Does anyone know what was involved in witnessing land transfers, appraising estates, and administering estates during this time period in VA? Were those involved licensed, were they paid, was it a sideline of a particular career? Every land transfer had multiple witnesses, but the Hume(s) appear to have been involved rather frequently. George Hume (Home) was a surveyor, but from 1725 to 1738 he is on file as having witnessed 29 land transfers in Spotsylvania Co., VA. His son George Hume Jr. apparently was engaged in similar activities in Culpeper Co., VA and appears to have introduced his brother John Hume and his son John Hume into the same activities in Culpeper Co., VA. One or more John Hume(s) were involved in witnessing, appraising, or administrating estates at least 32 times, from 1755 to 1829. What was their incentive to be involved in these activities so frequently? If they were licensed where should I look for that information?