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16 April 2015

How Easy Is It to Twist Them Up?

I have a work colleague whose last name is McNeil. My mother has a good friend whose last name is Macdonald. Today several times I referred to my work colleague by using the last name Macdonald until someone asked me to whom I was referring.

Is it possible that an informant on a record simply gave a similar sounding name or mixed up two names from the same language or ethnic group?


  1. Not sure what you are trying to say. Did you mistakenly refer to the McNeil as MacDonald? But then you refer to records with a similar sounding name getting mixed up? Are you trying to ask about the origin of the names of McNeil and MacDonald or ? My husband is McDaniel which was, originally, MacDonald. Would love to help you but need clarification on what the question is.

  2. good idea to think about when researching

  3. He's saying that it can be easy to get confused on similar names, and that it's possible, when reading an old record, that the informant did the same thing, especially if the name/date/whatever doesn't seem to fit or make sense.