Friday, September 22, 2006

Who's Yo Great-Grand-Daddy?

Once upon a time, I learned that ancestors of mine came to America as early as 1635. Men from that line also include veterans of the American Revolution and the Civil War. Interesting stuff. Made me want to learn more about my ancestors.

Genealogy frustrates me, however, because preserving and communicating this information isn't easy. I tried a couple times to create a database for my family tree, but problems surfaced: (1) My own system is incompatible with GEDCOM (the genealogy standard). (2) It's ill-positioned to receive any contributions from other internet users. (3) It relies upon my own efforts to maintain. (4) It's difficult to share the family tree with those (few) people in my family that show interest. And (5), I have no idea how to preserve it for future generations of children, nieces and nephews.

But after the Web 2.0 paradigm shift occurred, I searched online again, and this time I found an excellent solution. Check out It's very similar Wikipedia, but is specially configured for genealogical information. Check it out. Upload your own family tree. Maybe we're related!

For example, two of my ancestors are:
Elder John Strong, immigrant from England
Capt. John Strong, veteran of the American Revolution

Warning: For the sake of privacy, do not upload any information directly connected to a living person to Criminals can use that data (primarily, the mother's maiden name) to commit identity theft.