Week 3: Unusual Names

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The first person who came to mind on this, along with his twin sister, I can’t use ’cause as far as I know of they are still living. So I went back to my tree and scrolled through names. Surely in the 850+ people on my research tree, one of them has an unusual name! I found a couple random women named Appolina who married in to the family (one my 6th great-grandmother and the other the wife of my 3rd great-uncle).

But I think the most unusual name in my tree is actually my great-aunt. My grandmother had a very different name, and big her sister was no exception (see them both in the photo above). Especially since I’ve never figured out where the name came from.

Donaldine Margaret Thomas was born in 1913 in California. Not only was her father NOT named Donald, there are no Donalds in the family at all. “Auntie Don” as my father and his siblings called her seems to stand all alone.

Was it a popular name in 1913? Was there an interesting novel my great-grandmother might have read that carried the name?

When Donaldine married and had a child, the name she gave her daughter made sense. Cleline was the daughter of Clel and Donaldine. Very straightforward. But when Egbert and Elizabeth’s daughter was named Donaldine, I’m sure there were a few questions.

And if they’ve ever been answered, no one has shared them with me.

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