I only have copies that were given to me. Two begin with the phrase "Letters of Administration" in the first sentence. Another is started with "Estate of Order to Sell Slaves." Another entry mentions "relinquishing rights to administer." Another appears to request a quick sale of property because of perishable items on the inventory, another is an inventory and then there is an "Account of Sales."
Consistently on all records, the names are listed as (and in this order):
William Cowan, David Cowan, James Cowan, Joel A. Garrett and his wife Nancy E. Garrett and Samuel Cowan.
All of the above are KNOWN children of this marriage except James. I suspect that James is also one of the children, but has just never had much research on his branch. There is also a known nephew named James. Many of the Cowan researchers feel that James (from the above probate records) was that nephew. I think he is another son and just wanted some opinions from other researchers.
On land records, James lives right in the middle of these known children on his own land. They all bought these land parcels during the very same short period of time (about 4 years). The mother is living immediately next door to James on the 1850 census. I think more evidence points to him being another son more than a nephew.
Opinions anyone? No relationships are mentioned on the documents except the daughter being the "wife of" the son-in-law. No distinctions are made in the other men's names.
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