Together We Can Change the World: One DNA Test at a Time

Asian. Black. Caucasian. Latino. The labels that define us often divide us. But what if your DNA could change the conversation about identity and race? One professor – and her students – are proving it can. A Pioneer Eleven years ago – before DNA testing was widely available – West Chester professor Anita Foeman wondered this: Read More

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Can You Beat This 1940s Quiz?

Find out where your family lived in 1940, who they lived with, who the neighbors were, what they did for a living, and more things 1940 at Ancestry.

There Are 7 Types of English Last Names – Which One Is Yours?

Many of us have surnames passed down to us from ancestors in England. Last names weren’t widely used until after the Norman conquest in 1066, but as the country’s population grew, people found it necessary to be more specific when they were talking about somebody else. Thus arose descriptions like Thomas the Baker, Norman son Read More

Walking With My Enslaved Ancestors

Jason Atwater* was on a mission: to discover the names of his enslaved ancestors. He never dreamed his research would lead him to the Virginia plantation where his ancestor’s legacy lives on to this day. What Were Their Names? After taking an AncestryDNA test, Jason became curious about his African ancestors who had been enslaved. Read More

Baby Name Trends: What A Difference a Century Makes

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

Now and Then: Photos of New York City’s History

New York is one of the nation’s most recognizable cities. Yet despite a landscape filled with historic buildings, New York is a city that is always changing . Thanks to the New York City Municipal Archives, we can take a look back to the late 1930s and see what some of the Big Apple’s iconic Read More