Did They Just Make It Up?

I have a friend whose first name is a combination of both her grandmothers’ first names. Another relative’s somewhat unusual first name was chosen simply because her mother “liked it.” Another relative never would tell me if the first name given to a child had any significance or meaning.

Sometimes people just make up an age when asked.

It happens. People sometimes make things up for no reason. But there are differences. Making up a name for a child on a whim and having that child use that name consistently for their entire life is different from changing your age constantly when asked. A name pulled out of the blue makes the researcher wonder where it came from but makes the person easier to trace. An age that changes all the time presents an entirely different research challenge.

Check out Genealogy Tip of the Day book version.