The term Fraktur comprises a number of embellished calligraphic forms produced within Germanic communities in America. Because they were commissioned or received from active members of their own community, fraktur is rarely signed. This Taufschein, or birth certificate, is distinctive for the fresh clear colors and graphic cartoon–like imagery that illustrates the maxim “A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush”—or, as translated here, “in the woods.” The so-called Bird-in-the-Hand Artist is also known as the Northampton County Artist because the texts refer to families in that Pennsylvania region.
Stacy C. Hollander, "Taufschein for Johannes Dottere," exhibition label for Jubilation|Rumination: Life, Real and Imagined. Stacy C. Hollander, curator. New York: American Folk Art Museum, 2012.