Friday, March 04, 2005

What's my name, anyway?

For most of my life, I have known that my name is incomplete. I've always been Stanley William Kost, but when I was little my parents used to tell me about how our ancestors probably had their name shortened when they came to America. There were different reasons for name changes back then: often, a family's patriarch would "Americanize" their surname in order to fit into their new lives with less difficulty. Also, a frequent practice in the always-crowded immigration offices was just to shorten a name that couldn't be pronounced quickly.

We've always suspected that the latter is what happened to the surname that became Kost.

Some time last week, one of my uncles stopped by the store where my sister works, and mentioned to her that he had been doing some research on the origins of our family. He had traced the name to Poland, and was able to find out what the original spelling was.

So now my sister knows what it is, and I haven't heard back from her yet since I called her on Monday or Tuesday. I'm sure I'll see her tomorrow, since it's her birthday, but this anticipation is making me anxious. Not that I'm going to rush down to Vital Records first thing Monday morning and change my name, but it would at least satisfy this curiosity that I've had for many, many years.

1 Talked Back:

At July 21, 2005 at 10:31:00 AM CDT, Blogger Jim said...

did you ever find out?


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