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Many people are completely unaware of their ancestors and the lives they lived in the decades and centuries that have already gone by. Even so, the lives and decisions of these ancestors most certainly went a long way towards shaping the habits, traditions and values of the people who carry their story on today.

Fortunately, the annually-celebrated Ancestor Appreciation Day gives people a reminder to learn more about those who came before!

History of Ancestor Appreciation Day

Each generation within a family has its own unique characteristics, and Ancestor Appreciation Day was established to bring awareness to and show appreciation for the previous generations. From genetic disposition to cultural heritage, a person’s roots offer special insight into the diversity and commonalities of distant relationships.

Learning about family history can also provide important information about the future, especially as it relates to medical history. Diseases like sickle cell, cystic fibrosis and even diabetes can all be better predicted in people who know the medical history of their ancestors.

Ancestor Appreciation Day subscribes to the belief that building a more complete picture of past relatives and their history can help to promote a greater appreciation for life and form a better understanding of the individual journey each family has been on.

So get ready to access the past in order to have a better future by observing Ancestor Appreciation Day!

How to Celebrate Ancestor Appreciation Day

Show some affection and pay some attention to the people who have gone before by celebrating Ancestor Appreciation Day. Have some fun, learn something and observe the day by implementing some of these ideas:

Perform Some Ancestry Research

The internet can be a wonderful tool when it comes to researching genealogy and the history of a person’s family tree in honor of Ancestor Appreciation Day. Various online resources are available to help folks find records of their family’s history, while learning about their ancestors and their way of life. It’s even possible to create a detailed family tree through the information discovered on genealogy websites.

Services such as Ancestry, My Heritage and Find My Past are just a few of the many online services that offer paid (sometimes with a free trial) options for those who are interested in learning more about their own past.   

If nothing else, why not spend Ancestor Awareness Day with some living relatives? Ask a few questions, let them tell stories and find out about previous generations that way.

Build a Family Record

Whether it is in the form of a detailed record that has names and dates, or something a bit more personal, future generations will benefit from receiving family records that are passed down. In celebration of Ancestor Appreciation Day, grandparents or parents can write down their stories in the form of a journal, or record them on audio or video for posterity. Some people even enjoy setting their experiences into posterity by publishing a book of memoirs that will allow those in the future to have a better glimpse into what life was like for them.

Learn Fun Facts about Genealogy

Glean loads of interesting tidbits of information to share in celebration of Ancestor Appreciation Day. Get started with some of these fun facts about genealogy and the study of family history:

  • When taking a DNA test, even full siblings can show ethnicities in differing amounts, due to the way that genetic inheritance is randomly allotted.

  • While most people today have “outbred” families, with 256 ancestors going back eight generations, in the past, “inbred” families (especially royals) who would marry each other would have perhaps only a few dozen ancestors – and often many disabilities to go with it.

  • Some DNA tests can get so specific as to determine if people come from more hunter-gatherer backgrounds or farmer backgrounds, even if the person doesn’t have a written history.

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