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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Wed Aug 23, 2017 1:46 pm

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Falconer360 wrote:
Did any of your relatives keep a family tree or some sort of genealogical records? That would be very helpful to your search, far more than the internet, since it would have been made by the people themselves. My dad's side has a family tree that's mapped out on butcher paper that goes back a few hundred years, every name and birth and death are recorded (well I'm sure a few were stricken from it). My mom has meanwhile been compiling genealogical info for her side, mostly done through asking older relatives, then finding distant cousins online who help fill in blank spaces.


I do not know of any records but maybe I could look into it. I have asked family about my ancestry and what I have learned from that is I am German, Polish, Irish, and Russian.


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Wed Aug 23, 2017 2:03 pm

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I just wanted to say I respect the Jewish community and Judaism. I also wanted to say that I am not sure if I have Jewish ancestry or not.


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Wed Aug 23, 2017 2:17 pm

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Actually, now that I think of it, I do not believe I am Jewish. Going by what I have heard in the family I am just German, Polish, Irish, and Russian.


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Falconer360
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Wed Aug 23, 2017 5:48 pm
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mmatt9876 wrote:
Falconer360 wrote:
Did any of your relatives keep a family tree or some sort of genealogical records? That would be very helpful to your search, far more than the internet, since it would have been made by the people themselves. My dad's side has a family tree that's mapped out on butcher paper that goes back a few hundred years, every name and birth and death are recorded (well I'm sure a few were stricken from it). My mom has meanwhile been compiling genealogical info for her side, mostly done through asking older relatives, then finding distant cousins online who help fill in blank spaces.


I do not know of any records but maybe I could look into it. I have asked family about my ancestry and what I have learned from that is I am German, Polish, Irish, and Russian.


Your family probably has a better idea of your ancestry than the internet does for sure. that would be where I would start my search. It's like through my mom's side I'm descended from a sibling of President William Henry Harrison, so I'm descended from Benjamin Harrison V. Which my mom found out by tracing her ancestors backward.

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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Fri Aug 25, 2017 10:06 pm

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Falconer360 wrote:
mmatt9876 wrote:
Falconer360 wrote:
Did any of your relatives keep a family tree or some sort of genealogical records? That would be very helpful to your search, far more than the internet, since it would have been made by the people themselves. My dad's side has a family tree that's mapped out on butcher paper that goes back a few hundred years, every name and birth and death are recorded (well I'm sure a few were stricken from it). My mom has meanwhile been compiling genealogical info for her side, mostly done through asking older relatives, then finding distant cousins online who help fill in blank spaces.


I do not know of any records but maybe I could look into it. I have asked family about my ancestry and what I have learned from that is I am German, Polish, Irish, and Russian.


Your family probably has a better idea of your ancestry than the internet does for sure. that would be where I would start my search. It's like through my mom's side I'm descended from a sibling of President William Henry Harrison, so I'm descended from Benjamin Harrison V. Which my mom found out by tracing her ancestors backward.


I think it is cool you are related to President William Henry Harrison. I will probably continue most of my ancestry research with my family. I believe some online ancestry resources may be credible. Does anybody know of any?


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Falconer360
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Sun Aug 27, 2017 5:06 pm
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mmatt9876 wrote:
I think it is cool you are related to President William Henry Harrison. I will probably continue most of my ancestry research with my family. I believe some online ancestry resources may be credible. Does anybody know of any?

I believe ancestry.com is fairly good. But the problem of course is that it requires a subscription. Although you could sign up for the 14 day free trial then cancel before you get billed.

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janus
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Sun Aug 27, 2017 7:43 pm

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Falconer360 wrote:
mmatt9876 wrote:
I think it is cool you are related to President William Henry Harrison. I will probably continue most of my ancestry research with my family. I believe some online ancestry resources may be credible. Does anybody know of any?

I believe ancestry.com is fairly good. But the problem of course is that it requires a subscription. Although you could sign up for the 14 day free trial then cancel before you get billed.


It depends. It's pretty good if you have a Western Europe ancestry or for tracking down branches of the family in the US. I was able to fill out my wife's tree pretty well with it. On my Finnish side, not so great, and I had better luck with Heritage.com which actually has quite a few members living in Finland.


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Sun Aug 27, 2017 10:11 pm

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Thank you for the ancestry research site suggestions Falconer360 and janus.


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wireless
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Mon Aug 28, 2017 10:37 pm

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I will say this again. I am a white African born in Kenya of parents of the British Isles .Certain people may not like this, but the PC world can be a tough place.


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:04 pm

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I just wanted to apologize to the community here for all the confusion about my ancestry. I have decided that I am a German, Polish, Irish, and Russian American. All the other things I thought I was were based on research I did on several different online resources that I have now decided may not be absolutely credible. Thank you!


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iNow
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:20 pm
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wireless wrote:
I will say this again. I am a white African born in Kenya of parents of the British Isles .Certain people may not like this, but the PC world can be a tough place.

Please do let us know if you ever decide to stop carrying around the giant chip on your shoulder.

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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Wed Aug 30, 2017 10:25 pm

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I have decided to share what I have discovered about my ancestry by doing online research. I have discovered I may have English, Dutch, French, Swiss, Roman, and Jewish ancestry too. I am not sure how credible this information is since I researched it online but I am willing to give it a chance.


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iNow
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Thu Aug 31, 2017 1:22 am
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Remind us, Matt, what prompted this passion and what sustains this energy you have to better understand your ancestry?

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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Thu Aug 31, 2017 10:25 pm

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iNow wrote:
Remind us, Matt, what prompted this passion and what sustains this energy you have to better understand your ancestry?


I just have a dedication to accuracy and a passion to connect to people I did not know I had a deep connection to.


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wireless
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Fri Sep 01, 2017 2:02 pm

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iNow wrote:
wireless wrote:
I will say this again. I am a white African born in Kenya of parents of the British Isles .Certain people may not like this, but the PC world can be a tough place.

Please do let us know if you ever decide to stop carrying around the giant chip on your shoulder.

I am a very well balanced person who has a chip on both shoulders.


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marnixR
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Fri Sep 01, 2017 7:26 pm
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wireless wrote:
iNow wrote:
wireless wrote:
I will say this again. I am a white African born in Kenya of parents of the British Isles .Certain people may not like this, but the PC world can be a tough place.

Please do let us know if you ever decide to stop carrying around the giant chip on your shoulder.

I am a very well balanced person who has a chip on both shoulders.


is that with or without vinegar ?

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wireless
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Fri Sep 01, 2017 10:39 pm

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No vinegar, just mushy peas mate.


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Sat Sep 02, 2017 10:59 pm

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I have been feeling more confident in my online ancestry research.


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Falconer360
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Sun Sep 03, 2017 8:05 pm
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mmatt9876 wrote:
I have been feeling more confident in my online ancestry research.

How many generations (or years) back have you managed to trace your line of ancestors? Just curious.

I can get about two hundred years back on both sides of my family with a few lines going further and a few going shorter.

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janus
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Mon Sep 04, 2017 5:59 am

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Falconer360 wrote:
mmatt9876 wrote:
I have been feeling more confident in my online ancestry research.

How many generations (or years) back have you managed to trace your line of ancestors? Just curious.

I can get about two hundred years back on both sides of my family with a few lines going further and a few going shorter.


As for myself, I've been able to trace one line to the 1400's, 17 lines end in the 1500's, 22 end in the 1600's, 19 in the 1700's and 5 end in the 1800's.
The most generations I've been able to to go back is 14 and the fewest is 2 (I can't get find any info past my paternal grandmother.)


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 2:21 pm

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Falconer360 wrote:
mmatt9876 wrote:
I have been feeling more confident in my online ancestry research.

How many generations (or years) back have you managed to trace your line of ancestors? Just curious.

I can get about two hundred years back on both sides of my family with a few lines going further and a few going shorter.


I recently got a free myheritage account but I have not found much yet.


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iNow
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 3:08 pm
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Those websites and services are really only as good as their data sets and existing user base. Much like joining Match.com or eHarmony to find a mate will limit you to others who have joined those specific sites and what information they've entered, you'll be limited on your ancestry search for the same reasons.

It's generally best to communicate with family and look at birth / death records maintained by government. My dad did this before he passed, and his aunt apparently has our family tree on my fathers side traced back several hundred years. She's not used any of the websites you mentioned, AFAIK.

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janus
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 6:53 pm

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iNow wrote:
Those websites and services are really only as good as their data sets and existing user base. Much like joining Match.com or eHarmony to find a mate will limit you to others who have joined those specific sites and what information they've entered, you'll be limited on your ancestry search for the same reasons.

It's generally best to communicate with family and look at birth / death records maintained by government. My dad did this before he passed, and his aunt apparently has our family tree on my fathers side traced back several hundred years. She's not used any of the websites you mentioned, AFAIK.


The road blocks I hit revolve around a few points:
1. My grandparents were all Finnish immigrants and there seems to be a dearth of Finnish records that are easily to access and have been translated to English.
2. There is a large gap in years between myself and my grandparents. I was born later in my parents life (my dad was nearly 50) and my father was also born late to his parents (My grandfather was almost 54). So even though I am the grandson of immigrants, my family immigrated back in the 1800's.
3. Before 1929, surnames were even not a legal requirement in Finland, and while in sometimes is was passed down from generation to generation, this was not always the case. In many cases a person's surname came from their homestead, and if a son moved and started his own homestead rather than taking over his parents' one, he would often change his surname. My own grandfather changed his name twice during his life. Once when they sold the family homestead to immigrate to the U.S., and then again after getting to the U.S., by shortening and slightly altering the spelling.

I had one bit of good luck in that I had a Great Uncle on my Mother's side who, back in the late '70s, hired a professional genealogist to research his paternal line. I came across it while going through some stuff of my Mother's my brother had stored. It went back as far as my 8th great grandfather. This provided something to expand upon.

The one thing I was able to do was increase my knowledge of how my father's side of the family expanded after reaching the U.S. I knew that my grandfather at least had one brother who had immigrated when he did, but was surprised to learn than he actually had 5 brothers and 2 sisters that came over too, and most of them had a good number of children.


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iNow
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 7:29 pm
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I know how big families go. I can't throw a rock without hitting a cousin somewhere. My grandfather was from a Roman Catholic family and had 9 brothers and 2 sisters.

I still laugh each time at the relevance of the Monty Python every sperm is sacred skit from The Meaning of Life.


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 10:13 pm

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iNow wrote:
Those websites and services are really only as good as their data sets and existing user base. Much like joining Match.com or eHarmony to find a mate will limit you to others who have joined those specific sites and what information they've entered, you'll be limited on your ancestry search for the same reasons.

It's generally best to communicate with family and look at birth / death records maintained by government. My dad did this before he passed, and his aunt apparently has our family tree on my fathers side traced back several hundred years. She's not used any of the websites you mentioned, AFAIK.


Thanks for the advice!


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Wed Sep 06, 2017 2:19 pm

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iNow wrote:
I know how big families go. I can't throw a rock without hitting a cousin somewhere. My grandfather was from a Roman Catholic family and had 9 brothers and 2 sisters.

I still laugh each time at the relevance of the Monty Python every sperm is sacred skit from The Meaning of Life.



Very funny!


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Sat Sep 09, 2017 11:19 pm

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So to sum up my ancestry I am a German, Polish, Irish, and Russian American. I may also have some English, Dutch, French, Swiss, Roman, and Jewish ancestry too.


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Fri Sep 15, 2017 8:00 pm

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I do not believe I have any Jewish ancestry.


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Falconer360
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Fri Sep 15, 2017 8:26 pm
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mmatt9876 wrote:
I do not believe I have any Jewish ancestry.

You flip flop on this particular bit a lot. What specifically keeps causing that? You stated before that none of you family believes there was any Jewish ancestry and they're going to be more knowledgeable about your ancestry than anything you will find online. As for your other ancestries, a lot of it is arbitrary and depends on when your ancestors lived in those areas. A majority of my ancestry is Hungarian, but it's possible that at times they were Romanian or Austrian. Hell they may have originally been none of those and just settled there from another region before any of my family started keeping track.

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PhDemon
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Fri Sep 15, 2017 10:06 pm

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Mat, I appreciate your passion for discovering your ancestry but do you have to post every 30 seconds about what you have found (at least that's what it seems like!).,
Why not think things through and post what you are confident about rather than flip-flopping about whether or not there may be certain ethnicities in your background?

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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Fri Sep 15, 2017 10:11 pm

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Falconer360 wrote:
mmatt9876 wrote:
I do not believe I have any Jewish ancestry.

You flip flop on this particular bit a lot. What specifically keeps causing that? You stated before that none of you family believes there was any Jewish ancestry and they're going to be more knowledgeable about your ancestry than anything you will find online. As for your other ancestries, a lot of it is arbitrary and depends on when your ancestors lived in those areas. A majority of my ancestry is Hungarian, but it's possible that at times they were Romanian or Austrian. Hell they may have originally been none of those and just settled there from another region before any of my family started keeping track.


Sorry! I just want to be accurate about my ancestry.


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Fri Sep 15, 2017 10:11 pm

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PhDemon wrote:
Mat, I appreciate your passion for discovering your ancestry but do you have to post every 30 seconds about what you have found (at least that's what it seems like!).,
Why not think things through and post what you are confident about rather than flip-flopping about whether or not there may be certain ethnicities in your background?


Thanks for the advice!


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Sat Sep 16, 2017 1:33 am

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Falconer360 wrote:
mmatt9876 wrote:
I do not believe I have any Jewish ancestry.

You flip flop on this particular bit a lot. What specifically keeps causing that? You stated before that none of you family believes there was any Jewish ancestry and they're going to be more knowledgeable about your ancestry than anything you will find online. As for your other ancestries, a lot of it is arbitrary and depends on when your ancestors lived in those areas. A majority of my ancestry is Hungarian, but it's possible that at times they were Romanian or Austrian. Hell they may have originally been none of those and just settled there from another region before any of my family started keeping track.


I will be honest. I have been feeling a little insecure about possibly being Jewish. It is a lot of history to consider.


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iNow
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Sat Sep 16, 2017 10:22 am
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mmatt9876 wrote:
I will be honest. I have been feeling a little insecure about possibly being Jewish. It is a lot of history to consider.

This is perfectly understandable. Just keep in mind, unless you're surrounded by nazis or happen to be a nazi yourself, having Jewish ancestry or not having Jewish ancestry changes absolutely nothing about who you already are. There is no affect on the life you're living (unless perhaps it causes you to be more compassionate and kind toward others). It's completely arbitrary.

Would you be equally concerned about the possibility of having a Buddhist ancestor? If not, then you need to rethink your stereotypes, not your lineage.

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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Sat Sep 16, 2017 1:59 pm

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iNow wrote:
mmatt9876 wrote:
I will be honest. I have been feeling a little insecure about possibly being Jewish. It is a lot of history to consider.

This is perfectly understandable. Just keep in mind, unless you're surrounded by nazis or happen to be a nazi yourself, having Jewish ancestry or not having Jewish ancestry changes absolutely nothing about who you already are. There is no affect on the life you're living (unless perhaps it causes you to be more compassionate and kind toward others). It's completely arbitrary.

Would you be equally concerned about the possibility of having a Buddhist ancestor? If not, then you need to rethink your stereotypes, not your lineage.


Thanks! I am not surrounded by Nazis or a Nazi myself. I do not think I would worry about having a Buddhist ancestor as much as a Jewish ancestor because the Buddhists, to the best of my knowledge, were not a target of mass extermination. I guess I need to change my stereotype beliefs as you have suggested. There is nothing wrong with being Jewish. I treasure the Jewish people so I should feel honored to possibly be one myself. It is just hard for me because I tend to obsess and worry about things. It is just a lot of history to consider.


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Falconer360
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Sat Sep 16, 2017 3:59 pm
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mmatt9876 wrote:
It is just hard for me because I tend to obsess and worry about things. It is just a lot of history to consider.

Maybe it will help alleviate the overwhelm of thinking about their history to consider that any ethnic group has just as much history (other than the whole recent history concerning the holocaust). I mean if you go back far enough you could have all sorts of ancestors, Roman, Egyptian, etc. Every generation you go back the number of ancestors increases dramatically http://www.askamathematician.com/2014/04/q-if-the-number-of-ancestors-you-have-doubles-with-each-generation-going-back-you-quickly-get-to-a-number-bigger-than-the-population-of-earth-does-that-mean-were-all-a-little-inbred/
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...in the age of Charlemagne (more or less when everybody’s 40-greats grandfolk were living) the world population was between 200 and 300 million, and yet 2^40 (the number of ancestors you would have with no overlap) is 1,099,511,627,776. As it happens, 1.09 trillion is bigger than 300 million (math!). That means that your average ancestor alive 1200 years ago shows up in your 40-generation-tall family tree at least around 4,000 times. That redundancy is likely to be much higher.

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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Sun Sep 17, 2017 1:18 am

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I have given my research some thought and I have decided that I may have some Jewish ancestry.


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Sun Sep 17, 2017 10:25 pm

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Falconer360 wrote:
mmatt9876 wrote:
It is just hard for me because I tend to obsess and worry about things. It is just a lot of history to consider.

Maybe it will help alleviate the overwhelm of thinking about their history to consider that any ethnic group has just as much history (other than the whole recent history concerning the holocaust). I mean if you go back far enough you could have all sorts of ancestors, Roman, Egyptian, etc. Every generation you go back the number of ancestors increases dramatically http://www.askamathematician.com/2014/04/q-if-the-number-of-ancestors-you-have-doubles-with-each-generation-going-back-you-quickly-get-to-a-number-bigger-than-the-population-of-earth-does-that-mean-were-all-a-little-inbred/
Quote:
...in the age of Charlemagne (more or less when everybody’s 40-greats grandfolk were living) the world population was between 200 and 300 million, and yet 2^40 (the number of ancestors you would have with no overlap) is 1,099,511,627,776. As it happens, 1.09 trillion is bigger than 300 million (math!). That means that your average ancestor alive 1200 years ago shows up in your 40-generation-tall family tree at least around 4,000 times. That redundancy is likely to be much higher.


Wow! Thanks for the math!

I have decided to look at the positives and not the negatives when it comes to being Jewish or being any race.


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Sun Sep 17, 2017 10:32 pm

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I think at the heart of why I was feeling uncomfortable about being Jewish was I was afraid of being hated or targeted in some way. I now realize I need not worry about that. Times are changing and people are becoming more tolerant and accepting of each other, which is a good thing. I need not obsess and worry.


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Falconer360
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Sun Sep 17, 2017 10:44 pm
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mmatt9876 wrote:
Wow! Thanks for the math!

I have decided to look at the positives and not the negatives when it comes to being Jewish or being any race.

You're welcome, I figured you would find it useful. given those numbers, it's probable that most of us have tons of ancestry that we are unaware of. In fact it kind of makes a lot of it seem rather moot. Especially the people who are very xenophobic or racist, given that those people likely share ancestors far enough back with the ones they despise. There's a poster on another forum who could do with this realization.

Matt you never did actually answer my question about what information or sources that are causing you to flip flop on your ancestry? Like are you finding contradictory sources? Or are you just searching surnames and finding the same surname associated with certain ethnicities?

Quote:
I think at the heart of why I was feeling uncomfortable about being Jewish was I was afraid of being hated or targeted in some way. I now realize I need not worry about that. Times are changing and people are becoming more tolerant and accepting of each other, which is a good thing. I need not obsess and worry.


Well that seems like a nonsensical worry to me in general. I mean you are not a practicing Jew, nor are your parents. I'm also assuming that you do not possess "Jewish traits" that racists use to stereotype, or a "Jewish" last name. So there would be no real need to worry that anyone would hate or target you for that. They would have no clue that you had Jewish ancestry.

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"It is easy to kill someone with a slash of a sword. It is hard to be impossible for others to cut down" - Yagyu Munenori


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Mon Sep 18, 2017 10:16 pm

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I feel more confident and comfortable with my ancestry now.


Last edited by mmatt9876 on Mon Sep 18, 2017 10:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Mon Sep 18, 2017 10:25 pm

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Falconer360 wrote:
You're welcome, I figured you would find it useful. given those numbers, it's probable that most of us have tons of ancestry that we are unaware of. In fact it kind of makes a lot of it seem rather moot. Especially the people who are very xenophobic or racist, given that those people likely share ancestors far enough back with the ones they despise. There's a poster on another forum who could do with this realization.

Matt you never did actually answer my question about what information or sources that are causing you to flip flop on your ancestry? Like are you finding contradictory sources? Or are you just searching surnames and finding the same surname associated with certain ethnicities?


The information sources I researched caused me to flip flop because sometime I ran into contradictions. One example is some sources said my family originated in England and others said my family originated in Germany.

Falconer360 wrote:
Well that seems like a nonsensical worry to me in general. I mean you are not a practicing Jew, nor are your parents. I'm also assuming that you do not possess "Jewish traits" that racists use to stereotype, or a "Jewish" last name. So there would be no real need to worry that anyone would hate or target you for that. They would have no clue that you had Jewish ancestry.


Yea, I do not really believe people are after me or anything it is just an irrational thought I had been getting concerning being Jewish.


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Mon Sep 18, 2017 10:40 pm

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It does not really matter to me what my ethnicity is. I just started posting about it and got caught up in being accurate.


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Falconer360
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Wed Sep 20, 2017 3:53 pm
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mmatt9876 wrote:
The information sources I researched caused me to flip flop because sometime I ran into contradictions. One example is some sources said my family originated in England and others said my family originated in Germany.

I thought that could be the case, I've run into similar trouble. Searching for the origins of my last name for instance provides conflicting results of it being from England and from Germany as well. Although talking by to family I was able to narrow it to England. Of course that doesn't mean that my ancestors didn't come to England from somewhere else way before that.

Have you thought of paying for the 23andme genetic test and analysis? https://www.23andme.com/ A few friends of mine have done it and were really satisfied.

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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 2:13 pm

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Where I got the ideas about my ancestry was by doing online research on my last name Meyer.


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Falconer360
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 5:03 pm
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Ah okay, knowing that I can see why there was the doubt on your part. Looked up the origin of Meyer just now myself (not intensively) and I can see that basically for some it indicates an English and anglo-saxon ancestry, but for others it indicates German ancestry and for others yet German Jewish ancestry. But without tracing your patrinlineal line back you won't be sure where exactly your name originates. That's not counting for all the other branches that merged into your ancestry.

Since I don't particularly care if people know my name, my last name is Wellman. It's fairly common but I know my patrilineal line back about 6 generations at least so I Know that the Wellman line comes from England. I also know that my grandfather's mother was from Norway.

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janus
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 5:08 pm

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mmatt9876 wrote:
Where I got the ideas about my ancestry was by doing online research on my last name Meyer.


That can be a bit difficult, especially if the name is a fairly common one. There are two problems one can run up against when researching genealogy by surname: A dearth of information and a glut of information. I've run across both. On my Dad's side, I can find no information past his Mother. I know her maiden name, but the only information I can find on her is after she came to the US. I get a few hits for records for her surname from Finland, but nothing I can tie to her. (it doesn't help that I'm not even sure that the first name I have for her is her actual birth name. It was quite common for Finns to "Americanize" their names. I have two uncle "Walter"s, one who was born Toivo and the other Waino. My Dad had a brother who I always knew as "Joe", who I just recently learned was born Kalle Josef, which he later changed to Charles Joseph (or commonly C.J.) before becoming just Joe.)

On my wife's side, I run across the opposite, Her Dad's side is from England, but both grandparents had very common last names. So you get lots of hits, many of them contradictory, so you have trouble deciding which, if any, are the right ones.

Her Mother's side comes from Germany and Denmark. Tracing lineage in Denmark can be a headache, as surnames were not passed directly from generation. Instead a son's surname is taken from his Father's first name. If Hans Jorgensen has a son Christen, he will be Christen Hansen, and if Christen then has a son Jorgen, he will be Jorgen Christensen.( The Finns had a similar tradition, except the father's name is passed on as a middle name. Thus all of Pauli's sons have the middle name of Paulinpoika.)

Actual records are your best resource for confirming information. I'll give you an example: I found a reference in someone's family tree to a supposed brother of my father that I had never heard of. I had already run across some mistakes that I knew were wrong ( for instance, one resource listed three siblings as mother, father and son, just based on the fact that they shared the same headstone), so I was doubtful. Anyone that I could have asked about this have long passed away. Then I came a across a request for a military headstone for him that had been applied for by my father (I even recognized his signature).

But even some records need to be taken with a grain of salt. I found a census record for a "Yunse Fyne", as the daughter of one of my grandfather's brothers. That's how the census taker heard "Josephine" as spoken with a Finnish accent. Also, since many of these old records are hand written, the software searching these records often makes mistakes in translating the hand writing(especially since the handwriting of some census takers was horrendous) . In another census record, it listed someone as the mother of the head of household, but it was actually his mother-in-law, and it had completely mangled her last name, where as I, knowing the correct name, had no trouble reading the handwriting correctly directly from the image of the census page.

I've even "family trees" that have "ancestors" who were born after their "descendants".


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 11:17 pm

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Falconer360 wrote:
Ah okay, knowing that I can see why there was the doubt on your part. Looked up the origin of Meyer just now myself (not intensively) and I can see that basically for some it indicates an English and anglo-saxon ancestry, but for others it indicates German ancestry and for others yet German Jewish ancestry. But without tracing your patrinlineal line back you won't be sure where exactly your name originates. That's not counting for all the other branches that merged into your ancestry.

Since I don't particularly care if people know my name, my last name is Wellman. It's fairly common but I know my patrilineal line back about 6 generations at least so I Know that the Wellman line comes from England. I also know that my grandfather's mother was from Norway.


Thanks for helping me sort my ancestry out a bit. So it looks like there are three major branches of the Meyer family. There is an English branch, a German branch, and a Jewish branch. I wonder where the Meyer family tree starts?


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Falconer360
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Wed Sep 27, 2017 5:19 pm
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mmatt9876 wrote:
Thanks for helping me sort my ancestry out a bit. So it looks like there are three major branches of the Meyer family. There is an English branch, a German branch, and a Jewish branch. I wonder where the Meyer family tree starts?

Given that it is an occupational hereditary surname I would hedge my bets on there being multiple Meyer family trees and multiple origins, probably more than three. Although I also wouldn't be surprised if they intersected at times. It's almost a certainty that some individuals will appear in multiple places on your family tree, ie two people get married, and both of them share an ancestor several generations back.

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"For every moment of triumph, for every instance of beauty, many souls must be trampled." Hunter S Thompson
"It is easy to kill someone with a slash of a sword. It is hard to be impossible for others to cut down" - Yagyu Munenori


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mmatt9876
Post  Post subject: Re: My Ancestry [split from off-topic thread]  |  Posted: Wed Sep 27, 2017 11:26 pm

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Falconer360 wrote:
mmatt9876 wrote:
Thanks for helping me sort my ancestry out a bit. So it looks like there are three major branches of the Meyer family. There is an English branch, a German branch, and a Jewish branch. I wonder where the Meyer family tree starts?

Given that it is an occupational hereditary surname I would hedge my bets on there being multiple Meyer family trees and multiple origins, probably more than three. Although I also wouldn't be surprised if they intersected at times. It's almost a certainty that some individuals will appear in multiple places on your family tree, ie two people get married, and both of them share an ancestor several generations back.


In addition to the English, German, and Jewish branches/trees of the Meyer family I found some sources that said there may also be Roman, Dutch, French, Swiss, and Danish Meyers too. It is hard to say if each branch/tree of the Meyer family started and evolved on its own or if some or all these Meyer families are connected in some way.


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