Included in Christian’s probate file was a copy of his will. It was prepared on July 23, 1906, about two years before he died.
In it, he appointed Mr. J. J. Johnson as his executor. This could be the same John Johnson who signed an affidavit in Christian’s homestead claim in 1879. In the homestead affidavit, he said he was said he had known Christian since 1873. I haven’t definitively located J. J. Johnson in the census records (too many Johnsons!). But it seems reasonable to assume that Christian might appoint his old homesteader friend as his executor.
The witnesses were Frank Hakel, J. W. Gorder and J. J. Pospisil. Based on census records, it appears that Hakel and Pospisil were farmer neighbors, both of them immigrants from Austria. J.W. Gorder was a Wahoo physician.
The will was apparently drawn up by an attorney, but I don’t know who the attorney was. Interesting that his son Will’s lease and deed documents the previous year were all professionally typed while this will is hand-written.
The text of the will is below. Next time I will comment on its provisions.
being of sound mind and memory and realizing the uncertianty
of the mortal life, do hereby make, publish and declare this
my last will and testament.
First: I direct that all my just debts and the expenses of my
last sickness and the administration of my estate and my funeral
expenses be paid out of my personal property.
Second: I give devise and bequeath to my beloved wife
Johanna Pearson all the residue of my personal
property for her sole use forever.
Third: I give to my said wife Johanna Pearson
all of my real estate of which I may die seized
and possessed for her use and enjoyment during
her natural life.
Fourth: After the decease of my wife Johanna, I give to
my son Per William Pearson the East Half of the South
West quarter of Section Twenty Six (26) in Township No. Fourteen
(14) Range No. Six (6) in Saunders County Nebraska, for which he
is to pay to the other of my heirs, hereinafter named, the sum of
Fifteen Hundred Dollars.
Fifth: I give to my children: Carl Oscar, Paulina Mathilda,
Fritz Fritioph, Ernest Albin, Agda Elida, all the residue
of my real estate of which I may die seized and possessed,
share and share alike.
Sixth: I hereby appoint J.J. Johnson of Wahoo Nebraska Executor
of this my last Will and Testament.
In testimony whereof I have hereunto subscribed my name the 23rd day of July 1906
witness to mark
We, whose name are hereunto subscribed, do hereby certify that the testator
subscribed his name to this instrument in our presence and in the presence of each of us
and declared at the same time in our presence and hearing that this instrument was
his last will and testament and we at his request sign our names hereto in his
presence as attesting witnesses, and certify at the same timne said Christian Pearson
signed the same he was of sound mind and memory.
Frank Hakel residing in Weston, Nebraska
J.W. Gorder residing in WEston, Nebraska
[additional info may have been cut off]