Tag Archives: Ancestral Signatures

Literacy & Our Ancestors: How Many Ancestral Signatures in Your Family Tree?

Last year, I shared the beginning of my quest to determine the literacy level of my ancestors, at least insofar to whether or not they could sign their names.

Just because inquiring minds want to know, I’m documenting both actual signatures along with notations that a person signed with his/her (X) mark. That’s just as important to me as seeing their actual handwriting.

Since last year, I’ve documented more of my ancestors, but I have also eliminated whole branches of my family tree.

My paternal grandparents were of Rusyn heritage and came from small villages in today’s eastern Slovakia. It wasn’t until the turn of the 20th century that schooling became locally available, so I am certain that George (Kucharik) Sabo, who completed the 8th grade in Passaic, Passaic, New Jersey and Julia (Scerbak) Sabo learned to read and write in the Udol village school in the early 1900s.

On the maternal side of my family, my grandmother’s mother was born in Copenhagen, Denmark. She came to America as a young teen and while she may have been literate, there are no surviving cards or letters that contain her signature.

Likewise, her parents and grandparents in Denmark and Sweden might have been literate, but none of the government documents contain their handwriting. All vital record entries were made by church officials.

Given the above limitations,  my literacy ahnentafel looks like this:

1. Me – YES
2. George Michael Sabo – YES
3. Doris Priscilla Adams – YES

Grandparents

4. George (Kucharik) Sabo – – End of literacy line
5. Helena (Julia) Scerbak – – End of literacy line
6. Vernon Tarbox Adams –
7. Hazel Ethel Coleman –

Great Grandparents

12. Charles Edwin Adams
13. Annie Maude Stuart
14. Hartwell Thomas Coleman – 1900 census, Can R/W
15. Anna Elisabeth Jensen – 1900 census, Can R/W

2X Great Grandparents

24. Calvin Segee Adams – 1900 census, Can R/W
25. Nellie F. Tarbox
26. Charles Augustus Stewart – 1880 census, Can R/W
27. Elida Ann Hicks
28. William Coleman – 1900 census, Can R/W
29. Sarah Moriah Crouse – 1900 census, Can R/W

3X Great Grandparents

48. Daniel Adams
49. Sarah Ann Parker
50. George Rogers Tarbox – 1880 census, Can R/W
51. Mary Elizabeth Scripture ***
52. John Stewart 1820 deed
53. Catherine Carlisle 1820 deed
54. Israel Hicks
55. Abigail Carlisle – ????
56. Thomas Coleman – 1800 census, Can R/W
57. Mary Elizabeth Astle – ***
58. Peter Crouse – ????
59. Rebecca Jones – 1880 census, Can R/W

4X Great Grandparents

96. Thomas Adams ***
97. Sarah Brawn ***
98. Benjamin Parker ***
99. Maria Wilson – ????
100. William Tarbox ***
101. Judith Haskell – ????
102. Oliver Scripture ***
103. Mary Goddard Bucknam ***
104. Walter Stewart
105. Sarah (MNU)
106. Robert Carlisle
107. Catherine (MNU) –
108. Ira Hicks
109. Sarah Thornton – ????
112. Joseph Coleman ***
113. Ruth Spur ***
114. Daniel Astle – typed deed 1815***
115. Jane (MNU) ***
116. Philip Crouse
117. Sarah Burt – ????
118. Richard Jones
119. Mary Boone

5X Great Grandparents

192. John Adams – ????
193. Sarah Coley – ????
194. Benjamin Brawn –
195. Mary (MNU) – ????
196. Jonathan Parker
197. Unknown – ????
198. Robert Wilson
199. Dorothy Holmes – ????
200. Samuel Tarbox ***
201. Deborah Sayward ***
202. Nathan Haskell ***
203. Judith Witham – ????
204. James Scripture
205. Sibbel Shepley ***
206. Joses Bucknam
207. Abigail Hay
216. Samuel Hicks ????
217. Thankful Bowen ????
218. Israel Thornton ***
219. Joanna Wilkinson – ????
224. Joseph Coleman ***
225. Eunice Coffin ***
226. John Spur ***
227. Rebecca Blackman ***
228. James Astle
229. Elizabeth McLean
234. Benjamin Burt ????
235. Rebecca Follett ***
238. William Boone *** (will)
239. Ruth Hill ????

6X Great Grandparents

384. David Adams ????
385. Susannah Lockwood ????
386. Jonathan Coley ????
387. Lucy Sturges ????
388. Benjamin Brawn ***
389. Mary (MNU)
396. Robert Wilson ***
397. Mary Woodward ***
398. Joseph Holmes ????
399. Silence Brown ????
400. Joseph Tarbox ????
401. Susanna Stevens ????
402. Joseph Sayward
403. Sarah Giddings ????
404. Hubbard Haskell
405. Anna Millett
406. Daniel Witham
407. Lydia Sanders
408. Samuel Scripture
409. Mary Green ????
410. Oliver Shepley ????
411. Mary Lakin ????
412. James Bucknam ***
413. Mary Goddard ????
414. William Hay ***
415. Phebe Brown ????
432. Joseph Hicks ????
433. Patience Wheaton ????
434. Josiah Bowen ????
435. Margaret Child ????
436. Titus Thornton – YES, signed his will, 1757
437. Mercy (MNU) ????
438. John Wilkinson ????
439. Rebecca Scott ????
448. Joseph Coleman ????
449. Rachel Norton ????
450. Cromwell Coffin ????
451. Ruth Coffin (X)
452. Robert Spur
453. Jemima Foster ***
454. Benjamin Blackman ***
455. Abigail Spur ????
468. Seaborn Burt ????
469. Susannah Lobdell ????
470. Joseph Follett ????
471. Anna Tongue ????
476. Samuel Boone
477. Mary Wightman ????
478. Ebenezer Hill ????
479. Mary Fones ????

7X Great Grandparents

768. David Adams
769. Abigail Silliman
770. John Lockwood
771. Elizabeth (MNU)
772. Peter Coley
773. Hannah Couch
774. John Sturges
775. Sarah Fanton
794. John Woodward
795. Saphira Moore
800. Samuel Tarbox
801. Experience Look
802. William Stevens
803. Abigail Sargent
804. James Sayward
805. Deborah Stover
806. George Giddings
807. Elizabeth Eveleth
808. William Haskell
809. Jemima Hubbard
810. Nathan Millett
811. Sarah Babson
812. Thomas Witham
813. Abigail Babson
814. Thomas Sanders
815. Abigail Corney
816. Samuel Scripture
817. Elizabeth Lund
818. Jonathan Green
819. Sarah Lakin
820. Jonathan Shepley
821. Lydia Lakin
822. James Lakin ,***, land deed 1738
823. Elizabeth Williams
824. Joses Bucknam
825. Phebe Tuttle
826. Giles Goddard
827. Hannah Pratt
828. Peter Hay
829. Lydia Lynde
830. Abiel Brown
831. Sarah Green
864. Daniel Hicks
865. Sarah Edmunds
866. John Wheaton
867. Elizabeth Thurber
868. Thomas Bowen
869. Thankful Mason
870. John Child
871. Margery Hayward
872. Benjamin Thornton
874. Unknown
878. Sylvanus Scott
879. Joanna Jenckes
896. Thomas Coleman
897. Jane (MNU)
898. John Norton
899. Mary Torrey
900. Ebenezer Coffin
901. Eleanor Barnard
902. James Coffin
903. Ruth Gardner
904. Robert Spur
905. Elizabeth Tilestone
906. James Foster
907. Anna Lane
908. Benjamin Blackman ***
909. Jemima Breck
910. Thomas Spur
911. Elizabeth Kinsley/Kingsley
936. Benjamin Burt
937. Sarah Belden
938. Joshua Lobdell
939. Mary Burwell
940. John Follett
941. Martha Callam
942. John Tongue
943. Anna Wheeler
952. Samuel Boone
953. Mary Sweet
954. John Wightman
955. Jane Bentley
956. Jonathan Hill
957. Unknown
958. Jeremiah Fones
959. Martha West

Overall, not a bad tally and, of course, there is still more evidence to be uncovered!