Wednesday, May 30, 2012

How this 20-something developed an interest in genealogy

This may not be a newsflash to anyone else, but genealogy doesn't appear to be something many people my age are interested in. 

One of my grandmothers purchased Family Tree Maker - the first ever edition - when I was  a child. My googling leads me to believe this was around 1995. I would sit next to her while she typed names and dates...names and dates on an ancient computer. She would tell me elaborate stories about these people I had never met. It took a while, but I eventually began to feel like I did know these far away relatives and their stories.

In 8th grade I was given the assignment to ask my oldest available family member some genealogy questions. I interviewed my grandparents, ages 85 and 90, and recorded some wonderful stories about being a child during the early 1900s. I wish I could find that folder.

In 2007 I made a big move and set off for New York City. A new city to me...but not a new city to my genes. I joined in 2008 but did not purchase a membership right away. I spent hours and hours searching haphazardly for anything I could get my hands on. Surprisingly I was able to piece together a nice framework on which to build my tree.

It was quickly apparent that the branches on each side of my tree were going to look very different. One side reaching back to America before its Revolution and the other to a divided America at Civil War with itself.

My 7th great grandparents.

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