Jessica Taylor

Jessica Taylor is an Editorial Researcher at Ancestry. She received a Masters in history at the University of York and has worked as an accredited genealogist for many years. She's presented at genealogy conferences and performed research for the hit TV show, “Who Do You Think You Are?” Jessica loves history and helping people discover their past.

Jean Smart: After the Witch Trials

Posted by Jessica Taylor on June 29, 2018 in Who Do You Think You Are?

What do you do when the paper trail for your ancestor ends? Jean Smart discovered the answer was to not give up. Jean went on a road of discovery and found that her 8x great-grandmother, Dorcas Galley, was accused as a witch in Salem, Massachusetts. Shortly after her trial in 1692, Dorcas appeared to vanish Read More

Molly Shannon: Secrets in Irish Marriage Records

Posted by Jessica Taylor on June 27, 2018 in Who Do You Think You Are?

Sometimes a simple piece of paper can unlock a deep and tragic story about your ancestors. That’s what happened for Molly Shannon, who went on an emotional journey to trace her 2x great-grandparents, Hugh Cattigan and Bridget Farry. Molly’s adventure led her to Ireland, where she discovered their 1851 marriage certificate. That simple piece of Read More

Hilary Duff: Tracing Rags back to Riches

Posted by Jessica Taylor on June 25, 2018 in Who Do You Think You Are?

Hilary Duff knew her father was born into money, but her mother grew up poor. She assumed that, because of the poverty, little could be learned about her mother’s side of the family. But once Hilary embarked on the quest to discover her mother’s ancestors, she soon found secret gems buried in her family history. Read More

Laverne Cox: Expressions of Freedom

Posted by Jessica Taylor on June 20, 2018 in Who Do You Think You Are?

The search for African American ancestors often reveals a tale of hardship and overcoming trials. Laverne Cox went on the hunt to learn more about the family of her 2x great-grandmother, Georgiana Banks, and discovered a trove of stories that showed the African American experience in the 19th century, as well as expressions of freedom Read More

The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising: A Fight for Survival

Posted by Jessica Taylor on April 18, 2018 in Collections

Underground markets. Escapes through sewers. Friends and neighbors defending their streets from tanks. On the 75th anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, we look back on a WWII story rarely told, but just as heroic as the Landing at Normandy or the Battle of Britain. On 19 April 1943, the Warsaw Ghetto, a starving Jewish Read More