Monday, January 25, 2010

What Does Your Name Mean ?

I've been reading the book "New Dictionary of American Family Names" by Elsdon C. Smith. I found most of the German and Acadian family names as well as those from other parts of the country. I was surprised to find the country of origin wasn't always what I expected. Remember that our ancestors crossed oceans and moved from country to country hundreds of years ago.
I've also been reading a book about the history of names of Scotland and many of these names were originally English, French, Norwegian and Irish.
If you don't find your name as you spell it now, look for variations. Change the vowels at the beginning and within the word.
Local names of Rome was Rommel,Savoie was Savoy. Some names were changed completely, such as Toups. This name was originally Dubs. These people came here from Switzerland, but the names Dub,Dubb,Dube,Duba could have been English, French, or Czecho-Slovakian originally.
Finding out where a name originated may help you in tracing your family in earlier years. The meaning of a name also adds another bit of interesting information to your family history.
Your library may have other titles of this same type of book. Look in the 929 section and you may find many interesting books to read.

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