Estate Inventories are Usually Grouped

Transcribing old estate inventories can be a challenge. The handwriting can be difficult to read. The spellings can be phonetic and sometimes based on a pronunciation that is foreign to a modern speaker of the same language. The items may be household or farm items that have not been used in centuries.

Google searches will not resolve every difficult to transcribe item. While items can be listed in an estate inventory in any order, they are usually grouped–either by purpose of the item or where they were located on the property. This is more likely if you are using the estate inventory appraisal and not the list of estate items sold. The appraisal of the estate was more likely to be done by walking around the property. This can sometimes be visualized when thinking about the items as you are transcribing them.

Are they in the house (and the kitchen, living area, etc.)? Are they in the barn? Are they walking around the field? Where would the other items listed near this item probably be located on the property?

Estate inventories, like other records, are best analyzed when one thinks how was this item originally created?