Petition of Sarah Martin for a Divorce from Nathaniel B. Martin.Entire Image 364KB
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The Petition of Sarah Martin late Sarah Parry To the Honl. the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Illinois
Your Petitioners would humbly represent to your honl. Bodies that previous to the 30th day of October 1839 She was living on the Premises where her first husband had lived and where he died. That she has the care support & education of two little boys confided to her the children of her deceased husband, one of the age of Eight years — and the other five.
That by her care & industry She would have been enabled to support herself and the two little Boys But that at the time first above, named your Petitioner was married to a man by the name of Nathaniel B. Martin who after six days left house with out assigning any sufficient cause. intending as he said to go to Alton and St. Louis and there to return to carry on his business of Blacksmithing in the Town of Springfield. And said he had secured a shop from Mr. Hinkle for that Purpose. All which has turned out to be a mere pretence. He has never returned since and is now residing as she is informed somewhere in the Iowa Territory. He has never even written to her and moreover has owed when he left her a large amount for some of his debts and she has been called on and greatly harrassed Her first husband was an industrious & frugal man as well as a kind husband. and by his business of Blacksmithing supported his family directly and left a house, and lot and a small personal estate. That all of his personal estate except what was assigned to [unknown] her Dower has been expended in necessaries for the nurture & education of her children But if
2Your Petitioners could be assured that what she might in future earn should be her own She still believes she could by the blessing of Providence support herself and children and live in comparative peace and comfort again. But this She thinks cannot possibly be the case while She is bound by the Marriage relation to said Martin. That she has now no hopes that he will ever be a helper but a hindrance to her in providing for her family. She is sorry to say that he has proved himself utterly unworthy of the confidences he once reproved in him. Your Petitioner would wait the ordinary process of the Law and obtain a Divorce at the end of two years on account of his absence But she feels that by so doing She is hazarding her happiness and that of her children. [unknown] standing able to have all her property taken by him and His Creditors and they become a wretched child of want cast on the cold charity of a world too indifferent to the wants or the woes of others. Your Petitioner thinks she has learned a sufficient lesson by this sad experience not again to hazard her happiness Her property her all by a similar act. built by a life of quiet industry and domestic cares to render herself worthy of the respect of her neighbors and the regard of those whom She now Petitions; In tender consideration of the Premise She Prays that your Honl Bodies will grant her a divorce from her husband the said Nathaniel B. Martin and [unknown] restores to peace & comfort in some degree. one who is doubly a widow — And for this Your Petitioner will ever Pray