JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Re:Before and After Name Adoptions #general

Ury Link

Dear Genners,
Monica Leonards asked the next qustion:

>>I'm wondering how people who lived and died before the adoption of surnames are
listed in the European vital records after the adoption of surnames. Let me be
more clear. Suppose you have a woman born before surname adoption in that area,
who married. Some time after her marriage, Jews were required to adopt surnames,
and her surname became that of her husband. Let us assume that at the time of
surname adoption, both her parents were dead. When this woman died, how would her
"maiden name" or parents names be indicated on the death record? When her children
married, how would her "maiden name" be entered?(I know that not all vital records
asked for the maiden name of a deceased woman, or the maiden name of bride/groom
mothers, but some did.)>>>

You question is a correct question, but you give in you letter the answer also,
"I know that not all vital records asked for the maiden name of a deceased woman,
or the maiden name of bride/groom mothers,""

This is one of the biggest problem of a genealogist, to find you family before
the adopting of the family names. In this period of the adopting of family names
in Europe begin of the 19 century we have to deal with another system that we
have today. I have a little experience with documents >from this period and I know
that in the most of the case you can not find the maiden name of a women , the
only think that we know is the name and the name of the father and if she was
married the name of her husband. You have also deal with different country and
different low system. it is dependent in which area you seek you family in
Western Europe or in East or South Europe . But if you have the time and the
patience for research you can find a lot about women names also before the
adoption of family names.One of the best ways is to find the marriage books of a
town that you family lived in (if the have it) look on the name that you seek and
find the name of her mother and father and look also on the names of the witness,
perhaps you find a brother of the bride as a witness. Through this way you can
find what was the family name of the masculine part of the women family that you
seek and look to what name the change if you have documents about it. I promise
you it is not easy but you can have success with this way. In the Jewish burial
books normal you don't find a maiden name of a women in the begin of the 19
century or before.
Best regards
Ury Link

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