Fremont County, Iowa
First Deed Made and Recorded
The first deed recorded in Fremont County:
This indenture, made and entered into this 22nd day of August, in the year of our Lord, one thousand eight hundred and forty-nine, by and between Peter Livermore and Julia Livermore,
his wife, of the county of Fremont and state of Iowa, of the first part, and Wm. Keutsier of the county and state aforesaid, of the second part, witnesseth that the said party of
the first part, for and in consideration of the sum of four hundred dollars, to them in hand paid -- the receipt whereof is hereby acknowledged -- have given,
granted; bargained and sold, and by these presents do give, grant, bargain, sell, and convey and confirm unto the said party of the second part and to his heirs and assigns forever;
a certain tract, piece, or parcel of land, being the one undivided half of the northwest fractional quarter of section 23, township 67 north and range 42 west, containing one
hundred and fifty-four acres and seventy-seven hundredths, situate, lying, and being in the county and state aforesaid, to have and to hold the said undivided tract, piece, or parcel
of land, with all the appurtenances thereunto belongihg (sic) or in any wise appertaining to the only proper use, benefit, and behoof of the said William Keutsle;
the said party of the second part, and to his heirs and assigns forever; and the said party of the first part, for himself; his heirs, assigns, executors and administrators,
covenant and agree to and with the said party of the second part and his heirs and assigns, the said undivided tract, piece,, or parcel of land and bargained premises
and every part and parcel thereof the said party of the second part and to his heirs and assigns, all manner of claims will warrant and forever defend the same by these presents.
In witness whereof the said party of the first part have hereunto set their band and seals the day and year above written.
his Peter >< Livermore [seal] mark
her Julia >< Livermore [seal]mark
STATE of Iowa
Be it remembered, that on this 28th day of August, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and forty-nine, personally appeared before me, the undersigned,
a justice of the peace within and for the county aforesaid, Peter Livermore and Julia Livermore, his wife, who are personally known to me to be the persons whose names
are subscribed to the above and foregoing instrument, acknowledged the same to be their act and deed for the purposes therein expressed; and the said Julia Livermore was
by me made acquainted with the character and contents of the above and foregoing instrument of writing, acknowledged, eta an examination separate and apart from her said husband,
and she declared that she executed the same and relinquishes her dower in the real estate above mentioned, voluntarily, freely, and without compulsion or undue influence
of her said husband. Given under my band and seal this day and year above written.
James Cumings, J. P. [seal]
I do hereby certify that the within and foregoing deed was by me, the under-signed, recorder within and for the county aforesaid, recorded on the 8th day of October, A. U., 1849.
A. H. Argtyle, Recorder.
It will be observed that in the acknowledgment of the above instrument the justice of the peace states that he examined the said Julia Livermore
* * * separate and apart from her said husband," and that she acknowledged that she had signed the deed "without compulsion" etc.
***This was the practice under the old common law, which then was in force, in the state-a practice now obsolete. The theory was that the husband was the lord, and master of his wife,
and that she executed merely his will and pleasure when she did anything in his presence. With the abolition of the common law came the newer and better theory that the woman
is a free moral agent, with rights, privileges, and spunk. Indeed there are many instances where the gray mare is known to be the better horse. The idea that a wife must be examined
apart from her liege lord as to whether or not she had executed ad instrument without compulsion or bulldozing on his part, would to-day be considered preposterous.
Source: Des Moines, Iowa Historical Society, 1881; History of Fremont County