No matter how “odd” you think a name is, remember that there may be others with a very similar name. I have an uncle born in Germany in the 1850s whose name was Tamme Focken Tammen. He has first and second cousins named Tamme C. Tammen, Tamme Focken Tammen, Focke Tammen Tammen, etc.

They were born at approximately the same time and in some cases settled in close proximity to each other and can be very easy to confuse.

What you think is rare may not be.



One response

  1. I have this problem, several times over. We have tons of Valentines, Johns, Josephs and Abrahams. It’s enough to drive one mad. All born around a similar time, all pretty much living in the same area. The Patriarch of this family remained in England, after emigrating there from Navarre, France. He was a Huguenot. He was the original John Sevier (anglicized from Jean Xavier) His middle name, Valentine. He named a son Valentine, who emigrated to the U.S. and named his first born John (baptized Jean Xavier) later anglicized to John Sevier. Valentine’s second son was Valentine, Jr. John, the son, had both a John, Jr. and a Valentine. Valentine, Jr., also had sons named John and Valentine. And so it goes. My fifth great grandfather is a Valentine, the fourth son of John Sevier, born in the U.S.A. He’s hard to track down. But, everyone in this rather large family, is having a tough time keeping the Johns and the Valentines straight.

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