It’s a mystery how and when the Kings County Surrogate’s Court lost its earliest records of guardianships in Brooklyn. Perhaps they were stolen a century ago. But last week, they came home, via a train from Philadelphia. “It’s not just court documents — this is our history, part of a legacy,” said Surrogate Diana A. Johnson of the surprising, recent discovery.

The record books, Brooklyn’s “Bonds of Guardianship, Vol. 1 through 4,” date back to 1830 and record the details of guardianships through 1852. The historic volumes were found last year at a used bookstore in Philadelphia by professional genealogist Sandra Hewlett.

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