Wednesday, 13 March 2013

What's in a Name?

Number three following Lisa Alzo's Fearless Females list. There are going to be thirty one of these and I have some catching up to do, so you have all been warned.

This post is about names. Lisa asks:
"Do you share a first name with one of your female ancestors? Perhaps you were named for your great-grandmother, or your name follows a particular naming pattern. If not, then list the most unique or unusual female first name you’ve come across in your family tree."

I do share my middle name with my mother, and she shares her middle name with her aunt, but as Mum and I are still alive, that's as much as I am willing to reveal.

My grandmother had an unusual name - Eda. Nanna was named after the midwife, an aboriginal lady named Eda (I don't know her surname - I thought it was Longbottom, but Mrs. Longbottom was not called Eda). The story that Nanna told me was that in the Burragorang Valley there was an aboriginal lady who was an excellent midwife. She delivered Nanna and her brother and sisters. The Valley was quite isolated, and there are more than enough tales of woe surrounding mothers and babies in our family in the Valley. My great grandmother named my grandmother, her youngest child, for the midwife. Great grandmother must have picked up a thing or two from Eda as she ended up a very competent midwife herself. When Nanna was around eight years old (I think), she and her family moved up to Wentworth Falls. From that time, many family members were born in Great Grandmother's house, mothers travelling up from the Valley when their time was near and staying for a few weeks afterward, till mother and baby were strong enough to travel back. It was only a little house, so this must have been an interesting juggling act with space. I wish Nanna was still here so I could ask her about it.

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