Middle names. Some people have them; others don’t. The three-name structure we use today (given, middle and last name) began in the Middle Ages when Europeans wanted to give a child a saint’s name and a traditional family name, but middle name use goes back even further.
In ancient Rome, it was an honor given to important people to have multiple names. Later - in the 1700s - aristocrats began to give their children long names to indicate his or her place in society. For example, Prince George Alexander Louis of Cambridge.
Recently, many historical television series have become very popular. What is it about this genre that appeals to us? What draws us to them?
Perhaps it's about getting a glimpse of what life was like in times gone by. We feel more connected to our ancestors when we learn more about their lives and times. It's the same feeling that draws many of us to genealogy and family history research. The achievements and struggles faced by our ancestors serve as lessons for our own future. After all, history is known to repeat itself.
One such show is the British series, "Downton Abbey," which has swept a nation and also has become popular in other countries, as well. It is now into its fifth season.
"Downton Abbey" follows the Crawley family through major events in history, showing the effects on their lives. The series opened with news of the sinking of the RMS Titanic, followed by the outbreak of the WWI, the Spanish influenza pandemic, and the Marconi scandal in the second season. It dealt with the interwar period and the formation of the Irish Free State in the third season, the Teapot Dome scandal in the fourth, and the general election of 1923 in the UK in the current season.
When we speak of war heroes, we generally refer to the brave men and women who fought and died for their country. Yet, many animals were on the frontlines with the soldiers. These heroic animals transported equipment, sent secret notes and informed of enemy movements.
Not all inventions have been successful. Here are some bizarre inventions that will make you wonder what their inventors were thinking!
1. A fold-up piano, designed for bedridden patients, Britain, 1935:
Have you thought about the skills your grandparents had, but that are no longer common today? Here are the top five skills:
1. The ability to write long, handwritten letters:
Do you still write letters by hand and send them by mail? Nowadays, most of us write emails and text messages, but not long, handwritten letters.
Join My Heritage's Chief Genealogist, Daniel Horowitz, in a free online webinar, who will provide tips to discover the missing gaps in your family history.
Date: Tuesday, September 24, 2013
Time: 12-1pm EDT
Register free here: https://www4.gotomeeting.com/register/362961911
Do you have questions you’d like answered? List them in the comments below, and we’ll ask them during the webinar.
Don’t miss this opportunity to take your family history research to the next level. Learn how to find those missing pieces and discover more about your ancestors.
We look forward to see you online!
While some genealogists have been at it for only a few years, MyHeritage member Gary Fenton Kemp, 76, has been researching for decades.
Gary became interested in computers in the early 1970s. He also observed his parents, then in their 70s, trying to put together their genealogy by typing and writing everything out by hand. He knew that there had to be some way to use computers and began searching for a program that would be able to organize the data.
I found PAF and started using it. In 1987, I went to my parents’ home and spent three days entering data for 752 names.
Gary has many interests in addition to family history, such as surfing, fly fishing, geocaching, glider racing and lifting weights. He’s been an educator from kindergarten through university, and conducted teacher training programs in Fiji and elsewhere. Although now retired as a teacher, coach, high school principal and school district superintendent, he is still active, serves as a local school board member and as a Boy Scout merit badge counselor.
The San Tan Valley, Arizona resident has been married to Nancy for 54 years, has four children, 13 grandchildren, three great-grandchildren and four more on the way.
The US Census is the nation’s largest and most important set of records. They are invaluable to everyone interested in discovering their family history.
This week marks the original Census Day, which took place on the first Monday in August in 1790.
The 1790 Census was the first census conducted, numbering the then-population at 3,929,214.
What's the relationship between our history and our daily reality?
Each day we walk by our local store, our neighbor's place or the park, without realizing the stories from the past that existed in those same places many years before.
While we often think of history as antique, irrelevant and something out of the past, it can just as easily be intertwined with the present.
Imagine what it would look like if the ghosts of World War II came back to the streets today. That’s what Dutch historian Jo Hedwig Teeuwisse shows through her Ghosts of War photo series.