Essay Family History

My Family History Essay

My Family History

Family history is very important to an individual. By knowing where you come from, you can have a better perspective of your life. Having a clear understanding of your family background allows you to better appreciate the things that you would normally take for granted. The house, the car, and the average clothing may look better when one sees the sacrifices their family has made. They will see that their family has worked very hard just so their family can experience the better things in life. A persons roots and origin is one of the most important things to explore. It alone can bring you closer to self-discovery.

     There are two sides to a person’s family and one side of my family has been traced all the way back to slavery. My father’s side of the family originally came from a Georgia plantation. Although my father is Afro-American, his great-great-grandfather was a general who owned slaves. From Georgia my father moved to New Jersey. After settling in New Jersey, my father enlisted in the military and began his life as a military man. My mother’s side of the family is all from Puerto Rico. My grandparents moved my mother and her sister to America when they were very young. They moved to Macedonia, Illinois. When my mother got older she too enlisted in the military as a nurse. My mother met my father while they were both serving in the military in Germany. After they both finished their time in the military, my mother moved to New Jersey with my father and they started their life together.

     My family has many different traditions that we hold dear to ourselves. One of these is that on Thanksgiving everybody comes together to my parents’ house in New Jersey for a huge feast. On Christmas only my mother and the children (me and my brother) travel to Illinois to spend a week with my grandparents. On New Years Eve we all get together at my parents’ house in New Jersey and toast to the New Year with champagne and apple cider. During Labor Day weekend all of my family travels to South Jersey to my grandfathers’ condo. We usually spend all of our time...

Loading: Checking Spelling


Read more

How Celtic Folkore has Influenced My Family

1587 words - 6 pages Every family has a unique background that influences the way they live and interact with other people. My parents, who emigrated from Ireland to the States with my three brothers in 1989, brought over their own Celtic folklore and traditions that have helped shaped the way our family operates and lives. One aspect of folklore that has helped shape my family dynamic is the Celtic cross—both its background and what role it has played in our lives....

My Family: Life in Rural America

2704 words - 11 pages As a child growing up in a rural county, I didn’t have soccer practice or dance recitals; no play dates or playgrounds. I had trees to climb, woods to explore, bikes to ride and adventures to be had. I had bare feet in the grass, wincing on the gravel driveway, rocks digging into my soles. I had walnuts to crush, plums to eat, flowers to pick, bugs to catch. I had my little brothers to bug me, my mom to take care of me, my dad to laugh with me...

Family Matters

1086 words - 4 pages When thinking of our family, and our background, most would argue to say that what we get from them are positive things such as a sense of comfort and pride. In countries like the United States, having a family to lean on is never a bad thing. However, what most of us do not usually see is that, sometimes the very own people who brought us up, and had the utmost influence on our lives, are the very own people who have set barriers for us. Such is...

Diseases That Haunt My Family Tree

977 words - 4 pages It is common knowledge in the medical community, that certain diseases can be labeled as family traits. I remember entering a doctor’s office and being asked to complete the medical history form. That was the first time I learned that my maternal and paternal grandparents were diagnosed with the same diseases Type 2 diabetes and colon cancer. The ADA describes Type 2 diabetes as a chronic disease that occurs when a person’s body has...

Asian Family

3434 words - 14 pages Being the biggest continent in the world, Asia contains about 60% of the world’s population and growing each year. Though China, and India are two of the most populated countries in the world, having about 30% of the world’s population, there are about two-fifths of the countries that have less than five million habitants. Though forty-two different countries make up this great continent, much of the similarities are family values. Customs and...

Family Abuse


Family Medicine

1222 words - 5 pages In 1970's Cleveland, two entities were on the rise "The Clinic" (legally distinct from the Cleveland Clinic) and La Cosa Nostra (Italian organized crime). An aspiring 29 year old surgeon named Dane Cecchi from Cuyahoga Heights saves the life of brutal crime lord John Scalish after a shoot out with a rival gang. Dane is "persuaded" via blackmail into service for the Mayfield Road Mob also known as the Lakeview Road Gang part of the Licavoli crime...

My Family

673 words - 3 pages I was born into a “happy” family that was actually a web of lies, which unfolded itself through a divorce. My parents’ marriage was based on the fact that my father needed a permanent residency card to stay in the United States. Some people may view this as a devastating event; however I have chosen to embrace being an American and a Ghanaian. Coming from two different backgrounds was a challenge, because of the different values and morals each...

Changes in Family Structure

1346 words - 5 pages The typical family consists of a breadwinner father, homemaker mother, and children, all living in one home. This was my narrow view of family and my own family follows this model very closely, so it is indeed normal to me. Early sociologists called the family a social institution, emphasizing the rules and expectations that guided family interaction. They stated that the family consisted of at least two adults of the opposite sex, united by...

The Importance of Family

3112 words - 12 pages ?gThe family is the most basic unit of government. As the first community to which a person is attached and the first authority under which a person learns to live, the family establishes society's most basic values.?h Charles Caleb Colton What does the existence of ?efamily?f mean to you? To me, family is the group of people who will be by my side through out my entire life. They are the people who cherish myself and turn to me when...

Planning Family Ministry

3384 words - 14 pages The book, Planning Family Ministry, a guide for a teaching church was written by Joe H. Leonard Jr. in 1982 and pressed in the Judson Press. It includes 63 pages. This book is divided into six chapters;The Tasks of Family MinistryThe Content and Skill Areas of Family MinistryThe Biblical Foundation of Family MinistryChanging Families and Family MinistrySteps to Planning...

Was one of your New Year’s resolutions to buckle down and start working on your family history? Or is family history something you’ve always wanted to do, but you’re just not sure how? Many people have the desire to expand their family tree but find the thought of starting to be overwhelming. If you’re one of them, here’s a secret for success: start at the beginning—with yourself.

This advice applies whether you know next to nothing about your family, you inherited stacks of family papers, or even if you stumbled across an online tree stretching back to the 1500s. While it might feel more exciting to jump in to learning about your Mayflower ancestor or your Hungarian immigrant ancestor, resist the urge— at least for now. Instead, turn your attention a little closer. Here’s why:

  • That Mayflower ancestor might not be related after all. As incredible as this may sound, not every family story is true, and not every family tree is accurate. It’s up to you to start from the beginning and work backwards, making sure the connections are right.
  • It’s much easier to write down what you know than it is to uncover new information so do the easiest tasks first. Also, by preserving information about yourself and your family, you ensure others won’t have to dig for it later.
  • You are the expert on yourself. Nobody knows more about your life and your family than you do, and chances are nobody has better access to the correct information and records than you. Make sure this part of your tree is done correctly by doing it yourself. Besides, if you don’t collect and preserve this information, who will?

Now that you’re convinced starting with yourself is the way to go, you just need a game plan. Don’t worry—we’ve already developed one and we’re happy to share it with you:

1) Record What You Know

If you’re starting with yourself, you should start by recording your own information. The basics in family history are dates and places for births, marriages, and deaths. (Of course, you won’t be recording death information on yourself.) Next, move to your immediate family. Record this same information for your spouse, children, siblings, parents and parents’ siblings. Avoid guessing about dates and places. Instead, take time to verify things you are unsure about. If that’s a breeze, push back another generation to your grandparents.

Just gathering information isn’t enough of course. You also need to find a way to organize and preserve it so that it doesn’t just drift back into the forgotten abyss. One simple way is with the FamilySearch Family Tree. Create a free account on, and start adding your own information. With each new person you enter, Family Tree prompts you to search the existing database to see if this person might link with other trees. Keep in mind that living people’s information is always private, so you cannot connect to another tree until you get back far enough to find deceased family members. Family Tree also allows you to attach scanned documents, photos, videos, and sound clips to individual ancestors.

Besides using an online program that connects to others, you can also save your information in a program on your own computer. Many of these connect and share information with Family Tree. Three great options are Ancestral Quest, Legacy Family Tree, and RootsMagic. The basic version of each are free; the snazzier versions must be purchased. If downloading software sounds overwhelming, just stick to the online Family Tree for now.

After you get the basics about your own family recorded, reach beyond the dry facts to record family memories and stories. If you haven’t written a life history, now is the perfect time to do it. No need to feel pressure to make this the next Pulitzer Prize winning memoir; you can start with a few pages about your own life, and continue adding to it in the future. Consider doing the same thing for your parents if they haven’t written anything themselves, and then attach these histories and memories to your Family Tree.

2) Gather Documentation You Already Have

An important part of family history is documenting your information. This makes sure all information is accurate and prevents false information from creeping in. Documentation is important even at the beginning of your Family Tree, so start gathering your papers. The most obvious documentation is birth, marriage, and death certificates. However, think broadly about other types of papers that might help tell your family’s story such as letters, relevant newspaper articles, or important government, employment, school, or medical records.

Some people will quickly find themselves facing large amounts of information. Digital cameras allow us to take hundreds of photos for almost no cost, and email makes sending family updates free. Concentrate on the most meaningful papers and photos, and then make sure these important pieces of your family story are preserved by printing or saving emails and digital photos—and labeling those photos!

3) Ask Your Family for Help

Once you’ve compiled what you know and what you have in your possession, it’s time to reach out to your relatives. Ask them specific questions about information you’re missing, and let them know you’re interested in any family documents or photos they might have.

Again, it’s important to think beyond dates and documents. Ask your family members to share stories and memories with you. You can create an audio recording of their memories, or you can write them down. Be sure to contact the oldest living generation in your family to capture their priceless information and stories before they are lost. If you need help thinking of questions, check out this FamilySearch blog, and use these to prompt your relatives to share.

Ready to get started? As you begin your family history, there’s no telling where you might end up!


You may also like:

Simple Start to Family History

Beginning Genealogy: How to Get Started the Right Way

Family History Apps for Beginners


0 Replies to “Essay Family History”

Lascia un Commento

L'indirizzo email non verrà pubblicato. I campi obbligatori sono contrassegnati *