A. Key words here are couple, heirs and related. Was heir used in the document? Were other people named in the division besides the couple in question? Have you identified the others as relatives of the deceased? If not, research and identify each one. Other documents related to the case may help.
For example, was the division based on a will? What did the will provide? Did it name heirs and their relationship to the deceased? Did it name devisees or legatees? These were not always relatives because the testator (the one writing the will) could leave property to anyone of choice, related or not. Was this an intestate estate (one without a will)? What was the law of heirship at that time in the state where the deceased died? State law dictates who are legal heirs of an intestate estate if the deceased had no surviving spouse, children, parents or siblings. Heirs may then be descendants of parents’ or grandparents’ siblings—cousins of varying degrees.