Saturday, October 21, 2017

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun: Top 10 (or 20) Surnames in Your Family Tree

In this week's installment of Saturday Night Genealogy Fun, Randy Seaver is updating another of his statistical analyses of his family tree database.

Here is your assignment if you choose to play along (cue the Mission:  Impossible music, please!):

Go into your genealogy management program (GMP; either software on your computer or an online family tree) and figure out how to count how many surnames you have in your family tree database.

(2) Tell us which GMP you're using and how you did this task.

(3) Tell us what the top 10 (or 20)  surnames are in your database and, if possible, how many entries.  How many different surnames are in your family tree?

(4) Write about it in your own blog post, in a comment to this blog post, in a status or comment on Facebook, or in a Google+ Stream post.

I last did this analysis in 2015, although Randy mentioned that he ran it in 2016 also (I must have missed that day).  I am still using Family Tree Maker 16 on a PC (if it ain't broke, don't fix it).  To find the total number of different surnames, I go to the Tools menu, then Family File Statistis, and then click on Calculate "Total number of different Surnames."

I have 2,004 different surnames.  Two years ago I had 1,952 surnames.  I have made a little progress.

My program does not provide me with a handy list of the top surnames.  I have to count them manually.  Even though I have added more than 50 surnames to the database, the top ten are the same, and the numbers have not changed much.

1.  Gantt/Gaunt/Gauntt, 879 people
2.  Sellers/Söller, 633 people
3.  Allen, 142 people
4.  Mack/Mock, 132 people
5.  Fuller, 103 people
6.  Crawford, 66 people
7.  Dunstan, 64 people
8.  Eckman, 61 people
9.  Wickham, 52 people
10.  Smith, 50 people

So the only changes are in the top three names.  I know I've done work on the Gauntts and Sellerses, so I understand why they increased, but the additional Allens don't make sense to me.  But statistics don't lie, right?

And I still don't count "unknown" as a surname.

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