Myths and secrets — some benign in the "fruit seller" vein, some far more explosive — can burrow themselves into family narratives with surprising ferocity. But genealogists come along and unpack them. And it's receipts that are sorely missing from the current debate over immigration policy.
I was curious how long it would take me to hit an immigrant if I dug into the tree of Tomi Lahren, the platinum blonde, snowflake-hating ultra-conservative firebrand recently hired by Fox News. The answer was “not long,” but I never expected to hit pay dirt quite like I did.
To say that the availability of online records has revolutionized genealogy would be an understatement. For new genealogists, going online for the first time can be like visiting a sumptuous buffet table, brimming with tantalizing delicacies. The good news is that there’s so. much. good. stuff. The bad news is that it’s easy to overfill your plate and end up feeling sick.
There’s been nothing short of an explosion in consumer DNA testing of late. How do you decide which test to take and with which company? Before you start, it’s important to clarify why you’re taking a DNA test. If it’s just because you’re curious about your ethnicity, you might want to test at whichever company is having the best sale.
Jennifer Mendelsohn is a seasoned journalist and ghostwriter. A former People magazine special correspondent and Slate columnist, her work has appeared in numerous local and national publications including The New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Today, Politico, Washingtonian, Tablet, Medium, McSweeney’s, and Jezebel.
A passionate genealogist, she is a member of the board of the Jewish Genealogy Society of Maryland.