Friday, January 6, 2017

Reading about my Snow family on a snowy night

Snow is falling and I am reading the inventory of my ancestor Nicholas Snow's estate and it reminded me of another estate inventory.  The estate inventory of Henry Byrom.

Henry Byrom came to Virginia in 1703 as an indentured servant .  He was a gunsmith and he was allowed to bring a servant with him (his brother Peter Byrom).  I am not all sure about the status of an indentured servant's servant because this is the only time I have seen this.

Henry did pretty well.  He married Frances Mills on December 10, 1702.  She was the daughter of Robert Mills and Jane Brown.  Henry died in 1717 and his inventory is the subject of this post.  One of the things listed is a brass divider.  I shared the inventory with another researcher and she asked me how Henry Bryom would have used a brass room divider in his small house.

Since my father was an engineer, I knew this was a tool that Henry would have used to measure the distance between two points. This would have been necessary for a gunsmith during this time because this was long before standardized sizes for for gun parts would be used.  Each gun was a single piece of art. 

An antique brass divider is both a beautiful piece of art and a useful too.  I could not find a photo of an antique brass divider, but trust me, they are beautiful.

By Glenn McKechnie - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

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