iOS app Android app

Ancestry

Teaching Kids To Trace Their Roots

Posted 08.03.2012 | Parents

This week's Family Dinner Table Talk, from HuffPost and The Family Dinner book: Genealogists working for Ancestry.com recently took a close look at...

A Second Chance to Be a Genetic Pioneer

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 10.02.2012 | Science
Megan Smolenyak

Genetic genealogy -- DNA testing done for the purpose of learning about one's roots -- has been around for about a decade, but a recent development suggests that we've reached the pioneering sweet spot.

Does Accuracy in History Matter? The Case of 'American Tapestry' and Michelle Obama's Ancestors

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 08.19.2012 | Books
Megan Smolenyak

Perhaps many reading this will consider me a relic to place so much weight on accuracy. If so, I suppose it's an occupational hazard as a genealogist's worth is measured largely in credibility, but what do you think?

Michelle Obama's Ancestors: 'American Tapestry' Has Holes in It

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 07.31.2012 | Books
Megan Smolenyak

As the genealogist who initially researched the first lady's family tree (four to five generations on all branches), I wanted to love American Tapestry: The Story of the Black, White and Multicultural Ancestors of Michelle Obama, but found myself disappointed -- mostly due to what's missing.

10 Things You Didn't Know About Martha Stewart's Family Tree

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 07.08.2012 | Celebrity
Megan Smolenyak

Martha's grandfather, Frank Kostyra, owned a tavern in Jersey City. On the 4th of July 1929, two boys stuck a piece of dynamite in the foundation of the tavern, causing an explosion. It's somewhat remarkable that the building is still a tavern today.

Mystery Of Horse's Origins Solved With Help Of Hair Samples, Math

AP | RAPHAEL SATTER | Posted 05.08.2012 | Science

LONDON -- A genetic study of horses across Eastern Europe and Central Asia has traced the domestication of one of man's most powerful animal allies to...

Michelle Obama's Ancestors: The First Lady's Multicultural, Great Migration Past (VIDEO)

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 04.30.2012 | Celebrity
Megan Smolenyak

Several years ago, I conducted extensive genealogical research into the heritage of Michelle Obama. A few of my discoveries -- particularly those per...

Michelle Obama's Ancestors: Purnell Shields

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 04.25.2012 | Chicago
Megan Smolenyak

D.T. lived in hopeful expectation, but even today, it's stunning to think that the life of this one-time slave overlapped with that of his great-granddaughter, Marian, who now resides in the White House.

Michelle Obama's Ancestors: Rebecca Jumper (aka Coleman)

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 04.22.2012 | Celebrity
Megan Smolenyak

Michelle's maternal grandmother, Rebecca Jumper, did an admirable job of keeping her past a secret, but that's probably because she didn't know much about it herself. That's unfortunate, because hers is an intriguing history.

Michelle Obama's Ancestors: The Great Mixing

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 04.04.2012 | Celebrity
Megan Smolenyak

Among the half million African Americans who moved to Chicago during the Great Migration were a number of Michelle's relatives, and they hailed from Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, Louisiana, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Tennessee, Kentucky, Missouri and the southern part of Illinois.

Michelle Obama's Ancestors: The Great Migration

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 04.02.2012 | Celebrity
Megan Smolenyak

This is the second in a series about the ancestry of the First Lady. The introduction can be found here: Michelle Obama's Ancestors: Chicago Beginni...

Michelle Obama's Ancestors: Chicago Beginnings

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 03.31.2012 | Celebrity
Megan Smolenyak

Michelle LaVaughn Robinson Obama's presence in the White House is historic. A hundred years from now, scholars and school children will still be stud...

A Peek into Blue Ivy Carter's Past

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 03.13.2012 | Celebrity
Megan Smolenyak

She's not even a week old, so the newborn daughter of Beyoncé and Jay-Z doesn't have a past yet -- except in the genealogical sense.

Honoring Fearless Ancestors At The Holidays

Deborah Swiss | Posted 02.24.2012 | Fifty
Deborah Swiss

The holidays offer a special time to share the cherished traditions that our children will remember and pass on to the next generation. Gathering our families together for dinners and celebrations, it's easy to forget what a long road it's been for some of our ancestors and the lucky chain of circumstances that brought us all to our holiday feasts.

An Ancestral Revolution

Cheryl Wills | Posted 10.17.2011 | Black Voices
Cheryl Wills

Genealogy may seem like an innocuous hobby, but in this age of smartphones and e-Readers, more and more families are anxious to download two very basic and sometimes profound answers: Who am I and where did I come from?

The Cure For Disease: Is It In Your Genes?

Posted 08.16.2011 | Healthy Living

If you've been waiting to jump on the personalized nutrition bandwagon, now may be the time. A new study conducted by the Wake Forest Baptist Medical ...

What Kind of Name Is Boreanaz?

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 07.16.2011 | Entertainment
Megan Smolenyak

What of Boreanaz? Well, you'd be hard-pressed to find anyone of Italian heritage who tracks to more extreme edges of the country.

Sneak Peek: Obama to Visit His Irish Ancestral Hometown of Moneygall

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 05.25.2011 | Travel
Megan Smolenyak

It was just last week on St. Patrick's Day while hosting Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Enda Kenny at the White House that President Obama announced his u...

WWI Soldier Representative of Connection Between Ireland and America

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Megan Smolenyak

With St. Patrick's Day looming, then, I hope you'll understand that I have no choice but to surrender to my genetic urges and write of yet another link between our two countries: Private Thomas D. Costello.

The Real Black History

Robin Quivers | Posted 11.17.2011 | Healthy Living
Robin Quivers

Next time you're enjoying that discussion with friends about where you come from, just remember that most African Americans have no answer to that question.

South Dakota Winters Set Records That Still Stand

Tim Giago | Posted 11.17.2011 | Healthy Living
Tim Giago

I know we have horrible winters, and there are times on these frozen mornings when I wonder what in the hell I am doing here. But then I think of my ancestors, living in tipis and surviving.

Emmitt Smith: Who Do You Think You Are?

Megan Smolenyak | Posted 05.25.2011 | Entertainment
Megan Smolenyak

Emmitt James Smith grew up wanting to be a Dallas Cowboy, but he far exceeded that aspiration. And now, after retiring, Emmitt has welcomed the opportunity to explore his roots.

Growing Bolder: Social Networking With Dead Relatives (VIDEO)

Marc Middleton | Posted 11.17.2011 | Healthy Living
Marc Middleton

Aided by vast digitized databases and powerful software programs, genealogy has rapidly transformed from a mind-numbing process of slow research into an exciting game of personal puzzle solving.

Custer's First Stand: Old West Point Applications Put Online

AP | CHRIS CAROLA | Posted 05.25.2011 | College

ALBANY, N.Y. — Years before leading his vastly outnumbered troops to their doom at Little Bighorn, a young George Armstrong Custer was described...

The Ghosts of America's Past Speak

Cheryl Wills | Posted 11.17.2011 | Healthy Living
Cheryl Wills

It's called the U.S. Immigration Collection. Americans who are eager to do more than just connect the dots in their family's tree can listen online to invaluable oral histories of their ancestors.