In a previous post, I briefly mentioned the disappearance of my 4th Great Grandfather, James Joslin, sometime between 1850 and 1860. That is a mystery that will likely go unsolved; it is not known whether he died or took off for parts unknown. However, there is yet another enigma concerning James. . .
In July 1841 he sold 40 acres of the original 80 acres he had purchased from the government on August 25, 1838 in Whitley County, Indiana. In itself, that is in no way unusual. However, he sold it for $50 to his 16 year old son Lysander! Then, three years later, on August 1, 1844 James sold the remaining 40 acres - 20 acres to each of his other two sons, Edward and Joseph. Edward, whose name was actually Edwin, was only 14 years old at the time and Joseph was 12. That seems more than a little unusual to me. Was there no minimum age requirement for purchasing land? It just makes you wonder what was really going on. There must have been a reason that James sold the land to his young sons, but again, that's something we'll probably never find out. The land record does not provide any clues, it simply gives the basic facts involved with the sale.
In the 1850 census, Lysander is the head of his own household since he is married and living with his wife and the first four of their 15 children. James too is listed as head of his own household. He does not own any real estate. Listed in James' household are Edwin, age 20 who owns real estate valued at $200 and Joseph who owns real estate valued at $160. I haven't found the records of the transactions yet, but by 1860, Lysander was sole owner of the original 80 acre tract that was purchased by James in 1838.