigrant who came to America through Philadelphia in 1748. His date of birth is estimated to be in 1792 based on his first appearance on a list of taxables in Newberry Township, York County, Pennsylvania in 1813. As a general rule males were first listed at age 21 on tax lists in those times. No known tombstone or church birth record has been found which could provide a more certain date of birth.
According to his estate file he died in March or April of 1816. Therefore, he was a young man of about 24 years of age when he died. Tax list appearances from 1813 to 1816 indicate his occupation as “gunsmith” in each year. They also indicate he was an unmarried single man. His mother Catherine was a daughter of Samuel Grove, Sr. who was a well known gunsmith in Newberry Township. Catherine had a brother named Samuel Grove, Jr. He followed in his namesake father’s footsteps by also being a gunsmith.
Samuel Yinger was probably named after his Grandfather Samuel Grove, Sr. and his uncle Samuel Grove, Jr. Furthermore, he almost certainly learned the gunsmithing trade from them. His estate inventory includes accounts receivable due from customers which he and his uncle, Samuel Grove, Jr. had together in a partnership of gunsmithing before Samuel Yinger went out on his own for a short period before his untimely death.
Martin and Catherine Grove Yinger had one other known child beside Samuel. He was a brother to Samuel named Paul. Paul was born on September 17, 1793 according to his tombstone. His estate file and life and times are discussed in other sections of this web site. The life and times of their parents, Martin and Catherine are also discussed in another section of this web site.
Transcripts prepared from the original documents in Samuel Yinger’s estate file are included on this web site and can be viewed by following the links at the bottom of this introduction and summary. The documents which comprise Samuel Yinger’s estate file with my comments about certain important items to note are as follows:
Renunciation of Catherine (Grove) (Yinger) Cline to Jacob Kirk, Jr. for Administration
At the time of her son Samuel Yinger’s death in 1816, his mother Catherine was remarried to William Cline. Her first husband Martin Yinger had died, probably in the 1790’s, and she, therefore, would have been the default administrator for their son Samuel’s estate. Discussion about the premature death of Martin in the 1790’s while he was in his late 20’s or early 30’s is reserved for the section of this web site discussing he and Catherine’s lives and times.
Catherine’s signature is indicated with “her mark” which indicates she probably had not learned to write. As mentioned in other estate file document discussions on this web site, this was very common for the times in which these events occurred. Men were generally the ones who handled legal and business affairs while women were “keepers of the home.” As such, women were not expected to handle legal and business affairs for their families. When circumstances forced them to fulfill that role they often delegated that responsibility to a trusted male relative or neighbor.
Isaac Kirk accepted the responsibility delegated to him by Catherine’s renunciation to be the administrator for her son Samuel Yinger’s estate.
The Inventory and Appraisement of Samuel Yinger’s estate
The inventory and appraisement for Samuel Yinger’s estate indicates his primary occupation was gunsmith. Most of the inventory enumerates tools, implements, raw materials, etc. related to that profession. A significant portion of his assets at the time of his death in March or April, 1816 were in the form of accounts receivable from customers for his gunsmith work.
Apparently, he was on his own in the gunsmith business at the end of his life because his inventory first indicates receivables from customers in which the amount listed as owed to him is denominated in dollars and cents. In another section of the inventory a listing of amounts owed to him by customers which he and his uncle Samuel Grove, Jr. shared in a 50/50 partnership are denominated in pounds, shillings and pence. Possibly this indicates an apprenticeship period with his uncle during his teenage years in the first decade of the 1800’s at a time when currency was still patterned after the British system. A review of the list of accounts and customers indicates a broad clientele and an insight into the many male community members in Newberry Township in the early 1800’s.
In addition to assets pertaining to his gunsmith occupation, the inventory also indicates farming possessions like a cow, 2 pigs, summer hay, farming tools, etc. His inventory also lists oak shingles and 32 house logs which may be an indication of his plans to build his own log home before a premature death intervened.
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