Steve & Kay in April, 1946
Steve remembers a story about his mother Kathryn:
I STOPPED IN AT MY PARENTS WITH A FRIEND AND MOM INVITED US TO STAY FOR DINNER. DURING THE COURSE OF THE MEAL IT CAME UP THAT MY FRIEND HAD BOTH A CAT AND A DOG THAT WERE NAMED “CHARLIE”. THE CAT SHE HAD FOR YEARS AND THE DOG WAS A RECENT ADOPTION FROM SOMEONE WHO HAD LEFT THE AREA FOR SOME FORGOTTEN REASON. OF COURSE MOMS ONLY QUESTION WAS “HOW DO YOU TELL THEM APART”.
This may be the McNally family motto.
The 1910 census listed 8 McNallys and Valentines living on Adelphi Avenue in Brooklyn. Three (38%) were named Elizabeth.
Lizzie Daly Valentine in 1934
Grandmother Elizabeth Daly Valentine was 48. Her nickname seems to have been Lizzie, but everybody there probably called her Mother. Her daughter Elizabeth Valentine, 21, was called Bess. Anna Valentine McNally had three little girls, the middle one another Elizabeth. Because her father was William McNally they called her Billie, which was probably a good solution for the name confusion at the time.
Billie in 1949
Billie was called Billie all her life, but when she was 17 her little brother William Joseph McNally was born.
Bud in 1940
He was never a Bill but a Buddy, another good solution to the question of How Do You Tell Them Apart? The solution only lasted for a while. When Bud was about nine years old, Billie married another Buddy, Francis Thomas Duane, so we have an Uncle Buddy Duane and an Uncle Bud McNally.
Buddy and Billie Duane in 1946
Ronnie in 1949
Bud added further to the confusion when he grew up and married Veronica Muenkel in 1948. Now we had a second Aunt Veronica McNally, but we could always tell them apart because one's nickname was Vera and the other's name is Ronnie. They had a daugher named Veronica Ann McNally, but she's called Bonnie.
Vera in 1935
We probably don't even want to start on Bonnie's generation with all the Bills, the Patricias and Patricks....
Patty in 1945
The most confusion may have been caused by the 1952 wedding pictured at the top of the blog, at which the bride at the end of the line, Pat McNally, married Pat Neary. They were always distinguished at our house as Pat and Patty.
Uncle Tommy (a relatively rare name in the whole McNally scheme of things) married Margaret Mary Wood in 1950, giving us a second Aunt Peggy McNally. We always called Peggy McNally Bentley "Peggy Bentley" and Peggy Wood McNally "Peggy Wood".
Peggy Bentley in 1945
Peggy Wood in 1978
Because her older sisters-in-law knew her when she was young we always referred to Mrs. Peggy McNally by her maiden name and it was all quite clear.