Monday, July 14, 2008

Does Roy Blackmore have the most recorded ancestors?

Chris Dunham posted a link on his The Genealogue blog to a Daily Telegraph (UK) newspaper article published recently - the article is here - titled "Orphaned British pensioner uncovers 1,500-year-old family tree," by Aislinn Simpson.

The article tells about Roy Blackmore who has traced his ancestry back at least 1,500 years, and has 9,390 ancestors in his family tree, researched using traditional repository and paper resources. He has filed for a Guinness World Record for the largest documented family tree.

The article doesn't say whether Roy is done researching yet, or if he has his tree completely filled out. As we all know, in the 20th generation back (about 1500 A.D.), we all have over 1 million ancestors (give or take a few due to cousin intermarriage). Obviously, Roy is not done - he's found less than 1% of his 20th generation ancestors. There is plenty of work left for him to do!

This is tremendous publicity for genealogy research in the UK!

The (UK) Ancestors magazine blog has a comment by Simon Fowler about the article, and Roy's claims here.

Roy Blackmore has a web site here, and says:

"BLACKMORE FAMILY. My name is Roy Blackmore, I live in Somerset, England and have been researching the Blackmore's of Sheldon and Cullompton, Devon since 1984. I began searching for my Great grandfather John who was born in 1825 in Cullompton and who moved to Bath in Somerset, circa 1859, with his wife Elizabeth Agnes Smith of Payhembury Devon.

"Having lost both my mother and father as a child, I became inquisitive about my family background sometime during the 70s. My older siblings had very little information and what little they did have proved to be influenced by their childhood imagination. Armed with only my birth certificate I set off to St Catherine's House London, where I found that John had been born in Cullompton. The census returns revealed that he was a Surgeon/Dentist by profession with a practice in Bath and had twelve children."

What a wonderful research story - please read the whole Telegraph article and visit Roy's web site for more information about his distinguished ancestry and his genealogy research.

Because of Roy's ancestry connecting to William the Conqueror and Alfred the Great, he and I are cousins (but then, aren't we all?). I wonder if Roy is Barack Obama's cousin too? Another research puzzle for him to pursue!

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