We love bringing member success stories to our readers. They provide encouragement, offer tips, and show what can be accomplished. We especially like the stories of our younger members, which often spotlight social media.
Joe Tarsh of Manchester (UK) is only 21 and became interested in his family when he was 13.
I came to the realization that I wanted to know where I came from and a little voice at the back of my head told me that if I don’t ask now, then all the people who can answer may not be around to answer those questions much longer.
Born in London in 1991, his family moved to Hertfordshire, where he lived until 18. He then took a gap year, returned to the UK in 2010 and is now in his third year at university, studying for a degree in youth and community work.
He joined MyHeritage in March 2010 because he liked the site’s easy accessibility, found it simple to use and it had an incredible amount of data.
Family history attracts people of all ages.
Recently, MyHeritage was happy to hear from member Jeff Zeitlin of Connecticut, who sent an email on behalf of his son Jared, 11. He explained that Jared was very interested in genealogy and asked if it was possible to get a MyHeritage souvenir.
Our marketing department wrote to Jeff and discovered that Jared had made remarkable family history discoveries.
We asked the family's permission to share their story and they were happy to do so. Of course, we sent Jared a MyHeritage fleece (see photo left).
Here’s Jared's story:
A fifth-grade student, Jared’s parents are Alyson and Jeffrey Zeitlin and he has an older sister, Mikayla. He also enjoys spending time with his grandparents in Connecticut and Florida.
Growing up in a Jewish family, Jared found great interest in religion and genealogy. These interests spurred his focus in researching his family history, which resulted in building the family tree on MyHeritage.com.
One day a few summers ago, Jared’s father’s first cousins visited them in Connecticut – the first time Jared had met them.
During the day we discussed how we were related. Cousin Arthur mentioned that another distant cousin had created a family tree on another website. That got me interested in looking at my family.
Australia’s world peace bell is housed in Cowra, an honour normally bestowed upon a nation’s capital. The town was also the location of the infamous Cowra Breakout where over 500 prisoners of war attempted to break out of the POW camp there.
Olwyn, how did you get into family history research? Why are you so involved with it now?
I have been a member of Cowra Family History Group since its inception in 1983. I was on the steering committee and was the first treasurer. I got into family history in 1981 when my maternal grandmother died and I received many personal possessions, jewellery, photos and more. Stories relayed to me by my aunts encouraged my sister - and then me - to begin researching the family.
This week we talk to Jeanette Finlayson from the Central Queensland Family History Association. Queensland is a large state in Australia’s northeast.
Tell us a bit about yourself, Jeanette. How did you get into family history research and why are you so heavily involved with it now?
I am a retired teacher. Many years ago, I was having a conversation with one of my cousins from my Mother’s side. He was saying how fortunate we were that our ancestors had the foresight to migrate to this country. Of course, I agreed with him, and then thought how little I actually knew about their story, so I decided that as soon as I retired I would find out as much as I could about my maternal German ancestors and my Irish paternal ancestors. I have now been researching for 14 years, and have been richly rewarded by what I have found, and the people I have met. The story of my ancestors was one of hardship and sacrifices, and required great courage in their fight for survival in their new country. I am greatly indebted to them for the comfortable life I have today.
Cairns is a city in the far northeast of Australia. This week we talk to Cynthia Edwards from the Cairns and District Family History Society.
Tell us a bit about yourself . How you got into family history research? Why you are so heavily involved with it now?
I started thinking about recording our family history about 11 years ago when our grandchildren started coming along. As my parents had passed away some years before I realised, it was up to me to tell their stories, as well as mine to this new generation. My mother became interested back in the seventies when she watched Janet Reakes on the Mike Walsh Show. Sadly her researach was not recorded, including photo captions.
That was about 12 years ago however, I have only been seriously researching for the past seven or so years. The information I started finding out about my grandparents and their siblings encouraged me to keep researching as these were the stories I never knew. To discover so many of the people that myself, my sister and brother thought were friends of our parents, but were actually relations has been a lovely surprise. I often sidetrack to see if I can answer questions like " How did my great-grandfather receive training when he began his teaching career in 1872?"
This is a rough translation of Entrevista a Benicio Sánchez, Genealogista y Presidente de Genealogía de México written by our Latin American country manager, Javier.
This Friday we have a treat for you -- a special interview with Benicio Sanchez, genealogist and President of Genealogy of Mexico, an organization that studies the family history of not only the Aztec country but also many other places around the world.
My name is Benicio Samuel Sanchez Garcia, genealogist and family historian and the first Molecular Genealogist of Mexico. I was born in Torreon, Mexico in 1963. I am married with two children.
I'm President of The Genealogy of Mexico, which manages two major genealogical sites in Mexico:
- www.GenealogiaMolecular.com (in development)
I have worked for most of the State Archives and have contributed to more than one hundred articles and publications, for both national and international institutions.
How did your interest in genealogy start?
You never know you are ill until the infection is already manifesting itself significantly. That's what happened in my case. I read the family bible, in which I found the first dates of my family; later my maternal grandmother, Maria Espino del Castillo Epitacia showed me her photo archive and before I knew it, I was designated to preserve and research our family's genealogy.
Now, like all genealogists: it's a way of life.
In this interview we meet with Rozalyn Kuss, from Caloundra Family History Research (CFHR).
Tell us a bit about yourself Rozalyn - how you got into family history research, why you are so heavily involved with it now etc.
My family had owned a holiday property at Caloundra since 1944 so we spent every weekend at the beach. The holiday home became the main residence for my parents from 1966. In 1977 my husband, daughter and I moved here permanently to live and work. Ken’s family came to live at Moffat Beach in early 1941, so he grew up on the Sunshine Coast, was educated here and became a member of the Metropolitan Caloundra SLSC, though he had to complete his apprenticeship and find work in Brisbane because Caloundra had a very small population in the 1950’s.
In this interview we meet with Kay Francis, Honorary Secretary of the Casion & District Family History Group (CDFHG)
Tell us a bit about yourself Kay - how you got into family history research, why you are so heavily involved with it now etc.
I started researching our family history 33 years ago, The records then were few & far between & found the only way to find information was through asking a lot of questions of close relatives, church records & historical societies.
I am still interested in finding new information a least once a week on past members of the family, it is adding character to their existence & not just a date on a piece of paper.
Anne Bradshaw is the author of the genealogy bestseller “True Miracles with Genealogy” and has written books for more than twenty years. She was born in England, is a spouse, a mother and grandmother, and has lived in the USA for many years. Besides writing books Anne has a personal blog and a website for her latest book.
MyHeritage.com talked to Anne about her interesting bestseller, her background and her kinship with the legendary singer Phil Collins.
For the people that didn't read your book could you tell us what it is about?
"True Miracles with Genealogy" contains fascinating family-history research stories. They’re the kind of stories where you know that ancestors were making things happen. Material came in from the USA and many other countries such as England, Canada, Australia, and the Netherlands. Each story is unique. It was inspiring to learn about the many different ways descendants discovered information.