Genealogy is like a jigsaw puzzle, but you don't have the box top, so you don't know what the picture is supposed to look like. As you start putting the puzzle together, you realize some pieces are missing, and eventually you figure out that some of the pieces you started with don't actually belong to this puzzle. I'll help you discover the right pieces for your puzzle and assemble them into a picture of your family.
Sunday, July 24, 2011
Tracking Family from the 1620's to the Present
Martin Van Buren
The New York Times of July 22, 2011 published an interesting article on the Van Dusen family in the United States, which began with a Dutch immigrant to Manhattan in the 1620's and now has more than 200,000 far-flung members all over the country. Variations of the name include Van Deusen, Van Deursen, and Van Duzer. Descendants include the famous (Presidents Martin Van Buren and Franklin Delano Roosevelt) and the not-so-famous, and even the president of the New England Historic Genealogical Society. There was even a town named Van Deusenville. Family artifacts mentioned include photos, family Bibles, and a hymnbook from the Civil War. For me, one of the best aspects of this story is that many of these people are in communication with each other in context of being descendants of the same person.