An End to Years of Tedious Research?
Over the course of my 35+ often tedious years of researching and documenting family histories, obviously I have discovered many ancestors and even living relatives who I wasn’t aware were connected to our family. Nevertheless, during their lives for whatever reason(s), they left indelible marks on our world’s history and in some instances our “pop” culture.
If we look back at my blog over the past 5+ years, we can see that many of my 325+ posts have focused on the more famous characters–those who made an impact on me or society because they attained great knowledge or fame through their leadership, their bravery, their innovation and perseverance through difficult times, their specific skills and contributions to a particular field or study, or their God-given callings and talents that helped make them extraordinary persons in the eyes of their peers.
We’re Related App
To both my joy and sorrow, Ancestry recently released a new FREE mobile app, “We’re Related.” The ease of this app quickly puts new and interesting relationship details in your hands that once took decades to uncover. It finds discoveries that you never would have expected; i.e., you are related to famous people, or you’re related to friends within your social media circles.
I allowed the app to access to my already public ancestry tree that goes back generations. Almost instantly it started notifying me of new finds about possible relatives through shared common ancestors. While I haven’t yet shared any new relationship discoveries on Facebook, Snapchat or other social media, the capabilities and options to do so are there.
The app’s look and feel and overall navigation options are outstanding – easy, simple, intuitive, with options for feedback. It is loads of fun and may be “for entertainment only,” but for a serious genealogist it can be a tool for research, too.
This is a screenshot of one of my suggested relatives, former Sex Symbol of the 1950s and 1960s: “Marilyn Monroe.” While not shown here, there are icons below the narrative, to allow you to check the branching of relatives from you back to a relative in common with the notable person; a button that links me back into my tree for further exploration; a share button to allow you to share via the usual social media sources, an emoji heart-shape to recommend the app to others; and, opportunities to select and/or invite friends to join in on the fun or to see if you are related to the friend. There’s also a statistical chart that breaks down all suggested relatives by their occupations; e.g., I have 14 identified relatives. The breakdown is as follows:
- All – gives you the total count of relatives suggested, in my example – 14
- Favorites – indicates those that you marked as “favorite” upon reviewing them
- Facebook – tells you how many of your relatives are from Facebook – 1
- Nearby – How many relatives live nearby- 0
- Actors & Actresses – In my example, I have 5
- Authors & Writers – In my example, 2
- Business Magnates – 1
- Musicians and Composers – 2
- Politicians – 3
- US Presidents & First Ladies – 1
- Arts and Architects – 0
- Crime Fighters and Lawyers – 0
- Criminals, Eccentrics, and Oddities – 0
- Educators – 0
- Entertainers and Magicians – 0
- Historical Figures – (this should be 2, but it says 0) what would you call Ben Franklin and Winston Churchill?
- Journalists – 0 (Ben Franklin was also a journalist)
- Medal of Honor Recipients -0
- Military Figures – 0
- Philanthropists – 0 (this should say 1) Bill Gates
- Religious Figures – 0
- Royalty – 0
- Scientists and Inventors – 0 (again, Ben Franklin)
- Social Reformers – 0
- Sports Figures – 0
- U.S. Supreme Court Justices – 0
- Victim – 0
The following link takes you to the list I created by extracting an individual relative’s information from the app. I hope you enjoy and will send me your thoughts and feedback.