Surnames

Most Recent Articles
Why certain surnames are more popular than others.
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Expect surname variations
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Stumped by two John Smiths? Can't tell if Great-aunt Delia's also Great-aunt Bridget? Don't get caught playing the name game without our guide to untangling multiple monikers.
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Follow along as our online genealogy expert uses smart web searching strategies to research an ancestor with a common name.
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Surnames developed different ways in various regions and countries, but all tend to fall into one of four categories. Use these tips to decipher your family's monikers.
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Are you lost at sea in your search for ancestral maiden names? We'll show you 10 places to lay anchor and find your female forebears.
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Mixed up by multiple monikers? Here's how to untangle the ancestral nicknames, name changes and spelling variations that can trip up your research.
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So there are 31,139 John Smiths in the 1900 US census — and your ancestor is one of them. These techniques will help you find the right guy.
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Finding names is at the heart of genealogy. Try these seven surname research strategies, and you'll open doors to family tree discoveries.
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Don't fall for fake surname genealogy books.
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