Sunday, March 3, 2013

Fearless Females - First Names

March 3 — 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.

The name Kathryn is usually thought to derive from the Greek word for pure and is related to the Greek word "katharsis".

Some famous Kathryns include saints Catherine of Alexandira and Catherine of Siena, actresses Katharine Hepburn, Catherine Zeta Jones and Cate Blanchett, and royalty such as Catherine the Great, Catherine de' Medici, three wives of Henry VIII (Catherine of Aragon, Kathryn Howard, and Katherine Parr), and of course, Princess Kate Middleton.

My parents said they chose the name since it was used on both sides of the family. As for the spelling of my name, they said they just liked it! Since I've started researching my family tree, I've discovered several other Katherines, Catherines, and a Kate, but none with my spelling.

My parents must have really liked the name since they named my younger sister Karen. My sister and I were looking our names up in a book of baby names one day and when we got to Karen, it said, "Derived from Katherine". We had no idea that we essentially have the same name!

Here is a list of Kathryns and variations from my Family Tree:
Karen - sister
Edna Catherine Willis - grandmother
Mary Catherine Gast - great-grandmother
Catherine Desch -  2x great-grandmother
Kate Covey - 2x great-grandmother
Katherine Maria Staenke - 3x great-grandmother
Mary Anna Katherine Hagedorn - 3x great-grandmother
Katharina Margaret Anthony - 3x great-grandmother
Catherine Harmon -  3x great-grandmother
Catharina Margaretha Panschard - 3x great-grandmother
Catharina Margaretha Pieper- 4x great-grandmother 
Katir Niehaus - Great-grand aunt
Catharine Niehaus  - 2nd great grand aunt

My graphic with the names was made at

Once again, in honor of National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month.

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