An American Family History

Mary Bolen Taylor

Bolin is a Swedish ornamental name composed of the elements bo ‘farm’ + -lin, suffix of Swedish family names. Other spellings include Bolen, Boling.
Guardianship is when a court gives an adult custody of a child and/or the responsibility of managing the child's property. Before women could own property, guardians were appointed for their minor children if their husband died.

Mary Bolen Taylor was born about 1805 in Ohio. Her step-son, John Taylor, listed her name as Mary Bolden in the Wesley Chapel Methodist Church records. She was between 20 and 30 in 1830. She may have been Ann Bolen Taylor's sister.

She left Pennsylvania with her family and became a pioneer in Ohio.

She married her sister's widower, David Taylor, about 1826. Their children and life together are described in detail in the section on David and Anna Taylor.

Children of David Taylor
and Anna Bolen Taylor

  • John Taylor
  • Abraham Taylor
  • Richard Taylor
  • David Taylor
  • Jacob Taylor
  • Mary Ann Taylor Barr
  • Elizabeth Taylor
  • and Mary Bolen
  • Ann Taylor Dill
  • Margaret Taylor Winget
  • Nancy Taylor Cox
  • She became a widow when he died in 1834. She was not appointed the guardian of her own children and all of her husband's property was sold to pay his debts. She was only provided with $150.00 worth of goods (see below).

    Women played an essential role in American society as mothers and homemakers.



    A Dower is a provision for a wife's support should her husband die before her. Her dower right was the use of ⅓ of her husband's estate. The dower was settled on the bride at the time of the wedding. A drowry was the property a bride brought to her marriage.

    It was common for bequests to include wearing apparel.
    Coverlets (Coverlid) are woven bedcovers, used as the topmost covering on a bed.

    Page 22 of David Taylor's Estate
    A schedule of property set off by us the appraisers aforesaid for the support of the widow and Children one year from the death of the intestate to wit for the widow and six children estimated at one hundred and fifty dollars.

    To wit the provisions on hand            5.00
    To wit one brindled heifer             3.50
    To wit two lots of potatoes             4.00
    To wit one Brindled Cow                                      11.00
    To wit one red Cow with blind eye                   11.00
    To wit One red steer  14.00
    To wit one brindled steer with white lock       8.50
    To wit one yoke of cattle with the yoke    30.00
    To wit two Calves       2.50
    To wit one red Steer                    3.50
    To wit one bay Mare 50.00
    To wit four hogs                                 7.00

    Appraised and set off by us the seventh day of September 1854
    John M. Wilson, Silas D. Allen, James Skillen, appraisers   


    Page 9 of David Taylor's Estate - Widow Dower
    The widows property of Which She is not to account for as a part of her husbands Estate

    To wit bedsteads beds and bedding   31.50
    To wit 49 skeins of woolen yarn    8.16 ⅓
    To wit 112 ½ ? Pounds of Cotten yarn   3.43 3/4
    To wit five head of sheep  5.00
    To wit one red Cow 13.00
    To wit one Brass kettle and skillet 3.62 ½
    To wit 27 pounds of Wool 10.12 ½
    To wit One lot of flease 1.90
    To wit some rolls and Apron .37 ½
    Also two spinning wheels a large and a small one 4.50
    Also her husbands wearing apparel not valued total amt 81.47

    Certified by us the appraisers
    John M. Wilson
    James Skillon
    Silas T. Allen

    We also certify that the widow selected four coverlets appraised at 15 dollars in lieu of 15 dollars the debtor is allowed by law. 15.00

    The first Europeans settled in the Northwest Territory in 1788. Migrants came from New York and New England. Ohio was admitted to the Union as the 17th state on March 1, 1803.

    A spinning wheel is a device for making thread or yarn. and was an essential part of Early American life. An unmarried woman would often take on the important job of spinning for the household, thus the term "spinster."
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    ©Roberta Tuller 2023
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