How would it be if we all had double surnames, one from our paternal line and one from our maternal line. Sort of like the Spanish do, but modified slightly so the maternal surname really is a surname that passes along the maternal line and not just the mother’s paternal surname. That’s the idea thrown … Read more


Maybe I have too much time on my hands. One of the projects I was working on this week involved finding the ancestry of my dad’s best friend, Cleve Henry. One of my middle names — Cleve — is after this guy. He and my dad were cowboys together in the glory days of their … Read more

Name of Jesus

I wonder sometimes. Genealogists are supposed to use the earliest attested name. The rule is often glossed as requiring genealogists to use the “birth name“. We had a debate on a while back about the name of Jesus. I still don’t feel comfortable with the result. The Messianic Jews argued stridently in favor of … Read more

Name Choice

“Sancho Panza by name is my own self, if I was not changed in my cradle.” — Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra (1547-1616), Don Quixote Name Choice “Name Choice Freedom is not a new concept; it’s just that few people exercise or realize that they have such freedom. The result is that nearly every woman gives up her … Read more