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Wills & Estates

Wills list the person's to whom the testator is leaving his/her property. When the testator dies, the will is admitted to probate [proven] and an executor is appointed. The filing for admission to probate is recorded in the Testamentary records along with the appointment of the executor.

The wills on file in the Archives cover the period of 1803 through 1999. Later ones are in the Probate Court. Each book contains an index and there are also compiled indexes available. 

Note: These wills are exact copies of the original ones which are locked in a vault in the Butler County Court House. The original wills are not available for general research and copying due to their fragile nature.

Staff members or volunteers can help make copies of any record from these volumes.

Estate Packets contain the records pertaining to the disposition of the decedent's property. The packets may or may not list heirs, inventory of property, bills of sale and final accounting. Both the original indexes of the packets and a compiled index for the years 1803 through 1900 are available. 

Note: These are all original documents and many are extremely fragile. Handle them very carefully. Copies of the documents are to be made only be a staff member or volunteer researcher. 

The will books and the index to decedents and estates are on open shelves and may be directly accessed by researchers. Estate packets can only be obtained through a staff member or volunteer and only one may be viewed at a time.