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View Full Version : How many generations are documented in your family? (Genealogy)



poi
06-25-2018, 07:04 PM
How many generations are documented in your family(paternal and maternal)?

Things to consider as this gets staggering:
1. a) Parents and b) siblings
2. a) upto 4 Grand-parents and b) all their grand-children.
3. a) upto 8 Great-Grand-parents and b) all their great-grand-children.
4. a) upto 16 Great-Great-Grand-Parents and b) all their great-great-grand-children.
5. a) upto 32 Great-great-great-grand-parents and b) all their great-great-great-grand-children.
6. and so on...

In my case, both my paternal and maternal sides commissioned their genealogy/tree, but the trees do not have all the branches. In fact, even we do not have the entire set of #3, especially all the great-grand-children of all of our great-grand-parents. Unilineal lines do go pretty high up (unipatrilineal lines from my paternal and maternal lines go up to 7 and 8 respectively). But all most of their descendants are not documented. Technically, I likely have dozens, if not hundreds, of generational cousins that I have no idea about. Looking at 23andme, there are dozens of 3 to 4 generational cousins with good segment matches. Their surnames are all over the place as well, but all within the Khas bahun ethnic group. The "west" vs "east" split is not evident at all, so there must not have been much effect just a few generations ago.

anthroin
06-26-2018, 04:12 PM
I counted now and found out that I have knowledge of some 23 cousins- these all come from direct relatives from the 8 great-grandparent stage. But this is not complete. Maybe some 10 more cousins could be there from relatives from the same level of which I'm not much aware. And regarding the great grandparents themselves, I know the names of six except those of the parents of my maternal grandfather (I guess my maternal grandmother knows but maybe the topic just did not come up in our conversation anytime- my maternal grandfather himself died quite young, just an year or so after my mother was born and my mother never saw him; and my grandmother did not maintain so much of a link with his family later on as they did not bother much about their son- my maternal grandfather- when he was alive too). I personally knew 1 great grandparent- my maternal grandmother's mother- when I was young.

It is best to say that I probably have no much knowledge about cousins from relatives from the 16 ancestor level- but I tend to know some aunts, uncles and granduncles and grandaunts resulting from that level. If you remember, I actually don't have 16 ancestors at that level but at most 14 (my paternal grandfather's maternal grandparents and my maternal grandmother's maternal grandparents are the same 2 people). I know the names of those 2 people. My paternal grandfather's paternal grandparents (2) I don't know much about- simply because I never asked my paternal grandfather about it. I'm sure he knows that generation and one or two up above, there. About my paternal grandmother's maternal and paternal grandparents (4) also I don't know- again I'm sure she herself knows and probably two more generations there. About my maternal grandfather's maternal and paternal grandparents (4)- no idea. My maternal grandmother may have a perhaps very vague idea. I have some idea about my maternal grandmother's paternal grandparents' (4) family; don't know or don't recollect the names of her paternal grandparents as such but know some details and some very intricate life stories (narrated to me by my maternal grandmother who has an excellent memory) about their progeny- i.e. my maternal grandmother's paternal uncles and cousins. I also know a little bit about my paternal grandfather's paternal grandparents' families. One particular uncle related from that side to me has always been a close friend of my father since childhood. He is the son of my paternal grandfather's paternal uncle's daughter. I thus know his children who are my cousins also.

Going one level up to the 32 (the actual number is likely quite a bit lower lol) ancestors, I somewhat vaguely know some events in the early life of my maternal grandmother's maternal grandmother and some idea of relatives from the level of this latter person's parents. They established due to some legendary incidents and have been running since then, a Hindu temple dedicated to Subrahmanya or Naga in a small village in the Krishna district. But again, as I said, my actual paternal grandparents likely definitely know more about their ancestors at least upto their grandparent or great grandparent level. So overall, I guess the "documentation", which in our case is probably just hard memory, goes back to the level of the 16 in a somewhat solid way and vaguely to the 32 stage. Knowledge about progeny probably follows in most cases and is perhaps present with my paternal grandparents and also to an extent not yet told to me with my maternal grandmother, but I'm personally not aware of most relatives in my generation resulting out of marriages from these older levels.

nuplix
06-26-2018, 04:42 PM
Found my family tree going back to some 1000 years. Did DNA testing and figured out that it was bogus. Now, I am constantly searching for the legit one.

midichlorian
06-26-2018, 06:50 PM
Most Gujaratis don't know past like 5 generations max LOL

RougeS
06-26-2018, 07:55 PM
I just know names of two of my paternal great-great grandparents,Names of 6/8 & Surnames of 5/8 great-grandparents and that’s it.I could know surname of another great grandmother if I’ll ask my mum but as for 2 others left I would never know. There aren’t many relatives on my paternal side as my father has a single sister and his father too had a lone sister(who had a son but dunno anything about him for 5 decades).And all the siblings of my paternal grandmother died childless.On mothers side there are like 20 second cousins or maybe more but I could count just 17(even here I just added 2 people assuming few had babies & based on names I’ve heard),I know just 7 of my possibly numerous 3rd cousins,a 2nd cousin once removed & there are few of these once or twice removed cousins from different families (Relation gets weird on some of these once or twice removed cousin when they’re mothers or grandmother’s cousin yet younger than your own siblings lol)and have seen other cousins who are supposedly “dajuvai” of mamaghar but don’t know the relation.

Wish there was tradition of keeping records like in medieval Europe but alas there weren’t any & still no one is intrested in making one.

RobertCasey
06-26-2018, 10:11 PM
My parents and I researched our family history publishing nine 600 page books including the following numbers of descendants (and spouses):

John Bryan, b. 1730s, NC - 7,500
Robert Brooks, b. 1730s, VA - 7,500
David Wininger, b. 1770s, VA - 7,000
John Shelton, b. 1780s, VA - 6,500
John Pace, b. 1672, VA - 6,500
John Olliff, b. 1750s, NC - 6,500
James Stevenson, b. 1720s, NC - 4,000
Ambler Casey, b. 1790, SC - 4,000
John Arrington, b. 1760s, NC - 2,000
John Tucker, b. 1809, AR - 800
John Hill, b. 1800, AR - 700
James Revier, b. 1770s, VA - 500
Elisha Woodward, b. 1809, MO - 200
Christian Messer, b. 1780s, TN - 200
Jacob Harper, b. 1818, AL - 200

These numbers do not include intermarriages that are around 20,000 as several these lines intermarried in the 1700s. My "Olliff Family History" is a unique surname in the deep south and is fairly complete for the first four or five generations starting in the 1750s. John Olliff is estimated to have around 30,000 direct descendants with just one couple born in the 1750s with around an additional 1,500 new descendants being added every year today. Assuming 2.2 children per family, another 60,000 descendants will be born over the next generation. Another mind boggling fact - 90 % of the descendants of this 1750s couple are still alive today.

poi
06-26-2018, 10:34 PM
My parents and I researched our family history publishing nine 600 page books including the following numbers of descendants (and spouses):

John Bryan, b. 1730s, NC - 7,500
Robert Brooks, b. 1730s, VA - 7,500
David Wininger, b. 1770s, VA - 7,000
John Shelton, b. 1780s, VA - 6,500
John Pace, b. 1672, VA - 6,500
John Olliff, b. 1750s, NC - 6,500
James Stevenson, b. 1720s, NC - 4,000
Ambler Casey, b. 1790, SC - 4,000
John Arrington, b. 1760s, NC - 2,000
John Tucker, b. 1809, AR - 800
John Hill, b. 1800, AR - 700
James Revier, b. 1770s, VA - 500
Elisha Woodward, b. 1809, MO - 200
Christian Messer, b. 1780s, TN - 200
Jacob Harper, b. 1818, AL - 200

These numbers do not include intermarriages that are around 20,000 as several these lines intermarried in the 1700s. My "Olliff Family History" is a unique surname in the deep south and is fairly complete for the first four or five generations starting in the 1750s. John Olliff is estimated to have around 30,000 direct descendants with just one couple born in the 1750s with around an additional 1,500 new descendants being added every year today. Assuming 2.2 children per family, another 60,000 descendants will be born over the next generation. Another mind boggling fact - 90 % of the descendants of this 1750s couple are still alive today.

Americans, at least Europeans, have pretty good documentation due to your family immigration being documented by the government. In my case, even my great-grandparents did not have government or official IDs. We do not even know what year who was born lol. It sucks.

misanthropy
06-26-2018, 11:22 PM
I'm #34 on one side of my maternal family tree which starts in the 12th century in Baghdad which was apparently well preserved overseas and translated from Persian(?) (which was the official language in South Asia for a while anyway) I believe. Edit: I was given the order of names in my line of descent for it too.

RobertCasey
06-27-2018, 03:49 PM
Americans, at least Europeans, have pretty good documentation due to your family immigration being documented by the government. In my case, even my great-grandparents did not have government or official IDs. We do not even know what year who was born lol. It sucks.
In the US, we did not get national IDs until the 1930s when Social Security was first introduced as an option. But we did have census records every ten years since 1790 - but all family members with ages did not start until 1850. Based on English law (except Louisiana which is based on French law), probate records were pretty extensive but fires and the Civil War destroyed a large percentage of these records. My above family histories do not include any ties back to Europe - except one line where YDNA recently revealed baptismal records in England that reconstructed my Pace family in the 1600s. There is less than five percent Internet based content - this was mainly done via snail mail and then later (when available) via email. It has also been over ten years since I have added to these family histories. Here is a link to these publications at my web site:

http://www.rcasey.net/acrstrt2.htm