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29 November 2013

Record Copies are Handwritten-Usually

Most of the local copies of records used by genealogists are not originals but are record copies. While it is always possible the local courthouse will have the "original," most likely the material you are using from the courthouse is a manual transcription of the original item.

Because of this, the copy you are using:

  • doesn't contain the actual signature
  • could contain transcription errors
  • may have been made from an original which was occasionally difficult to read
If you are not certain whether the item you have is a "record copy," ask. If you do not know, assuming may create more work for yourself that you already have.

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