I, Isaac C. Sutherland, of the Town of Milo County of Bureau and state of Illinois, being in ill health, but of sound and disposing mind and memory and being mindful of the uncertainty of human life do now make publish and declare this my last will and testament.
Iowa Wills and Probate Records, 1758-1997
When I first saw the probate record for Isaac Sutherland in my Ancestry.com hints, I assumed that the record referred to Isaac Sutherland senior (1802-1877). I tagged it to his profile and moved on. I planned to transcribe the will and write up an article for the blog.
After slogging through the 145 yr old handwritten legal document, I realized that the will was for his son, Isaac Calvin Sutherland (1846-1874), Charles Wesley’s next older brother. He was dying at the age of 27. The will was his last effort to make sure that his children were taken care of.
Isaac Calvin was born to Isaac and Margaret Sutherland in 1846. He was their next to youngest child, three years older than Charles Wesley. He is recorded in the federal census of 1850 and 1860 living in Milo, Illinois with his parents. By 1870, Isaac Calvin had his own farm in Guthrie County, Iowa, married and father to one daughter.
After 1870, Isaac Calvin’s family disappears from the census records. Without his will, we would have no idea what happened to this Isaac.