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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Trouble Reading Handwriting on Manifest

Clayton asked:
This is my fourth time I have requested this. No one seems to respond. My mother ,Aunt and Grandmother arrived in Halifax on Jan 1 1913 on the SS Potsdam. There lastname is Leskiw. I believe that they Americanized their first names when they arrived here. They all came from Austria. My mother we knew as Nellie Leskiw age 11 months born in 1912, my aunt we knew as Irene Born in 1911, my Grandmother we knew as Mary Leskiw born in 1882. I cannot read their first names on the ships manifest, can anyone with more experience than I ,read the hand writing on the manifest.

Hello Clayton, You may have misunderstood what AskOliveTree is all about. There's only me answering queries from other genealogists so patience from questioners is a must. I pick one question each day to answer. I don't give a personal response, my answers are posted here on the blog. Some who send a question will never get an answer as there is not enough information provided for me to respond. Others may wait up to a month or longer to see a response from me so you have to be patient and keep checking back here on the blog.

Having said that, your first message came up in the queue for an answer (sending repeated requests didn't do anything to get your question higher in the waiting list) so I had a look at the manifest for SS Potsdam on Ancestry.com Canadian Passenger Lists, 1865-1935

My reading of the first names is

* Marya, age 30 (your grandmother Mary)
* Yeryma, age 2 (easily converts to Irene)
* [S?N?]ascia, age 11/12 (11 months)

I am leaning towards Nascia as the name but it is hard to tell as the first letter is difficult to read. You should go back and compare that first letter in her name to a name or word you recognize that has the same letter formation. Look at other pages on the manifest if you have to.

Hopefully others who read this will have a go at reading the image and give their opinion as to the name of your mother.

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