INDEPENDENT NEWS

Genealogy Is The New National Craze

Published: Thu 4 Nov 2004 11:30 AM
Genealogy Is The New National Craze
A recent survey by Genes Reunited, the sister website of Findakiwi.co.nz, has revealed that tracing the family tree is turning into a national craze that spans generations. The site has become so popular that two million names are being added worldwide every month, with families being connected every 30 seconds.
Of more than 2000 respondents to the survey posted on the Genes Reunited site, the age of those researching their family trees was spread evenly between 26 and 65 years old. The majority began their search out of curiosity and over a quarter have traced their ancestry back more than three centuries, while 15% of respondents have gone as far back as 1600 and beyond.
Internet technology has created millions of ‘cyber detectives’ who are harnessing the web’s incredible resources and unlocking the secrets in their family tree. The recent surge in interest has seen over six million names added in the last three months alone, taking the number of listings to over 20 million.
Anthony Adolph, an expert genealogist who has studied family ancestry for over fifteen years, says: “The number of people interested in the subject is growing far faster than anyone had ever anticipated. The fact that half of those surveyed have only just begun mapping their family history is astonishing and Genes Reunited’s contribution to this phenomenon has clearly been considerable.
“I’m fascinated to see that the traditional goal of trying to find a link to royalty hardly features in the scale of people’s motivation for tracing their family trees, instead the majority are simply driven by a curiosity to know where they have come from.”
Here is an interesting discovery made by a Genes Reunited member:
• Alan Papprill, 57, Manukau City , New Zealand
With only 33 Papprill families existent in New Zealand , the UK and Australia , Alan thought tracing his ancestry would be a tough challenge. However, he soon discovered that a Silas Papprill was credited with conducting the first trial of the telephone in Christchurch in February 1878. Alan has also traced blacksmiths, engravers and tea and fur merchants in this family history dating back to 1600.

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