In Defense of the Common Ancestor

Genealogy marketers use potential “famous connections” to generate interest and sell subscriptions. Apparently it works.

The fact remains that most of us have ancestors who are very non-famous.  Normal people living normal lives–with the occasional colorful “black sheep” thrown in the mix. And that’s fine. Most family genealogists are not famous themselves, so why should they expect their ancestors to be any different and to be any less human than they are? What genealogists are more likely to encounter are relatives who were impacted by a historical event, the enactment of a law, etc.

For those with an interesting in reading more thoughts on the “famous” subject:


4 thoughts on “In Defense of the Common Ancestor

  1. Judy Kurtz

    But it IS fun to find a famous relative! I grew up knowing I was related to Daniel Boone , but was most excited to discover I was related to George Rogers Clark, my hero. And of course, that means his more-famous brother, William Clark, too. I have been able to connect the Haggards in my tree to Merle and the Paxtons to actor Bill. However, I also enjoy connecting smaller historical events to my family tree.

    1. Susan Masse

      Hi Michael: Daniel Boone is my 1st cousin 7 times removed. My first cousin is his 5th g-grandson. Hi cousin!

  2. Kim Elizabeth

    Most of my ancestors were hard working, salt of the earth people. I *am* related to James Fenimore Cooper’s aunt. (His mother’s sister.) James was born in my hometown. But really, I;m more interested in the farmers and shoemakers and other ordinary folks who populate my tree.


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