Monday, July 1, 2013



Here is a little hint for those of you that are researching German roots and need to be able to read the old German script.  You can download a free Sütterlin font and play around with it.  The more familiar you are with the letters, the easier it will be for you to recognize letter and words in old documents.  My mother is old enough that she learned to write this way in school so when I get stuck I just ask her.  I realize that is cheating but sometime you just have to do what you have to do.  If you do download the font, make sure you read the instruction page because there are some letters that change form when they are in a certain combination, like tz.  The instruction page will give you the keyboard shortcuts to make them correctly.  Of course this makes your writing look perfect like how a school child was taught.  In real life you will have messy writers but you will certainly be able to read it better if you practice with how the letters are supposed to look. By the way, the line above says, «Können Sie das lesen?» Which means, “Can you read this?”

Here is my grandmother’s birth certificate.  The writing is actually very neat and clear.

Glaentzer 5

Here is one word out of this document so you can see a comparison.  My grandmother’s first name was Theresia. 


And here is how it looks when I type it using the Sütterlin font.

Theresia 2

Not bad!

Copyright © 2013 Michele Simmons Lewis


  1. My grandmother still had her book from first grade that taught the children this form of writing. I borrowed it to teach it to myself, and it really helped when I research German documents. Thanks for posting the link to the font... I'm definitely going to download it!

  2. I have a primer from 1901 which is my pride and joy.