Sunday, January 4, 2009

"Will the Real Slim Shady Please Stand Up"

My genealogy vacation is almost over, tomorrow I have to go back to work and the real world. I've done pretty much all I can do online with the Redcay/Ferro families, to make progress it's going to take a visit to local historical societies now. That can wait until spring so that walks around cemeteries won't be freezing cold.

Once I figure out a way to make $500,000 a year by doing genealogy research for a living, I'll make the career switch for real. Until then though, I need the real job still! Dumb old real job....

Anyway, one of the most fun things to do if you like doing genealogy is to inflate your sense of grandeur by finding famous people you are related to. Some of the one's I've found for me are Lucille Ball, President Grant, and Queen Mary of Scotland (the one who had her head chopped off in a particularly unpleasant way by Queen Elizabeth). Again, I laugh at the people who say they yearn to live back in simpler times. Oh yeah? Either you were poor and constantly at risk of having your landlord put you out or torture you or whatever, or you were rich and constantly at risk of having your head chopped off by peeved kings or queens. Frankly, I'd prefer to be living in the future when we'll have time machines and food pellets that actually taste good. Then I can visit the past, but not stay. I'd just love to see if it was as smelly, louse-infected and yellow-tooth filled as I believe, or am I just a bit too imaginative.

But back to the grandiose feeling of being related to famous people. There are also the people who love saying they are related to royalty. That's why there was a big genealogy craze back in the late 1800s, early 1900s. It suddenly got real popular for the upper-crust in New England to say they were related to royalty back in the old world. Some shady people made lots of money making up fake lineages attaching to royalty just to make people happy. Several years ago I was researching one of my lines, and traced it back to England/Scotland and actually did find a royal connection. But I wouldn't let myself believe it until I had verified it six ways to sunday. Whatever that phrase means. But I made double-sure before I told anyone.

As I've been doing my brother-in-laws family, I've been hoping to present him with something cool, some famous person, but I don't have them going back far enough to really do that yet.

Until last week. I found a famous person. Turns out my brother-in-law is 5th cousins with.........


Yes, that Eminem, the only Eminem. How funny is that? They have a common ancestor in a Jacob Heffley, born on March 27, 1833 in Lebanon County, PA. At some point he moved out to Minnesota and through various descendants and states, voila, we have Marshall Bruce Mathers, III. I've read a few quotes from Eminem, and he says he's never met his father (and apparently doesn't care to). I thought that was sad. Also, it probably means he wouldn't care to be contacted by long-lost relatives, huh?

more animals


  1. That's funny! I remember when I was ten, and I was obsessed with Melissa Joan Hart because she played Clarissa, and Sabrina the Teenage Witch... anyway she was my neighbor's second cousin and I thought that was basically the coolest thing ever. I was also ten.

  2. Oh, that's too funny! I was wondering what the title to your blog was all about; now I know. I too have some odd connections to celebrities, though none of them actually blood related. My father used to baby-sit Valerie Bertinelli - waaaaay before she met Eddie VanHalen. And again, my father works with Bruce Willis' uncle (whom he's apparently very close with). That's a long sad story that ended in a practical joke against me (thanks dad!). Ahh, families. ;-D

  3. Well, as it turns out, ALL of the famous people in my ancestry are also in YOUR ancestry. I imagine that's a good thing.

  4. Speaking of famous (or infamous) people we're related to, one of my relatives came to American on the Mayflower. He also ended up being the first person in America hung for committing murder. So, I think I'd rather be related to Emimine, even if he didn't want me to contact him.

  5. That is fascinating! I wonder who I am related to now!!