Sunday, May 16, 2010


I need some good questions to answer. What would you like to hear about or know more about? I am going to run out of things to say......

This week I have a goal of calling for information about a grave I am looking for. So be prepared to hear all about the journey to find the missing Civil War Grave of Myron Ames. I figure if I write the goal down then I will have to do it!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

The naming game part 3

German Naming Pattern

Pattern A

1st son=father's father
2nd son=mother's father
3rd son=father
4th son=father's father's father
5th son=mother's father's father
6th son=father's mother's father
7th son= mother's mother's father

1st daughter=mother's mother
2nd daughter= father's mother
3rd daughter =mother
4th daughter=father's father's mother
5th daughter=mother's mother's mother

Pattern B

The pattern is the same for the sons but different for the daughters.

1st daughter=father's mother
2nd daughter=mother's mother
3rd daughter= mother
4th daughter =mother's father's mother
5th daughter=father's father's mother

Pattern C

1st son=father's father
2nd son=mother's father
3rd son=father's oldest brother
4th son=father

1st daughter=father's mother
2nd daughter=mother's mother
3rd daughter= mother's oldest sister
4th daughter =mother

German children had the same first names, but went by their middle names. First name is usually a saints name.

If a child dies young the next child is names the same.

The term cousin is widely used for any relative.

And remember Van is Dutch and Von is German

Sunday, May 9, 2010

What is in a name....part 2

Irish Naming Pattern

1st son=father's father
2nd son=mother's father
3rd son=father
4th son=father's eldest brother
5th son=mother's eldest brother

1st daughter=mother's mother
2nd daughter=father's mother
3rd daughter= mother
4th daughter =mother's eldest sister
5th daughter=father's eldest sister

If the father remarries after the death of his first wife the first daughter to the new union is often named for the first wife.

If a child dies young the name is often used for the next child of the same sex, thus honoring the child is named for.

The Irish used this pattern into the 20th century; especially those families who came over from the potato famine.

Dutch Naming Pattern

Van is Dutch Von is German

1st son= fathers father
2nd son= mother's father
3rd son= father

1st daughter= mother's mother
2nd daughter= father's mother
3rd daughter= mother

The Dutch sometimes named daughter's after grandfathers using feminine versions of a name.

Sometimes when a mother's family is more prominent mother's names would be used first.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

The naming game

I have a few family lines that drive me crazy. Everyone is a John or Andrew. Even cousins born the same year have the same name. So the next few posts will naming patterns. They can be helpful. Just remember it is a pattern and not always used. So we will start with ....

English Naming Pattern

1st son = father's father
2nd son= mother's father
3rd son= father
4th son= father's oldest brother
5th son= father's second oldest brother or mother's eldest brother

1st daughter=mother's mother
2nd daughter=father's mother
3rd daughter= mother
4th daughter=mother's eldest sister
5th daughter=mother's second oldest sister or father's oldest sister

This pattern continued to about 1870

Colonial America

New England's first settlers gave three different types of names:
1. English origin
2. Hebrew/ bible names
3. Names associated with moral qualities: Patience, Mercy, Charity, Thankful

In New England, Virginia and later in other colonies it was common to see surnames as a middle name.

Southern names typically use basic English names such as Mary, Richard. However, regional names did develop such as Ashley, Courtney, Tracy, Shelby. Also two word names are Southern such as Billy Bob, Betty Jean. There is a French influence in the south from Louisiana such as Beau, Paulette.

Quakers and Puritan especially used the biblical names. Puritans would often open the Bible, close their eyes and point to a word at random. Thus you had such names as Maybe, Freegift etc.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

census 101

I got this information from my good friend when I was first learning.

One of the most useful tools in research is the census. U.S. Federal Census began in 1790. The U.S. is the first country to have a federal census. Census were taken to determine how many representatives each state would receive. The census are available from 1790 to 1930. Each census year has a different information. The 1880 census was destroyed in a fire in Washington D.C.

When reading a census remember:

1. That the female head of household is not always the mother of the children listed.
2. Surname spellings may vary. Not everyone could read and write and many did not know the spelling of their name so the census taker spelled the name.
3. County lines changed with population and might have become part of a new state.

overview of census

1790 First time recorded- about 2/3 of the census survive today. Losses were in Del., Ky., Va., N.J., and Ga.

1830 First time census were sent to Washington D.C according to a law passed by Congress.

1840 Shows veteran history

1850 First time every member of the household was recorded. Family relationships were not recorded. Be aware that children listed may not be children head of house. First time place of birth is recorded

1880 first time family relationships are recorded. Also, place of parents birth is recorded.

1890 census destroyed in fire. However, information can be gathered through tax, voting, phone directory records.

1900 census records for the first time immigration year, number of children born, number living, language spoken in home.

1910 census records military information, number of years married, naturalized or alien. First time Native Americans recorded in general census. Native Americans had other census.

1920 census records for firs time all states and territories. National origin recorded. Many country origins were difficult to identify by citizens because the world map had changed. For example citizen who emigrated from Prussia is now Poland.

1930 census records families with radios and value of home

This is just a basic summary of the census.

Also there are state census records. Many states had their own census for tax purposes. These census were recorded every ten years but different years than the federal census.