Help with deciphering signatures
February 12, 2015 9:33 AM   Subscribe

Can anybody help with deciphering the lastnames on these two signatures?

These two signatures come from a marriage record in 1771. Both people are expected to be English with typical-for-the-time English lastnames. Their firstnames are the only other example of their writing on the document.

Any suggestions are welcome as they can be checked against a database. The second one is particularly troubling!
posted by Thing to Writing & Language (25 answers total)
 
No idea at all about the bottom one, but for the one on top: maybe James Aker?
posted by easily confused at 9:37 AM on February 12, 2015


James Ak{o,e}?
Susanna T??rman
posted by bfranklin at 9:41 AM on February 12, 2015 [1 favorite]


Grossman for the second one?
posted by kuanes at 9:45 AM on February 12, 2015 [1 favorite]


The first one looks looks like Akos.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 9:51 AM on February 12, 2015 [4 favorites]


My guess is James Ake{r,s} and Susanna Tr{um,oop}an.
posted by zamboni at 10:10 AM on February 12, 2015


Looks like:
James Akos
Susanna Voorman
posted by stampsgal at 10:14 AM on February 12, 2015


Looks like Akos, but it's Aker, if it's English.
Susanna T?orman would be my guess.
Any chance you can post the full document so we can see other writing on it and make deductions, even if it is other people's writing?
posted by beagle at 10:15 AM on February 12, 2015 [1 favorite]


To me, they look like Akos and Goodman. easily confused's suggestion of Aker fits better with the time and place than Akos, though.

The last three letters in the second surname are definitely m-a-n.
posted by daisyk at 10:15 AM on February 12, 2015


I also saw "Grossman" on the second one, though the only part I feel confident about is the "m-a-n" at the end.
posted by mjm101 at 10:21 AM on February 12, 2015


I'd go with James Aker and Susanna Norman.
posted by Catseye at 10:21 AM on February 12, 2015 [1 favorite]


I'm voting for Akes on the first name. It's a suitably Germanic name (unlike Akos), and the last letter looks like an s to me.

The second one could be almost anything. I like Voorman.
posted by It's Never Lurgi at 10:25 AM on February 12, 2015


First one does look like Akos though Akos is a Greek last name. Akes as a possibly alternative.
I also get this for the second: ???rman - with fair confidence on the last 4 letters; so a guess is possibly Poorman (wild guess based on first letter looking possibly like a P to me.)
posted by gudrun at 10:46 AM on February 12, 2015


Dorman? Dorhman?
posted by littlewater at 10:56 AM on February 12, 2015


I'm voting for Akes on the first name. It's a suitably Germanic name (unlike Akos), and the last letter looks like an s to me.

This is right, thank you! I thought Aker sounded the most likely suggestion, but a search shows that Akes is a rare local name. I think it is a variant of Akers which died out by the early 1800s.

Also thanks to people who suggested ides for the second name. I am still working through them, though sadly nothing seems likely as yet.
posted by Thing at 12:03 PM on February 12, 2015


I've previously indexed Census records for Family Search and have found these handwriting guides to be helpful.
posted by initapplette at 12:29 PM on February 12, 2015 [1 favorite]


Can you post a larger sample with more words? Looking at many census records, I find that I can often spot a more legible example of particular letters other places on the page.
posted by oneirodynia at 12:34 PM on February 12, 2015 [1 favorite]


What is the location?
posted by beccaj at 1:00 PM on February 12, 2015


Call me crazy but I think the first two symbols in the second name are a sloppily written P, as in this handwriting example. That could make it POORMAN.
posted by bq at 1:15 PM on February 12, 2015


Can you post a larger sample with more words? Looking at many census records, I find that I can often spot a more legible example of particular letters other places on the page.

The signatures are the only examples of those people's writing on the page. The rest is written by a clerk or priest.

What is the location?

Rural England.
posted by Thing at 1:40 PM on February 12, 2015


No village? I am thinking , after a marriage is often a baby. So I was hoping to get a send chance to see similar names in the area.

So often people were illiterate and they just "sounded out" the name. It looks like "Akos" to me which could easily be "Akers". They don't seem like signatures since they appear too similar to each other.
posted by beccaj at 2:55 PM on February 12, 2015 [1 favorite]


Ayscough is a hit with
soundex, FYI.
posted by beccaj at 2:58 PM on February 12, 2015


James Acco in S Walden, Essex birth date, 1851
posted by beccaj at 3:00 PM on February 12, 2015


That looks a lot like Susanna Gorman to me.
posted by carbide at 10:49 PM on February 12, 2015 [1 favorite]


The second one looks vaguely like Boardman to me - the length is about right and it sounds like a typical-for-the-time English rural surname.
posted by Azara at 10:45 AM on February 13, 2015


Call me crazy but I think the first two symbols in the second name are a sloppily written P, as in this handwriting example. That could make it POORMAN.

The second one looks vaguely like Boardman to me - the length is about right and it sounds like a typical-for-the-time English rural surname.


I think that Boorman and Boardman are possibilities for the area. Thank you.
posted by Thing at 8:07 AM on February 15, 2015


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