1. I love history, and it takes some serious study of history to figure out the next step.
2. It’s interesting to see the “fads” in naming as you go through the generations. Concept names (Thankful, Hope, States Rights, etc.) go in and out of vogue, as well as Biblical, mother’s maiden name, and so on.
3. Medical history of your family can give you some insight into your own health.
4. You meet interesting living people.
5. You meet even more interesting dead people. My great grandmother, who homesteaded to Oregon, is very alive in my memory.
6. Personal papers give you a glimpse of life in other times. Diaries, letters and newspaper accounts make you feel “you are there.”
7. Occupations can be quite interesting. On both sides of my family, it’s pretty much “farmer” all the way back so far, but others I know have found ancestors who were lawyers, silversmiths, etc.
8. Finding cousins can be such fun! My mother found, after several years of genealogy, that a co-worker of my dad’s was actually a cousin…and a professional genealogist! Another time we connected with some double fourth cousins in Minnesota!
9. When you see how your ancestors travelled, migrated and backtracked, you realize that transportation hardly changed from Julius Caesar to George Washington, and changed greatly from Washington to Lincoln; even more from Lincoln to Kennedy.
10. When you get right down to it, genealogy proves your secret conviction that it really all is about YOU!