Go Green: Recycle Names

Every once in awhile, I come across a suggestion from WordPress’s Daily Post blog that grabs my attention. Yesterday’s suggestion fits the bill:

How did you get your name?

Who chose it, and why?

Ahhh, names. My family recycles names like some people recycle soda cans. Let me explain.

I’m the fourth “Wade” in my family. My first-born son is the fifth, but we all have different middle names. Traditionally every other generation goes by its middle name. I grew up being called by my middle name, but my first name stuck when I started college. Yeah, I know. I broke the tradition. But we’re trying to return to the tradition by calling our son by his middle name, Timothy.

Hang on. We’re just getting started. Here’s where it gets complicated:

  • My middle name is the same as my uncle’s (dad’s brother) first name. He passed along his first name to his son (my cousin). Fortunately my cousin has a different middle name.
  • The same uncle shares a middle name with my grandfather (Wade #2). Did I mention that it’s also my brother’s first name? Oh yeah, it’s my son Daniel’s middle name, too.
  • At least my brother has a middle name that is unique. Well, it’s a variation on my mother’s maiden name.
  • To further confuse things, my dad’s (Wade #3) middle name is Lee. My mother’s name is Shirlee. Note that it’s not spelled with a “y.” Guess what my dad’s side of the family calls my mother. That’s right: Lee. “Shirlee” you must be joking.

Confused yet? Try attending a Christmas gathering with my family.

Wait, that gift is for Wade? Which Wade?

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  1. Wade Abbott

     /  March 30, 2011

    Yeah and my special name for Wade Timothy is WT.

  2. Wow! My head is spinning. That is hilarious and a great post! After doing a bit of work in genealogy I can tell you, I feel for the ones in years to come trying to peace that together! I’m having challenges with my “green” ancestors from centuries back!

    • Thanks Debbi. I never thought about the impact on future genealogists. We’ve got enough trouble now with keeping credit reports accurate.

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