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Grandpa's Autograph Book, c. 1888

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Posted 6 years ago


(84 items)

In 1875, my grandfather’s mother died when he was three years old. His father was devastated and wandered for a time, leaving his son with relatives. I knew Grandpa was raised with a loving family but I never knew their names until I found this autograph book and put the pieces together! The first two entries (above) in the book were George and Alice Huntington. I have always wondered why I could never find an 1880 census record for my grandfather. Sure enough, when I searched 1880 census records for George and Alice Huntington, I found my grandfather, age 7, living with them under the name of Calvin Huntington! He always used his birth name, Calvin Burroughs, so that’s why I was unable to find him in the 1880 or 1890 census records.

The autograph book contains a total of 53 entries, most between 1888-1894. Some friends glued on vintage stickers as shown above. My 2nd great-grandfather, Stephen, signed the book in 1890. As a child, my aunt found and signed the book in 1914, and my mother discovered it in 1931 and signed it at the age of 12. To preserve the book, I've put all of the pages in acid free plastic. The handwriting of the folks in this book is amazingly beautiful, of course, those were the days you wrote real letters! This summer, the Indiana State Legislature passed a bill that cursive writing will no longer be a required subject in the public schools. What a shame.


  1. ThriftStoreAddict ThriftStoreAddict, 6 years ago
    What a wonderful keepsake.
  2. marcobabe13 marcobabe13, 6 years ago
    Thank you so much, ThriftStore......
  3. lundy lundy, 6 years ago
    thats nice
  4. marcobabe13 marcobabe13, 6 years ago
    Thanks, lundy.
  5. SMD SMD, 6 years ago
    What a wonderful piece of your family history to have. The images are not stickers but rather die cuts that were glued on, they were commonly used in Victorian-era scrapbooks.
  6. marcobabe13 marcobabe13, 6 years ago
    Thanks, SMD, it is a wonderful piece of family history. Thanks for the information about the die cuts. I just assumed they were stickers, but it's obvious now that they were glued on!

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