Advanced search

Are you interested in your family history?

(23 Posts)
FearlessSwiftie Fri 10-Jul-20 05:41:39

Do you have a family tree? Have you tried tracking your second name down the history lane? Or is it just a full waste of time, as my boyfriend believes? sad

OP’s posts: |
StrictlyAFemaleFemale Fri 10-Jul-20 06:05:03

I enjoyed it. Didnt find any skeletons in any closets. Found it quite interesting though.

StrictlyAFemaleFemale Fri 10-Jul-20 06:22:42

But why does bf decide what is worthy of your time? If it interests you then do it. You can get a free trial with ancestry. Might be better to wait until next year when the 1921 census becomes available.

squeekums Fri 10-Jul-20 06:35:33

I have no interest in doing it. Dp is the one who does as I'm estranged from my family.
But as I don't want to, we haven't as its my family history and my choice

You should if you want to, it's your family history. Its not your boyfriends choice

QueenOfThorns Fri 10-Jul-20 06:38:36

It’s like many things in life - some people are interested and some aren’t. Personally, I am fascinated with finding out about my ancestors, while DH doesn’t want to know about his. He would never tell me that it’s a waste of time or try to stop me from doing it, though.

crosser62 Fri 10-Jul-20 06:40:49

Yes I’ve traced my husbands because there was so much mystery and so many unknown, in answered questions.
It was fascinating and I uncovered some very interesting things.

For me, the mystery was unnecessary and unacceptable if I were to have any children. I needed to know of any possible diseases that could be passed down.
So not at all a waste of my time.

1300cakes Fri 10-Jul-20 06:43:54

Personally it's not my thing, but doesn't mean you can't enjoy it. Does your bf have to sign off on every activity you do through put the day?

My DP enjoys looking at pictures of planes from ww2, I'd rather stick pins in my eyes. But that's fine, we all like different things.

whiteroseredrose Fri 10-Jul-20 06:45:23

Yes. I've loved the journey of finding potential ancestors and then cross referencing to confirm it. It's like doing a big puzzle.

bluecherries2020 Fri 10-Jul-20 06:47:14

I've followed my family tree on both parents side.

I found one ancestor that emigrated from the UK to the US and his daughter's husband was involved in the Salem Witch trials. A distant cousin was in and out fo the London workhouses during the time of Jack the Ripper. She was a maid who got pregnant from her employer and then lost her job. She got involved with a Bill Skyes type character who was tried at the Old Bailey for mugging someone and other crimes. My Great Great Grandmothers brothers were millionaires from developing a famous hop in Kent. My Great Great Grandfather was a Butler who spoke multiple languages, there is rumours that he worked at Highclere Castle (Downton Abbey). I came across a Great Aunt born in the late 1800s who was rumoured to be a Lesbian. When I looked at the Census records she lived with a female who I believe was a life partner, all her life. She never 'came out' as a Lesbian due to the time she lived, sad how people had to hide their true selves.

There were plenty of people, leading normal lives but these were the most significant. I was really into it for a while and got a lot of enjoyment from it

Welshmamma Fri 10-Jul-20 06:48:07

I've been working on mine for two years, I love it and really relate to lots of the people I research. I've found out so much I didn't know and my family are all enjoying the finds too! I use Ancestry and our local records offices x it's not really my hubby's thing but he was lied grave yards and listened to my stories ..... like I listen to him talk about his interests. Xx

Welshmamma Fri 10-Jul-20 06:49:38

That should say he has walked grave yards 🙄 I wish there was an edit function lol

catfeets Fri 10-Jul-20 06:59:26

I started mine several years ago but haven't had the time to keep going. I love doing it and it isn't at all a waste of time.
I guess if you don't like history then you might find it a waste of time (a couple of my ex BF's thought it was pointless).

My DP was vaguely interested and I kept pestering him about starting his own and he kept saying no. When I pressed him on it he revealed that he knows NOTHING about his family - including not being sure of his own mum's real surname! He said I would get nowhere tracing his family so I had a go. Within an hour I had him back 3 generations and it sparked buried memories of his grandparents. It did make him consider trying to contact his deadbeat dad though which I don't think is a good idea.

I love the weird and wonderful details I find out. It's a shame my family were mainly all hardworking, boring people as there's very little to be traced from newspapers etc.

squeekums Fri 10-Jul-20 07:10:46

*I guess if you don't like history then you might find it a waste of time*

For me it's not that, I actually love a good history doco
When it comes to my family, before I was estranged, it was already pretty fractured and weird and that's of the very little I do know, I just have no desire to find out how screwed up a line I really come from. Why torment myself lol

thisstooshallpass Fri 10-Jul-20 07:26:40

No interest.

My second cousin is OBSESSED with it. She lives in America and has done for a very long time. I think it stems from many Americans being extraordinarily interested in their heritage.

We are related to royalty apparently?! She has set up a Facebook group and is also fixated on relatives from 200 years ago having a 'look' of the latest family baby.

chaoticisatroll55 Fri 10-Jul-20 07:33:55

Yes I find it really interesting. I found out one family line originated from the Border Reivers. Found a whole load of distant cousins in Cornwall and found out who my grandmas family was. The fact that she started life in a workhouse made me understand a little more about her.

Standrewsschool Fri 10-Jul-20 07:39:14

Not really. My dm is fascinated by it, and travelled all over England to see where Great Uncle Bob lived etc. I used to find it fascinating talking to my Gran and get stories of older relatives, but that’s as far as it goes.

Sweetener12 Fri 10-Jul-20 08:16:30

Your bf's comment was really rude hmm, why would he comment on something he doesn't necessarily like but you enjoy doing, in the first place? To me it is not really exciting, but my mom loves all these things and usually sends me some Family tree articles in order to get me excited as well grin. You may look through them, too, actually, they post about family trees and programs to restore old photos, etc. May be useful for you. But if your bf doesn't enjoy it, then just ask him to stop making rude comments about that. Don't do his family tree either, he doesn't deserve it! grin

Normalmumandwife Fri 10-Jul-20 08:21:31

I've done and really easy with Ancestry as it searches for you as you build the tree. Found out some skeletons and was amazed how people covered things up with a "story" as recently as the 1950s so my grandparents were involved which shocked me. I suppose,the result of the time and living in a close knit village where things couldn't be discussed.

Also sad stuff about my great grandfathers sister losing all her sons in WW1. The graves have been photographed and are on Ancestry.

Be prepared that other distant family members you don't know have researched the same family members. You can see the tree they have built and contact them

FearlessSwiftie Fri 10-Jul-20 09:09:07

StrictlyAFemaleFemale and Sweetener12, THANK YOU! useful info!

OP’s posts: |
Parky04 Fri 10-Jul-20 09:13:31

Couldn't care less but each to their own.

Pelleas Fri 10-Jul-20 09:20:07

I did a free trial on one of those Ancestry websites and managed to trace one line back to a marriage at the turn of the 18th/19th centuries which was quite interesting. One of the surnames was quite unusual and now if I ever come across it, I wonder if I am distantly related to the person. It was also fun to see a census form completed by my great-grandfather in 1911, even though I knew the information on it.

merryhouse Fri 10-Jul-20 09:45:42

@thisstooshallpass all the americans are related to royalty grin

(To be fair, a lot of the emigration will have been people who had a bit of money, so more likely to be minor scions of gentry and therefore possibly descended from a royal bastard or two.)

When you look closely at their working you discover an awful lot of tenuous links and downright impossibilities (I've seen one tree which had someone giving birth before she was born), and they don't appear to grasp that a distance of thirty miles means it's considerably less likely to be the same parents...

OP, it's an intellectual pastime with the occasional emotive link. It's not your boyfriend's idea of a good time, but that's ok. It's not going to change your life or reconnect you with long-lost relatives or get you any money; but it's fun. I have a great-great aunt who married JM Barrie's nephew, but I was far more excited to discover a cousin six times removed who married the great-great-great-uncle of the person who wrote little books about my birthplace's history; and I got really emotional about the hideous early life (and peaceful later one) of a fourth cousin three times removed.

ChristmasFluff Fri 10-Jul-20 20:15:03

I love tracing my family tree - my mother has a very unusual name, but her lineage is much harder to track than my Dads very common name. Mum's ancestors liked to randomly massively change the spelling all the time, it's so frustrating!

What your boyfriend thinks really shouldn't matter. How often do we hear of men who spend all their time on hobbies-that-must-not-be-named (golf and cycling) or gaming, yet women are supposed to put up with it? I bet you aren't an absent partner.

I hope that this isn't one of those posts where it this is the tip of a controlling iceberg? Enjoy your hobby, OP

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in