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Shaking the Family Tree

Blue Bloods, Black Sheep, and Other Obsessions of an Accidental Genealogist

Buzzy Jackson

This book is available for download with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device, and with iTunes on your computer. Books can be read with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device.

Description

“WHO ARE YOU AND WHERE DO YOU COME FROM? ”

As a historian, Buzzy Jackson thought she knew the answers to these simple questions—that is, until she took a look at her scrawny family tree. With a name like Jackson (the twentieth most common American surname), she knew she must have more relatives and more family history out there, somewhere. Her first visit to the Boulder Genealogy Society brought her more questions than answers . . . but it also gave her a tantalizing peek into the fascinating (and enormous) community of family-tree huggers and after-hours Alex Haleys.

In Shaking the Family Tree, Jackson dives headfirst into her family gene pool: flying cross-country to locate an ancient family graveyard, embarking on a weeklong genealogy Caribbean cruise, and even submitting her DNA for testing to try to find her Jacksons. And in the process of researching her own family lore (Who was Bullwhip Jackson?) she meets legions of other genealogy buffs who are as interesting as they are driven—from the boy who saved his allowance so he could order his great-grandfather’s death certificate to the woman who spends her free time documenting the cemeteries of Colorado ghost towns.

Through Jackson’s research she connects with distant relatives, traces her roots back more than 250 years and in the process comes to discover—genetically, historically, and emotionally—the true meaning of “family” for herself.

Publishers Weekly Review

May 31, 2010 – In her new book, Jackson (A Bad Woman Feeling Good), inspired by her background studying American history and the recent birth of her son, tracks her family genealogy and takes the reader along for the ride. Before she can learn who her ancestors are, Jackson must learn the ins and out of genealogy, which she does by attending seminars, joining a local genealogical society, learning from the field's experts and, yes, going on a genealogy cruise. In conversational and witty prose, she conveys not only how much fun she is having but also what she is learning. But genealogy culture is just half of the story, the other half being Jackson's search for her family tree. While her quest starts innocently enough as she reaches out to her mother and father soon she finds herself embarking on a series of quirky adventures like looking for lost graveyards, hanging out with Mormons, going to her high school reunion, and finding out the Confederate South still exists. Thankfully, Jackson is a skilled writer, and the fun she has trying to find her dead kin is nicely balanced with the touching reconnections she makes with her living relatives.

Customer Reviews

Not just for genealogists!

A fun and funny read.

Shaking the Family Tree
View In iTunes
  • $12.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Social Science
  • Published: Jul 06, 2010
  • Publisher: Touchstone
  • Seller: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc.
  • Print Length: 256 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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