What Is The Merging Protocol With Different Spellings?

+4 votes
164 views
Many times there are profiles for the same person with different spellings of the last name.  The name may have been spelled several ways in records, and they all show up as profile spellings.  An example is Thomas "Miner" "Minor" "Myner" in early America.

Also, I now know that we are supposed to merge De Lastname into Lastname, but here is an example of a problem: Brioquibec-1, which appears to be an incorrect spelling and De Briquebec-1.

What is the protocol for merging profiles of the same person with different spellings?  Does number of the profile make any difference, i.e. Myner-2 and Miner-35?

To make it worse, there are wives to be merged, such as Unknown Ann-1, Ann UNKNOWN-12345  and Mrs. Walter [Husband's Name]-47.  For wives,  I have chosen to merge Ann-1 and Mrs. Ann [Husband's Name]-1 into Ann UNKNOWN-12345, regardless of the larger/smaller profile numbers.
in Genealogy Help by Vic Watt G2G6 Pilot (327k points)
edited by Vic Watt
If been wondering about this question also.

The sister of my great grandfather married married Alfred Burris Tenney, Tenney-63.

Working with "The Tenney family; or, The descendants of Thomas Tenney of Rowley, Massachusetts, 1638-1904" I added profiles of ancestors back to Thomas.

After adding these profiles I discovered that several of these persons were already here on wikitree as Tenny.

Should I just start going down the list and suggest mergers, or is there another way to approach this problem?

3 Answers

+1 vote
I too have trouble with the various possible spellings of names, and have asked about it before.  I think the spelling to be used should be a mutual agreement between the various profile managers.  I usually try to use the most common spelling contemporary with the subjects life.  If it's an obvious mis-spelling I would change the LNAB at birth, if I were the PM, prior to proposing any mergers.

Wives are another area that sets me off.  "Mrs. Walter" is probably not a real given name.  It looks like you handle it the same way I do.

I don't think the numbers make much difference when dealing with different LNABs of the same person.  Generally, I would go with the lowest number of the agreed name as the governing profile.
by Dan Thompson G2G6 Mach 2 (22k points)
0 votes
Vic when merging surnames merge using the most common spelling.  Note in Bio the different spellings and their source if known.  In the case of Thomas Minor / Myner / Miner, I would use Miner as his father was a Miner and his children were listed as Miner.  It is in Town and Church records that the name change was made.  In the case of Walter Palmer's wife,  it would be proper to use the Mrs Walter Palmer as his first wife has not been identified as yet or leave it as unknown.  That is a preferance type listing they both mean unknown.  Go ahead and be bold, we can fix it later as we go.
by A B G2G6 Mach 4 (41.1k points)
+2 votes
Hi Vic,

This is a tough area.

I'll answer the easy part first: Regarding spouses with unknown last names, using "Unknown" as the last name is our convention. So that is the proper LNAB.

Deciding on the proper LNAB in other cases is much harder, and ideally it should be done before a merge. It's what determines the direction of the merge. The number is irrelevant if the two profiles have different last names. First determine the proper last name. Then find the profile with the lowest number with that last name and merge all other profiles into it.

As to how to find the proper last name, every decision that's made collectively can be found here: http://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Name_Fields

You could ask here for input on specific names. This was a really common issue with the European aristocrats when those merges were going strong.

Chris
by Chris Whitten G2G Astronaut (1.2m points)
With the local priest rcording data in Sweden it was an aural system. Eric Persson might tell the priest his name and have it recorded as Erik Pehrsson.  Which is correct?  Neither? Both?  Some how the records must refer to the same individual.

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