David's Reformed Church Congregation

David's Reformed Church Congregation
Congregation of David's Reformed Church, Montgomery Co, Ohio, Circa, 1900

Monday, September 20, 2010

Mystery Monday - Who in the World Was Leland?

My Grandfather, Leland Vincent Norris


My grandfather's name was Leland Vincent Norris.  I never thought too much about his name until I began my digging into my family roots.   It didn't take too long to discover that the Vincent in the name was in honor of is uncle, Vincent Norris, who had been born in Frederick County, Maryland, and who came to Montgomery County, Ohio along with his brother, Harry.  Both brothers married ladies whose families owned farms; one in Van Buren Township in Montgomery County and the other in Beavercreek Township, Greene County, although they were actually only just a couple of miles away from each other.  After marrying into these farming families, the Norris brothers moved onto those properties and lived and worked with their in-laws.
As I looked a little further into the family history, I could not locate any of my grandfather's ancestors who shared the name "Leland" with him.  After finding no leads in either the Norris or Routsong families, I decided that my great grandparents may have simply chosen the name because they liked it.  I kept that opinion until I made another discovery.
I had always known that my grandfather's cousin, Dwight Barnes, middle initial was "L", but it wasn't until I found his World War II draft registration form that I discovered his middle name was "Leland".  I feel like it's too much of a coincidence that these two shared the name of "Leland" without there being some type of significance to it.  Who was the original "Leland" and why would the two Routsong sisters feel strongly enough about him to name their sons after him?  It is a mystery that continues to confound me!

8 comments:

  1. What an interesting mystery! And your grandfather sure is good-looking!

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  2. Thank you, Amanda. I think he is very handsome as well! By the way, you have my dream job! :)

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  3. Keep digging Lori, go sideways, if you have not already, keep chipping away, you will find out why, then, you can turn your skills to my Exum Eley (ya, same problem, why did they name him Exum? which is a surname of the area?)

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  4. Interesting. If there wasn't a specific "Leland" they were named for, it would be quite a coincidence. I have the same problem with my Lawson Fuller Lair. Fuller?? Not a common given name, and could find no surname of Fuller anywhere in the family - father's or mother's. Perhaps he was named for a treasured friend or something. Inquiring Descendants Want to Know! :)

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  5. Grandpa was an extraordinary man. Sure did love him. I have so many wonderful memories of days spent on Trails End Dr.

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  6. Interesting mystery that I'm sure you will be able to unravel! I look forward to reading an update on this.

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  7. Well, whoever the original Leland was, your grandfather Leland is certainly good looking! It seems like it's definitely not a coincidence that the cousins both have Leland for a name. What if you did census searches in the localities of your focus ancestors, searching by first name only? I know you can do it on Heritage Quest but I don't know about ancestry or FamilySearch. Of course it may not have been a first name for the original Leland....

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  8. Ahhh...what's in a name???? I ponder that question over and over...lol I agree...your grandfather is VERY handsome.

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