April 9, 2008
Today, I uncovered this flier amongst papers relating to the executorship of Benjamin Chew's estate. This tells a little bit of the story of "Bad Ben" (Benjamin Chew, III), who contested the sale of Cliveden, the Chew's family home in Germantown, and was at the heart of a massive family dispute regarding the estate.
On the back of one of the summaries of court proceedings was written in faint pencil "mischevious machinations"; the document discussed forfeiture of property. "Bad Ben" was removed from his role in the execution of his father's estate, but contested all of the decisions made by the remaining executors, thereby dissolving the family fortune in legal costs.
This is just one piece of a family drama that consumes many linear feet of material. These materials comprise the next large portion of our processing work.