The England and Wales National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1858–1966 records are particularly interesting as they show where and when your ancestors died and the value of the estate they left behind.
Now I don’t know about you, but none of my ancestors left too much money behind, but there are a few famous faces in these records who had larger estates than the average person.
- Noble Prize Winner George Bernard Shaw died in November 1950, leaving behind a huge fortune of £367233 which equates to over $16 million in 2012.
- Former Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill passed away in January 1965, leaving behind an estate worth £304044 or approximately $7.7 million by today’s standards.
- Celebrated nurse Florence Nightingale left behind £36127 when she died in 1910. That’s the equivalent of over $5 million in today’s money.
- Poet T.S Eliot died in 1965 and left £105272 to wife Esme, which is approximately $2.5 million by today’s standards.
- Sir Alexander Fleming, who discovered penicillin, left his Effects, worth £29321 (just over $1 million in today’s money) to his son Robert.
- James Joyce, the Irish novelist and poet left behind £1212 when he died in 1941 - that’s about $85,000 in today’s money.
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