Ainsworth

What’s in a name?

I was recently browsing through the list of names in my family tree and noticed quite a few occurrences of surnames becoming first names. It got me wondering how common this was and I suspect that certainly in the 18th and 19th centuries it was seen more often – but that is just a guess. The tradition in my family seems to have stopped for the most part, although I haven’t explored many lines into the last century.

So I though it would be interesting to post some examples from my tree.

Mason Buckley is my 2 x great grand uncle. His parents are Thomas Buckley and Henrietta Mason – my 3 x great grandparents.

Watson Dawson is my 3 x great grand uncle. His parents are John Dawson and Ann Watson – my 4 x great grandparents. The name Watson was also carried on in to subsequent generations.

Daniel Owen Espley is my wife’s grandfather. His father Frederick married Frances Owen.

John Bentley Hurtley is my first cousin 3 x removed. His parents are Thomas Hurtley and Maria Bentley.

Bracewell Kighley is my second cousin 3 x removed. His father is Isaac Kighley who married Sarah Bracewell.

Greenwood Lonsdale – is the son of Thomas Lonsdale and Sarah Greenwood.

Thomas Ainsworth Musgrove is my great grandfather and his parents are John Musgrove and Catherine Ainsworth.

My grandfather Fred Ainsworth Stowell Musgrove got his name from his parents Thomas Ainsworth Musgrove and Ellen Stowell.

My uncle Stowell is the last in that particular Musgrove line to carry on the tradition.

John Robert Turner Musgrove is my grand uncle. His parents are Joseph Musgrove and Elizabeth Ann Turner.

George Wigglesworth Nightingale – his parents are Thomas Nightingale and Ann Wigglesworth.

I really like the tradition and it’s quite sad that it has stopped.

How common is this tradition in your family?

Surname Saturday – Ainsworth

The Ainsworth’s in my family are on my maternal grandfather’s side.  The earliest person I have found so far is Thomas Ainsworth, my 4 x great grandfather.

According to the website surnamedb the name is of Anglo-Saxon origin.  It is said to be a locational name from a place called Ainsworth in Lancashire, which is recorded as “Hainewrthe”, around 1200 in the Pipe Rolls of Lancashire, and as “Aynesworth” in the Assize Court Rolls of 1285.

The placename is composed of the Olde English pre 7th Century personal name “Aegen” meaning own, plus “worth”, a homestead; hence “Aegen’s homestead”.

The surname is said to date back to the early 14th Century, and early recordings include John de Aynesworth, who appears in Baines “History of Lancashire” in 1370.  Church records list the christening of Richard Ainsworth on July 25th 1567 in Winwick, Lancashire.

One Robert Ainsworth (1660-1743) was educated at Botton, and published a much acclaimed treatise on education in 1698; he also compiled a Latin-English dictionary in 1736.

The first recorded spelling of the family name is said to be that of William de Aynesworth, which was dated 1332 in the “Lay Subsidy Rolls of Lancashire” during the reign of King Edward III.

My own Ainsworth’s come from Darwen in Lancashire exactly from the area where history suggests the name originates.

A  Google search of Ainsworth produces lots of family websites and genealogy information.  I have chosen to give you a link here to a website with information about the family name and further links to the Ainsworth Genealogy forum.

There will be more to come about my Ainsworth ancestors in the future.