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  1. #1
    Over 9000! Orby's Avatar
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    Has Anyone Here Tried to Trace their Family history?

    Over the last 10 years me and my mum have been trying to trace our family history. It's something she has been very passionate about wanting to know, starting off as a hobby, I pitched in later to help out. It's been very insightful.

    My mums side seems far more interesting than my dads. On my mums side at least to around 1840 her ancestors moved over from Sweden as immigrants. Also on my mums side there is some Russian history that dates by to the Tsar days of the time of Nicholas II. That side is confusing as hell.

    My dads side on the other hand seems 100% British as far as been recorded or at least since 1750's.

    Unfortunately the further we dig the more expensive this stuff gets. Especially if you had ancestors who lived abroad. So we have had to lay off it this year. But its been so fascinating to learn about my history.

    Have any of you dug into your family tree, if so how far did you go?

  2. #2
    Immortal Templar 331's Avatar
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    My grandmother did the Ancestry.com thing and has been digging hard. She's found a good bit of our family tree.

    I'm not too interested in it though.

  3. #3
    Old God I Push Buttons's Avatar
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    My dad looked into ancestry stuff in the early 2000s and found information going as far back to the early 1800s for his side of the family. The only particularly noteworthy ancestor was a colonel who fought for the Union during the Civil War, commanding a volunteer cavalry regiment; I can't remember which particular regiment and what state the regiment was from, though, other than it wasn't Ohio.

    My mother was adopted and never looked into her real parents, so no idea on that front.

  4. #4
    Stood in the Fire
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    Can trace my fathers side to like 17th century in sweden. My mothers side isn't as easy to trace.

  5. #5
    I am Murloc! shadowmouse's Avatar
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    My family went through that back when Roots kicked off a genealogy frenzy. They shared some of their favorite bits with me, but I never found myself that caught up in it.
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  6. #6
    The Unstoppable Force breadisfunny's Avatar
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    no because our state doesn't believe in allowing adoptees to know their parents.
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  7. #7
    Old God Seranthor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Orby View Post
    Over the last 10 years me and my mum have been trying to trace our family history. It's something she has been very passionate about wanting to know, starting off as a hobby, I pitched in later to help out. It's been very insightful.

    My mums side seems far more interesting than my dads. On my mums side at least to around 1840 her ancestors moved over from Sweden as immigrants. Also on my mums side there is some Russian history that dates by to the Tsar days of the time of Nicholas II. That side is confusing as hell.

    My dads side on the other hand seems 100% British as far as been recorded or at least since 1750's.

    Unfortunately the further we dig the more expensive this stuff gets. Especially if you had ancestors who lived abroad. So we have had to lay off it this year. But its been so fascinating to learn about my history.

    Have any of you dug into your family tree, if so how far did you go?
    Been at it off and on since the early 70s...

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  8. #8
    Tracing stuff in the Balkans is really difficult. The Ottomans weren't big on keeping birth records of their human livestock.

    All I know is that my family history on that side of the family is in Epirus going back to the 1800s at some point, genetically it shows I have some Slavic ancestry prior to that, and my Greek mother's family name is atypical for a Greek name.

    On my American father's side is mostly British Isles and France as far as I can tell, with smaller amounts of German and Scandinavian. He claimed he had some Native American ancestry as well, but that never showed up in the DNA test, whether that's due to small sample sizes for Native populations or him just being wrong I don't know. I do have a picture of a great-great-grandmother or somesuch, her name was Martha Savage and she had some commonly attributed Native American features. But I have no way to tell if she was a blood relative or not.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kidkilla View Post
    The Ottomans brought civilization to Greece.
    Oh my...

  9. #9
    Stood in the Fire
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stelio Kontos View Post
    Tracing stuff in the Balkans is really difficult.
    Tell me about it. My mothers side of the family came from Yugoslavia, they're Serbs. Ran into problems almost instantly when trying to trace it.

  10. #10
    Merely a Setback Trassk's Avatar
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    My aunt did. I have royal ancestry, but so do many people. Furthest back was that of Eleanor of Aquitaine, which goes back about 900 years



    This is on my mother and grandfather's side. I don't know my biological father so no way of tracking that back
    Last edited by Trassk; 2019-12-31 at 04:26 PM.

  11. #11
    I know it kinda to around WW1 for my mothers side but even that is questionable since most of them lived in rural bavaria and records - and actual proof for being related so someone - was thin at best. On my father's side migration from areas that were lost in WW2 and the destruction of most records then make it kinda hard to track my father's mother's side. My father once tried to track his actual father but the military register of the US supposedly burned down. From what my grandmother could put together my grandfather was the son of french-italian emigrants who had a pizza place in New York - which doesn't exactly narrow it down, neither does a name like "Little Joe".

    I frankly don't have much interest. I compiled a family tree once in case I have kids and they would care, but that is pretty much the extend I'm willing to go here. I can't even stand the close relatives and I certainly don't feel the need to go around and annoy some other family with their ancestor's dirty deeds. As far as the gene tests go I'm not sure how much you can trust these. At least the ones that are popular on the internet. The degree of certainy that they try to sell seems a bit dogy to me at least.
    Last edited by Haidaes; 2019-12-31 at 04:45 PM.
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  12. #12
    Blademaster Kante's Avatar
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    The only thing i was able to dig is the occupation of the family, in Germany your last name was usually given based on trade (Seidemann) Silk worker/trader.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Stormvind View Post
    Tell me about it. My mothers side of the family came from Yugoslavia, they're Serbs. Ran into problems almost instantly when trying to trace it.
    I'm from Serbia and I can trace my family to some late 18th century at least. It's not hatd at all. I haven't been trying much than that but records are mostly kept in church archives...

  14. #14
    Between a name change and a courthouse fire where records were kept, it's pretty hard to go back more than four generations on my dad's side. I think my mom's side knows pretty far back though.
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  15. #15
    Dads side: Two dates: A hard and a soft date, soft is a possibility, and the hard one is for sure.

    Hard: 1533 where an ancestor of mine rented out a place to finance something, also, dividing inheritance with a payment of about 20 guilders a year.
    Soft: 1466, where a possible ancestor (name, of the 1533 guy basically somewhat confirms the soft date) buys and trades a plot of land. Possibly earlier dates, but cant confirm due to it still not translated or lost in a fire by Maarten van Rossum. A real soft one is probaly 1363, source: The rents from some estates.

    Moms side: Super confusing... 1660 or thereabouts, but a cousin of my mom made a bunch of notes linking it to 1400's.

    bigger picture: Same as Trassk basically, lower gentry confirmed though. and no, im not taking the royal lineages for granted, my cutoff date is 1200. Before that date its badly sourced. and after that date im somewhat taking it with a pinch of salt... Forgeries ya know?
    ''With this attack, we have no choice but to protect our kind by unleashing our almighty weapon upon them. Summoning the Apocalypse'' - Stellaris Apocalypse trailer.

  16. #16
    Couldn't give a toss. Maybe due to having a common-as-muck family name, given the topic more thought while writing this response than I probably have in my entire life. TV shows like "Who do you think you are" don't help.

    Think most of this is probably akin to astrology in terms of "telling rubes what they want to hear" veiled in the plausible deniability of "it gets a bit tricky to trace at this point here" crap. TV shows like "Who do you think you are" don't help.
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  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by AeneasBK View Post
    Couldn't give a toss. Maybe due to having a common-as-muck family name, given the topic more thought while writing this response than I probably have in my entire life. TV shows like "Who do you think you are" don't help.

    Think most of this is probably akin to astrology in terms of "telling rubes what they want to hear" veiled in the plausible deniability of "it gets a bit tricky to trace at this point here" crap. TV shows like "Who do you think you are" don't help.
    Luckily not for me... them documents are still there.. church parish records etc. But it does gets iffy before the 1350's imho.
    ''With this attack, we have no choice but to protect our kind by unleashing our almighty weapon upon them. Summoning the Apocalypse'' - Stellaris Apocalypse trailer.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by markos82 View Post
    I'm from Serbia and I can trace my family to some late 18th century at least. It's not hatd at all. I haven't been trying much than that but records are mostly kept in church archives...
    Depends on the region, the Turks had a habit of burning churches and the like in some areas during the various Balkan wars of national liberation. I have family stories going back to the late 1700s, but for actual records, the mid-late 1800s was the best I could do for the Epirus region bordering Greece and Albania.
    No ideology has been more murderous or detrimental to human dignity than Communism
    Quote Originally Posted by kidkilla View Post
    The Ottomans brought civilization to Greece.
    Oh my...

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Stelio Kontos View Post
    Depends on the region, the Turks had a habit of burning churches and the like in some areas during the various Balkan wars of national liberation. I have family stories going back to the late 1700s, but for actual records, the mid-late 1800s was the best I could do for the Epirus region bordering Greece and Albania.
    That's not true at all, there was no force indoctrination. First few centuries Serbian orthodox church had same rights as before....

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by markos82 View Post
    That's not true at all, there was no force indoctrination. First few centuries Serbian orthodox church had same rights as before....
    Then you guys got treated a lot better than much of the rest of the Balkans. The Ottomans kept the church leadership around, controlling who got promoted, but on the ground, out in the country, each population was the the mercy of each individual pasha. Where my grandmother's from, Messolonghi, the Turks slaughtered most of the population when they tried to rise up. Bulgarians were brutalized as well. Surprising to see a Serb say the Turks were good to them.

    Also, I didn't say anything about indoctrination, I said there was mass-killing and burning of villages and churches at various points. The Ottomans couldn't kill all their Christian rayah (cattle) because then who would pay the blood taxes for the janissaries and pay jizyah (tax used until 1856 for non-believers to keep their heads on their shoulders)?

    But by the time the Greeks, Bulgarians, and other groups started their uprisings, there were plans to liquidate all Christians. We saw that play out in the various genocides in Anatolia of the Armenians, Assyrians, and Pontic Greeks.
    Last edited by Stelio Kontos; 2020-01-02 at 12:01 AM.
    No ideology has been more murderous or detrimental to human dignity than Communism
    Quote Originally Posted by kidkilla View Post
    The Ottomans brought civilization to Greece.
    Oh my...

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