Five Unusual Inheritances - Boyum Law
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Five Unusual Inheritances

Five Unusual Inheritances

When picturing an inheritance, money or family heirlooms are typically the first items to come to mind. Nothing can pleasure someone more than knowing that they are passing down a beloved family treasure. It’s the only way to keep it living through the ages. Regardless of whether you need to have a look at these family heirloom ideas, or if you already have the perfect item in mind to pass down to a family member, you will find great joy in giving someone something to remember you by when you’re no longer with them. However, some people choose to think outside the box when gifting heirs their possessions. Whether it be to avoid inheritance tax (read more at or to make their experience more memorable! Read on to discover five heirs who received unique inheritances.

1. A family of deceased turtles

Lois Collins, a staff writer for Deseret News, wrote an article on the inheritance she and her husband received from her mother-in-law, which included a unique set of items. Most notably, Collins and her husband received a family of dead turtles. The turtle family, which had passed away years before and been preserved, consisted of a mother turtle and three babies. The set came with specific instructions stating that Collins was to take care of the turtles and pass them down to her own children one day. Collins is unsure why her mother-in-law kept the deceased turtles and gave them as an inheritance. However, she came to the conclusion that the turtles can be used as a threat if her children misbehave, saying that if they stay out past curfew, they’ll receive the turtles one day.

2. Bracelets made of hair

Preserved hair equals preserved memories? Perhaps that was Napoleon’s line of thinking. The Frenchman left instructions in his last will and testament for his hair to be turned into bracelets and given to family members. The bracelets featured a gold clasp. His mother, brothers, sisters, nieces, nephews, Empress Maria Louisa, the Cardinal, and his son all received the gift of this unique inheritance.

3. A new birthday

Birthdays are unique to every individual, but certain days of the year don’t make great birthdays, such as Christmas. For this reason, author Robert Louis Stevenson left his birthday to his friend Annie Ide when he died in 1894. Ide had told Stevenson she felt cheated out of a birthday since hers fell on Christmas day. Thanks to Ide, her new birthday was his own, November 13th.

4. 100,000 baby pictures

When Constance Bannister, “the world’s most famous baby photographer,” died in 2005, she left her daughter Lynda more than 100,000 baby photos. The “Bannister Baby” archive Lynda received could be worth a fortune, according to this Fox Business an article. During her lifetime, Constance Bannister produced calendars, a comic strip, and wrote books on photography. She got her start by taking photos of babies in Central Park then selling the prints to the mothers.

5. A home for feline friends

When Jonathon Jackson of Ohio died in 1880, he made sure to bequeath his fortune to a cause close to his heart: taking care of animals. Jackson left instructions and funds in his will to create a home for cats. He wanted the home to feature sloped roofs for climbing, a cat gym, and bedrooms for the cats, according to this legalzoom article.