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The Vermillion Sea

Thinking Like a Notary

I knew a lot about the artist Alexandre-Jean Noël, but still had lots of questions. I dragged my suitcase up to the third floor apartment and then headed over to the National Archives, a few blocks away. The Archives' reading room doesn't open on Sundays, but I thought I'd check out the building. Turned out, there was a special event going on! An exhibit of documents in the Archives, many of which were documents recorded by French notaries.
     Portraits and personal stories about these scribes of the law fascinated me, and I learned that when property traded hands, a court told a debtor to pay, or a person died, a notary made a record of that event for posterity. If you died without a will, a notary would come and place a value on your property. Read More 
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