19 September 2012

Tombstone Typo and Leaving the Shadow

Tombstone of Geo. A. Trautvetter and wife, Bethany United Church of Christ Cemetery, Tioga, Hancock County, Illinois
I've always wondered exactly how I should transcribe this stone of my great-grandparents.

"Geo. A. Trautvetter 1869-1934" is not the problem. It is great-grandma that's the issue.

Her first name was apparently incorrectly inscribed as "Ada," and then a correction to "Ida" was attempted. Should I transcribe it like it is supposed to be or what it looks like? Transcribing "supposed to bes" can get one into trouble--where does that line end?

I've decided that my transcription should say "Ada Trautvetter Miller 1874-1939," because that's what it looks like on the stone. My notes should include the comment about the apparent correction on the tombstone along with a digital image of the stone. My notes should also include the fact that Miller was Ida's name when she died as it was the last name of her second husband.

This tombstone faces west and this picture was taken in the afternoon. The shadow of George and Ida's great-grandson (yours truly) is also in the picture (with an apparent seed corn or fertilizer cap on, courtesy of George and Ida's grandson). I think I'm going to leave the shadow in the picture--that way it kinda connects several generations at once.


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