Anyone with a cursory knowledge of US history would know that an ancestor named George Washington Smith, Benjamin Franklin Butler, or Abraham Lincoln Jones was likely named for the famous American. But what about someone named Lorenzo Dow Smith or Jasper Newton Smith? Do not assume you have a connection to the Dow or Newton families just because your ancestor had these names. Sometimes names are simply popular cultural references that have faded from memory.
© Michael John Neill, “Genealogy Tip of the Day,” http://genealogytipoftheday.blogspot.com, 8 Jul 2012.
Note from Site Admin: I have encountered exactly this issue in my research, middle name of Dewitt. All indications point to a military service connection. If you have a similar situation, continue to broaden your research & look for close neighbors, military associations, political, etc.