Birth Families

<em>Secret Ledger and Memorial Book</em>
Pepo d’Antonio di Lando Degli Albizzi, Secret Ledger and Memorial Book, 1339-1358.

Birth Families are at the heart of our modern notion of kinship. Marriages, baptisms, and the marking of deaths are the milestones exemplified here. We also include a reminder that modern families are sustained and even defined by public health practices, especially programs for infants.

Pepo degli Albizzi was a Florentine wool merchant who penned this family diary, a genre which may be considered the ancestor of both personal diaries and modern business ledgers. Most poignantly, he recorded the deaths of relatives from the Black Death in 1348. [Essay 92]

Pepo d’Antonio di Lando degli Albizzi
Secret Ledger and Memorial Book

Florence: 1340/1360
Ryerson Fund, 1952

Vault oversize Case MS 27


Ketubbah, 1711.

The ketubbah, or marriage contract, has been a part of Jewish weddings for more than two millen­nia. It conveys the husband’s promise of honor, support, and conjugal rights to his new spouse and guarantees the wife a first claim on his estate. [Essay 51]

Venice, 1711
Gift of Edward E. Ayer, 1911
VAULT Hebrew MS 11

Baptismal Certificate of Hans Friedrich Latscha
Heinrich Otto, Baptismal Certificate of Hans Friedrich Latscha, 1788.

Heinrich Otto, an itinerant scribe, ordered these broadsides with text and woodcut borders, which he subsequently colored and filled out to order for his clients, as this one demonstrates. [Essay 52]

Heinrich Otto
Baptismal Certificate of Hans Friedrich Latscha
Ephrata, Pennsylvania: Cloister Printshop, 1788
Purchased from the fund generated by the sale of duplicate and out-of-scope materials, 2003
Stopp 247.2

Pure Milk Campaign Notices from Chicago Commons Scrapbook
Pure Milk Campaign Notices, 1902.

Chicago Commons, a settlement house, was part of a city-wide effort to provide inexpensive, pasteurized milk to families with small children. [Essay 36]

Pure Milk Campaign Notices from Chicago Commons Scrapbook
Chicago, 1902
Gifts of Lea Demarest Taylor and Katharine Taylor, 1951
Midwest MS Taylor, Box 58 Folder 2473