After coughing up a decent chunk of money for copies of Samuel Bevier Sturtevant’s probate package to the Denver County Probate Court, I was annoyed to find out that Denver Public Library has copies of Denver County probate records from 1930-1989. *sigh* I also found out that since his wife, Lotta, survived him, her will and probate is a lot bigger. Well, now I know where I’ll be going to look for Lotta’s monsterous probate package!!
Sam’s packet was quite interesting despite the hefty copying fees. The most important finds out of these records were verifying family connections and pinpointing where family members were living in the 1960s. I also found out a bit more about Sam’s interests and associations. Lots of nice clues!
Sam’s health had been deteriorating for some time which probably prompted him to write his will. Three months later he died at the Presbyterian Hospital in Denver on November 8, 1960. The last survivor of five siblings, and having no surviving children of his own, Samuel’s will reveals that he remained connected with his Lyckman cousins in Colorado and his two nieces on the west coast.
Ultimately his wife, Lotta, was the sole beneficiary of his estate, but he stated his wishes if Lotta preceded him in death. This simple list provides wonderful insight into the people and organizations that were important to Sam.
- Father’s oil paintings to the Boulder Historical Society
- House with furniture and furnishings to cousin Vera (Lyckman) Hill of Denver
- $2000 to cousin Ruth (Lyckman) Hansen of Fountain, Colorado.
- $2500 to cousin Ernest Lyckman of San Acacio, Colorado
- $3000 to cousin Walter Lyckman of San Acacio, Colorado
- $2000 to niece Marjorie (Weeks) Leatart of Long Beach, California
- $2000 to niece Betty (Weeks) Hursh of Larsen Air Force Base, Washington
- $2000 to cousin Vera (Lyckman) Hill of Denver
- $200 to Josephine Norlie (no relation)
- $500 to the Social Order of Beauceant of Denver, for the welfare program
- $1500 to Epiphany Episcopal Church of Denver
- $2000 fo the Ohio Northern University at Ada, Ohio [Sam's alma mater]
- $2000 to the Colorado’s Women’s College of Denver, scholarship fund
If any person or organization died or lapsed prior to Sam’s death, remainder of estate would be distributed as follows:
- 75% to El Jebel Temple, AAONMS of Denver for the Shriners’ Hospitals for Crippled Children
- 25% to cousin Vera (Lyckman) Hill, if living; if deceased 25% to El Jebel Temple for general charity fund
Beyond the typical property and investment listings, one unexpected item I found out about Sam was that he was a stamp collector! While I’m not a hard-core philatelist, I do have a fondness for stamps and the amazing art and history represented on them. Sam’s collection was extensive enough for the appraisers handling his estate to estimate his large collection between $5000 and $6000! After punching these numbers into an inflation calculator Sam’s collection would have an estimated value between $38,200 and $45,900 in 2011!! And that doesn’t count for the variation in the collector’s value of the old stamps. Quite impressive, Sam!
Now that I know Lotta was the sole beneficiary, I hope to find her probate packet at Denver Public Library during my trek there this weekend. Then hopefully I’ll get more details about the lives of Lotta, Sam, and the Sturtevant legacy.