Tuesday, October 13, 2009

What's in a Name?

In NL, your last name seems to be an important thing. For years, I have heard people talking at kitchen tables and the one question that always comes up is, "who was she before....?."

At first, I wasn't even sure what this meant. Before what? Maybe like native people, once we are at certain age, we could choose our adult name; usually befitting some great accomplished feat. But no, who was she meant before she was married. Ah, the great feat of marriage!

My surname is not of the island and in fact, I know that I am the only one of my kind here. This tends to un-nerve some people; after all, it proves that I am a CFA (come from away) and have no island history to determine just who I am and where did I come from?

And don't get me started on the term of "maid". Another NL term which seems well entrenched into colloquial days.


  1. Hello Julie,

    I did a stupid thing and had you linked just to a previous post....so....every time I checked in it appeared you had not posted since I last commented. I'll relink your blog correctly. As for names, I've kept my "maiden" (is a strange word for current times) of Stewart. My family is very small and needs all the Stewart's on this lineage before we disappear!

  2. My family is from the south (USA) and when I was growing up it was always, "Who are her people?"

  3. When in doubt, keep them all. At decision making time, I felt that my "first" last name needed to stay with me. Luckily, it went well with my "second" last name. It did cause a little confusion with babies in the hospital, since they only got Davis. But names are like good slippers - comfy and tough to give up.