Brumley Naming Chart


Brumley Naming Chart – have you ever wondered who or why you were named after a relative? In my case, I was named after no one at least that is what I have been told over the years. My father, Merle Otto Weik was the one who named me (Diann) and I have done genealogy since 1983 and have found no one I am named after except for my middle name Marie.

My name is spelled differently than most people’s name as well. As a child, I would ask my mother Nancy Gertrude Brumley why is my name spelled this way? The simple answer was this is how my father thought my name should be spelled. It might have been simple to them but for the person owning the name I have had to spell my first and last name to just about everyone I have ever known to this date. 

Naming charts have been around forever and it has been an excellent tool for me to use when trying to figure out what relative belonged to someone. Not all families used naming charts but in my research, it has been used many times. It also has helped me to lay out a road map of relatives generation after generation.

You will often see the same names used over and over again in families. While certain names are popular in different areas at different times in history, the repetition could represent a pattern. Many cultures believe in honoring their elders and do so by naming children after them. Angus Baxter in “In Search of Your British and Irish Roots” describes a pattern that was popular in England in the 1700-1875 period:

  • The first son was named after the father’s father
  • The second son was named after the mother’s father
  • The third son was named after the father
  • The fourth son was named after the father’s eldest brother
  • The first daughter after the mother’s mother
  • The second daughter after the father’s mother
  • The third daughter after the mother
  • The fourth daughter after the mother’s eldest sister

In the Brumley -Weik families that I am related to saw to it that people were named after previous generations. 

Nancy Gertrude Brumley – Nancy was for her father’s mother (Nancy Katherine Cox) and Gertrude was for her mother’s mother (Gertrude Wilburn Nichols). My father was different Merle Otto Weik – Merle we do know where that name came from but Otto was his father’s name (Otto Richard Weik).

Also, I have discovered that they would name their children after Presidents of the United States, such as Grover Cleveland Sells, George Washington Sells or Thomas Jefferson Sells. They also would name their children with the same first initial, Esther, Elmer, Edna, Elsie, Emery, Earl, Eldon, Everett, and Euela. The different combinations are interesting to discover. As we move forward we are not seeing the naming charts used much anymore. They may use a name for a middle name but not for a first name.
Please feel free to share this post with family and friends. If you have questions or wish to add any new information please email me.

Thank you.

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