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Old 02-24-2013, 09:15 PM
 
Location: Grand Rapids, Michigan
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I was looking a our family tree and at the beginning it was dated 1750. Back then was it certian well to do people that would make a point to chart their family lineage or was it something that the common person would do?
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Old 02-25-2013, 02:36 AM
 
Location: Colorado (PA at heart)
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Well, it's not certain every upper class family charted their tree. It was very common in the south, probably not unheard of in the north. But that doesn't mean every family did it.

It's important to note that there were more than two social classes in colonial days - society was broken down into four classes:

Upper class, who were mostly politicians and plantation owners.
Middle class, consisting of skilled workers such as tradesmen, craftsmen, and farm owners (not to be confused with large plantation owners).
"Laboring poor" or lower class, who did mostly unskilled work (often on farms) such as digging ditches, rolling wheelbarrows, carrying timber, pitching manure and hay, etc but it also included sailors and fishermen.
"Miserable poor" or the unemployed, were often criminals and prostitutes.

Most likely, the two lower classes would not have had the time or means - some families in the middle class may have.

Colonial families of both the upper and middle classes are often well documented after their arrival in the colonies, which is why there are a lot of lineage books and local history books published in the 19th and early 20th centuries.
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Old 02-25-2013, 05:41 AM
 
Location: Everywhere and Nowhere
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PA2UK View Post
Colonial families of both the upper and middle classes are often well documented after their arrival in the colonies, which is why there are a lot of lineage books and local history books published in the 19th and early 20th centuries.
We have a whole separate section of one of the city libraries here in Alexandria, VA for those. They used to take up several rooms in an old house across the street (The Lloyd House) before they moved them over to the new facility. Local families around these parts donated them over the years. It's interesting reading the notes people had scribbled into the margins. They're a tremendous resource. I used to spend hours in there.
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Old 02-25-2013, 06:43 AM
 
Location: Colorado (PA at heart)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CAVA1990 View Post
We have a whole separate section of one of the city libraries here in Alexandria, VA for those. They used to take up several rooms in an old house across the street (The Lloyd House) before they moved them over to the new facility. Local families around these parts donated them over the years. It's interesting reading the notes people had scribbled into the margins. They're a tremendous resource. I used to spend hours in there.
Yeah, just keep in mind then can contain inaccuracies.
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Old 02-25-2013, 07:38 AM
 
Location: Grand Rapids, Michigan
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I forgot to mention this was 1750 in Europe, and my mom said that on her trip to the Netherlands found a family crest
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Old 02-25-2013, 10:22 AM
 
Location: Little Rock AR USA
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Originally Posted by topher5150 View Post
I forgot to mention this was 1750 in Europe, and my mom said that on her trip to the Netherlands found a family crest
Family crest too often is a scam, so be careful. My family has at least three published and copies advertised for sale, BUT, when researching, trying to decide which one was authentic, I found that our family never had one. In fact, I found out later that one of them was constructed by a family high school student when studying genealogy in school. She just used her imagination and known family history to do it. It later was picked up by someone and published as an"official" crest.
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Old 02-25-2013, 11:11 AM
 
Location: Grand Rapids, Michigan
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Originally Posted by ArkansasSlim View Post
Family crest too often is a scam, so be careful. My family has at least three published and copies advertised for sale, BUT, when researching, trying to decide which one was authentic, I found that our family never had one. In fact, I found out later that one of them was constructed by a family high school student when studying genealogy in school. She just used her imagination and known family history to do it. It later was picked up by someone and published as an"official" crest.
My mom found this in some kind of great hall in the city hanging on the wall with other names and family crests or coat of arms
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Old 02-25-2013, 04:54 PM
 
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Depends on what you consider family tree. Many families no matter what their social or economic status kept records in family bibles or religious books. They have pointed me in the right direction plenty of times! The Victorian era seemed to encourage lots of trees to sprout, some good, some quite questionable. Aside from affection for your ancestors, 'trees' per se were more often used to prove lineage and thus some claim to property and the formalized ones were more likely produced for families of some substance.
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Old 02-25-2013, 06:55 PM
 
Location: Georgia, USA
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A few months ago I was visiting my MIL and went through some family photos she had. She also has a Bible and someone had inserted a typed copy of some names with births and deaths. I thought I had hit the jackpot! Then I started surfing for more info and discovered there was no way some of the implied relationships were correct. The list was created in the 1920s, I think.

Verify! Always verify!
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Old 08-23-2013, 07:14 PM
 
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i had mom family tree back to 1420, when she pass, my brother threw it away, now i have no idea
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