Understanding Maryland Records
Records show that parents sometimes gave more than one of their children the same name. There was a very high mortality rate among infants and children. Sometimes the parents strongly desired that a particular first name be handed down to the next generation, and would give the same name to their next-born child. For example, one couple had a son named George born in 1716 and another son named George born in 1720, yet later records show only one George, indicating that the first one died before 1720 . There are instances when two, sometimes three, children with the same name were alive at the time a parent died. This also may have been done to ensure that the name would be handed down to the next generation.