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Family History - I'm Hooked!

For the past several weeks I've been keeping busy with researching my family tree. I think I'm starting to drive Josh a little crazy with it. I've done some research in the past (around 2003 maybe?) and I didn't find much further than my great great grandparents. I had always been told that my family hasn't been in America for very long so I figured that I wouldn't be able to find much... I was told that my dad's side was Irish/French Canadian/Native American (no one knew about the Indian side..). I was told that my mom's side was Italian. What I found out was that there's so much more to the story!


I think what sparked my interest was that new show that comes on NBC called "Who Do You Think You Are?" I was watching the episode with Sarah Jessica Parker... where her ancestor was part of the Salem Witch Trials. Little did I know that I probably should have been paying closer attention. (More about that later.)


I started asking Josh about his family and where they came from. He had no idea. He barely knows  anyone beyond his own immediate family. His family members keep adding me as a friend on Facebook. When I ask him who they are he'll say, "I don't know... a cousin or something..." So I decided to ask his mom.


I figured his mom would be my best chance to learn more... She helped me out by giving me a few pedigree charts from their family history folder. That was MORE THAN enough to get me started! 


As soon as I got them home I filled in my Personal Ancestral File with the info from the charts she gave me. Then I went on Ancestry.com to see what I could find. (Birth records, death records, marriage records, etc, etc, etc.) I found a gold mine of information!! Not only on his side of the family, but on mine as well. The more I found the more into it I got. 


I signed up for the 14 day free trial and planned to cancel it, but I'm STILL finding out stuff so I think I'll pay for a month or two.


So back to the Salem Witch Trials... In that episode with Sarah Jessica Parker she learned about her 13th great grandmother Esther Ellwell. Turns out that her great grandmother and MY great grandmother (9th), Rebecca Dike (maiden name Dolliver) not only knew each other, but were both (along with Abigail Rowe) accused of using witchcraft against a woman named Mary Fitch. How crazy is that? I was watching that episode and learning about my (9th) great grandmother without even knowing it. :)


There's so much more I've been learning about our family that I never knew before. No one told me that we were some of the first settlers in America... Josh's family too... I also had no idea that I had so much French blood in me... Or that my 3rd great grandmother was full blooded Argentine and was adopted by an Irish family.


I could go on and on... but I'll save some for another post. I'll end with 2 pictures. One is a picture I found of Josh's great-great grandfather, Frands Peter Hansen Petersen. The other is a recent picture of Josh. Don't these 2 look very similar?




2 Responses
  1. hahaha! That side by side captures it brilliantly! :) I'm glad you're having tons of fun!! Jimmy has a bunch of stuff on his family, and I have wanted to get down to it ever since we got married...but I'm a slacker!


  2. hahaha! That side by side captures it brilliantly! :) I'm glad you're having tons of fun!! Jimmy has a bunch of stuff on his family, and I have wanted to get down to it ever since we got married...but I'm a slacker!