Now, That’s a Strange Name

This strange ancestor lived to be 88 years old, and he fathered 17 children. At the time of his death, he had over 280 grandchildren, well when including grandchildren, great grandchildren and great-great grandchildren! What a legacy!

One interesting surname in my family is Strange, and unfortunately, this 6x great grandfather just could not catch a break, for he was not just Strange, but a Lot Strange. Okay, that was cheesy, but seriously, can you imagine having that name today? As a middle school teacher, I can just hear the snickers in the classroom while taking attendance. “Lot. Lot Strange.”

The surname Strange originated from the Old French as a nickname for a foreigner or newcomer from the Old French word “estrange” or in Middle English “strange.” The Strange name was introduced into England during the Norman Conquest in 1066, and the earliest Strange name is found in Norfolk.

My Lot Strange, my 6x great grandfather, was born on March 4, 1699, Lot Strange was born to Alice Sherman of Newport Colony, Rhode Island, and James Strange, an immigrant from Wales. The family lived in Portsmouth.

On January 19, 1720, Lot married Hannah Hathaway in Freetown Massachusetts, the daughter of Jacob Hathaway and Phillippe Chase. Although the day of her death is unknown, she died around the year 1735.

This grandfather remarried many years later to Almy Tripp on November 17, 1765, in Freetown, Massachusetts. Her parents were Eleanor Waite and Abiel Tripp. Now, Captain Strange was 29 years older than his bride, and when his last two children were born, he was in his seventies.

One amusing anecdote I discovered was in The South Carolina Historical and Genealogical Magazine, for it states, “Lately died at Rhode Island, Capt. Lott Strange, in the 88th year. Of his age, after a long and lingering sickness. He was born at Portsmouth on the 4th of March, 1699. Early in life, he married Hannah Hathaway, by whom he had 15 children: She dying, he married Almy Tripp, by whom he had two children. His posterity is seventeen children, eleven which had issue, ninety-two grandchildren, thirty-three of whom had issue, one hundred and eighty-five great grandchildren, four of which had issue, six great-great grandchildren, in all two hundred and eighty. (Thursday, July 27, 1786.)” (Webber 146).

This 6x great grandfather created a wonderfully large and “strange” family, and the numbers have continued to grow as his many greats have thrived and lived on to carry his legacy. And I am happy to mention that while we may not carry on the Strange Family name, a little strange lives in each of us; pun intended.

Family Tree

Photo by Nicole Honeywill on Unsplash

Cover Photo by Philippe AWOUTERS on Unsplash


  • Dodd, Jordan, Liahona Research, comp. Massachusetts, Compiled Marriages, 1633-1850, Operations Inc, 2005,
  • Edmund West, comp. Family Data Collection – Births, Operations Ina, 2001,
  • Edmund West, comp. Family Data Collection – Individual Records, a, 2000,
  • Godfrey Memorial Library, comp. American Genealogical-Biographical Index (AGBI), Operations Inc, 1999,
  • Massachusetts, Town and Vital Records, 1620-1988, Operations Inc, 2011,
  • “Strange: Biographical and Historical Sketches of the Stranges of America and Across the Sea.” Edited by Alexander Taylor Strange, Google Books, Higginson Book Company, Salem, 1911,
  • “Strange.” The Internet Surname Database, Name Origin Research, 2017,
  • “The New England Historical and Genealogical Registry.” Edited by Albert Harrison Hoyt, Google Books, Heritage Books, Inc. 1993,
  • “The New England Historical & Genealogical Register and Antiquarian Journal.” Edited by Samuel G. Drake, Google Books, Samuel G. Drake, Boston, 1861,
  • “The South Carolina Historical and Genealogical Magazine.” Edited by Mabel Louise Webber, Google Books, Baltimore Williams & Wilkins Company, 1919,
  • Yates Publishing. “U.S. and International Marriage Records, 1560-1900.” U.S., Department of Veterans Affairs BIRLS Death File, 1850-2010, Operations Inc, 2004,

12 thoughts on “Now, That’s a Strange Name

  1. I have a couple of le Stranges on side branches of my family tree (not direct relations), but I can honestly say that none were “blessed” with the given name Lot.

    BTW: I LOVE that piece from The South Carolina Historical and Genealogical Magazine! 280 children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren… WOW!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I wonder if Lot Strange knew Preserved Fish, born 1679 in Providence RI, son of Thomas Fish and Grizzel Strange. Preserved (and his son Preserved Jr.) are often my entry into the “names that are odd to modern ears” discussions.

    Liked by 1 person

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