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David T. Cole

Chasing Leaves: Genealogy Talk

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Has anyone traced their genealogy?

My grt-grt aunt did in 1967-69. She traced it back to our ancestor who came to the US in 1669. And this was before computers.

For 4 generations family had 10-13 kids, more than 1/2 that survived to adulthood. She traced ALL of their descendants. She had some help, of course; but she was the driving force. She bound it all together and sold bound copies with little stories and even a picture of the original Swedish ancestor's grave, but then gave away typed lists to everyone else who wanted it. I have a bound copy that my grandfather bought.

Since then, other family members have turned online and traced our family back to the 1100's.

Only thing interesting is a distant cousin who disappeared at age 4 in the 1920's. He eerily looked like my grandfather. I've always wondered, since my grandfather looked like neither of his parents. Age would be fairly close.

I wish I knew more abt my father's family. They are more recent immigrants.

Edited by roamyn

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I've been working on mine, thanks to Ancestry.com. Ancestry.com makes is pretty easy to research, especially if others have researched the same lines.  Most of my family is easy to trace but there are a few brick walls.  I ran across a first cousin once removed who knew nothing about the family so I took a bunch of info and photos over.  His daughter was there.  She was the spitting image of our great grandmother.  It was amazing!  And the research is a lot of fun!

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Hate to be a wet blanket but one should be careful putting too much data on any online genealogy site due to the propensity of identity thieves and frauds being able to use them for ill purposes.

   If you want to research, do it offline via city directories, county records and churches. Yeah, a lot more time consuming but far less risky.

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How can they use the information for ill purposes if the living people on the family tree are blocked?  I don't research living people, or put up photos of them.  I do have photos of people who are no longer living and that information is available to other people.  No one can see the living people on my tree unless I give them permission.

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riverblue,

  I don't want to get too technical but I'll just say that these precautions you've taken may cut down on the possibility of 'Net frauds using stuff on the living but it won't eliminate it altogether - and there have been frauds who've misused vital info on dead folks for current schemes

 

 Anyway, to keep this ontopic, I say surf genealogy sites as long as you don't have to   identify yourself or provide more details though doing it offline helps ensure the info is more authentic..

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I'm a genealogy freak. My mom researched her mom and dad's lines back in the late 80s/early 90s, using the Mormon libraries. She did a pretty good job at getting a good, detailed genealogy going back to the 1500s. She also was able to get a bit of my dad's father's line going back to the mid 1800s but hit a dead end on when they came over from Scotland. We had nothing on my dad's mom's side since he was taken from her when he was seven years old and had lost contact with her. 

 

I was able to flesh out my mom's side and my dad's paternal side a bit more using Ancestry.com. After 10 years of computer searching, I was finally able to find my dad's mom. She had passed away 13 years ago, but I found her last husband, living just 3 hours away from us! He did not know about my dad existence. Surprise! We have built a relationship and he now lives 15 minutes away. I have been able to find out more about my grandmother and her ancestry (back to 1700s) online, including the other five husbands (and counting, it seems like) she had, found her living half-siblings and cousins and made contact with them. I discovered I look exactly like my grandmother. There are still about 15 years of her life that are a mystery. I still haven't been able to flesh out my dad's paternal side pre-USA.

 

On Ancestry, the info for anyone living is not shown. I never post pictures or documents of any kind, with current or ancestral information. I ran into a guy who was determined that his ancestor was part of my mom's family line based on some bad research his family had done. He wanted photos of my ancestors to include in his tree. I wasn't going to send him anything. Info about the deceased is online and if someone wants to use it for schemes there isn't anything I can do about it. 

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I never thought of identity theft being a problem online, but it make sense to be careful.

My - now estranged - sister said she did trace our maternal grt-grandmothers family back to King Stephen Bathory of Poland. So apparently we're of a minor branch of the Polish royal family. That would be my grandfather's mother.

I've never been on ancestry, or other genealogy sites, but I may someday ti find out more abt my father's family. Two things I didn't know were that my paternal grandmother had a sister who died b4 I was born, and her only brother signed up for WWII under an assumed name - he was only 17. He died over the Atlantic Ocean & his body never recovered. When my grandmother passed a few years ago, an Uncle- who is his spitting image - got the flag.

I love hearing about other's journeys.

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I had used Ancestry.com for records search only for many years. I found some information but still couldn't find my grandmother. As a last-ditch effort before we turned to private investigators, I made a public family tree (one that could be viewed by anyone) and within one hour of publishing it I had a hit on another public family tree that contained her name also. It was the tree of her last husband's mother. A day later I had another hit from a distant cousin, who put me in contact with my great uncle, who was the keeper of the family history on my grandmother's side.

 

In the last few years, the database on Ancestry has exploded. So many other databases are loading their information online- directories, churches, etc. The biggest problem with using information from other family trees is people find information but don't take the time to double check dates, locations, name spellings and other such things. They just add and add anything to build a tree. I have found all sorts of mistakes in trees regarding my own family information- a son with a birth date AFTER their mother, or siblings born within 5 months of each other. You really have to be careful when sorting through other's trees.

 

roamyn- My mom traced part of her family back to Olaf the Black (Norway/Scotland) in the 13th century. Sea Kings!

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When I was a teenager in the 70's, a woman who was researching her own genealogy by driving around visiting courthouses and cemeteries and writing information out by hand saw an article about my dad in the local newspaper. He had been appointed principal of the local elementary school and the article mentioned his parents' names. The woman called him on the phone, asked him a couple of questions to verify that she had the right person, then drove over to our house and gave him his family history back to his ancestor's arrival from Germany in 1728, including documentation of one ancestor's service in the American Revolution. It turned out that, as she was looking at her own line, she kept intersecting with my dad's family, so she started keeping track of that information in a separate book. She figured that she would find out who it belonged to eventually, and she did. At the time, I thought, well, that is pretty cool but so what? Now I am amazed that I have this gold mine of very accurate information, that basically just appeared at our door.

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I got very lucky with part of my family tree, I ran into a distant cousin online and he was generous enough to fill in the blanks on my tree since our tree was pretty well documented though unknown to me. I have met a lot of interesting people who are researching the same information. 

I research my husband's line also so I get to annoy him by reminding him he is related in some way to Richard Nixon. 

But then I discovered we are cousins, 17 times removed.

Edited by Chicklet

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I research my husband's line also so I get to annoy him by reminding him he is related in some way to Richard Nixon.

But then I discovered we are cousins, 17 times removed.

You & your husband are 17x cousins removed? (Gasp!) The Horrors! LOL

If u have teenagers, u can always annoy them with that info.

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I have researched my lines and still am. I also have been DNA tested for genealogy purposes and have a tree online. I have gotten most of my lines into the early 1800s. 

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You & your husband are 17x cousins removed? (Gasp!) The Horrors! LOL

If u have teenagers, u can always annoy them with that info.

Yea everyone is amazed the kids only have 2 heads. But they both look like my husband. Bummer.

 

I do love playing with that Ancestry item that tells you relationships. I'm my own cousin several times over.

Edited by Chicklet
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We are from the south, with both families having lived in the same area for centuries. My parents are fifth cousins by marriage, I think. And on both sides there is a bunch of double lines resulting in second cousin/great grandmother-type designations. We are almost veering into polygamy family wreath territory!

 

I love seeing all the old names too. Some are very poetic. My name is the seventh in line on my mom's side.

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Oh family wreaths, my fathers family has 2 big ole round circles which thoroughly confused me when I was starting out. "Wait, that couple is the grooms parents and the brides grandparents", but I don't know what I expected when they lived in the 1700's in the boonies of Virgina and there was nobody else to marry but family. I guess that explains being my own cousin. Still, I'm glad I didn't have to marry my 2nd cousin.

 

What's everyone's favorite family name? I have one named Mourning Winn. Love that one.

Edited by Chicklet

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My favorite ancestor is Englebert Huff (1637-1765).  He reportedly lived to the ripe old age of 128!  Here is a summary of his life:

 

"[He] served in the Dutch Military, in the army of William of Orange (Who later became King William [iII] of England) and escaped from the ship of Van Couwenhoven when stationed at Wappingers, Canada during the Esopus Wars in 1662. In his early years, he lived in Phillipsburgh, later known as Tarrytown in the New York area. Engelbert was described as "a man of considerable local celebrity for his scholarship and dashing horsemanship". He also was reported to have seduced a young maiden in her early 20's when he was 120 years of age. He died as a result of a hip wound incurred in a fall from his horse on 21 March 1765, aged 128 years in the town of Fishkill, New York - USA. He was buried near the East wall of the Reformed Dutch Church at Hopewell, New York. There is a silver commemorative tankard in the church, which has an interesting inscription: " Presented by Samuel Verplanck Esq., to the First Reformed Dutch Church in the town of Fishkill, to commemorate Mr. Engelbert Huff, by birth a Norwegian, in his lifetime attached to the life guards of the Prince of Orange, afterwards King William (III) of England. He resided for a number of years in this country and died with unblemished reputation, at Fishkill, 21st March 1765, aged 128 years".

 

I don't think I'll ever come across a more interesting ancestor.  It's fun coming up with stuff like this!

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All mine are fairly normal: Daniels, Clarence's, Georges & Carolines, Julia's & Ruth's.

Probably the most interesting is my cousins nickname He's a 3rd, but has never gone by his real name. Neither did his father, my uncle. I don't want to post it because it's unusual & he's still living.

Mine is a common name, but spelled unusually.

I even checked my 1864 family bible... nope, nothing unusual.

Edited by roamyn

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My dad's cousin had spent many years tracing Dad's family history, and when she died, I inherited what she had done. Very interesting stuff in the U.S. and Germany. So I got into it and decided to work on tracing my mother's side. It turns out that my dear sweet Presbyterian grandmother has the most interesting branch. We're descended from Benjamin Franklin's first cousin, and we're distant cousins to James Thurber and Lucille Ball . . . and Lizzie Borden! That's my favorite one. I don't think Grandma ever knew that. (Lizzie Borden was her fourth cousin.) Grandma would have been horrified. But Grandpa? He would have been delighted! "My wife? Yep, Lizzie Borden's cousin. I hide the axes every night."

Edited by Bubbacat
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The most unusual name in my family history is Keziah. Apparently, it is a Biblical name, maybe Hebrew? The family has been in the same area since 1789, the men are mostly Johns and Georges and Williams, and the women are Marys and Marthas and Susans. But this name Keziah shows up in several generations, then just disappears.

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My dad's generation was the first in many to not have a woman named Adelaide. Aside from that, the names passed down on that side are pretty standard, and my mom's side had little tradition of passing on names.

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(Lizzie Borden was her fourth cousin.) Grandma would have been horrified. But Grandpa? He would have been delighted! "My wife? Yep, Lizzie Borden's cousin. I hide the axes every night."

 

 

I love it when notorious ancestors are uncovered.  Mine are the McLaury Brothers, killed in a shootout with Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday in Tombstone, Arizona.

 

That brings up a problem with the Jesse Tyler Ferguson show.  They focused so much on the "black sheep" relative and it wasn't really contrasted with all the good relatives that he had.  I hope he looks at the bigger picture of his family tree which would provide a better perspective.

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Unusual names? Oh, we have them all over my family. My sister's name is Teckla -- and she's the third (after my great-aunt and my aunt). One of my brothers is Otto -- and he's the fourth (after my great-grandfather, grandfather, and Dad). We also have Hugos and Rosellas and Frederickas all over the place. I ended up with the most common name in my family. I was almost named Thea after all of the Theodores in the family. Whew!

 

I love it when notorious ancestors are uncovered.  Mine are the McLaury Brothers, killed in a shootout with Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday in Tombstone, Arizona.

 

 

Hey, we have something in common! Well, kind of. The same grandmother who was related to Lizzie Borden was related by marriage to the outlaw Johnny Ringo (Grandma's aunt married his first cousin who was also named John Ringo). Johnny Ringo was an associate of the McLaurys and the Clantons (who fought the Earps and Doc Holliday at the OK Corral). He was supposed to be at the gunfight that day, but he never showed. Shortly after the gunfight, he was found murdered outside Tombstone. The rumor was that Wyatt Earp killed him.

Edited by Bubbacat

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Surprisingly, I had many men in my family named what would today be called trendy (first) names: Webb, Spencer, Cauldfield, Parker, and Ever. I also have a slew of "iah"s: Azariah, Mariah, Hedidiah, and Jedidiah. I even have a Mingo, which may be a name of one of my last African relatives.

 

For the most part, on most of my lines, the names seem to recycle through the generations, except for the abovementioned.

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OK, here's something no one expected  to find when searching the family tree- one ancestress got legally divorced from her husband instead of just quietly 'separating' with him going off with a girlfriend then winding up in a rest home and her 'visiting' their grown kids and grandkids for years at a time on a rotating basis until her own passing. The thing is that even the grandkids all seemed to think that she and their grandfather had just informally separated rather than her having gotten a divorce. My guess is that she didn't want to be legally tied to his messes any more and this was the only way to do it but she somehow got those few in the know to keep it quiet so there would be no 'disgrace'.

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My cool family names: Zaccur Prall, Valentine, Easter, Lyddall, Colson and Moulton. So far no axe murderers or anyone else famous. Just a bunch of Scottish farmers on three sides and German wild-catters on the fourth. I did find out that the wild-catters were somehow involved in the Teapot Dome Scandal in Wyoming. They also had a propensity for marrying often and having many significant others on the side. My great-grandfather was in the Army in both WWI and WWII, and served as a sniper in France in the first war. It's the German side I just recently found out about and the stories are wonderful.

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When I inherited that big 1864 family bible, I inherited alot of old pictures & a few tintypes (and wedding rings).

One picture, from maybe the 1910s, looks exactly like the infamous Susan Smith.

Unfortunately no one wrote names down.

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My favorite family names are Cordelia Sheets who was my great grandma, Magdalena Schlee who was my 5th great grandma, and Lopsley Glenn one of my great uncles,

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I have a Cordelia and several Magdalenas too. Beautiful names. Alvilda, Polann, Whyneath Celia and Mary Pretty Molly are some of the unusual female names I came across in my tree.

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I have a Mungo Reed. When his first wife died (she was my relative) he left the kids and a house full of furniture with the in-laws and took off to parts unknown. Two years later the inlaws ( my great great grandparents) get a letter basically saying "remarried, send the furniture, keep the kids". He didn't get it.

Apparently the new couple had a daughter but the first daughter never met her. She did meet her half sister's half sister.

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I've recently gotten involved with my genealogy. I've been told all my life that we were related somehow to the Hatfields of Hatfield and McCoy infamy. Sure enough, I found the connection. Just today I found that we were also related to the boxer Jack Dempsey. It's been fun. I found that some of us are descendants from the Huguenot immigration from France, too. Most of my family is concentrated in Logan County, WV.

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I have several Keziahs in my line also. My son and DIL named their daughter Keziah. But the coolest/weirdest name in my line is Taliaferro Skinner.

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My favorite ancestor is Englebert Huff (1637-1765).  He reportedly lived to the ripe old age of 128!  Here is a summary of his life:

 

"[He] served in the Dutch Military, in the army of William of Orange (Who later became King William [iII] of England) and escaped from the ship of Van Couwenhoven when stationed at Wappingers, Canada during the Esopus Wars in 1662. In his early years, he lived in Phillipsburgh, later known as Tarrytown in the New York area. Engelbert was described as "a man of considerable local celebrity for his scholarship and dashing horsemanship". He also was reported to have seduced a young maiden in her early 20's when he was 120 years of age. He died as a result of a hip wound incurred in a fall from his horse on 21 March 1765, aged 128 years in the town of Fishkill, New York - USA. He was buried near the East wall of the Reformed Dutch Church at Hopewell, New York. There is a silver commemorative tankard in the church, which has an interesting inscription: " Presented by Samuel Verplanck Esq., to the First Reformed Dutch Church in the town of Fishkill, to commemorate Mr. Engelbert Huff, by birth a Norwegian, in his lifetime attached to the life guards of the Prince of Orange, afterwards King William (III) of England. He resided for a number of years in this country and died with unblemished reputation, at Fishkill, 21st March 1765, aged 128 years".

 

I don't think I'll ever come across a more interesting ancestor.  It's fun coming up with stuff like this!

Small world! I'm originally from that area. The Dutch Reformed Church has a lot of interesting people buried there. I’ve done some research on the Samuel Verplanck you mentioned. If you're looking for more info on that particular ancestor or the area check out Mount Gulian Historic Site.

Some interesting names on my tree such as Herr Paul. I love when they're unique like that, makes it so much easier to do research.

Edited by t7686

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If you're looking for more info on that particular ancestor or the area check out Mount Gulian Historic Site.

 

 

 

 

Thanks for the tip--I will definitely check it out!  I have a boatload of ancestors from Dutchess County.  My Dutch ancestors, the Stoutenburghs, migrated from New Amsterdam to Hyde Park.  My English ancestors settled in the Brinckerhoff area before the Revolutionary War.  We visited the site of the old Brinckerhoff church but unfortunately the cemetery was not kept up and the headstones were unreadable.  Next time we'll visit the Dutch Reformed Church cemetery and the Mount Gulian site.  Can't wait!

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No interesting names on any side of my tree so far.  John, Charles, Henry, Mary, Sarah, Bridget -- generation after generation, ad infinitum.  One Jeremiah.

 

Best discoveries -- my mom's maternal grandparents were divorced.   It wasn't even that long ago, and yet neither my mom nor any of her siblings or cousins were aware of this.  They knew they lived separately, but he died when they were still fairly young, so they thought it was just one of those devout Catholic separate lives things.  Nope - complete divorce.  Trying to get the documentation through probate.  She was a very devout woman, so I kind of fear the results, because it must have been momentous for her to make that break so absolute.

 

They also thought their paternal grandfather had died in an accident in the trainyard where he worked.  I got his death certificate and he had a stroke, at home!  However, months later, digging through their paternal grandmother's side, I discovered that HER father died in a logging accident, which might somehow have gotten confused in their minds as kids.  

 

Most scandalous discovery - My 4x great grandmother was a widow, and I got a lead that she remarried a guy by a certain name and had more children.  So I tracked it down, the actual parish registers of weddings/christenings are online, and could see on the same page of the church book that she gave birth to a baby, two weeks later the baby was baptized, and two weeks after that they got married!  And went on to have more kids.  

 

But she'd been widowed for a while.  Just makes it a mystery why you'd go the whole pregnancy and actually have the baby and only THEN make it legal.  Need to follow up and find out if he was in prison or the military or something.  I considered that he might be married, but it wouldn't have been a Catholic marriage, then.  

 

Total fluke that all those entries appeared on the same register book page and jumped out at me.  Ancestry had given me the link to the page for the wedding record.

 

I did feel that twinge of guilt of digging up the woman's secret that she had buried for 140 years. Seeing the words "natural child of" definitely make your eyes bug out and a "whaaaaaa?" spring to mind.  But good for her for pulling it all off.

Edited by kassa

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One of the good names on my tree is Comfort Muchmore. I think that's great. Executed Salem Witch, Martha Allen Carrier is my 9th GrGrandmother.Her Mother was Faith Ingalls and that makes me distantly related to Laura Ingalls Wilder.

 I have in interresting death in my  tree. His grave says Killed By an Icicle. Apparently the day before his weddingg he went into a cave in Ohio and an Icicle fell on his head and split it open. The future wife married his brother 2 years later

Edited by JennyMominFL
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Love all the family tree secrets.  My grandfather's older brother was born 2 years before his parents legally married and my grandfather barely made it in on the "legal" side.  The marriage license record I found said they married in April 1897.  My GF was born in August 1897.  I guess they didn't want to push it with 2 babies out of wedlock. 

 

A few years ago my father (same family) spilled a bit of family information he only learned himself as an adult, from his sister, after their father died in the 1980's.  What he said she had told him was that their father had accidentally shot and killed his (their father's) younger sister when he (their father) was a teenager.  They had never heard of this aunt they never knew, not even a name.  Of course I was now intrigued and later scoured both Ancestry.com when I had a subscription, and Family Search.  So, what I learned is that sometimes oral history from your relatives is not necessarily the real or whole story.  In fact, even among my own siblings, I could swear sometimes we grew up in different families because our own memories of past things or even conversations is completely different.

 

So, my research found that my grandfather had indeed shot his younger sister in the head by accident when she was 13.  "Accidentally shot in the temple and narrowly escaping death." was part of the newspaper article I found on it.  But I also had found her gravesite, next to her mother who had died a few years earlier, with a death year of 1913, the same as the shooting accident.  So I kept looking and found she actually had died in a kitchen accident later that same year.  So, did my dad not get the whole story or did my aunt really even know the whole of it?  They are both long gone, so I can't backtrack it with them.  I agree, sometimes it seems surreal to find out family history so far after the fact.  I wonder if most people back then just didn't worry about the details after a certain point.  I will always wonder why my father and aunt had grown up and never even remembered hearing anything about this person, since her eventual death was not caused by my grandfather anyway.

Edited by Glaze Crazy
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Wow everyone here has really interesting stories. Here's one of mine. My great great grandpa Patrick was born in 1816 and my great great grandma Anna was born in 1835. Now here is the kicker. They got married in 1851 and it doesn't take a rocket scientist to see that they were 19 years a part. Patrick was 35 and Anna was 16 when they got married and they had their first kid in 1852. Talk about jail bait. Anyway my great grandma Lucy was the last of their 7 kids and she was born in 1879 so her father was 63 years old. He lived long enough to see her graduate from high school which is remarkable considering that they were lower middle class people.

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If you know your ancestors back to before the Revolutionary War and wonder whether they had royal ancestry, here's a good book:  Royal Descents of 600 Immigrants to the American Colonies or the United States, by Gary Boyd Roberts.

http://www.americanancestors.org/Product.aspx?id=21787   Your library may have it.

 

The show didn't mention that most royal and "noble" lines are pretty well known, while others are not.  By the time you get back 10 generations you have a lot of ancestors.  When they followed (say) Valerie Bertinelli's line back, the chart had a lot of spouses with no ancestry listed.  Out of thousands of ancestors at a given generation, it's not surprising to find a prominent one.  A large proportion of people with European ancestry are descended from Charlemagne, a.k.a. "Chuck the Prolific."

 

maraleia, marriage age in the US varied geographically.  In New England, brides were usually at least 20.  In some parts of the south, age 14 was not unusual.

 

Ancestor names:  One of mine was a doctor named Comfort Starr.  Good name for a doctor.

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Comfort was a common Puritan name. One of yhe people on the Mayflower was named Comfort Mather, an ancestor of one of the founders of Harvard; and the judge who put a stop to the Salem witch trials; and a leading family in Cleveland (whose mansion is one of the few remaining on Millionaire's Row).

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My grandfather's older brother was born 2 years before his parents legally married and my grandfather barely made it in on the "legal" side.  The marriage license record I found said they married in April 1897.  My GF was born in August 1897.  I guess they didn't want to push it with 2 babies out of wedlock.

I remember waaaay back when I was in college and Gae Exton was Christopher Reeve's girlfriend, and she said (about themselves) "One child out of wedlock is romantic; two is tacky." 

 

No exotic names in my tree, but my friend has a 4x great grandmother named Ardilda.

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Good names int he family tree?   Loads but Sumner Wynn Hill is my favorite.  Lots of Zilphas though and some Lemuels and a whole line of women named Fredonia.   Oh and a Sterling Cato whose son was named Green.  Both good names, I think.    

 

The thing I get most from genealogy is that there is nothing new under the sun.   Both of my mothers sets of grandparents were divorced in the 1920s.   Many babies were born out of wedlock.   All those people who say you can't get pregnant after the age of 35 clearly have never read the census.   Those farm wives very very very often pushed out babies every other year from the age of 16-44.  

 

The world is a complicated place but it has always been so and anybody who tells you any different hasn't read their history.

Edited by bybrandy
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I got very lucky with part of my family tree, I ran into a distant cousin online and he was generous enough to fill in the blanks on my tree since our tree was pretty well documented though unknown to me. I have met a lot of interesting people who are researching the same information. 

I research my husband's line also so I get to annoy him by reminding him he is related in some way to Richard Nixon. 

But then I discovered we are cousins, 17 times removed.

Is this possible? I thought "removed" meant generations apart, vertically in the tree. That would put you at quite disparate ages. Now 17th cousins, that's more likely, that goes horizontally in the tree. Please someone correct me if I'm wrong.

The most interesting thing I've found in my tree was that I had some relatives that were sent to live in a TB sanitarium. I haven't yet found out if they were cured or died there.

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My grandmother always said her brother was a bad kid but every story she ever told about him was just kids stuff.   I didn't get all the negativity.   Then in the 1940 census I found him in a reform school.    Guess it wasn't all just kid stuff.   

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Yesterday I finally succumbed to the relentless ads for Ancestry and bought the subscription. Wow. I was up til 3AM! It's like crack! I had varying levels of success in tracing back from my grandparents. I can't find the parents of my paternal grandmother. However, my mom had always told me that if I ever cared to do the research, I could probably trace her lineage back to the Mayflower. Looks like she may be right! In about nine hours of research, it looks like I have two direct ancestors through whom I can gain membership to the DAR, and one of those I traced back to one who was born in England in the 1600s and ended up in Virginia. As long as the information is accurate, and right now I have no reason to believe it is not.

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Oh yea, 17th cousins, its kind of all running together and I can't keep them straight. We have the same great <times a lot> grandfather. I wasn't paying attentiion to the correct term for the relationship at that point.

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This has been fun reading so I will add my little tid bit. I didn't have to go back far to get my first surprise. My paternal great grandfather was 16 when he married my great grandmother, she was 24 also full Cherokee, my grandfather was born when his father was 17. Yes, I am a descendant of a cougar. The other thing was that my Fathers's oldest brother had two families (about 50 miles apart). Two wives, multiple children, two farms. Both proudly documented on the census. When I asked my older brother about this he laughed and confirmed it. Good thing they didn't have Facebook.

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I think the male-female age difference might have been viewed differently in previous eras. One of my 6-or-more-times great grandfathers ran off at age 21 with a woman who was 28. They went on to have 6 children. The interesting thing is that we believe, but have thus far not been able to prove, that this was a case of a privileged young man from the South falling in love with one of his family's slaves and running away with her to one of the Northern states that did not recognize slavery. The details of the story fit that scenario, but we don't know anything about the 6-or-more-times great grandmother other than her age and her first name - Celeste. I've occasionally wondered, if the situation was as we believe, whether Celeste loved her husband or just saw an opportunity for freedom, and whether that even mattered. She had six children with him and didn't murder him in his sleep, so he was obviously someone she trusted.

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My paternal great grandfather was 16 when he married my great grandmother, she was 24 also full Cherokee, my grandfather was born when his father was 17. Yes, I am a descendant of a cougar.

That also makes you 1/8 Cherokee! Are you eligible for tribal citizenship?

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