I started initially researching the surname Talbott. Other spellings included:
All in all, I was able to keep track of the family back through the years.
Howard proved a trickier name to track back through the records. After "losing" the family only 3 generations back, I found the name was Harward. At this point, the family remembered that indeed the family name was Harward, but no one knew the reason for the change to Howard. Lesson learned: Ask for family name variations when interviewing older family members. Through the records other variations were found:
The Haley family out of Halifax County, Virginia also has a number of variations including:
I am early in the process of tracing this family, but keeping an eye out for other variations.