Sunday, February 24, 2013

Sadistic Sunday

I have spent many an hour pondering naming patterns in families (I think some of these families might get sadistic pleasure watching us beat our heads against the wall looking for naming patterns LOL). Figuring out who belongs with who can be challenging when you have many individuals carrying the same first and last names. For instance I counted about 3 men named Andrew Forgey living not far from one another in Tennessee at the same time. All descended from a common Scots-Irish family, and tended to name their children from a selection of a few common first names. After separating the individuals based on ages and land purchases, spouses etc. I was then able to differentiate between them. Like I said in my previous posts I came to rely on naming patterns to help confirm I was tracing the family back correctly. I had not dealt that much with families in the latter part of the 19th century because my family was well documented in that time period, and I never encountered a brickwall until the time period before 1850. Working on someone elses brickwall at that point in time caused me to shift my usual techniques as far as looking at naming patterns.
It interesting to see my early Forgey male ancestors were named after their grandfathers so they alternated the names every generation between Hugh and Andrew. So for 4 generations my ancestors were Hugh, Andrew, Hugh, Andrew (see above).
When I collaborate with another researcher on these early lines figuring out which James or Andrew Forgey they are referring to can be challenging. If someone approaches me with very little information other than a name it can take us a while to figure who this individual is. Many men carried these names and they were located in many different states.
Unusual first names have been so helpful in researching my family. The use of  Lockey, Villourous and Vandover in the Wray family have caused that family to stick out in the crowd. I was wondering if the name Vashti was a peculiar family name because I just ran across that name recently (when I see a peculiar name I wonder if they made it up LOL). I was watching an episode of last years Generations Project and that name was brought up. Apparently it is a biblical name. So it's not a name invented by a particular family. I believe another name, Pulcherry, was a named invented by one of my ancestral families but I am not sure?
According to My Heritage  John , James and Mary are the most common names on my family tree. Mary and it's variations were often used in my family because many lines were Catholic. I had many Marie, Marias in Quebec and Austria. We still have a lot of males named James in the family. To the right is a list of names used in my family and there popularity in my family according to My Heritige . The larger the print the more frequently it was used.
I've always enjoyed studying and sometimes laughing at the first names I've run across doing my research. Names like Missy Moffat make research entertaining.

Here are a few of the James Forgeys from Carla Rotmans' site

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