Household of Patrick Thomas Bradley, US Federal Census for the year 1900, Belvedere, Marin, California; Roll: 93; Page: 11A; Enumeration District: 0061, lines 26-33
One branch of my family is notorious for mixed up names.
My great-great grandfather, Patrick Thomas Bradley was "known" as Tom. His daughter, Jane Elizabeth, named for her maternal and paternal grandmothers, Jane Graham Ahern and Elzabeth (who herself was actually Anna Elizabeth!) Rugh Bradley, was known as Lizzie.
Next in line was John Francis "Frank" Bradley.
James Ahern whose middle name was his mother's maiden name, is probably one of the few with a "call" name that matched, at least somewhat, his first name. They called him "Jim."
My grandmother, Mary Agnes, was known as Agnes all her life.
Hilary Patrick was the other one of all these children called by his first name.
I don't know what Miriam Marcella used for a legal name - I suspect Miriam, but she was known to the family as Brownie. I don't recall ever hearing someone call her anything else.
Finally, youngest son, Thomas Graham, was of course known as Graham. Hey, why use your first name when you have a perfectly good middle name?!!!
When Mary Agnes appears with her parents in the 1900 census of Tiburon, California, she's listed as Mary A. If you didn't know what she was called, you might have a hard time connecting 11-year-old Mary A Bradley with the newlywed, Agnes Kircher when she appears with her husband, Charles, ten years later. But on every census with Charlie, she's listed as Agnes.
If you're looking for your family member on a census or in a city directory, and you just can't find them, try looking for them under their middle name. Maybe they were like my family. At least it's worth a shot. Good luck!
Charles Kircher Household, US Federal Census for 1910, Sausalito, Marin, California; Roll: T624_88; Page: 11A; Enumeration District: 0050, lines 7-9