Common Naming Patterns of Anglo Families

The Fall 1996 issue of THE UPPER CUMBERLAND RESEARCHER contained the following note from THE LEFTWICH HERITAGE on common naming practices:

The 1st son was usually named after the father’s father.
The 2nd son was usually named after the mother’s father.
The 3rd son was usually named after the father.
The 4th son was usually named after the father’s eldest brother.
The 5th son was usually named after the mother’s eldest brother.

The 1st daughter was usually named after the mother’s mother.
The 2nd daughter was usually named after the father’s mother.
The 3rd daughter was usually named after the mother.
The 4th daughter was usually named after the mother’s eldest sister.
The 5th daughter was usually named after the father’s eldest sister.

This pattern was not always followed exactly, but most would usually keep the pattern for the first three children. If there was a name that was found in every generation then somewhere in their children you will surely find these names. If one is stuck on finding parents for an ancestor, try this pattern to give one a suggestion as to a name to search for.

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