You might be a Luxembourger genealogist when… you hear complaints about how someone’s ancestors gave a second child the same name after the first one died and start laughing, because your ancestor gave two living children the same name. Yup, Luxembourger families often reused names, supposedly in honor of godparents.
Which means two or three generations out, instead of having two Annas, you might now have six – or twelve. So, how do you tell which Anna is “your” Anna?
- Start with what’s unique about the individual. Two or more people may share a name, but they likely don’t share a birth date, birth place, or parents. If you know those things, use them to be sure that you’re tracing the right Anna.
- Then move to the family. If you have two women named Anna born about the same time and about the same place, how do you tell them apart? Think about what else you know about her family. Was one the daughter of a farmer, the other the daughter of a shopkeeper? What was her spouse’s last name?
- Then look at friends, neighbors, and acquaintances. What schools did she attend? What businesses did she visit?
Each of these steps will give you unique details that should make finding “your” Anna just a little easier!