When doing legal translations, I sometimes find myself trying to decipher badly handwritten text. Usually I manage to puzzle out the text, and only seldom have to resort to the [illegible] tag. Names of people and places, however, are often more challenging, as context offers no help.
When a badly handwritten place name includes a ZIP or postal code, however, there is usually help: you can search for the ZIP or postal code to determine the name of the place. For example, Linderburst, NY or Linderhurst, NY? By looking up the 11757 ZIP code in the USPS web site, I can see that the correct spelling is Lindenhurst, and not Lindeburst.