How Big is Your Family Tree?
Did you know the longest maintained family tree belonged to Confucius? It is now in its 83rd generation and has over 3 million descendants. In 2008, Roy Blackmore claimed to have the biggest family tree. He lives in Taunton, Somerset, England. He has compiled 9,390 relatives over 30 years of research. His tree extends back 37 generations to around 500 AD. He did all his research without the privilege of the internet. Manfred Huchthausen and Uwe Lange claim to have the “longest proven family tree” in the world. In 2008, […]
Can African-Americans Trace Their Roots to Africa?
I went on Wikipedia.com to look up the word “genealogy” and found an interesting statement: “Genealogy received a boost in the late 1970s with the television broadcast of Roots: The Saga of an American Family, Alex Haley’s account of his family line.” I remember that the movie was about slavery in America. It made me wonder how a person could trace their lineage from America to Africa. Taken from their ancestral homes, given Americanized names, and enslaved. After hundreds of years, could a person find a connection? In my online […]
Can a Single Parent Build a Family Tree?
Most family tree websites use the terms “husband” and “wife” when entering information. In the past society viewed the family unit as two married individuals with children. Today’s modern society has allowed unmarried individuals to have children without persecuting them. These men and women have children “out of wedlock.” They may stay together or separate and find new mates. Can you create your family tree from such a situation? Yes, you can! Genealogy is the study of both the paternal and maternal sides of the family. If you exclude the […]
What Secrets Are in Your Family Tree?
Most families have their dark, little “secrets.” Those scandals that they want to keep hidden from themselves and the rest of the world. Did an ancestor make his fortune from slave labor, did one go AWOL in the war, or was there one accused of killing a man? The list of family “secrets” goes on and on. Many genealogists find the same “secrets” while searching their family trees. Should you publish this information to the family tree or not? Does the world need to know this unsavory detail in your […]
Ancestry and Genealogy
In the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, the word ancestry means “line of descent.” While the word genealogy means “the study of a line of descent.” In other words, you as the genealogist would be using genealogy to study your ancestry. Merriam-Webster.com is a free website with both a dictionary and thesaurus. It gives examples, as shown below, of the words used in sentences, to better understand them. Merriam includes three examples of using the word ancestry: They claim to be of noble ancestry. A person of unknown ancestry She claims to be […]
Starting My First Family Tree
I became interested in my family heritage at an early age, around ten years old. This was way before the internet generation! My mother had told me that she was born in England and that my father was American with a little Indian in his blood. That statement got me wondering about my grandparents and great-grandparents. I knew very little about them, much less where they had been born or lived. In my later years, I always remembered what she had told me. By the time the internet came around, […]
How to Make Genealogy Come to Life
As I was searching my family tree the other day, I thought to myself, “Boy, these people don’t seem very interesting.” I had been on my computer for about 6 hours, making steady headway down the ranks of relatives. I found birth, marriage, and death records. I found census returns, military reports, and newspaper articles. Even though I had all these documents, it did not seem to make my ancestors “feel real” to me. I needed more than name, rank, and serial number! I wanted to know how they lived, […]
About Me and The Genealogy Insider
Hello, my name is Donna Wakenight, and I would like to tell you a little about myself and my website. I was born in the ’60’s to an English mother and American father. There are eight children in all, and we lived in the rural, farming area of western Illinois. In 1999, after the death of my father, my mother wanted to move to a warmer climate. We had taken a vacation to Las Vegas a few years prior, and she loved the drier weather. We found a small town […]