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Samuel Eaton binds dau. Anna to Jonathan Pentz

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Samuel Eaton binds dau. Anna to Jonathan Pentz

Posted: 5 Apr 2008 6:31PM GMT
Classification: Query
Surnames: Eaton, Pentz, Ryman, Wingfield
The [Harrisonburg, Virginia] Daily News Record, Tuesday, 27 Apr 1926, p. 7, col. 1-2

Rockingham Girl in 1845 "Bound Out" by Frher [Father]In Contract Not to Marry

Old Indenture, Found in Antique Desk in Broadway, Reveals Unusual Conditions in "Binding Out" Girls in Light of these Days of Flapperism

(Special to Daily News Record)
Broadway, Va., April 26--To the modern flapper and present-day independent girl and woman it is a far-cry to 1845 in Virginia.

An old "indenture" was found a few days ago by Miss Lina Wingfield, of this place, in which Samuel Eaton, of Rockingham county, doth put and bind his daughter Anna Eaton after the manner of an apprentice with and serve the said Jonathan Pentz for three years during that period the girl shall not contract matrimony.

Hidden in Antique Desk
Miss Wingfield found the document hidden away in an antique desk which she purchased in the rural section of Rockingham community. The desk evidently belonged to Pentz, a well known Rockingham citizen in his day.

The indenture executed by Pentz and Eaton on January 15, 1848, and attested by Levi H. Ryman, prescribed unusual conditions viewed in the light of the present day. It reads as follows:
"This indenture Winesseth that Samuel Eaton of the County of Rockingham and State of Virginia hath this day put and placed and by these presents doth put and bind out his daughter Anna Eaton after the manner of an apprentice to dwell with and serve the said Jonathan Pentz from the day of the date hereof until the first day of April A.D. 1848.

"During all which time or term the said apprentice shall well and faithfully serve her master, keep his secrets and everywhere at all times readily obey his lawful commands. She shall do no damage to her master nor wilfully suffer any to be done by others, and if any to her knowledge be intended, she shall give her master reasonable notice thereof.

"She shall not waste the goods of her master nor lend them unlawfully to any.

Couldn't Marry
"She shall not contract matrimony during said term, nor shall she absent herself from the service of her said master, but is all things and at all times she shall carry and behave herself as a good and faithful apprentice ought during the whole time of term aforesaid.

"And the said Jonathan Pentz on his part doth hereby covenant, promise and agree to send the said Anna to school three months at one time, and shall well and faithfully find and provide for the said apprentice good and sufficient meat, drink and clothing, and lodging fit and convenient for said girl during the term aforesaid.

"And at the expiration thereof he shall give her a good bed, bedstead and bedding and as good and new spinning wheel.

"In testimony whereof we we hereunto set our hands and seals this 15 day of January, 1845.
Jonathan Pentz (seal)
Samuel x (his mark) Eaton (seal)
Attest,
Levi H. Ryman

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