Message Font: Serif | Sans-Serif
No. of Recommendations: 0
Yes, this is a common problem. Certain names are popular in families. Babies get named after someone in the family. Or a family name is repeated again and again.

In German families it is common to name children after their sponsor at baptism. Hence, in my family, the first William is named after his stepgrandfather, who was his sponsor. Christian's son was sponsored by friend Andreas, and named Andreas.

With common names like John, it can get very difficult to sort them out. Baptimal records usually name parents. So you can get birth dates. And sometimes to avoid confusion records give John, son of Nathan. Or John who lived on a certain farm or in a town. Records were not very common way back when, but tax collectors and census takers tried to know which John had paid or been counted. So they tried to avoid confusion even then. When a common name is used repeatedly often they adopted a family nicknames to deal with it. That can make for additional confusion unless the nickname is unique.

When uncommon names are used (like in my family Delos), some say, ah ha, someone with that name must be part of the family. And often they are. But not always. Given names can be a clue.

Good luck with your hunting. This all part of the fun of genealogy.
Print the post  


What was Your Dumbest Investment?
Share it with us -- and learn from others' stories of flubs.
When Life Gives You Lemons
We all have had hardships and made poor decisions. The important thing is how we respond and grow. Read the story of a Fool who started from nothing, and looks to gain everything.
Community Home
Speak Your Mind, Start Your Blog, Rate Your Stocks

Community Team Fools - who are those TMF's?
Contact Us
Contact Customer Service and other Fool departments here.
Work for Fools?
Winner of the Washingtonian great places to work, and Glassdoor #1 Company to Work For 2015! Have access to all of TMF's online and email products for FREE, and be paid for your contributions to TMF! Click the link and start your Fool career.