9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars
Invaluable to the casual researcher of NF family history., Oct. 10 1998
Seary's in-depth study of nearly three thousand family names of Newfoundland, arose from his work on the study of place names of the island. As his study progressed, Seary became fascinated with tracking families as they migrated along the coast or changed their names to avoid detection by Britain and France. His pursuit of the rise of Newfoundland surnames illustrates that relationships, place of origin, occupation, and even nicknames played very important roles.
The core of his research comes from the Official List of Electors 1955 chosen because it was the most comprehensive list of names and the communites to which they were linked before the massive resettlement programs of the 1960's. The sources of his information are vast as he quotes from scholarly works from England, Wales, Ireland, Scotland, France and the Channel Islands as well as the many censuses taken in Newfoundland since 1675 in his attempt to get at the origin of the name.
Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland attempts to trace each name to a geographical origin in England, France, Ireland, etc. as well as trace its linguistic origin. This will provide the reader of this text with answers to such questions as; What does the name mean? Where is the name found in Newfoundland? When was the first recorded incidence of it in a particular region? Of course, this information is invaluable to any researcher of family history.
The real value to the student of genealogy, is that as Seary lists the early instances of each name in various places in Newfoundland, he provides us with all kinds of tidbits of information about the person - how they were killed, where they worked, their father, etc. And as expected from a scholar such as Seary, all of this information is referenced back to an original source document!