“This volume is now much ill used and very little cared for in that office,” wrote J.H. Jones in 1898 of the inventories for 1730-52 which resided in the Surrogate’s Office in Manhattan. The records for 1776-86 fared no better and he noted that the first 44 pages of this volume are missing. Mr. Jones transcribed the surviving records by hand into a ledger book, which has now been digitized. The inventories, of which no abstracts have ever been published, pertain not just to New York County, but to locations throughout all of New York State. Volume One covers the period 1730 to 1752 and is in three parts. Volume Two covers the period 1776 to 1786.
John Henry Jones, an NYG&B member, was born in 1851 at Cold Spring Harbor, New York, and died in 1905 in New York City. He retired as a partner in his uncle’s firm Jones, Underhill and Scudder, Auctioneers in 1894 to devote himself to the early history of Long Island and his family’s genealogy. His work The Jones Family of Long Island, Descendants of Major Thomas Jones (1665-1726) and Allied Families was published posthumously in 1907. Mr. Jones transcribed numerous records that were published in the NYG&B Record. His obituary (Vol. 36, page 228) describes him thusly: “Kind-hearted, sympathetic and generous to a fault, no man in his native place was more beloved than he by people in humble life.”
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