Finally Finding a Signature

Locating a signature for John Michael Trautvetter was difficult. It’s not that he was poor and left few records. It’s just that the records he left behind did not contain his own handwriting. The record copies in the local courthouse of the deeds and mortgages he signed were made when the clerk copied everything in his own hand–including the original signatures. John left no will and his parents had no probate that might have contained a receipt with his signature on it. His marriage record, typical for the time and place, did not contain his signature either.

But in January of 1905 his seventeen-year old daughter wanted to get married and John signed to give her permission. It’s the only record extant that contains his actual signature.

Just one more reason to perform a comprehensive search of every record you can.

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