Matt Combs has written a simple, but very useful, Windows program that will interest many genealogists. The "Surname Suggestion List" will assist you in searching the web for information on your surnames.
Once you download and install the program on your computer, you enter a surname of interest and click on the SEARCH button. The program then creates three lists of similar-sounding surnames. The lists are based on how close the names sound to the surname you entered. The lists are labeled according to their relationship with your entry:
- Excellent - Surnames in the Excellent list are considered to be very similar to your surname, and are excellent names to search for.
- Close - Surnames in the Close list are considered to be similar to your surname, and are good names to search for.
- Longshot - Surnames in the Longshot list are somewhat similar to your surname, and are longshots.
After the program builds your lists, you can click on a listed surname, and then click on a SEARCH button. A new window will appear and will perform a genealogy search on Google for your surname. You can choose to do a Google Web Search, Book Search, Image Search, or Blog Search.
Other options include the following:
- Wider Search - For a wider search, check the Wider Search option, then click on the Google Search button. A new window will open up which will perform a wider genealogy search on Google for your surname.
- Additional Search Terms - You have two entry fields into which you can put additional terms. Add additional search terms to those fields, then click on the Google Search button to perform the search with the additional terms.
- Date Range Search - You may also add a Date Range to your search. For instance, if you were interested in searching from 1900 to 1920, you would put 1900 in the first date range field, and 1920 in the second. Click on the Google Search button to perform the search limited to the date range.
Surname Suggestion List is free to download and try. If you like it, you are encouraged to make a small donation to support its development.
You can obtain more information or even download the program at http://home.triad.rr.com/combsfamily/sslmain.html.