On many of the New York Passenger Lists, on the second page, there includes a box to write the name of a relative in the country you're emigrating from, and the name of a person you know at your destination.
Multiple instances of my ancestors put down a relation in the box for the name of a person you know at your destination, and it seems, after further research, that they are not actually a relation.
So my question is: how likely is it that someone would lie about a relation on a New York Passenger List? Is it likely that a person who they refer to as "aunt" or "uncle" is simply a close family friend? These boxes of information are usually very helpful, but recently it has just given me a big bag of names I can't connect.