When comparing files to match/reject or merge if there are spouses.

+1 vote
I am comaring files to match/reject or merge.  

When comparing I see a lot of female spouses are married  However their married name has never been entered on the current last name name field.  

If this is a file I can edit, would it be wrong to put the married name in the field?  (And children of the pair are sometimes listed with the father's surname in both spouses) I know they may have been married to other people also, so not sure, but It seems to me that if the spouse was married her marriage name should be included so it can be seen when doing comparisons. It might make her easier to find.   I am comparing Elizabeth Hutchinson, know how many there are? Mine is married.

P.S.  I can edit because they are over 200 years old.

P.S.S.  Maybe people don't realize:

1. If you have the husband and add the spouse after the husband, it automatically puts his surname in the field.

2.  If you add the wife and THEN the husband, it does not, you HAVE to enter it yourself.
in WikiTree Tech by Betty Tindle G2G6 Mach 7 (70.8k points)
edited by Betty Tindle

2 Answers

+1 vote
Best answer
Hi Betty,

I'm new here myself so I hesitate to give advice.

However, I know from my own uploaded gedcom that if I had John Brown who married Sarah Cox, I had to manually go in and change the 'current last name' field from Cox to Brown.

I expect many who uploaded their tree needed to do this but did not notice.

There are also some wikitree users who strictly and particularly do not change this field, as in some societies the maiden name really was used even if the person was married.

So if the profiles have a profile manager, I would send a friendly and casual message asking if they wished it to be changed, rather than just go in and change it.

I agree, however, that to have both maiden and married surname showing up in a surname search list helps to avoid duplicates.
by Irene Dillon G2G6 Mach 2 (23.6k points)
selected by Betty Tindle
I've been changing married names for ever, when looking for possible matches. If I look at Betty Smith and see that she was married to Sam Taylor, I change her Married Name to Taylor and put "Correct Marrie Name" in the change line. I won't h ave to check her next time if I'm looking for Betty (Smith) Jones.
I also though maybe when entering people didn't notice they had to add it.  I did not when I first started. :)
0 votes
There is no such thing as a married name field, there is last name at birth, current last name and other last name. The practice of women changing their last name when they marry is not universal, more countries have the name staying the same for life than have it changing.

Personally I find it unhelpful if I am looking for Jane Smith to have listed all the Janes that changed their name to Smith.

As Irene said if you think it should be different than what it is on a profile then a freindly discussion with the profile manger is perhaps better than blindly changing things.
by R. G. G2G6 Pilot (213k points)

"There is no such thing as a married name field" Correct. Nit picking?

Well, it really is called "Current/Married Last Name"

Thats afully close to  "Married Last Name".

To continue my explanation, when I want to search for Betty (Smith) Jones.I entere a search for Betty Smith, then look for  Betty (Smith) Jones, mentally ignoring all the other Betty (Smiths). It really isn't hard. 

Sorry ,  I used the wrong terms.  You are absolutely correct.   I apologize.

My main concern was if I should change the last name at all.  I didn't want to make a change if it might not be helpful.    

I also know of the practice of retaining a married name, hence another reason I asked the question.  If I EVER finish my degree, it will be in Cultural Anthropology.

There were many matriarchal societies also, but in Genealogy we have it solely as a patriarchal society.  Gotta be some of those in here too, right?

Sorry for using the incorrect terms....had been awake for about 24 hours.


Thank you.

I have never seen "Current/Married Last Name" I only see Current Last Name which could be used for other things than marriages. I was told of for calling a marriage name when I first started here and felt obliged to pass it on. The main point though is not what is called but how it is used and I still think a friendly word with the profile manager is preferable to changing it to what you think is correct, there may be a good reason it was not done.

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