Surname Tips (4)

Surname Tips

Copyright – Julie Goucher 2019

The tip for day four is to estimate how big your surname study is going to be? – Is it the size of a matchbox, the size of Mount Everest or something in between?

There are advantages and disadvantages to both small and large studies, and in my view there is no reason to not consider any, as long as you know exactly what you are going to do, and will have to do in order to build a study. A study is quite a commitment, but there are a number of factors that are worth considering. A study is not a marathon, it is a gentle walk in the park on a Sunday afternoon.

When I joined the Guild in 2002, I immediately registered the surname of Orlando. It’s an Italian surname of some proportion, one with a great deal of migration and that is why a study should be global. If I did not focus on the global element, I would miss all those who migrated to other countries from Italy. That said, I am not going to be researching everywhere at the same time. Slowly and methodical is the way forward.

Global is relative to where you are of course. An Orlando researcher in the United States is just as global in their approach as I am in England and as any Orlando researcher in Italy.  It is about the numbers of a study, but it is also about context of your particular surname and the interaction with researchers you meet along the way, whether they are researching your surname or not. The ability to learn and share with each other. The making of friendships that makes our genealogical endeavours so special.

About Julie Goucher

Genealogist, Author, Presenter, native Guildfordian, avid note taker and journal writer. Lover of Books, Stationery & History; Surnames, Butcher & Orlando One-Name Studies. Pharos Tutor for all One-Name Studies/surname courses as well as Researching Ancestors from Continental Europe.
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