Friday, September 03, 2010

Is moving genetic?

kw: genealogy, family history

In answer to a friend's question, I said something like "all my ancestors come from different places." Then I looked into it and found it is true on two levels. Firstly, from four to fourteen generations back, I have lots of immigrants to and emigrants within the continental United States and Canada. Secondly, just picking the fourth generation, my eight great-grandparents each have a different birthplace from all the others.

Running down the Ahnentafel (ancestor table) from father's father's father to mother's mother's mother, the places of birth are England, Canada, Missouri, Ohio, Arkansas, Alabama, Illinois, and Indiana. The next generation prior, of sixteen people, twelve states or countries of birth are represented. None of the above was born in California, but I was, so every generation moved somewhere.

No wonder I have been a wanderer. I come from a long line (a dozen long lines) of people who moved multiple times in their lives. I find it astonishing that I've lived in the same place for fifteen years now. It is more than twice as long as I lived anywhere else. So, OK, I am slowing down. Not at a full stop, though, not yet!

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