The Library Springfield-Greene County Library District Springfield, Missouri
Genealogy, Law

Who Legally Owns Davy Crockett Document?

Margaret V. Smith was ordered by a Tennessee judge to surrender a document she inherited from her uncle Henry Vance decades ago. Vance worked at the Jefferson County, TN courthouse in the 1930's and 1940's.  

Was the marriage license stolen by one of Smith's ancestors or was it discarded by courthouse employees as she contends?  Does a document always belong to the county creating it? Is there a statute of limitations if a document ends up in a private collection?  These questions are being addressed in the Tennessee and Florida court  systems.

The marriage license happens to have material as well as historical value as Smith found out on "Antiques Roadshow" in 2005.   It was called irreplaceable and valued at $20,000 to $30,000.  Read more about the document and court cases surrounding it.  Read Margaret Smith's "Antiques Roadshow" appraisal transcript and view the marriage certificate.

Books and DVDs about Davy Crockett:

American legend : the real-life adventures of David Crockett / Buddy Levy

David Crockett : hero of the common man / William Groneman, III

On to the Alamo : Col. Crockett's exploits and adventures in Texas / Richard Penn Smith ; edited with an introduction and notes by John Seelye

Boone and Crockett [DVD videorecording] : the hunter heroes / The History Channel



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