eg260.htm - Revised 1997 August 11

Eddleman Tax Records in Kentucky

Written by Harold Eddleman, Descendent of Catherine Eddleman

When a man became 21 in Kentucky (and Indiana) he had to pay a Poll Tax of $1 per year if he wanted to vote. If you failed to pay your property taxes, the County took your property. The County did not take your head if failed to pay tax on it. I have heard many old timers brag that they had always paid their Poll Tax; it was a matter of pride and good citizenship. Thus, the year a man first paid Poll Tax should be his 21st year of age, unless it was delayed one year as property taxes are in present-day Indiana. John Burger, John Burger Jr, John Eddleman, Daniel Eddleman, and later Michael Burger always paid their taxes the same day. Since all these people paid tax the same day and all signed the deed when Catherine's original land of 1778 was sold, we have lots of evidence that Catherine Eddleman remarried John Burger Sr after loss of her husband to causes not known to me.

I would like to know more about the tax rules of those days. Why all the emphasis on watercourses. Did presence of streams increase the taxes? Can the tax rolls give us any information about who lived in Catherine's area during her first years in Kentucky, were the neighbors relatives. If we could determine her neighbors in the early years, their descendants might have information about Eddleman or what was happening in those days: diseases, Indians, etc.

People ask me if I have tried to find the location of the Catherine land grant in Kentucky. I have not. Robert, husband of Louise Eddleman of Springfield, Ky, was a vocational agriculture teacher. His son is a soil conservationist. They say it is impossible to determine land locations. Recall Abraham Lincoln's family had 3 farms taken from them for that reason, losing everything, they moved to Indiana.

Paying County Taxes in Fayette County

I have no Fayette County tax records. I do not know if I checked for such taxes at the State Museum. I have not been to Fayette County Courthouse. I have heard Fayette county records are complete from the founding of the county. 1786 would be the last year Catharine ( and John Burger) owed taxes in Fayette County. We need to check for those records.

Paying County Taxes in Bourbon County

Bourbon County was split off Fayette County in 1786. 1787 is the first year of Bourbon County records. I carefully checked for 1786 tax records of Bourbon County and found none.

Date Paid.........Taxpayer...........Poll....Horses... Real Estate, etc.
1787 ......No Eddleman...I do not know if I looked for Burger...1797 first year any Eddleman listed
1797 Jul 4.......John Eddleman .....1.........1......No watercourses, etc. First year John paid any tax
......subtracting we get: 1797 - 21 => John Eddleman was born ~1776 (prob in North Carolina)
1797 Jul 4.......John Burger Sr......1.........7.....400 acres....2 blacks....Townsend Waters
1797 Jul 4.......John Burger Jr.......1.........3.....no land
....paid 92,93,94,95,96..I think I mean both Burgers paid every year but I did not record them
1798 ....no tax book available...
1799 Sep 12....John Eddleman......1........9......one white over 16.....no Daniel poll tax.
I wonder what the catergory "one white over 16" means.
1800 June 4.....John Eddleman......1........4.......no real estate
1800 June 4.....Daniel Eddleman....1........2.......no real estate
1800-21=> Daniel born ~1779
1801 May 19...John Eddleman......1........2.......no land
1801 May 19...Daniel Eddleman... 1........3.......no land
1802 Jun 10.....John Eddleman......1........4.......no land
1802 Jun 10.....Daniel Eddleman....1........4.......no land
1803 May 18...John Eddleman......1........4.....50 acres of land
1803 May 18...Daniel Eddleman...1........4......50 acres of land
There were 3 different tax rates on land, Eddleman and Burger had to pay the highest rate. Each land parcel also showed: to whose name entered, to whose name surveyed, to whose name patented(?). for each of these notations the Eddleman boys' land carried the name of Jno Burger. For the years 1803-1809 inclusive, John Eddleman and Daniel each appear to have had the use of and paid taxes on 50 acres of John Burger land which was in the highest tax catergory. For the next years I will omit all these details on entry, survey, and patent as it was to John Burger each year. I did not copy Burgers' tax records except for 1797.
1804 Jul 4.........John Eddleman.....1........5.....50 acres
1804 Jul 4........ Daniel Eddleman..1........5.....50 acres
1805 Aug 15.....John Eddleman.....1........4.....50 acres
1805 Aug 15.....Daniel Eddleman...1.......6.....50 acres
1806 Jun 25.......John Eddleman....1........5.....50 acres
1806 Jun 25.......Daniel Eddleman..1........5....50 acres
1807 Aug 22......John Eddleman....1........6.....50 acres
1807 Aug 22......Daniel Eddlema....1.......4.....50 acres
1808 Apr 1........John Eddleman....1........3.....50 acres
1808 Apr 1........Daniel Eddleman..1.......4.....50 acres
1809 Jun 12.......John Eddleman....1........6.....50 acres
1809 Jun 12.......Daniel Eddleman..1........5....50 acres
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1809 was the last year that tax payments are shown for any Eddleman.
In 1810 the county combined records to one book but there was no Eddleman in it. Recall the family did not buy Indiana land until 1811. I do not know why we have these couple years of no taxes paid. I did not check whether the horses and land taxes were paid by John Burger for those years in question.

The Birth Dates of John and Daniel can be computed from the dates they first paid poll tax. Daniel did not pay poll tax in 1799, but did pay in 1800. Since this tax was paid at age 21, we subtract 21 from 1800 and find his birth year was 1779 which fits perfectly with Catherine's claim that she settled on her Kentucky land in 1778 and Daniel's claim on all census records that he was born in Kentucky. John first paid poll tax in 1797 which places his birth year as 1776, unless he was late paying his poll tax. From census records I had calculated John's birth year as 1770-75 and felt 1774 was the best fit. It seems there is a possibility that John Eddleman might be older than 21 when he paid poll tax in 1797. All census records reflect John Eddleman was born in North Carolina and Daniel was born in Kentucky. In the census of 1850, Daniel reported he was 75 years old and was born in Kentucky. It is unlikely Catherine was in Kentuck in 1775 and I conclude Daniel claimed to be 4 years older than his actual age. If John was born in 1776 and Daniel in 1779, there might have been a child between them.


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Compiled by Harold Eddleman, Ph. D., Indiana Biolab, 14045 Huff St., Palmyra IN 47164

Suggestions, corrections, and comments are appreciated: Contact Harold Eddleman indbio@disknet.com