Past Articles

CNN Roots with John Berman: What’s in a name?

Posted on October 20, 2014 in Celebrity, Research

John Berman remembers walking past a wall in the Boston Public Library that listed the names of famous philosophers throughout history. His father would point to Baruch Spinoza’s name and say, “We are related to him!” It was a strong statement given “Spinoza” is the middle name they both share, after John’s grandmother Grace Spinoza.… Read more

CNN Roots with Christine Romans: Bedstemor’s Tickets

Posted on October 19, 2014 in Celebrity, Research

We all have legends among our family stories. Some are linked to historical celebrities (my 3x great-grandfather rode with Teddy Roosevelt); some to historic events (my ancestors lived through the Great Chicago Fire); and some are inspiringly personal (my 4x great grandmother raised 12 kids on her own). Many family history adventures start when someone… Read more

CNN Roots with Fareed Zakaria: From Bombay, India to Bombings in London

Posted on October 19, 2014 in Celebrity, Research

Many decisions made by our ancestors have had a direct impact on what and where we are today. Sometimes these influential ancestors are not generations away from our memory, but have lived in our recent history, still leaving us a legacy of choices made and stories to share. Fareed Zakara, host of CNN’s “Fareed Zakaria… Read more

CNN Roots with Erin Burnett: Think of Ireland, and Think of Skye

Posted on October 17, 2014 in Celebrity, Research

Why do our ancestors move around so much or why do they stay put for generations? What was happening in the world around them where they lived and what kind of toils may they have faced? Understanding the historical context of the time in which your ancestors lived can shed light on these kinds of… Read more

CNN Roots with Jake Tapper: Obituary Gold

Posted on October 16, 2014 in Celebrity, Research

For a family historian, finding a story-rich obituary can be like receiving long lost money from an unknown great-aunt!  We knew that with CNN Chief Washington Correspondent Jake Tapper’s tree, we needed to find some of that “bank roll” to fill in the blanks within his ancestors’ Colonial story. One of the first obituaries we… Read more

CNN Roots with Don Lemon: An Étouffée of Stories

Posted on October 16, 2014 in Celebrity, Research

Don’s roots are not unlike the hot plate of étouffée carefully prepared for his return by his mother, Katherine: both Cajun and Creole, a spicy, savory blend of seafood and rice that is decidedly Louisianan. The instigator of the entire Roots series, Don wanted to better understand his deep Louisiana roots and wanted his mom… Read more

CNN Roots with Chris Cuomo: Discovering a New Branch on the Old Family Tree

Posted on October 15, 2014 in Celebrity, Research

Sometimes the smallest details can add up to the greatest helping of new information in a family tree. “Connecting the dots” within multiple documents was one way we were able to add a new branch to the Cuomo family tree. CNN’s Chris Cuomo already knew a lot about his proud Italian heritage. Our challenge was… Read more

Surprising Connections Between Occupation and Home Ownership From 1900 Through 2012

Posted on October 15, 2014 in Research

Members of the armed services are among those least likely to own a home in the United States, according to a new analysis from our research team. We analyzed 112 years of U.S. Federal Census data to better understand the connection between occupation and home ownership across the nation over the last century. As of… Read more

Genealogical Research in Your Italian Ancestral Town

Posted on October 14, 2014 in Ancestry.com Site, Family History Month

The catalyst for my pursuit of genealogy as a profession was the influence of my Italian immigrant grandparents. Because they have always been so wonderful and kind to me, I wanted to learn more about them. I wanted to know why being with them made me feel so special and warm, made me feel so… Read more

CNN Roots with Anderson Cooper: Seeing Both Sides

Posted on October 13, 2014 in Celebrity, Research

At Ancestry, we truly believe that there is a story in every family tree—you just have to find it. Anderson Cooper is one of the rare individuals whose storied ancestors aren’t just known by him, they are known by everyone. As the son of Gloria Vanderbilt, her history is just a Wikipedia article away, so… Read more