21 April 2012

The issue of the court case over Thomas Macindoe's will

It has long been assumed by living members of the Macindoe family that the court case over Thomas Macindoe's (1841-1901) will - being about the appointment of the executors - frittered away most of the money in the estate, and this was why the mysterious death bed message, that Thomas set aside £100 for the publication of, was apparently never published. Although the court case made the papers, it did not appear to be a long and protracted affair which might have sucked up all the money. Was it only the absence of the publication of the death bed message that made us all think that?

The other day I was looking through the probate records for Thomas' daughter Margaret Kirkwood (Maggie) Macindoe (1883-1929), and now I'm really wondering if all the money did disappear into legal coffers. Because when Maggie died she owned one of the properties that her father Thomas had in his estate i.e. it was most likely part of her share of the inheritance. So now I wonder, did any of Maggie's siblings own properties listed in their father's estate as well? I haven't seen the probate records for any of Maggie's siblings, but State Records holds a number of them: Thomas Macindoe jnr (1870-1947), Walter Walker Macindoe (1866-1955), Andrew Paterson Macindoe (1868-1956), and Norman Macindoe (1874-1956). As well as that, though Stewart Macindoe's (1872-1944) probate records are not held, his wife Mattie Carr Macindoe's (1875-1962) are, and considering she died after him, any property in his name may have been willed to her.

So that's another trip to State Records required. It will be interesting to see if any of the other children owned properties listed in their father's estate as well. Perhaps it was just that none of his children wanted his death bed message published, even if there was enough money there for it. I wonder what it said!!


  1. No wonder you're intrigued! Your case demonstrates how important it is to work beyond what everyone says, and look at the records for verification. How fantastic that there are so many probate records to look at.

  2. I can put you in touch with Stewart and Mattie's grand-daughter, she knows a fair bit!