When I was younger, I absolutely hated history and everything related to it. To me, history was reading about dead guys and the government from a textbook that I couldn’t stand carrying with me. The only thing that I wanted was a “B” so that I could be seen as a decent student in the class, and that was enough for me.
Most of the time, I just learned the information that I needed for the test and then forgot about it the day… (okay, the moment) after I handed my test in to my teacher.
However, as I started to grow more into my 20’s, I started to wonder about who I am, and more specifically, where I came from. No, I’m not adopted and I already knew my basic ethnicity:
I knew that I am Ecuadorian, German, and Hungarian, but the British and Scandinavian was a surprise to me! I really would love to track those down if I can.
Using Ancestry, I have also connected with some third cousins, and that has been very exciting! You can go to your DNA results on your account and see who your matches are, and sometimes you can see the person’s tree. It’s really exciting to see that your trees match!
Once I managed to get in touch with a third cousin, he sent me a copy (to keep) of my family’s history book (and it’s really dang cool). Reading through it, I learned that the earliest traces (so far) show that my family stems from 1870’s “Prussia” at Vallendar near Koblenz-am-Rhein. Specifically, we came from South Rhineland.
As my family’s history book has it, my great-great grandfather’s church wanted him to become a priest.
I’m here now, so that obviously did not happen. However, he did become a cigar maker and had a shop that unfortunately became stolen. Eventually, he ended up going to medical school, and became a doctor at the age of 38.
This is just the beginning of my discoveries.
Now, I’m not saying that I am ready to go back to college and major in history, but learning more about where I came from has made me more open and interested in history. It’s becoming interesting to see the historical events that my family was a part of. If I have the means to, I would love to visit Germany and meet with a genealogist, visit the areas where my ancestors grew up, and even see their houses (if they still exist). Until that happens, I’m just going to enjoy getting messages from Ancestry that I have new family record matches and on occasion, an update of my ethnicity estimation.
[Disclaimer, this post is not sponsored by Ancestry.com. I just wanted to share my experience with it!]