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Who else is a Genealogy Nut??

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cmbear
cmbear Member Posts: 674

I have been doing my family history for a few years now and I KNOW I am not the only one on here that dabbles in genealogy. Lets share our stories, our research queries and maybe along the way we can help each other with research. Or maybe we'll find out we are related!! My family roots go from Nebraska back to Scotland, Ireland, Luxembourg and France. What's yours?

 

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Comments

  • curveball
    curveball Member Posts: 1,583
    edited September 2012
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    I enjoy genealogy too, and have family roots in Barbados, Black American (pre-Civil War free persons of color on one side, probably born in slavery on the other) and one great grandmother from Devonshire in England. I would like to do DNA testing to find out what part of Africa my ancestors came from.

  • mdg
    mdg Member Posts: 1,468
    edited September 2012
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    I am into it too!  I am 100% Italian.  I have traced back my family to the 1700's and have visited the town they were from (on my mom's side).  Dad's side has been harder to do.....don't have many generations traced back for his side. 

  • Blessings2011
    Blessings2011 Member Posts: 1,801
    edited September 2012
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    Oh, I wish.......

    Most of my Genealogy research is packed away in boxes, and every day I think I should dig it out and complete it while elderly relatives are still living and can tell me stories.

    I got back to the 1700s on my dad's side, and the 1500s on my mom's side.

    Last month I did the DNA testing with Ancestry.com. Interestingly, I found that I was 80% Scandinavian (modern day Norway, Sweden, Denmark) but also from earlier people who migrated across Europe.

    I am also 14% Southern European (modern day Italy, Spain, Portugal), but again, the information goes back to ancient times, describing how different bands of people migrated across the world.

    The rest - 6% - is "Uncertain", meaning that Ancestry.com has not identified a large enough group of people with the same DNA in order to be able to legitimately name them.

    What is fascinating is that in my research, no named ancestors come from Scandinavia or Southern Europe, but the reality is that everyone had to have originated somewhere.

    I'm really glad I did the DNA test.

  • cmbear
    cmbear Member Posts: 674
    edited September 2012
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    Curveball--did you see Prof. Gates show on PBS? It was so different than the network show! He really added some interesting history to the family stories. I imagine tracing African roots would be frustrating, but I am amazed at what records are out there.

    MDG-how lucky to go back and visit where your family once lived. Some day that one clue will land in your lap for your dad's family and it will unlock all those mysteries.

    Blessings--oh do get those relatives on record--you will regret it if you don't. I know I didn't get interested in my genealogy until my grandmother had already crossed into dementia. I missed so much!! i took the $99 test on Ancestry--is that the one you took? I was surprised at my results too(62% Scandanavian, 26% Southern European, 9% Eastern European and 3%unknown.) My background is simply Irish, Scottish, German and French.  My guess is that my United Kingdom families probably were probably all from the Norse-land. But Southern European? Guess I have to go WAY back for that one! I really want to get the mat/pat DNA tests done but its really hard to justify spending $500 or so when you aren't working and you have a son in college. Lately I have been researching records in Luxembourg, so I have been reading a lot of old German and French records, which would be ok if I spoke either language! I actually have some German church records on film waiting for me over at the local Family History center. Now I know why they let you have them for 3 months!! 

    Part of the reason I started this was to see if maybe any of us could help each other. Maybe give ideas, suggestions, get us out of that roadblock we might be in. I have been so fortunate to find local people where ever I have been searching to do research for me, but some places are hard to find a soul that even cares about the history of the area. My family wasn't rich or famous so my records are hit and miss. But I love to celebrate others' successes, so lets share what we have found that is exciting--something that is a OMG moment.  

  • Sherryc
    Sherryc Member Posts: 4,503
    edited September 2012
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    I am also a genealogy nut.  I am so bad about getting off on rabbit trails.  Have done alot of my family and DH family.  I am so hoping that someone in the next generation will become interested so all my research does not go to the wayside.  I have not done any of the DNA testing but thought it would be interesting.  I saw the PBS program Prof Gates did and he was so very interesting.

  • LaurenS16
    LaurenS16 Member Posts: 13
    edited September 2012
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    I love working on genealogy. My family is mainly "Great British" -- English and Scottish with a bit Irish thrown in. My mother has about 1/2 German ancestry, but part of it goes back to the early 1700's in Pennsylvania.

  • cmbear
    cmbear Member Posts: 674
    edited September 2012
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    Don't get me started on rabbit trails!! I have 2 sisters--so I offered to do a little research for my BIL's. My older sister and BIL came to visit over Spring Break and the night they left, (Ric who didn't even know who his grandfather was,) I found him and back several generations. He was lucky, his family has a  lot of fellow researchers. He has since taken over and has tracked his family back to Virginia in 1630. I unleashed a monster!!Laughing A couple of weeks ago, I started looking for my other BIL's family in Philly, and found out that his long lost grandfather was actually from NC and his ggrandfather fought for the Confederacy. Needless to say, he was a little shocked!

    What and where is your research Sherry? 

  • cmbear
    cmbear Member Posts: 674
    edited September 2012
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    Lauren, what is your family from Pennsylvania? Do you know what county? 

  • LaurenS16
    LaurenS16 Member Posts: 13
    edited September 2012
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    CMBear,

    You know that those are dangerous questions to ask a genealogy nut, right? Because you're always going to get more answer that you may want! Laughing

    My Germans are mainly from Montgomery County, PA -- Schwager, Hauck, Weand, Shuler, etc. These are the pre-Revolution families, with lots of intermarriage. Many of their tombstones up to the 1860's were written in German. The other batch of Germans were 1800's immigrants to Philadelphia -- Kiefer and Hunn.

    The non-Germans all ended up in Philadelphia -- Daniel/Daniels (originally from Delaware in the 1700's), Mahorter/Mehorter (Scotland), Whyte (Scotland), Clare (New Jersey), Barlow (England), Gregg (Ireland), Murphy, and Smith.

  • GramE
    GramE Member Posts: 2,234
    edited September 2012
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    I have over 12 thousand names in my genealogy files.   More of my mother's side (back to 1600's) than my father's.    My grandad was the youngest of 17, grandma was one of 14.   Big families on my mom's side and the majority lived a long life.    

    My DH was Greek, so that kind of goes to a dead end since I do not read or write Greek, he and his sisters are dead.  One of his cousins did a small bit of research, but she too is gone.   We visited the village his parents came from quite a while ago.    

    I am German, Scot, and Irish ancestry, with some Swiss thrown in.    I had not heard of the DNA test, but I have also not been on Ancestry for a couple of years.    

  • cmbear
    cmbear Member Posts: 674
    edited September 2012
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    Well, I had to ask!! None of my Germans are your Germans. I havent done as much Revolutionary era research, looking for some vacation time to hit some courthouses and libraries. Most of my family settled in Nebraska as homesteaders so sometimes the trails are hard to follow.

  • cmbear
    cmbear Member Posts: 674
    edited September 2012
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    GramE--isnt it funny how the women seem to be the historians of the family? What names are on your Mom's side?

  • geewhiz
    geewhiz Member Posts: 671
    edited September 2012
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    I am an absolute genealogy freak. I am Irish primarily. I traipsed over to London to the National Archives, and pulled the military paperwork. In Ireland, many of the young men were "pressed" into service by the controlling British Military. Brutally really. The good news is that while most everything got burned or destroyed somehow or another in Ireland....the Irish that were in the British ranks had very good records maintained. I found my ggggrandfathers enlistment papers from 1810, he was 5'8 with gray eyes :D

    The first thing I did after getting my port out was to fly to Ireland to the small town we are from originally, taking my husband and 3 children! I stood in the graveyard, mostly tumbled down...and read all kinds of family names in a cemetary from the 1600's!! I took a small stone that I keep with me all the time. In the old annals my ancestors are listed as the town stone masons. They owned the town quarry. The rock has a very grounded healing vibe to me.

  • cmbear
    cmbear Member Posts: 674
    edited September 2012
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    Aww gee--what a great story!! Love, Love, Love it!!!  What are some of your Irish names?

  • GramE
    GramE Member Posts: 2,234
    edited September 2012
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    Some of my German names are Heck, Heike, Stankey, Steinke, -- settled in Wisconsin, Buffalo County.    

    Fulton is my Irish name -- New Jersey and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.    

  • Sherryc
    Sherryc Member Posts: 4,503
    edited September 2012
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    claire my moms family is very German, immigrated from Germany in the late 1800's to a German community.  My grandmother was the first to marry outside of the German Community.  My maternal grandfathers father true American melting pot.  My Dad's family is English and Irish.  Family seems to have started out in New England and then moved south.  so I have lot's of ancestors that have fought for the confederacy.  Interesting to find the pension records.

    My biggest find is with DH family.  His gg-grandfather and ggg-grandfather had a fight with a man over water rights in west texas.  The other man pulled out a gun and shot the gggrandfather in the leg and the ggggrandfather shot the man dead.  Big trial and lot's of court records that were interesting to read but in the end the court decided it was self defense for the ggg-grandfather and dropped the charges on the gg-grandfather.  We knew DH grandmother was raise in Buenos Aires and I could find out info on her mother but not her father.  I get an email one day wanting to know if I want some pictures of DH grandmother from when she was a teenage in Buenos Aires.  Well long lost family and come to find out the parents divorce and the mom moves back to the states.  He stay there and married again and had a whole new family.  So this person was part of that family and filled in all the gaps for me.  My M-I-L said her mother would never talk about divorse etc it was such a taboo.

  • curveball
    curveball Member Posts: 1,583
    edited September 2012
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    @cmbear, yes, I saw both parts of African American lives, and several of the segments of the more recent programs Dr Gates has done with Americans of other ethnicities--Asian, Hispanic, European ancestry, Native American. The things they found out were just amazing. Maybe I will get the whole set on DVD. I would like to see them again.

    My FPoC (free person of color) ancestors were Roman Catholic, so I was able to get some information on them beyond what is in the family bible, and may find more with additional research. They were in Baltimore MD and only the cathedral's records have been microfilmed that I know of. There may be other records still existing at other parishes that could throw more light. I have found no documents at all of the other side before 1867, and I think the most likely explanation for that is that they were slaves prior to the Civil War. Unless I discover who their owner was and that owner kept documents, that is probably as far as I will ever get on that branch, except by DNA testing. They have a somewhat unusual surname and there are white people with the same name. I'd be very curious to know whether there is any biological relation between the two. The records from Barbados are amazing. They have been microfilmed by the LDS and are available at the Family History Library and it's a good thing, because if you go down to the island, the original registers (many well over 100 years old) are still available for handling by all comers at the Archives. If that goes on they will eventually fall to pieces. I have not gotten far enough back in Barbados to "hit the wall". Slavery was abolished there earlier than the US, and I only know that side of the family back to my great-grandparents, which was some time after that. But I'm lucky in that all my ancestors so far are from English-speaking countries. I suspect that if I get a little further back with the FPoC I will hit a language barrier, as their surnames are French.

    Are there any other genealogy-nuts-of-color here on BCO? And is anyone doing medical genealogy on their family? I recall only one person in all my family researches who died of cancer (not breast), but on other threads I've heard of people with many generations of breast cancer in their families on both sides.

  • LaurenS16
    LaurenS16 Member Posts: 13
    edited September 2012
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    I've been tracking medical information with my genealogy for years. I was hoping all those 80 and 90 year-old relatives meant I had a long retirement to look forward to! Breast cancer just wasn't on the list. Unfortunately, my MIL died of breast cancer last fall, so now my daughter has breast cancer on both sides of her family tree.

     I'm not a genealogy-nut-of-color, but I was interested to find persons of color in my family tree. My great-grandmother was one of 12 children. Three of her sisters married African American men. I thought that was rather unusual for Pennsylvania in the 1890 to 1910 time frame.

  • curveball
    curveball Member Posts: 1,583
    edited September 2012
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    @LaurenS16

    My English GGM married one of the family I suspect was a former slave. There is a note from--we think--my great aunt (their daughter) who said GGM's sister also married a black man. That was in New York City in more or less the same time frame as your relatives in PA. Maybe interracial marriage was not as unusual at that time as we thought. If you have ever read "Having our Say", the autobiography of the Delaney sisters who both lived past 100 years old, they describe how interracial marriage was illegal in some states. They were born in Virginia and it would not have been legal at that time for their parents to marry. But mixed marriages weren't prohibited everywhere, even before the Supreme Court declared the laws against them to be unconstitutional. Obviously such marriages were not against the law in NY or PA! I have a photocopy of my GGP's wedding license and it clearly states that he was "colored" and she, "white".

    I have not done any research yet on my GGM's siblings, but there were five sisters and they were all brought to the US as children by their parents. I don't know who, if anyone, the other sisters married, so I may have many cousins, both black and white, of whom I as yet know nothing. I did once meet a lady whose surname was the same as my GGM's maiden name. She was from New Zealand, but I suspect we may be distant cousins by marriage. She told me there is a reunion of that family in England, so some of them stayed there too, or maybe went to the (then) Colonies and came back later. One of these days perhaps I will discover the ancestors of that family name now living in NZ, and whether they are related to my GGM. I may have cousins in Kiwi-land and/or England as well as the ones in Barbados that I know about and some of whom I have met. And I think one of my Barbadian great-uncles may have gone to England too. It used to be that if any of your grandparents was a Crown subject, you could move to Great Britain or I think anywhere in the Commonwealth, any time you wanted to, but the rules are different now.  

  • LaurenS16
    LaurenS16 Member Posts: 13
    edited September 2012
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    I love genealogy and need to get my mind off of cancer, so I'm going to be annoying an keep asking questions! LOL

    So, everyone, do you have a favorite surname that you are researching?

    Mine is RUMGAY. It probably comes from an estate in Fifeshire, Scotland known as Rumgally. It is the maiden name of my 2nd great grandmother Ann (Rumgay) Whyte (1847-1915), but I've found myself tracing Rumgays throughout Scotland, England, Australia, and the United States. I even have a picture of Ann -- one showing the back of her dress! LOL

  • cmbear
    cmbear Member Posts: 674
    edited September 2012
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    Rumgay--what  a fun name!! Do you know its roots? My family names are pretty run of the mill. I am having a little issue right now researching a German/Luxembourg family. Some researchers say it is FANCK and some say FUNCK. I have indexes where the indexer spelled the same person 4 different ways. I know German gothic script is hard to read,but if you know you are talking about the same person--wouldn't you at least note the inconsistency somewhere? Guess my frustration with my family search is that my family didn't have anybody famous or infamous, no money to speak of so hard to find too much info thru the years. WAHH!!

  • cmbear
    cmbear Member Posts: 674
    edited September 2012
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    Has any one done any Canadian research? Having a road block with the land up north. I have a family that landed in PEI about 1863 and left for Nebraska in 1870. Four children were born there but I can't find any records. Family Search has great baptismal records but none of my family is on there. Also can't find any passenger lists with the parents Donald Mckenzie and his wife Margaret Stewart.(Coming from Isle of Skye) Which leads into---any one have Scottish searching success? Give me some hints!

  • LaurenS16
    LaurenS16 Member Posts: 13
    edited September 2012
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    I've had great success searching in Scotland, but my closest link was relatively recent -- my great-grandfather immigrated to the US in 1905 and my great-grandmother immigrated in 1909. Have you tried the 1861 census? An index is available on FamilySearch, but you need a different (paid) website for the image -- scotlandspeople, I think. The IGI used to have lots of extracted baptisms and marriage banns from the Church of Scotland parish records. The information may still be there, I just haven't used it recently. All of my research has been in the low lands area -- Fifeshire, Edinburgh, and Lanarkshire.

  • curveball
    curveball Member Posts: 1,583
    edited June 2014
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    Hey bco genealogists, have you tried to log in at Ancestry.com recently? I tried yesterday evening and today and can't get on. I'm wondering if the problem is at their end, or is it just me?

  • Blessings2011
    Blessings2011 Member Posts: 1,801
    edited June 2014
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    curveball - I just logged in with no problem....

    ~~~~~~~

    I have some questions for all you experts: I have the uber-expensive version of Ancestry.com, plus the 2011 version of Family Tree Maker, with the 2014 version waiting to be installed.

    1. I started making separate family trees for every branch of the family and that got SO confusing, I just quit that and made one giant tree for myself, and one for DH.  (I think FTM allows you to print reports of separate branches.) Does anyone else use a "master list" of ancestors, or do you break it down?

    2. I have hit a brick wall on my maternal GGM. She came to America from Germany at the age of 16, to be a nanny for another family. I have searched ship's records, birth  and christening records in Germany, and every possible spelling of her last name. It's like she didn't exist before she came to this country! Apparently, she also lived with her older sister, who I also cannot find records for. No living relatives have any info. Suggestions?

    3. I was horrified to find my mom's obituary and picture on someone else's family tree. All the other info was incorrect. How do I handle this? Now all my trees are set to private.

    4. There is SO much wrong info out there about my family that other people have used in their trees! Do I just ignore this?

    5. How much of your online research have you printed up? I think I could fill a room with binders of different individuals and families!

    Thanks so much for any suggestions you can give me!

  • lintrollerderby
    lintrollerderby Member Posts: 70
    edited June 2014
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    Hi, everyone. Do you mind if I join the thread? I'm a recent, but HUGE genealogy buff. It takes up so much of my time. I find it to be a wonderful way to keep busy. My hubs has no interest in genealogy; I think it's mainly because he doesn't find it interesting, but partly because his dad loves it and has a very well-researched tree. 

    I learned I was BRCA1 positive after treatment. I knew of no other family members with breast cancer. When I started genealogy back in October, I found a box of old family records. In it, there was a letter by my grandfather written in May of 1945. In the letter, he states that he's gone to see his mom during her treatment and that her breast was bothering her. This hit me like a ton of bricks and I had a flashback of my childhood of my dad talking about someone having breast cancer when he was a kid (he has since passed). I found someone on ancestry.com whose mother is still alive and remembers my great-grandmother and stated she did die of bc. I found her death record for December of 1945. I am almost positive my dad was the BRCA carrier, and I think my great-grandmother who had BC was also a BRCA1 mutation carrier.

    I've found a lot of Civil War, War of 1812, and Revolutionary War records for my family. In one line, I'm able to go back to the late 1400s only because I happen to tie into a line that is extremely well documented. I will eventually go and research each person thoroughly on my own. As for now, I keep my tree private on ancestry.com because it's a work in progress and I can't verify the accuracy of some lines yet. I've pulled some info in just to have it, but I trust no one else's research. I source everyone to the hilt. My mother was Mexican and I've hit a brick wall there. FamilySearch has a ton of records available, but I just can't seem to figure out which family is hers.

    There is quite a bit of erroneous info about my direct line in the trees of other people on ancestry.com. Several people who were adding my mom's family (who I don't know), added my grandfather and since he had a hispanic name that matched someone else in another state, they added the wrong person to their records and really screwed it up. I plan on contacting people eventually and letting them know they're promoting inaccurate info. I, too, found my mom and dad's obituaries in the trees of people whom I'd never heard of. It is weird, but I check to see if they're adding it as part of an expanded tree and if they are, I don't worry about it.

    Good luck in your brick walls. I'm about to get my genealogy fix for the night. :)

  • curveball
    curveball Member Posts: 1,583
    edited June 2014
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    @blessings2011, thanks for the heads up. I did finally get back in a few hours after my previous post. To answer your questions...

    1) I have everyone in a single tree, with both my mother's and my father's family. It seems to be the consensus on the member support system that it's better to have one tree for everyone, rather than several separate trees. I haven't brought my tree from Ancestry to my desktop computer, haven't even installed FTM, so I don't know what sorts of reports I'll be able to make. Anyway, I have the Mac version which may not be exactly the same as FTM 2014 for the PC. 

    2) Can't help you there. I have one line that goes back six generations in the US, others that hit a brick wall in the 1860's (they were probably slaves before that) and others in England and Barbados. But it may be that the records you are looking for simply don't exist any more. I imagine many German records were destroyed in the course of two world wars.

    3 & 4) Inaccurate info in other people's trees is bound to be a problem. Ancestry is so huge that it would simply not be possible for them to check everyone's trees for accuracy. Anyway, their interest is to have the maximum number of subscribers, and setting any kind of accuracy standard would probably reduce the numbers of people who use the service. I only know of a few other people whose trees overlap mine at all. I've seen wrong information on one of those trees, and offered to send a copy of the documentation I have to the author of the other tree, but if he doesn't respond I'm not going to pursue it any further. I'm not the "genealogy police". If I try to go around correcting everyone else's tree I'll never finish my own. The best I can do is include the sources on my tree, so anyone who who looks at it can see the supporting evidence, or at least see that there is supporting evidence. If someone ever asks me to explain why I have different info in my tree than they have in theirs, I will. But there's no way I can make them change their tree to what I think is right, so I'm not even going to try. Who knows, maybe they are right. I'm not infallible.

    The other thing I'm doing is not attaching any media to my tree on Ancestry. I'll wait until I have all people and associated facts entered and documented, then bring the tree into my desktop computer and add the photos and so on there. That will at least prevent people from snagging pictures etc off my tree on Ancestry, and adding it to the (wrong) person on their own tree. Since your tree is private, I don't think other people will be able to see it unless you invite them as guests. Whether they can snag photos with that status, I don't know.

    5) I don't print out data from my tree. My plan is to make it into a book when it's finished, which I think can be done through FTM, and spread copies around to relatives and maybe some local libraries and genealogical societies. None of the next generation are interested in genealogy, that I know of, and I'm probably not going to be around until the generation after that (which at present consists of a single pre-schooler) is old enough to take an interest and continue the research. A book might with luck survive for a century or longer, until some future family member gets curious about "where did we come from".

  • vlnrph
    vlnrph Member Posts: 493
    edited July 2015
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    I began this "hobby" several months ago, shortly after getting a positive result on a rare founder mutation associated with hereditary breast & ovarian cancer, determined to find out where this defect came from!

    Those of us with Scandinavian roots can thank those old church authorities for their attention to detail, although some of them were more conscientious than others in terms of accurate/legible record keeping. As our fellowship trained geneticist pointed out, wherever there was a sea coast harbor frequented by sailors, there could be unexpected additions to the chromosome pool. That means I may never track down the ultimate source of our disease history but it has been interesting to try. The opportunity to do original research is intellectually stimulating and should appeal to anyone who enjoys figuring out puzzles.

    A new TV series starts in a couple weeks which might be fun to talk about here, especially after the recent Ben Affleck controversy. The 'roadshow' approach using regular people instead of celebrities was informative.

    It amazes me that so much data on line is presented as fact with obvious typos or explicit errors. Having used Ancestry.com once for free at our local public library which did provide a clue to a breakthrough, I have not joined any subscription services. Almost everything is on paper for now however I am beginning to see a need to make a commitment to a software program. Is there a good option which isnot terribly expensive? Privacy is also a concern...

  • summerangel
    summerangel Member Posts: 182
    edited July 2015
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    I'm not into it myself, but both of my parents have been seriously into genealogy for years. My dad's side is mostly Swedish. My mom's is a lot of Scottish, Irish, and English. Both of my parents have traced back pretty far, my mom's side more than my dad's because documentation is better. I have 5 relatives who were on the Mayflower and have multiple people who served in the American Revolution on both sides. My dad was the president of Colorado's chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution for a few years and my mom's been a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution for a long time. She signed me up as a member years ago.

    Blessings2011, my dad's grandmother came over from Sweden as a young adult and he was stuck trying to trace back from her for years. My parents were finally able to find her by traveling to Sweden, to the town she came from, and going through records there. A bit extreme, I know, but that's how they were able to find her line.

  • jcfree
    jcfree Member Posts: 30
    edited July 2015
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    I have done quite a bit of research on my geneology. Started it before I had my first child in the early eighties. Traced my father's side back to England, two brothers who were glass blowers came to America from England. Also found Charlie Conklin who was in silent films is a cousin and he was part of the Keystone Cops of the silent film era. Found relatives who served in the Civil War and many who went on to serve during WWI, WWII, Korean Wars. Have done some research on my mother's side traced back to Scotland.