Two families in different parts of the same state had children with similar names. They could easily have been confused. Numerous original records clearly indicated that one member of the southern family had moved west and established their own family. That individual was my ancestor. The connection was clear.
I researched the southern family as they were my relatives. I researched the northern family as well. Not in as much detail as my own family, but sufficiently enough to where I knew enough information about members of that family to help me to keep them separate.
Sometimes you have to research the people who aren’t “yours” to help you keep them as separate as possible.