Can you read this handwritten name?
January 25, 2017 1:02 AM   Subscribe

Can you read the name "Carrie ?????" in the description of this vintage photo?

This is kind of my hobby - to pin photos on eBay that are identified to help genealogists. But I can't make out Carrie's last name.
posted by cda to Writing & Language (24 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I'm reading Metman.
posted by doornoise at 1:06 AM on January 25, 2017


But she'll always be Carrie Wetnose to me...
posted by mochapickle at 1:08 AM on January 25, 2017 [2 favorites]

I want to point out that the capital M in Miss Carrie and the first letter of her last name do not seem consistent, which leads me to think it's a capital W.

The next letter is not dotted like her i's and is skinny like the e's;

And the final n is attached too high for me to think it's ~an, but instead ~on

All this considered, I cannot see anything other than Wetwon (Wetmon?), neither of which sound plausible. (Google did not come up with anything similar for a last name, but I could be entirely wrong.)
posted by lesser weasel at 1:19 AM on January 25, 2017 [1 favorite]

There were several women named Carrie Wetmore that lived in New York in the late 1800s.
posted by Jpfed at 1:32 AM on January 25, 2017 [10 favorites]

I'm inclining to agree; Wetmore looks pretty plausible with the (very small) closed loop at the top of the n/r (as it then slides into a rushed e)
posted by lesser weasel at 1:43 AM on January 25, 2017 [1 favorite]

Is it definitely Carrie? Looks like it could be Cassie?
posted by Mattat at 3:15 AM on January 25, 2017

I clearly read "Carrie Wetmore."
posted by I_Love_Bananas at 4:29 AM on January 25, 2017 [6 favorites]

Not Cassie; all other letter S appearances in the note are closed at the bottom. Those are letter Rs in the name.
posted by I_Love_Bananas at 4:30 AM on January 25, 2017 [1 favorite]

the "s" curves back further than the "r" so I'd vote for Carrie. Wetmore seems likeliest, as "Metmore" doesn't seem to exist much.
posted by Namlit at 4:31 AM on January 25, 2017

The other w's ("with", "whose") are rounded at the bottom, while the other m's (especially "Mary") are pointed at the bottom, so I think the last name more likely begins with an M, rather than a W. Comparing those letters in the post script ("was written March") also makes Carrie's last name look like an M. So I'd vote Metman.
posted by Zonker at 4:58 AM on January 25, 2017 [1 favorite]

Carrie Wetmore. All of the writer's 'e's are rubbish/barely visible so the last two letters are definitely 're'.
posted by ihaveyourfoot at 5:25 AM on January 25, 2017

Zonker, you're comparing lower case w's to upper case letters. Either way, all of her M's connect to the subsequent letters coming up from the bottom; the w's (rounded or not) and the first letter to the last name connect at the midpoint of the letter block. Compare where March connects to the a, for example.
posted by lesser weasel at 5:28 AM on January 25, 2017

My money's on Carrie Wetmore/Witmore, aka Carrie Lewis.
posted by katemonster at 6:06 AM on January 25, 2017 [3 favorites]

I also vote for Carrie Wetmore. Especially because there is a Wetmore Road and a Wetmore Cemetary in Lowville, NY.
posted by Kriesa at 6:06 AM on January 25, 2017 [4 favorites]

Also reading Wetmore. Both Es are consistent with the way the writer writes lower-case Es in other words. It's a fairly common surname.
posted by nangar at 6:28 AM on January 25, 2017

Before reading other suggestions I thought Witmore, but I see Wetmore now.
posted by supercres at 6:39 AM on January 25, 2017

I would bet that she is Carrie Wetmore, listed on the 1875 census as living in Watson, NY (about 3 miles from Lowville) with her mother, Margette and step father, James Lewis. If it's her, she was born around 1861, which would make her 24 in that photo, which looks about right.

I know the webpage I linked to says "Witmore," but if you looking at the attached image, I'm pretty sure someone transcribed it wrong and it says "Wetmore." I say that partly because that looks like an "e" to me, and partly because there are Wetmores around that area.
posted by Kriesa at 6:41 AM on January 25, 2017 [3 favorites]

OK, sorry, never mind, there are a number of options. She could also be Carrie Wetmore from Martinsburg, NY (just south of Lowville), daughter of David and Sarah Wetmore, or Carrie Wetmore Simmons, daughter of Erettus and Marietta Wetmore. Or, of course, a totally different Carrie Wetmore (but I do think it's "Wetmore").
posted by Kriesa at 7:01 AM on January 25, 2017 [1 favorite]

It's definitely -etmore, either Wetmore or Metmore given the similarity to the capital M in Miss and March. My hunch is Wetmore and just sloppy(ish) handwriting.
posted by lydhre at 7:01 AM on January 25, 2017

It's definitely Wetmore. The only ambiguity I'm seeing is in the m, which looks a bit like a w, except that it clearly terminates on the baseline (a w would terminate on the mean line, as the o does -- and as the W which is definitely a W does); the m's w-ness is mostly attributable to its being squished down weirdly, just like the n's in "cousin" and "taken."
posted by Sys Rq at 7:04 AM on January 25, 2017

I see Wetmore or Metmore but the "more" part is indisputable
posted by rmless at 7:13 AM on January 25, 2017

I also see Carrie Wetmore.

I imagine this seller is somewhere currently scratching their head trying to figure out what's so magical about this photo that it's garnering so many views!
posted by bologna on wry at 9:36 AM on January 25, 2017 [4 favorites]

Ooh, according to this website (second listing), the Carrie Wetmore who was the daughter of David and Sarah married a Willard Phillips. Maybe a relation to her friend Mary in the photo?

Although, it also says that she married him in 1878, so that begs the question of why someone would call her by her maiden name in 1885, so perhaps that's evidence that the Carrie in the photo is a different person?
posted by Kriesa at 10:23 AM on January 25, 2017 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Thanks everyone. I really appreciate your help. Must be Wetmore - I had never heard of that surname.
posted by cda at 12:26 PM on January 25, 2017

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