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On Thanksgiving, I'm Thankful My Ancestors Left Europe, and That America Took Them In

Ian Reifowitz | Posted 11.27.2015 | Good News
Ian Reifowitz

Thanksgiving -- at least in the form we celebrate it in this country -- is an American invention, and also a holiday about each of our relationships to America.

From a Recipient of Birthright Citizenship: Immigration Made America Great, Because Immigrants Are Us

Michael Shammas | Posted 08.28.2015 | Politics
Michael Shammas

Whether we are descended from majority who came here willfully and found a better life, or from the many who came here unwillingly and lived lives of destitution and terror, the fact remains: We are all transplants, all the descendants of immigrants who desired to have a flourishing life.

Season 3 of 'Finding Your Roots' Green-Lighted for January 2016 Return on PBS

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 07.14.2015 | Entertainment
Megan Smolenyak

Season 3 of the popular show, hosted and produced by Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates, Jr., was put on hold until certain measures were implemented.

Celebrity Genealogy on TV: Who and When?

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 06.28.2015 | Entertainment
Megan Smolenyak

We can probably expect an interlude between the next seasons of Who Do You Think You Are? and Finding Your Roots, and the duration of that lull will hinge largely on how PBS chooses to balance and accommodate the sometimes competing goals of content accuracy and viewer demand.

Sense8, Animism, and Modern Clan Awareness

Kelley Harrell | Posted 06.16.2015 | GPS for the Soul
Kelley Harrell

If you haven't seen it yet, last week Netflix debuted its new series Sense8. Created by the Wachowski duo (from whom we have The Matrix and Cloud At...

LeBron James Is Making His Cleveland Ancestors Proud

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 06.15.2015 | Sports
Megan Smolenyak

Whether LeBron knows it or not, three generations of his family once called Cleveland home. LeBron has classic, Great Migration heritage, and two branches of his family tree made their way from the South to Cleveland.

EXCLUSIVE VIDEO: Angie Harmon Understands the Power of Walking in Your Ancestors Footsteps

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 05.19.2015 | Entertainment
Megan Smolenyak

This Sunday on Who Do You Think You Are? (March 22, 2015 at 10/9c on TLC), Angie Harmon -- who always thought she was Greek, Irish and Native American -- makes some surprising discoveries about the Harmon branch of her family tree.

Your Story, Our Stories: A New Program at the Lower East Side Tenement Museum

Annie Polland | Posted 03.25.2015 | New York
Annie Polland

"Your Story, Our Stories," a new program at the Lower East Side Tenement Museum, invites New York City students and teachers to explore their own family's origins as part of their immigration units.

Photo of Barack Obama's Irish Immigrant 3rd Great-Grandfather, Fulmoth Kearney, Discovered

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 02.18.2015 | Politics
Megan Smolenyak

It was seven years ago when I identified Fulmoth Kearney of Moneygall, Ireland as the most recent immigrant on the maternal side of Barack Obama's family tree. Inheriting land in Ohio from a brother, Fulmoth's father, Joseph, left Ireland for the United States in 1849.

Fulmoth Kearney, President Obama's Irish Immigrant Ancestor, Gets a Tombstone

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 02.17.2015 | Politics
Megan Smolenyak

Back in 2007, I researched then-candidate Barack Obama's roots and identified one of his third great-grandparents, Fulmoth Kearney of Ireland, as the most recent immigrant on his mother's side of the family.

How My Mom's Death Changed My Definition of Family

Rachael Rifkin | Posted 01.26.2015 | Women
Rachael Rifkin

When I'm shopping and I see something she might like, I think about how much she loved chocolate and the color turquoise. And how strange it is to know that I won't be buying her anything anymore.

Art & the Tyranny of the New

Steven Crandell | Posted 01.06.2015 | Arts
Steven Crandell

I think it's time to create a market for art that deepens the spirit, not makes it shallower, a market to encourage art that taps into wisdom and truth that has lasted for generations, eons, as long as memory has served humanity.

The Most Ellis Island-y Celebrity Ever: Tom Colicchio

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 12.13.2014 | Entertainment
Megan Smolenyak

Colicchio's family includes a total of 12 immigrants -- eight of whom came through Ellis Island, three more who entered via New York earlier (one just four months prior to its opening), and a solitary ancestor who opted for Philadelphia.

5 Things You Didn't Know About Anthony Bourdain's Roots

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 12.08.2014 | Entertainment
Megan Smolenyak

Anthony Bourdain's very existence is against the odds, and his wanderlust almost inevitable.

Was David Duchovny's Family From Ukraine or Russia?

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 09.29.2014 | Entertainment
Megan Smolenyak

There's been quite a fuss about a nationalistic, Russian beer commercial David Duchovny made not long ago -- especially given that he recently discovered that his roots are actually in Ukraine. For obvious reasons, this is less than ideal timing.

Ancestor Deficit Disorder

Steven Crandell | Posted 08.11.2014 | Healthy Living
Steven Crandell

A tree without roots cannot grow. When we humans lose our roots, we too begin to wither -- losing our balance, our health and our spiritual foundati...

Respecting the Future in the Life and Cinematic Work of Jean Rouch

Paul Stoller | Posted 04.18.2014 | Arts
Paul Stoller

Known in Europe and Africa for his highly creative work in documentary film, Rouch's work helped to spark The New Wave of French filmmaking, inspiring filmmakers like Francois Truffaut and Jean-Luc Godard.

WATCH: Ever Wonder Where Museums Get Those Prehistoric Heads?

The Huffington Post | Isaac Saul | Posted 01.23.2014 | Science

Ever wonder about the origins of those incredibly life-like busts of our prehistoric ancestors on display in natural history museums? As it turns ...

The Weekly Rune: Othala

Kelley Harrell | Posted 01.23.2014 | Healthy Living
Kelley Harrell

Othala indicates that we are carrying a weight greater than a single life can bear. It's telling us that before we can seat into the role of elder in our lines, we must bless those who came before us. We must relieve them.

A Chat with Jim Piddock about HBO's Binge-worthy Family Tree

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 01.23.2014 | TV
Megan Smolenyak

This documentary-style, comedy series was conjured up by Christopher Guest and Jim Piddock (as it happens, both history buffs) over a lunch spent discussing Guest's dabbling in the world of genealogy.

How I Found Out I'm Part Jewish

Doug Bremner | Posted 11.23.2013 | Healthy Living
Doug Bremner

The results of my DNA analysis arrived in the mail a few weeks later. What a surprise! I had no idea where the Sub-Saharan African part came from, but that meant that I had a black ancestor somewhere about five generations back.

Seeing The World

Joe Malone | Posted 08.12.2013 | Fifty
Joe Malone

Joe Malone, technical writer, was laboring over a novel when his shrink suggested sticking to pieces that could be read in minutes. The rest is histor...

Weekly Rune: Othala

Kelley Harrell | Posted 08.10.2013 | Healthy Living
Kelley Harrell

Othala -- property -- Remember that journey we took with Raidho last week? Well, we did it right! Over the last few weeks the story of the Runes has ...

Heavenly Reunited

Lawrence D. Elliott | Posted 07.22.2013 | Black Voices
Lawrence D. Elliott

It was the summer of 2006, when I stepped off the cool airplane into the heat and humidity at Monroe Regional Airport. I was back in the Louisiana of my ancestral roots. My body was filled with great anticipation.

The Color Orange and My First Cousin Jesse: Rediscovering Family

Elizabeth Boleman-Herring | Posted 05.07.2013 | Women
Elizabeth Boleman-Herring

The Last of the Mohicans was made in 1992, just after my mother (the next to the last of my Mohicans) succumbed to cancer. Very much in Chingachgook's moccasins, I am the last, now, of the Boleman-Herrings.