St. Clair or St Clair for middle name?

+4 votes
in Policy and Style by William Collins G2G4 (4.7k points)
recategorized by Jillaine Smith
I prefer no periods, because they don't add anything.
the LNAB is St Leger (no points) in accordance with the naming guidelines of the European Aristocrats Project -

As a given name (first or middle), it should be spelled out - Saint Leger. See for example

Cheers, Liz
I try to follow the rules but....

Where is this rule written for middle names that are taking a family name?  I have not seen this in use, and disagree with this interpretation.  I can go along with the use in a last name but fail to see why it would change for use as a middle name.

  • Names like St John: "St" is a prefix which stays with the surname; that is, "St John" goes in the LNAB field, and St is not dropped nor separated out into the prefix field. Do not put a period after the St and do not spell out the word Saint.
ok. Then perhaps you could share which profile you're referring to & we can see if contemporary records can be found.
It shouldn't have the fullstop/period, but it should have a space because that's the way it is written.  (Made up names) Jenifer Amanda St Clair Oswith; or Harold Jonathon St Clair Phillips.

Just my tuppence.
P.S. to William... My logic in spelling it out when not LNAB is because it is my understanding that the LNAB guidelines are to ensure consistency for WikiTree IDs (which are based on what's in the LNAB field). If there is disagreement for a name field, which there appears to be, since this guideline is not specified for other than the LNAB field, I would point to the overarching, WikiTree guideline to "use their convention not ours" (meaning contemporary documents would need to be found to support which to use).

Cheers, Liz
The profile in question is Morton-7519.  I saw where there was a similar question on G2G that had not been answered..
St. is an abbreviation for Saint -- abbreviations should be followed with a period.

Historically, documents for the same person have appear both with and without the period. And they still do in modern time because the person writing them uses their own standard.

But it is not always followed and and WT didn't force a standardization and thus we surnames that are the same great family but are entered in two formats, for example "St Clair" and "St. Clair"

The problem extends to place names and again forced standardization doesn't exist. Example: "St Louis", "St. Louis" and Saint Louis" all appear in profiles.

And one I dealt with recently was "St. Onge" but the modern family uses "St.Onge" with no space.

Periods or no periods has no fixed universal rule.

I think WikiTree should embrace the non-American version for the sake of internationalism, and leave out the periods.

1 Answer

+2 votes
Best answer

William, thanks for the WikiTree ID.  Here's his death certificate:

"Pennsylvania, Philadelphia City Death Certificates, 1803-1915," database with images, FamilySearch ( : 9 March 2018), James St.Clair Morton, 18 Sep 1880; citing , Philadelphia City Archives and Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia; FHL microfilm 2,047,251.

His sister's birth record, same middle name:

"Pennsylvania, Philadelphia City Births, 1860-1906," database with images, FamilySearch ( : 10 March 2018), Bertha St. Clair Morton, 16 Oct 1870; citing Birth, Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States, City of Philadelphia, Department of Records, Pennsylvania.

Clearly, his family abbreviated 'Saint.'  Also clearly, he was not EuroAristo, so that Project's rules don't apply.  I agree with Melanie:  Space, no period.

by Herbert Tardy G2G6 Pilot (521k points)
selected by William Collins

Thanks for the star, William!  smiley

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