Add Married Names

TMG Utility is the essential TMG companion tool. If you use it, please make a donation.


On this page: Description, Step by Step, Operation, Log Only Exception, Notes


TMG supports multiple names for a single person. One name must be designated "primary", but all names appear in the picklist and may or may not appear in reports at your discretion. Additional name tags can be used to capture married names, nicknames, variant spellings, etc.

Add Married Names adds a name event with the husband's primary surname to all married women who do not have an existing name record with a matching surname. This is intended to produce non-printing name events for use with the picklist.

Add Married Names supports many different options, so these instructions are longer than the instructions for most other functions. Some options include footnotes that expand the explanation. If you still don't understand, experiment on a test database. In some cases, you may need to open the database in TMG to see the effect of the option.

Step by Step

  1. Choose Add Married Names from the function tree.
  2. Choose the tag you would like to add from the Name tag to add pull-down menu. See Note 3.
  3. Choose the option you prefer from the Name Style option pull-down menu.

    If you select Use style from menu below, the style you select from the Style for new name pull-down menu will be assigned to the new married name.

    • If you select Use style from wife's name, the style from the wife's primary name will be assigned to the new married name.
    • If you select Use style from husband's name, the style from the husband's primary name will be assigned to the new married name.
  4. If you would like to add a prefix (title) to the new name, key it in the Prefix text box.
  5. If you would like TMG to display the woman's given name as part of the married name, select Set "Infer Given Name" flag False from the Given Names: pull down list.

    TMG's usual behavior and the default in this program is to Set "Infer Given Name" flag True. Leave it set that way unless you are sure you understand how TMG uses the "Infer Given Name" flag.

  6. If Copy marriage date is checked, the date and sort date from the marriage event will be copied to the new married name. If the sort date is a regular date, TMG Utility will add one day to the value in order to make the married name sort after the marriage event.
  7. If Copy primary surname is checked, the primary surname (typically, the woman's maiden name) will be copied to the Suffix field or the OtherName field of the new name. Select the desired field from the pull-down menu. See Note 4.
  8. If Copy primary surname to suffix is checked, a set of other options appear. See the description of these options below under Note 4.
  9. Set the Flag Filter, if desired. TMG Utility will only add married names to women who pass the filter and meet the other qualifications.
  10. Click the [Add Married Names] button.


For each married woman, the program will build a list of (a) her existing names, and (b) the primary names of her husband(s). The program will compare the lists, and for each husband surname that does not exist in the list of the wife's surnames, the program will add a married name tag. The program does not copy the citations, if any, from the Marriage tag. See Note 1.

As a result of the logic described above, the program does not add name events when the woman's maiden name is the same as her married name. It will add only one name event when a woman marries two or more men with the same surname.

The program compares the contents of both the PreSurname and Surname fields to determine if the wife already has the husband's name.

See the note about the name index.

Log Only Exception

This function does not produce exactly the same results when Log Only is used; under certain circumstances, the log will show a married name added more than once for the same surname. This is because the program did not truly add the married name tag for the first occurrence, so it was not found when the second marriage was processed.


  1. Add Married Names does not copy the citations for the Marriage tag that prompts the addition of name to the new name tag. This is a deliberate omission. Add Married Names adds names in bulk. The program does not assume that the evidence for the marriage is evidence that the woman used her husband's surname after the marriage.
  2. Add Married Names copies both the husband's Surname and the husband's SortSurname. If the SortSurname does not match the Surname, remember to look in the right place in the TMG picklist!
  3. You might want to define a custom name tag for this purpose. The custom tag should have a sentence that has been customized for this use, for example, "--" (two hyphens), which will exclude the name event from all narratives and reports.
  4. This automates a convention that has been used by TMG users where a woman's maiden name is placed in the suffix field of married name entries. When the maiden name appears in the suffix field, it makes it easier to identify married names in the picklist. Here's an example of how a particular woman's entries might look in the picklist, using a recognizable name:
    Primary/maiden name entry: TODD, Mary Ann
    Married name entry: LINCOLN, Mary Ann (Todd)

    By default, the program puts the maiden name in parentheses and adds the hyphen exclusion marker so that the maiden name does not print in reports. The picklist ignores the exclusion marker.

    You can specify your own "header" to replace "-(" and your own "trailer" to replace ")". You can also specify a suffix to assign when the woman has no primary surname. The program's default is an empty string (nothing is stored in the prefix), but you might choose "-(?)" or something similar.

    As of TMG v5, it may be more desirable to store the Maiden name in the OtherName field.

Thanks to Sherri Hessick and Dick Martin who brought this convention to my attention via the TMG-L mailing list, and to Robin Lamacraft and others who described their own modifications to the basic technique.