Name spelling

Some remarks

Schleppi, Schläppi, Schleppy... ? Nowadays, familly names are regarded as something stable, almost for ever. A name is not changed so easily. Until about 1870, however, both first and last names changed quite often, especially when somebody moved to a region where another language was spoken. The first mention of the name Schleppi in Lignières is from 1805 (as Marianne-Julie was baptised), and in the following years different spellings of the familly name can be found in the official registers Schläpi, Schlaepi, Schläppi, Schlaeppi, Schleppy, Schleppi. Among the children of Benoît and Marie-Rose born Gauchat, there are even 4 different spellings in the register of births of Lignières... and each time in the same handwriting, i.e. written by the same officer! Apparently, this german-spoken name gave him much more trouble than local, perfectly french names like Bonjour, Junod or Gauchat, which spelling is fixed since much longer time.

In Switzerland, each familly has a community of origin which keeps the records of the members of this family. It is very usefull for genealogical searches because it is easier to keep track of people who moved. Often the parish at the place of origin also keeps records of its expatriated people. Such multiple records, however, can lead to inconsistencies in spelling. As we have two places of origin in Lenk and Lignières, the former one first didn't want to accept my birth, at least not under the name Patrick Schleppi. For them, i should have been a Schläppi! It is interesting to note that the emigration of Schläppi produced Schleppi several times independently: this is because the 'ä' does not well fint into languages other then german.

First names are not always for a life-long either. Some Johannes alias Hannes or Hans who migrates from a german-speaking to an english-speaking place may become Johann or John or even both in turn!

How to take such changes into account on these pages? I tried to keep the broad tendencies as found in the registers, but keeping names in the same spelling among close relatives (i.e. no 4 different spelling for 4 siblings). Some differences compared to other sources are thus essentially unavoidable!

As usually in genealogy, women appear under their maiden names within these pages: it is easier and less prone to errors.

When searching names within this site, you have several options: