This week’s prompt in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge is ‘Surprise.’ The timing couldn’t be more perfect.
My mom’s maternal family has lived in Angelina County, Texas since the mid 1850’s and many still do to this day. They were not rich but acquired farmland over the years and worked their fields. Benjamin Franklin Nerren was my grandmother’s grandfather. He was one of those farmers in Angelina County.
Benjamin, over time, divided up his farmland to each of his 7 children. The exact size of each parcel is unknown at this time. My grandmother’s father was Benjamin Holt Nerren. He was murdered in 1929 leaving a wife and 5 daughters. Benjamin Franklin Nerren gave Holt’s wife his inheritance of a parcel of land with the stipulation she remain a widow. Since the widow did marry, the inheritance was taken away and divided between the daughters instead.
Last week, we were contacted by a gentleman from Angelina County, Texas who was hired to establish heirship of the property in question. It appears the original farmland has been subdivided over time, and it is unknown if we still have legal claim of inheritance. This was certainly a ‘surprise’ to us. He stated that BP has interest in extracting natural gas from the property and needs to find all of the legal owners.
We also learned my grandmother’s eldest sister sold her interest in the property. Another sister willed her interest to her 3 living sisters at the time of her death. The remaining sister willed her interest in the land to her husband. My grandmother didn’t have a will and we are not even sure if she was aware of the property in question.
This story will be updated as new information becomes available.