[APG Public List] Newborn Given Temporary Name?
Joel S. Russell
joelsr at gmail.com
Sat Jul 31 11:37:45 MDT 2010
Isn't it possible that the 1880 Census taker got the information from
a neighbor instead of the family themselves? I'm aware of
situations, especially in rural areas, where the census take came by
and found no one at home. They then asked the neighbor who they
visited next about the "missed" family. If the baby was only a few
days old the neighbor might not know what they named the baby.
At 12:59 PM 7/31/2010, Donna McR wrote:
>I often come across a baby recorded as "Nameless" in censuses. I
>realize the reasons for doing this.
>This situation is not "Nameless," but I think it may be something akin.
>The 1880 census of the household of Frank and Sallie Fuller [names
>changed for privacy] records a baby named John Fuller as born May 1880.
>A John Fuller of this age never appears again, as far as I can tell
>from a thorough census search and search of other family documents.
>I need to determine reasonably that William Albert Fuller, also born
>in May 1880 according to his tombstone, is the son of the couple
>above. His parents' will and probate are not available, and their
>1900 census is nowhere to be found (even after a thorough, downright
>obsessive search---definitely exhaustive).
>In the 1880 census also appears Lena Fuller. In 1910, I find
>William Albert (and wife) in the next dwelling listed after Lena,
>and a known brother to Lena recorded two dwellings down.
>I have scoured the census of 1880 for another baby named William
>Fuller and find none that matches. I have considered that William
>Albert Fuller may have been adopted from outside the family and even
>re-named, but I find no other male child born that month and year in
>the county or surrounding counties.
>A file on the extended family held by the local genealogical society
>lists William Albert as Frank and Sallie's son, does not mention a
>birth for John Fuller, and makes no note of adoption (although the
>creator of the list might have just omitted that).
>I have also looked for a William of the right age living with other
>family members in the counties and state from which they came. No
>The infant John Fuller is recorded in this 1880 census as having
>been born in May 1880. William Albert Fuller was born 25 May
>1880. The census was taken 2 June 1880.
>This infant's grandfather was named John, and there were many in the
>extended family named John, although this particular couple never
>had another child named John.
>For William Albert Fuller to be the biological son of Frank and
>Sallie, they would have to have changed his name from John Fuller to
>William Albert Fuller----or given the eight-days-old baby a
>temporary name to satisfy the census taker.
>Do you know of cases when the parents just gave a child a temporary
>name for such a record as a census taken a few days after the child was born?
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