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Via Google books I saw a book, printed in some kind of Blackletter (Ueber Deutsche Runen, Wilhelm Carl Grimm, Göttingen, 1821). The shape of the umlaut caught my eye, but I paid no further attention. Today I visited someone who had a piece of furniture with type on it. This cupboard is made in 1855 and the type used seemed familiar. Indeed, it featured the same kind of e-shaped umlaut on top of the 'a'.
Where does this kind of umlaut come from and why is it replaced by the 'dots'?