(Not So) Wordless Wednesday: Precious Signatures

I love it when I find a document that has my ancestor’s signature on it.  There’s just something about knowing that they were the one that wrote that.

I was happy to find these signatures in a probate packet for Sophia Ross Pottgen (my 4th great-grandmother).  It was dated 1877.

Joseph Padgen, Kate Harris, and Louisa Thornton (my 3rd great-grandmother) were her 3 children.  James Thornton was Louisa’s husband and Philip was his brother.  They lived in Alton, Illinois – not too far from St. Louis, Missouri.

It’s always interesting to me to see the different ways that Pottgen is spelled – and it makes me wonder if this is the reason that I have a hard time finding them.  Besides being on both sides of the river (in the St. Louis area and in Alton, Illinois) the name also seems to have been spelled in various ways: Padgen, Potgen, Poettchen, Poettgen, Pottgen, Patkin, Podgen, etc.

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  • Cherie Cayemberg - December 10, 2011 - 8:02 am

    I agree! It’s so special to find those signatures. I haven’t found many, but those I have are certainly meaningful! What a great post idea, Jen!ReplyCancel

  • Kathy Reed - December 22, 2011 - 6:48 pm

    I still get a thrill when I see the very familiar handwriting of my Mom and Dad. With the lack of emphasis on handwriting, I wonder how long this will be part of our collective memories?ReplyCancel

    • Jen - December 22, 2011 - 10:46 pm

      It’s exciting, isn’t it? There’s just something about the fact that they actually WROTE that. :) It’s neat to have something tangible from an ancestor.ReplyCancel

  • Liz - January 1, 2012 - 2:00 pm

    I love finding signatures of ancestors. It is really fun to make a family tree with the signatures. I have a signature book from the 1880s that I really MUST scan and post.ReplyCancel

    • Jen - January 1, 2012 - 2:04 pm

      What a great idea of making a tree of their signatures!ReplyCancel

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