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Resources for Deciphering Handwriting

By Maureen A. Taylor Premium

Find it on the Web

? Name and Word Spellings

<www.genealogy.com/00000015.html>: Description of handwriting mistakes and misspellings.

? Examples of Old Handwriting

<www.rootsweb.com/˜genepool/oldalpha.htm>: Shows letters found in 17th-century documents.

? Medieval Paleography

<orb. rhodes.edu/textbooks/pa I index. html>: Online course from England’s Leicester University on the study of written documents from the Middle Ages.

? Old English Mailing List

A mailing list for anyone who is deciphering old English documents. To subscribe send “subscribe” to old-english-l-request@rootsweb.com (mail mode) or old-english-d-request @rootsweb.com (digest mode).

? Old Handwriting Examples

<homepages.rootsweb.com/˜mahudson/ole-hw.htm>: References names and words in various scripts.

? Reading Census Handwriting

<www.sierra.com/sierrahome/familytree/hqarticles/censusreading/>

? Tips on Reading Old Handwriting

<www.sierra.com/sierrahome/familytree/hqarticles/handwriting/>

? Martha Ballard’s Diary

<www.dohistory.org/diary/>: Online display of the late 18th-and early 19th-century diary featured in the book A Midwife’s Tale; features tutorials on reading handwriting and examples.

? Deciphering Old Handwriting

<www.amberskyline.com/treasuremaps/oldhand.html>: Examine examples and try your hand at a few samples.

? The Fraktur Tradition

<www.region.waterloo.on.ca/jsh2/>: Learn more about Fraktur and look at a few examples. Click on Collections, then Fraktur.

? History of Handwriting

<www.parkerpen.co.uk/history/>: Interesting overview of the history of handwriting from the Parker Pen Co.

? Early English Handwriting

<ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/dave_tylcoat/handwrit.htm>: Try your hand at reading examples from 1547 to 1612.

? •Dysgraphia

<www.dyslexia-ca.org/dysgraph.htm>: Find out more about learning disabilities and handwriting.
 

On the bookshelf

? Handwriting in America: A Cultural History by Tamara Plakins Thornton (Yale University Press)

? Handwriting of American Records for 300 Years by E. Kay Kirkham (Everton Publishers)

? Handwriting of the 20th Century by Rosemary Sassoon (Routledge)

? Pen, Ink, & Evidence: A Study of Writing and Writing Materials for the Penman, Collector, and Document Detective by Joe Nickell (Oak Knoll Press)

? Reading Early American Handwriting by Kip Sperry (Genealogical Publishing Co.)

? “Read It Right” in Unpuzzling Your Past by Emily Croom (Betterway Books)

? Understanding Colonial Handwriting by Harriet Stryker-Rodda (Genealogical Publishing Co.)
 
From the October 2001 issue of Family Tree Magazine

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