The constancy of names in the late 1800's, both given and surnames, was not what it is today. I've come across numerous examples of relatives given one name at birth and then called another for most of their lives. My paternal grandmother's family, generally known to us as the Saxe family, provides a wealth of examples of name variations.
| Fabian Saxe with his second wife, Theresa Helburn Saxe and their five children.|
In the back row are the three sons by Fabian's first wife, Minna Rochotsh.
|By 1894, most of the family members were using the 'Saxe' spelling. For reasons unknown to me, Henry retained the 'Sachs' spelling. (The names of the people in photo were recorded by my father, James Fabian Bernard Zweighaft.)|
|Kalisz, Russian Poland, birth record of Fabian Sax, 15 Mar 1833; citing Family History Library microfilm No. 743143, birth record no. 79.|
|A tintype, about 1884. From left, Theresa Helburn Sachs Kaliske, Belle [Bella], Martin, Artie [Arthur], Julie [Julian] and Blanche [Flora]. Note: The birth names are in brackets.|
|Blanche Saxe Kaliske, about the time of her 1894 marriage to my grandfather, Bernard Zweighaft|
The elegant elderly relative living at 336 West End Avenue in the 1960's, my grandmother's sister, was always known by us as 'Aunt Belle'. But she was actually born Bella Kaliske and indeed used the name 'Bella' in official records until late in life as is shown on the 1948 passenger ship manifest below.