26 April 2007

Spelling 101: Flexibility is key

Searching for your name? Try asking a first-grader to spell it phonetically. You might come up with a few more variations.

This article by James Beidler, focuses on spelling, and explains some universal problems faced by family history researchers.

He speaks about the name DAUB and how, in German, D, T, B and P are pronounced similarly, producing such variants in a simple four-letter name as Doub, Toub, Taub, Thaub, Doup, Toup, Taup, Thaup, Taube and Daup.

Beidler mentions how, in Pennsylvania, 18th century German names with umlauts, the two dots over vowels, were hard to anglicize, so that the name KRUECK is seen as 18th century Grig and Creek and contemporary Krick, Crick and Creek.

He also talks about his own name and how it is pronounced ... or isn't.

Happy reading!

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