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Norwegian naming practices-confused on how to guess/verify ancestors

Norwegian naming practices-confused on how to guess/verify ancestors

Posted: 20 Jul 2009 6:09PM GMT
Classification: Query
Surnames: andersen, klausen, pedersen,
I am tracing my Andersen family in Norway and have found several relatives thanks to the helpful people on this board. But I am confused on whether I am the right track as the given names do not seem to follow what I thought was a strict rule in naming the children (first born son named after paternal grandfather etc).

My great-great-grandfather was Anders Klausen and he married Karen Pedersdatter. Their children were Johan Kristian, Karen Marie, Elen S, Maren, Anne M and Karl Anton (my great grandfather).

I know there are some exceptions to the naming practices but it would seem odd that all of the exceptions would have applied. Why were no sons named Klaus or Peder?

Karen Pedersdatter's mother was Kirsti Johannesdatter, and her father was Johannes Erichsen, so it seems like the first born was named after the maternal grandmother and great-grandfather.

Kirsti Johannesdatter's mother was Maria Carlsdatter, so again it seems the 2nd born son(Karl) was named after the maternal great-grandmother.

I read somewhere that the maternal line was used when the husband took over his father-in-laws farm. But why the generation skip in the naming?

I had tried to guess the ancestors name using the next generation of children's names but that doesn't seem to work. Where am I going wrong?

Thank you for any insight.

Re: Norwegian naming practices-confused on how to guess/verify ancestors

Posted: 21 Jul 2009 12:18AM GMT
Classification: Query
Much can depend on the TIME and the PLACE.

TIME - The earlier in time the more likely to find the traditional naming patterns used. You get to more modern years and those patterns begin to fade.

PLACE - The ports and larger cities that had much influence from European and 'New World' trade and interaction saw the traditional naming patterns fade earlier. In more remote and rural districts the naming practices held far longer.

Consider the time and the place for these persons - information which is not included in your posting above.

Re: Norwegian naming practices-confused on how to guess/verify ancestors

Posted: 21 Jul 2009 1:54AM GMT
Classification: Query
Sorry, I should have included that information.

The family is mostly from Vestfold. Anders Clausen and Karen Pedersdatter are born in late 1820's in Laurvik. Their parents around 1800, grandparents around the 1770's.

Does that location and time period make sense for the practice to have faded?







Re: Norwegian naming practices-confused on how to guess/verify ancestors

Posted: 21 Jul 2009 7:11AM GMT
Classification: Query
Surnames: Pederdatter, Clausen, Reitan
There is also the fact that there were no surnames but that people took the name of the town. Reitan is a town. That was my grandfather's last name when he came to America in the early 1900's. His first name was Ole. Some record's say that his name is Ole Olson Reitan which could mean that he was Ole's son. Just the same as your grandmother was Karen, Peter's daughter hence Pederdatter or your grandfather Anders, Claus' son (Clausen).

Re: Norwegian naming practices-confused on how to guess/verify ancestors

Posted: 22 Jul 2009 1:15AM GMT
Classification: Query
I have no personal experience in that particular part of Norway and cannot speak to whether or not the naming customs were "customary" there and at that time.

Have you consulted the bygdeboks that might exist for those areas? You may not know about all of the children that were born and therefore be missing names that were actually given. Or that couple might just not have considered the naming patterns to be important to them. There was no rule - it was just a custom, the usual pattern.

http://homepages.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~norway/bygdebok.html

Re: Norwegian naming practices-confused on how to guess/verify ancestors

Posted: 22 Jul 2009 1:23AM GMT
Classification: Query
I have no personal experience in that particular part of Norway and cannot speak to whether or not the naming customs were "customary" there and at that time.

Have you consulted the bygdeboks that might exist for those areas? You may not know about all of the children that were born and therefore be missing names that were actually given. Or that couple might just not have considered the naming patterns to be important to them. There was no rule - it was just a custom, the usual pattern.

http://homepages.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~norway/bygdebok.html

You can occationally encounter some strange advise about Norwegian naming patterns. The most frequent form of 'surname' that is not patronymic was names adapted from a FARM name.

Good online study material to learn about Norwegian naming practices and patterns.

http://homepages.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~norway/na12.html
http://www.nndata.no/home/jborgos/names.htm
http://www.norwayheritage.com/norwegian-names.htm
http://www.nndata.no/home/jborgos/farms.htm

Re: Norwegian naming practices-confused on how to guess/verify ancestors

Posted: 22 Jul 2009 1:32AM GMT
Classification: Query
Reitan is the name of a FARM. In fact, there is more than one Norwegian farm called Reitan.

The 1900 Norwegian census indicates three different males named Ole Olsen residing on farms named Reitan.
http://www.rhd.uit.no/folketellinger/folketellinger_e.aspx


Re: Norwegian naming practices-confused on how to guess/verify ancestors

Posted: 22 Jul 2009 2:07AM GMT
Classification: Query
Surnames: Reitan
The search for my grandfather's family in Norway is very frustrating. I was only six months old when he died. All I know is that he was called Ole. For all I know his first name could have been Olaf. When he went through Ellis Island, he probably called himself Ole Olson Reitan meaning that he was called Ole, he was Olaf's son and from the town of Reitan. They probably thought he was called Ole Olson Reitan just like an American would have three names. He only spoke Norwegian when he arrived in the early 1900's. His first wife died here, she was also from Norway. When he married my grandmother, he insisted on only speaking English because he wanted to be a good American citizen. At least that is what my mother would always tell me. She spoke no Norwegian except for cuss words. He was a barber.

Re: Norwegian naming practices-confused on how to guess/verify ancestors

Posted: 22 Jul 2009 2:40AM GMT
Classification: Query
Thank you for your help and the links, I will check them out. I did get the names from the digitalarkivet census, so hopefully I have all of the names.

Re: Norwegian naming practices-confused on how to guess/verify ancestors

Posted: 22 Jul 2009 8:41AM GMT
Classification: Query
1865 census: http://digitalarkivet.no/cgi-win/webcens.exe?slag=visbase&am...
If you click "next" you get the other listings in same area. Some of them rename their granparents, some do not.

There was a son born after the 1865 census, Oluf, born 30. April 1867 http://www.arkivverket.no/URN:kb_read?idx_kildeid=1275&i...

Elen(S?) was baptised as Elen Petrea, born 14. Feb 1857 http://www.arkivverket.no/URN:kb_read?idx_kildeid=1232&i...

Anders Clausen (23) and Karen Dorthea Pedersdatter (26) married 17. July 1851 http://www.arkivverket.no/URN:kb_read?idx_kildeid=1243&i...

Confirmation of Anders Clausen (14) 1844 http://www.arkivverket.no/URN:kb_read?idx_kildeid=3069&i...

His parents (widower) Claus Jørgensen and Margrethe Olsdatter was married 9. Oct. 1813 http://www.arkivverket.no/URN:kb_read?idx_kildeid=8238&i...
The page is difficult to read, but you will find their names down in right hand corner.

Claus Jørgensen Biønøe in 1801 census: http://digitalarkivet.uib.no/cgi-win/webcens.exe?slag=visbas...
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