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A new hobby?

February 19th, 2011 at 05:58 am

I may have a new hobby. Genealogy! I love the show "Who Do You Think You Are" and it got me interested in looking into my own family. I know quite a bit about my mother's family, thanks to my cousin, but I didn't know much about my father's side, EXCEPT that we were rumored to be descended from an early President.

I got a free trial to ancestry.com and I was quite amazed at how much I found out in a few hours. First, of all, we are NOT descended from a President, but that line of the family goes back to pre-Revolutionary times. (And with a little more work, I might find a connection to the President's family, but we are not direct descendents.) Second, I found out that my grandfather grew up in a little town not far from here, so I'm going to make a trip (maybe even this weekend) to see if I can find the graves of my great-grandparents. Third, I actually found online some letters that my great-grandfather, who fought with the Ohio Infantry during the Civil War, wrote while he was in service. Amazing! I didn't even know he existed till yesterday, and here I am reading his thoughts as he sits by the campfire.

I can see how this get addictive. Once the free trial ends, the subscription is $12.95 a month. I don't know if I want to do that, but it is reasonable -- cheaper than some Netflix plans!

Yesterday I took a pot of chili into work to give to my boss, who is going through so much right now with her daughter's illness. However, she didn't come in, so I brought it home again. I guess I'll freeze it. It's too much for me eat, especially seeing as how I already have some I kept for myself.

I followed up on Petunia's post about -- oh, I can't remember the name -- the deal where you enter your credit card information and get instant rebates at the stores where you shop. I got three offers right away, and I activated two of them -- McDonald's and Target. I'll go to Target and do my fifteen items there -- I want to buy a photo album anyway, so that will work out well. For McDonald's I have to spend $10 to get $5 off. I don't ordinarily spend $10 at McDonald's, but I can use it when the grandkids are here.

6 Responses to “A new hobby?”

  1. MonkeyMama Says:

    I should ask my dh the details. He got some free software and was able to download the ancestry.com info.

    He did what he could and saved everything.

    My son had a project to trace his ancestors to when they came to America. So we did the free trial again (it had been a few years), and there was a lot more info that other people had filled in the past few years. I also tracked down more of my family's info - my mom gave me all the ancestry stuff that she had, etc.

    I think it's fascinating. I knew my great-grandparents came over from Germany and dh has a strong Irish heritage, but we were able to track back when our entire family came over from Europe. Some of dh's family came over in the 1500s, etc. England Norway, France, Netherlands, Prussia. Plus my dh didn't know he had so much (any?) family from Grmany too (no wonder our kids are blonde and blue eyed - we AREN'T!). Unfortunately, my parents know we have some native american history on my father's side and we GUESS for my mom's side - because we are all very dark. I have been confused for mexican over the years (though I am mostly german), and my grandfather looks 100% native american. I suppose could be some mystery hispanic or native american ancestry.

    Yeah, so our kids are blond, blue-eyed, and dark skinned. IT's california - they will pass for beach bums with age. They fit right in. Big Grin Looks like they work on their tan all year.

  2. MonkeyMama Says:

    P.S. Someone posted a story on ancestry.com about how someone in my family had made some trecherous journey to the west, and how many people they lost along the way, etc. One of my great-great grandparents died in the journey.

    That said, since she had died, it turns out the husband had remarried and had children with someone else. Dh for some reason had the wrong information. I had talked to my dad about it, and he knew the story. Well it turns out my great-great grandfather had kids with another woman, and dh/ancestry.com didn't have that info, but my dad was able to help us fix that. Anyway, we found it was easy to make these kinds of mistakes. There were a few people that had varying birth days reported and dh admitted if anyone divorced or re-married lord knows what happened. (Plus, as far as secret affairs - who knows! Wink )

  3. My English Castle Says:

    That show must really appeal to research geeks like us. I also really liked the PBS one, "Faces of America" which was a bit higher quality, I thought. But I still like this one! It's one of my ongoing hobbies. I found the ship's passenger manifest detailing my grandfather's emigration from Sweden. I could spend all day on that site. But today--I'm heading to Madison! After I grade some papers and go to double-coupon day!

  4. CB in the City Says:

    Glad there are fellow geeks here! After re-reading this I realize I should have said it was my great-great grandfather who fought in the Civil War -- I'm not quite that old.

    MM, I have often been mistaken for Hispanic or other dark-skinned persuasions all my life, but I am overwhelmingly British -- I'm seeing that even more as I do this research. And what isn't British is German!

  5. MonkeyMama Says:

    I had to clarify my statement: "Unfortunately, my parents know we have some native american history on my father's side and we GUESS for my mom's side - because we are all very dark."

    I didn't finish my thought that I we seem to know little about this heritage - this is the unfortunate part. Being mostly immune to sunburn is not unfortunate at all. Big Grin

  6. CB in the City Says:

    I agree. I'm a good tanner as well.

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