Past Articles

5 Famous People You Didn’t Know Were Kicked Out of College

Posted on March 2, 2015 in Celebrity

Even successful people hit bumps along the way. It’s reassuring to see that these famous people went on to do very well, even though they were expelled from college, whether for academic reasons or…other circumstances. Check out some of these fantastic—and entertaining—finds from the School Lists & Yearbooks collections on Ancestry. Edgar Allan Poe The author had… Read more

Summer Scorchers: America’s 9 Worst Heat Waves Ever Recorded

Posted on February 26, 2015 in Family History

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has a record of heat waves starting in 1895. Since that time there have been nine major heat waves to hit the U.S., and each has left damage and destruction in its wake. 1. Heat Wave of 1896 New York City experienced tragedy during the summer of 1896.… Read more

5 Amazing Facts You Never Knew About the American Cowboy

Posted on February 20, 2015 in Family History

Though there were cowboys both before and after, the golden age of the American cowboy, really started in 1866. The Civil War had just ended, the Union Army had exhausted the supply of beef in the North, and a steer that was worth $4 a head in Texas—where millions ran wild—could bring $40 in the… Read more

​7 Famous Sons of the American Revolution

Posted on February 17, 2015 in Family History

A person’s heritage can influence so much in their life, from the kinds of foods they prepare to the groups they associate with. The Sons of the American Revolution (SAR) is a lineage society made up of men who can prove their descent from a Patriot ancestor. The organization’s earliest iteration started in 1876 as… Read more

7 Facts You Didn’t Know about the D-Day Invasion at Normandy

Posted on February 7, 2015 in Military Records

D-Day, or June 6, 1944 —the day the Allied troops invaded the beaches at Normandy, France— was the largest seaborne invasion in history and the first time since 1688 that an invading army successfully crossed the English Channel. The D-Day landings led to the liberation of France from Nazi control and have been called the… Read more

7 Perks From the Golden Age of Aviation We Wish We Still Had Today

Posted on February 5, 2015 in Family History

When commercial aviation got off the ground in the 1940s, air travel epitomized glamor. Passengers dressed to the nines, stretched out their legs, and waited for the well-stocked bar cart to make another round. As airfares have become cheaper, perks have steadily been reduced. (Peanuts and soda, anyone?) In that spirit, here are seven reasons we… Read more

Baby Name Trends: What A Difference a Century Makes

Posted on February 5, 2015 in Uncategorized

Elizabeth and William — two strong, Anglo-Saxon names. A current queen and a future king. They’re also the only two baby names to appear in the top 10 for both 1914 and 2013, a span of 100 years. For today’s American babies, traditional names like Charlotte and Benjamin are nearly as popular as more trendy… Read more

Rosie Did More Than Rivets: How World War II Changed Cheerleading’s Gender Balance

Posted on February 1, 2015 in Family History

Often the word “cheerleading” evokes images of girls in short skirts, screaming and performing spine-bending gymnastics across a football field sideline or gym floor. However, the sport we see today didn’t start out as a female-dominated activity. In fact, organized cheerleading began with all-male squads. The first documented cheerleader (formally two words: cheer leader) was… Read more

First Foodie: What Presidents Ate in the White House

Posted on January 28, 2015 in Celebrity

From a love of French cuisine to down-home barbecue, each president brings his own tastes to the White House. While not all our commanders-in-chief were epicures, they inevitably influenced our ancestors’ eating habits. Here’s a look at some presidential palates. Thomas Jefferson As minister to France, Jefferson couldn’t get enough of the cuisine in Paris.… Read more

Beyond Corleone: Italian Place Names as Surnames

Posted on January 27, 2015 in Surnames

It’s a famous scene in cinema: In “The GodfatherPart II,” 9-year-old Vito Andolini arrives at Ellis Island and, being unable to tell the clerk his name, becomes Vito Corleone, the town of origin listed on his paperwork. While the scenario of an Ellis Island clerk changing immigrant’s names on a whim isn’t historically accurate, it’s… Read more