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A related problem is the tendency to drop the Jr or III designation once the previous one passes. Hence, John Smith, III records begin to appear as John Smith.

The added designation is used to distinguish the two (or more) in written records, but that becomes less urgent when the other one is no longer around.

Passing down a given name from generation to generation is a noble practice, but it does make for endless confusion, and requires some patience on the part of the players to keep it all straight. And that extends to genealogists too.
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