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Sunday, February 23, 2014

Surnames for First Names

Sometimes the digging part of genealogy is too difficult.  Considering a lack of more records, the naming of children (using surnames) certainly becomes a logical assumption of a connection.  Lately, I have been relegated to this method a number of times, only to discover through deeds, estates or wills that it was not so. However, the method does work sometimes. Why do people provide surnames for their children's first names?  I had a Smith family who named their first two children William Frankling Smith and Thomas Frankling Smith.  Okay, that was the first wife's children.  Turns out that Martha Franklin married Alexander Smith in Wilkes County, Georgia and that his son, Davis Smith, named these children.  When I discovered that William Franklin was a prominent minister in Wilkes County on Little Briar Creek and that organized the Franklin College (later University of Georgia), I understood.  Family pride.  In this instance, I really appreciate the message which he left me.  However, it does take a special sort of skill in comparing families and understanding who they were to sort out information and to prove that many of those types of names do not apply.

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