Researching Unusual Last Names for Genealogy – FamilySearch August 23, 2021

I saw this recently on FamilySearch – Researching Unusual Last Names for Genealogy: Slightly longer article,

August 23, 2021

Having an unusual last name, like Fryxell, means a lifetime of enduring mispronunciations and spelling it out (“That’s F as in Frank, R, Y, X—yes, really, X … ”). But an oddball surname has its advantages, too. Those butchered pronunciations are a dead giveaway when telemarketers call (“May I speak with Mr., uh, FREE-zell?”). And an unusual last name—your own, or anywhere in your family tree—can be a valuable genealogy tool.

Just because your surname is unusual today, don’t assume that’s always been the case. Search for those names on family history websites and in genealogical records, but remember to closely analyze any finds you make, rather than assuming a surname was uncommon back in your ancestor’s time and therefore that any person you find with that name is part of your family tree.


About Wichita Genealogist

Originally from Gulfport, Mississippi. Live in Wichita, Kansas now. I suffer Bipolar I, ultra-ultra rapid cycling, mixed episodes. Blog on a variety of topics - genealogy, DNA, mental health, among others. Let's
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