Old German Handwriting in the Classroom

This Old German cursive was taught in most German schools from 1915 – 1941.

To create a modern handwriting script, now known as the Sütterlinschrift (Old German hand), the graphic artist Ludwig Sütterlin was commissioned by the Prussian Ministry of Science in 1911.

When the Nazi Party banned Sütterlin, it was replaced it with Latin-type letters. However, many German speakers, such as the generation before me, had been taught only Sütterlin and therefore continued to use it well into the post-war period.

In 3rd grade, we had to learn Sütterlin, a mandatory part our our education. I’m very glad I learned it, because later in life, I was able to decipher old postcards, my father’s documents, and so much more.

I found this Deutsche Schrift (Old German writings) teaching supply at a private flea market in Oberursel the other day. It had come from an elementary school in Oestrich-Winkel (near Rüdesheim), where the seller’s father had worked as the Hausmeister (maintenance man) for many years. When the archives had to be cleared, he was given permission to take this one home.

Now I’ve got it hanging at my place of work.

Deutsche Schrift in der Grundschule

Deutsche Schrift in der Grundschule

Hessische Lehrmittel (Hessian teaching material), rolled up, with yellowed paper on the back

Schriftrolle