Hello fellow researchers
I am puzzled by several entries from the Evangelische duplicate church books for Werben (Kr Cottbus). A series of alternative surnames are given:
1. Lise Dahlitz oder Schwarzko is the unmarried mother of Christian Dahlitz (1825/36)
2. Anna Dahlitz oder Schwarzko and Hans Chuddi oder Koal are named as the parents in this record (1827/10). Martin Schwarzko of Werben is named as the first Godparent.
3. Christiane Schielka oder Schwarzko is the mother (no father listed) of Friedrich (1852/100). I think the record shows a Schwarzko as a Godparent but this is hard to read.
What do these alternative records mean? I have been told that these families are Wendish (Sorbian). Under what circumstances would these alternative names be used.
I will be very appreciative of some direction in this matter.
I think, the alternatives do not depend on beeing Sorbian or not: sometimes these alternative names have been used, if a person was born before the marriage of his/her parents. But in this case it was not usual to continue this naming for more than one generation.
1. a long time ago there might have been a person whose mother took a new marriage after the dead of his father. If the relationship between the child and the new husband of the mother has been very good - or if the husband was very honorable - the child might have taken both surnames: of his own father and of the new husband of his mother.
2. the mother has been of a (relativly) famous or mighty familiy and took a husband of a less famous family. Then the sense of this doubled surname (in German language most times noticed als "anders genannt" or "alias") may have been used as a symbol for belonging to a famous family.
One example for the last: I know about a Family "Gundelach anders genannt Becker". The Gundelachs have been famous and mighty with their making glass (and with beeing leaders of a glassmakers-association during the 16. century). "Becker" has been nearly a no-name - and so the combination "Gundelach anders genannt Becker" or "Gundelach alias Becker" or "Gundelach-Becker" took part.
Most times these combinations are very old, which makes it hard to learn anything abourt their orign.
Greetings from Hannover
To add one possibility more which has been in use until the end of the 19th century:
Sometimes families named themself after a house, an village or an aerea, which belonged to them and took this name as their first or second surename. If the house, village or aerea got its name from a familiy which had possessed it before, both of the names have been surenames.
Thankyou. Yes, perhaps it is a Hofname or Hausname. I have another ancestor this time from the village of Cortnitz in Saxony - his marriage record from the late 18th century describes him as "Andreas Kleinig called Mieth" - perhaps the same thing