Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Fearless Females March 3 - Family Names

March 3 — Do you share a first name with one of your female ancestors? Perhaps you were named for your great-grandmother, or your name follows a particular naming pattern. If not, then list the most unique or unusual female first name you’ve come across in your family tree.

We have two family names that have been passed down – Lear or Leah which became Lee. And Helen, which was originally Sarah Helen.

My name is Jennilee and I’m named after my maternal grandmother, Virginia Lee. When she was younger, she was called Jenny Lee and so that’s what my mother named me. Grandma’s maternal grandmother was Leah Powers and she was named after her. The story is that my great grandfather misspelled her middle name on her birth certificate and so she was Lee instead of Leah. Leah was likely named after her paternal grandmother, Leah McCarty Powers.

My mother is Helen. Her maternal grandmother’s name was Sarah Helen. My great grandmother was likely named after her aunt, also Sarah Helen (Aunt Helen, pronounced He-Len, not Hel-len), Leah Power’s sister.

So we have three Sarah Helen / Helens and four Leah / Lees in the family.

On a somewhat related note, my paternal grandfather is Donald Lee, my oldest uncle is Harold Lee, his oldest daughter is Melissa Leigh, my uncle Paul's oldest is Casi Lea and I'm Jennilee. I think we like the name Lee in my family.

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