Birth and Baptismal Certificate (Geburts und Taufschein) for Maria Elisabetha Müller

Birth and Baptismal Certificate (Geburts und Taufschein) for Maria Elisabetha Müller

Item Info

Item No: frk00053
Title: Birth and Baptismal Certificate (Geburts und Taufschein) for Maria Elisabetha Müller
Scripts/Text: Fraktur; German script
Language: German
Weiser Number: 23
Physical Description: Leaf
Material: Laid paper; watercolor; ink

Diesen beiden Ehgatten Als Michael Müller \ und seiner Ehligen Hausfrau Maria \ Elisabetha ist eine Tochter zur Welt Gebohren Wie Folget \ Maria Elisabetha \ ist zur Welt gebohren \ Im Jahr unsers Herrn Jesu 1775 den 12ten mertz ist nach \ der leibligen zur geistligen widergeburt der heiligen tauf befördert und mit dem \ Namen genennt worden vom dem Pfarherr, Wilhelm hendel, wie oben gemeldet, die oben \ Maria Elisabetha ist gebohren und getauft worden in America im Goferment Pensilvania, im \ Lancaster County, Cocalico Heidelberg Townschip, tauf Zeugen sind Catharina Müllerin, Geschrieben von Henrich Otto.


To these two married people, namely Michael Müller and his lawful wife Maria Eliabetha, was born a daughter into the world, as follows, Maria Elisabetha was born into the world in the year of our lord Jesus 1775, the 12th of March, after the physical birth she was taken to the spiritual birth of Holy Baptism, and was given the name by pastor Wilhelm Hendel. The above mentioned Maria Elisabeth was born and baptized in America, in the government [i.e. province] of Pennsylvania, in Lancaster County, in Heidelberg Township. Sponsors are Catharina Müllerin. Written by Henrich Otto.

Category: Birth and Baptismal Certificate (Geburts und Taufschein)
Media Type: Manuscripts
Source: Rare Book Department

Hand-drawn; hand-colored; hand-lettered. The text is within a rectangular frame that is surrounded on the top, bottom, and right sides by undulating leafy vines, rosettes, tulips, and other flowers. This certificate was made for the Müller/Miller family, owners of the Millbach House from which the kitchen was installed at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The Winterthur Museum owns a fraktur New Year’s Greeting made for Michael and Maria Elisabeth Miller in 1765. The use of the term “Goferment” to signify the colony of Pennsylvania is very unusual.

This fraktur was one of four from the FLP collection that were exhibited in the Face of America exhibit at the 1958 World's Fair in Brussels.  FLP 4, 713, and an unidentified certificate dated 1812 were the other three fraktur.

Associated Names: Otto, Henrich
Provenance: Henry S. Borneman


“Johann Henrich Otto” in Russell D. and Corinne P. Earnest, Papers for Birth Dayes: Guide to the Fraktur Artists and Scriveners (East Berlin, Pa.: Russell D. Earnest Associates, 1997), 2nd ed., vol. 2, pp. 594-600.

"Fraktur at the World's Fair," The Magazine Antiques (May 1958),  p. 476.

Homer T. Rosenberger, The Pennsylvania Germans 1891-1965 (Pennsylvania German Society, 1966); published on p. 262.

Lisa Minardi, "From Millbach to Mahantongo: Fraktur and Furniture of the Pennsylvania Germans," in American Furniture, ed. Luke Beckerdite (Hanover, NH: University Press of New England for the Chipstone Foundation, 2011), published on p. 12 as fig. 18. 

Lisa Minardi, "Henrich Otto and Sons: Fraktur Artists and Furniture Decorators," Der Reggeboge 49, no. 2 (2015), published on p. 16 as fig. 6.

Lisa Minardi, "Quill & Brush: An Introduction to Pennsylvania German Fraktur," in Framing Fraktur: Pennsylvania German Material Culture & Contemporary Art, ed. Judith Tannenbaum (Philadelphia: Free Library of Philadelphia, 2015), published on p. 31 as fig. 17.

Lisa Minardi, Drawn with Spirit: Pennsylvania German Fraktur from the Joan and Victor Johnson Collection (Philadelphia: Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2015), published on p. 32 as fig. 2-23. 

Wendy A. Cooper and Lisa Minardi, Paint, Pattern & People: Furniture of Southeastern Pennsylvania, 1725–1850 (Winterthur, Del.: The Henry Francis du Pont Winterthur Museum, 2011), published on p. 133 as fig. 3.29. 

Secondary Place Town/Township: Geographic Coverage State/Province:Pennsylvania
Geographic Coverage City/Town/Township:Cocalico Township
Geographic Coverage Note:Based on erroneous location of birth
Geographic Coverage Region/County:Lancaster

Creation Place Town/Township: Creation Place Note:Based on location of birth
Region/County:Lancaster [now Lebanon]
City/Town/Township:Heidelberg Township

Creation Year (Single Year or Range Begin): ca. 1775
Image Dimensions Width: 32.5 cm
ShelfMark: FLP 53
Creator Name: Henrich Otto (c. 1733-c. 1799) - Decorator
Henrich Otto (c. 1733-c. 1799) - Scrivener

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