Its Mike Williams

wrote a blog about it, want to hear it, here it is...

  • What are we celebrating?

    Why do we celebrate July 4th? Because on July 4th, 1776, the Second Continental Congress unanimously adopted the Declaration of Independence to announce the colonies' separation from the Kingdom of Great Britain. It honors the ideas of liberty, democracy, and the pursuit of happiness that the country was established on. It also makes me think of my ancestors making that journey to get here before that took place. Many of you know I am an Ancestry nerd (genealogist) and have been working on my tree for many years. Two particular ancestors come to mind each 4th of July. These two made the journey to "the new land" and established a life for themselves and their families. Yes, I am also reminded of my strong Native American Heritage that came with that. But on this day, I reflect on both Capt. Robert Beheathland (9th Great Grandfather on my mothers side) who arrived in Jamestown, Virginia in 1607 aboard one of the three founding ships, the Susan Constant. He is noted as the only original 1607 Jamestown colonist family surviving and has descendants living today.

    Also, John Howland (11th Great Grandfather on my fathers side) an indentured servant who arrived on the Mayflower. He went on to make his mark(s) in history. He almost did not make it as he is the one that was washed overboard during a storm, but fortunately he grabbed a line and was pulled back to safety.

    So, I reflect on their journey and life after they arrived. But, I also think of their lives before they decided to leave their homes, families, and friends. Making that journey. I cannot fully imagine.

    Have a happy and safe celebration of our independence all.

  • Ancestry

    This year marks around the 25th year my family tree has been in progress.  Way before Internet access and  My brother built the base information from the family bible, records offices in the cities our family was known to live, and cemetaries.  While building the main branches was the goal, a primary focus we my great grandfather on my father's side.  We only had the family "story", but could not verify it.  The growth of the tree pretty much hit a wall at just under 300 entries.

    Along comes the Internet, and  The ability to research, compare, and verify information.  The ability to collaborate with others building their tree.  Ancestors were being found and verified.  Census informaiton seems to be one of my best research tools.  While I was able to build my tree with the free account, it did not offer me access to records or global info.  The membership made the difference.  Growth of the tree was off and running.  Entries at this point were around 2100.

    DNA Kit.  Yup.  The next step.  I thought this would help me connect to family over seas perhaps.  Learn my genetic makeup.  Find family.  It has done that!  With that said, be careful what you ask for.  Because I guarantee you that you will learn more than you expect.  I did not realize how many of my connections were using the DNA kit to find parents.  Things I took for granted?  I have personally helped cousins find and connect to parents, half siblings, and 1st cousins.  Entries now - 4400!

    However, we have still not progressed any farther on my great grandfather.  We can find no information on him prior to his joinng the military.  The search continues...


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