Want to gain insight into the time period in which your ancestor lived? Consider reading the local court order books page by page. This can be especially helpful in the United States before 1850. Court order books provide a journal of what actions the court took, when court was actually in session, etc. Many local court order books are online at FamilySearch.
It will give you a better feel for what types of things you may find in these records, some insight into life during the time period, and help you to interpret the entries you have found for your family of interest.
I gained quite a bit of local knowledge reading one for my Virginia county in the late 18th century.
And my ability to read the handwriting got better.