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So, this is Dad and Mom. Ray is the son of Conrad Herrmann and Kate Bundock. He is the step-son of Edith Armstrong and Wally Hewitt. ...

Friday, July 26, 2013

J.S. Bundock and the Inheritance

One of the most interesting research discoveries in the Bundock history was just how close the Bundock family came to being wealthy. 
In researching news articles of the day, and through family stories, Samuel's wife, Mary Ann Dister (also spelled Diester), came from a prominent family lineage although further research has been unable to document her lineage.
But, apparently, Henry and his brother, John Samuel, received a missive from a Solicitor in England sometime in the early to mid - 1890s. The Solicitor stated that the brothers were heir to an estate through their mother. 
According to Dad, Henry was not interested in pursuing the claim the brothers had to the estate - but John Samuel was very interested. He procured the services of the Solicitor and, although it took several years, the claim appeared solid.
According to various news articles (all of which had facts in error in one form or another), the estate in question had been held in chancery for about 200 years. It consisted mainly of prime real estate in the heart of London among other items of value. 
When the Solicitor assured John Samuel that his claim was valid and he was confident that John would inherit a portion, at least, of the estate, preparations were made for the trip to England.  It had been decided that John Samuel would be accompanied by his son Emmet (John Emmet) who at the time lived in Hawaii. 
Emmet sailed from Hawaii to San Francisco in 1900 and joined his father on the trip cross country to New York where they would sail to England. 
Unfortunately, JS and Emmet never reached New York as John Samuel died in his sleep at the Nicholas Hotel on a stopover in Jefferson City, Missouri. According to the Coroner's Inquest, John Samuel died from a pre-existing heart or stomach ailment. 
Emmet stayed in Jefferson City to take care of the arrangements for his father's remains. Apparently, it was decided to have him buried in Jefferson City rather than transport the remains back to California.
Emmet did make it to England a year later, but he came home "empty-handed". One can only surmise that it was either too late to lay claim on the estate or that he was ousted out of the claim by other inheritors. 
Needless to say, it was a tragedy to a family that struggled financially after the death of John Samuel.