Which Last name at birth Surname do I use for an accepted Merge?

+5 votes
I proposed a merge of Kunkle-337 and Kunkel-4, believing they were the same person.  The profile managers of each felt that this was correct and accepted the merge.  As I attempted to resolve through source searching the Last Name at Birth, I was unable to find a direct source to verify which was correct.  Are they the same person?  Does anyone have a direct source, which I may use, to correctly complete the merge?  How do I best resolve this and remain accurate?
WikiTree profile: Johannes Kunkel
asked in Genealogy Help by James Mulhausen G2G2 (2.1k points)
retagged by Ellen Smith
This is not a source, but to my ears Kunkel is the German name (lots of Kunkels on German Wikipedia). Kunkle is the spelling when the Kunkel family met the English language. What comes up at German Wikipedia for the Kunkle spelling is a pioneer log cabin in Ohio.
GRIN!!! (and thanks for the long chuckle, Eva.
Thank you all for your responses to my request for help.  Recognizing that I still do not have adequate sourcing, I proceeded and chose to merge the profiles under Kunkel-4 as the best choice from consensus of responses.  I have added surnames to the known last names and added a research note.  This comment was added as a major 'Thank You' to all those individuals working toward accuracy of profiles.
Jim, Ellen, and Eva:  Likely many others and I'd like to know what the rules for merging are in addition to eyeing two family lines of two people who by accident have made similar choices (some correct and some mistakes). I encountered this situation yesterday with a merge "clarification" by one of our hardworking people. Partly it resulted in 2 paragraphs  (stuck on at the end of a profile), one labeled By editor 2, the next By editor 3. Hmmm. Who are those people? Is their judgment accurate? Is the only person who might know the person whose tree is being examined? or the person who made those divisions in someone's comments?

I hadn't checked into that profile for a long while. Whatever happened, I wasn't informed either Merge/change was happening or had happened, until yesterday's merge clarifier showed up in a message to me about the merge on my profile page (as I recall). That person would have been the 4th editor and I would have been the first.

Hmm: Wouldn't it be best/collaborative/polite to inform the person managing a profile to "pay attention" to merges made before things progress to some, if minor, confusion?  That would keep a steady balance in the changes processes, it seems to me.

3 Answers

+7 votes
Unless his father's name is wrong, Kunkel-4's LNAB of Kunkel seems more appropriate.  German names were usually spelled "el" and not "le"...
answered by David Hughey G2G6 Pilot (226k points)
+6 votes
Of those two names, I would prefer Kunkel because it's more consistent with German spelling, but it's possible that the LNAB was some other variant spelling, such as Kunckel (which appears on one of these profiles as an alternative spelling).

I've sometimes searched the web and German genealogy websites to see what spelling(s) are found currently or historically in the part of Germany the person is supposed to be from. https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Kunkle-337 mentions a birthplace in Germany. Have you looked at familysearch (which is free) or other sources to see if you can find a baptism record -- or other records for families with this name?

If you decide that the spelling should be something like Kunckel, you should ask one of the profile managers to change the LNAB on their profile to fit that spelling before you complete the merge of the two profiles, then merge into the profile with the new spelling. (That slightly reduces the number of redirects that might be created by the merges.)

And do record all variant spellings on the profile. For example, I see that the immigration ship's passenger list called him Kunk --  variant spellings like that one that aren't either LNAB or Current Last Name should go in "Other Last Names".
answered by Ellen Smith G2G6 Pilot (840k points)
This sounds very good to me, but I'm not selecting it as best answer for one reason only.

I advise waiting for someone from German Roots to weigh in and I would take whatever they say as gospel.  If you replace your palatine migration tag with just plain german that should also get the right people's attention faster.
I already added the German Roots tag to this question; no need to add it again.
0 votes
In case it is helpful, I have been using this website when I come across German spelling variations. My understanding is that it uses stats from modern German names, but it is really helpful to see that some of our Anglicized versions do not appear at all, or are very rare in Germany today. When I entered Kunkel it is very popular, ranked 665 of all names. Kunkle has 3 small hits and doesn't even have a rank.

answered by Darcie Light G2G6 Mach 1 (19.1k points)
Thanks, Darcie, Cool visual , though short. I wish they site had labeled the areas.

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