Surnames and Places



    I have chosen to standardize some family surnames and names of places. Some names are remarkably the same, and others vary in spelling with every recorded occurrence. Without standardization no index is very useful – just as no writing is very good without spell checking!

    Sometimes the variation is because of interchangeable letters in old German. T and D were interchangeable as were P and B. Examples are my surname which in the oldest church registers were sometimes TANGEL, but later always DANGEL – remarkably, almost always exactly DANGEL.

    Later, when signatures were placed in the record they often could only write their surname as DANGEL and rarely DANGELL – never DANGLE as I often have it misspelled.

    I have removed the German female ending in most cases for the same reason, indexing. I do not know of any of my family having their surname changed permanently by using the female ending on unmarried children. So DANGLERIN, etc. is DANGEL, the ERIN being a standard German addition to surnames for female children. Usually in my notes I give the exact spelling.

    Usually I have standardized on the spelling most commonly used by cousins living in that area today. When there is still variability today, I may use the actual spelling for those I know, even though it would be better for indexing to have them the same. The local telephone directory has been my guide. See the table at the end with some of my Alsacien family names and numbers.

    Names often vary with each recording. For my Slovenian or Austrian ancestor Joseph VERSIC, each ancestor is spelled differently, but phonetically they are about the same. The priests sometimes wrote the records in three languages for one event: German, Latin, and Slovene. With German having no V and Slovene having no W, each occurrence requires checking both sections of an index. Another name from this area with interchangeable old German letters were KRAMPERGER and the now used KRAMBERGER (P interchangeable with B).

    On pre names or first names, usually I have chosen to use the born name spelling and use later or more modern spellings as a nickname – in my program printed after the surname. Some cousins always use their language's modern spelling and I am tempted to do so for indexing within surname. Some pre names are numerous and have many variations as for Margaret. One reason I have not standardized them is the amount of time it would take and then which variation would I use? My family from Alsace has had name changes with every war for centuries. Even without wars pre names change with every entry by different priests, civil servants, or present cousins. Common names as Maria Anna will be written differently for her birth, marriage, death, and every child's birth. She will be Marie Anne, Anne Marie, Marianna, just Marie or just Anne, or lately Marie-Anne with the hyphen. What name is correct? I use born name when known.

    Currently in France they seldom use an umlaut. Alsace having been German or Austrian with the Hapsburgs and the Holy Roman Empire (neither holy nor Roman!) speak a German dialect at home even today. In the past surnames often included an umlaut. Presently I know of none being used for surnames or place names in Alsace. Usually the name has been revised to add an extra E after the umlauted letter as MOERNACH. DURLINSDORF does not and the umlaut on the U is ignored. Occasionally a name is used presently both ways as there are some UBERSCHLAG and more UEBERSCHLAG in the Sundgau.

    Since names are always changing and I may change some with every edition of the genealogy, we all have to search for our best guesses.

    On places, I usually use the modern location name when possible. MOOS is an exception as I do not use the newest name of MOOSLARGUE as I do not wish confusion with which register the data came from. With so many French cousins, I have adopted their system of including the department number when known, and not adding the department name, region, or country France. Likewise, for Slovenia, I have not included the country name as they know where they are and it seems not necessary to use with separate sections of the web cards for each part of the family. It saves space and ink, even though it would be more correct to have the country name as well. Other country names are mostly in English, except where I did not standardize names from data of cousins.

    I usually use abbreviations for countries, states, and county. I have thought about spelling them out, and taking more space to store and print them, as well as revising places collected from other cousins, but it would be a big time consuming job.

    If you find your family name or born name in my genealogy not to your liking, please write me and tell me what you use. I like to hear from all cousins. I prefer to have correct full names and dates and places for all events, even though data is suppressed for web cards on living persons. I exchange complete data with real cousins. I like to know where they presently live also.


SURNAME
Number in Haut-Rhin in October 2003


BIEDERMANN
   16
BIGENWALD
     5
BROEGLIN
   15
CASPAR
    41
DANGEL
    55
EGMANN
    14
ENDERLIN
  144
FLORY
    58
GISSINGER
    82
GODINAT
    13
HEINIS
  103
HEMMERLIN
    87
HIRTZLIN
    49
KANDEL
      3
KLEIN
  576
MACKER
    16
MEISTER
  162
MISLIN
    63
MONA
    46
MULLER
2098
PRACHT
    21
ROTH
  343
RUETSCH
  145
SCHALTENBRAND
      1
SCHLICKIN
    32
SCHNEIDER
  796
SIESS
    14
UBERSCHLAG
    13
UEBERSCHLAG
    86
VETTER
    99
WAGNER
  370
WALTER
  478
WILLIG
  130
WOLFER
    31
ZIMMERMANN
  572


James R. Dangel
1504 Sawmill Creek Road
Sitka, Alaska 99835 USA

Phone:    907-747-3348

Email:

Hiding my address underneath to avoid getting spam and unsolicited viruses has not worked very well. You will have to type in my email address from the picture file above. Perhaps you will also have to verify that you are a real person and not a robot if you are not in my mailing list. I apologize, but I know of no other good way to limit the junk mail.


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