I love family history.
When I heard that NBC was doing a series about celebrities discovering their family history. I think it will be such a great motivator to get people interested in their roots.
It's so exciting to find out from where you've come. When I took a class at BYU I figured I wouldn't learn much of anything new because my parents were both working at the family history center in Los Angeles at the time and had been working on their lines for decades. After a prayer to help me look in the right direction I felt like I should be searching in my Father's Mother's (Ruth Eleanor Lehner) paternal line.
That side of the family immigrated from the Swiss/Bavarian area in Europe. I was able to find my great-great grandfather, Samuel Lehner, and his wife, Anna Margaretha Burk in the 1880 census in Illinois. The next census was from 1900, the 1890 census was lost in a fire except for a few states. There I found them in Santa Barbara, CA. It was that Census that I found Samuel's Brother, Jacob, and Jacob's wife Susan Richner, along with their eight children. It was so amazing to me. The fun thing about that particular census was the occupation listing. Both the Lehner brothers were butchers there in Santa Barbara. It's interesting to see their names on different Census documents. At times the origins say Germany, others Swiss and even still Bavaria.
Because of that line I was born as a fourth generation Californian, very rare to find these days. I am excited to continue embarking on the hunt for more family. And it's shows like this that help me pursue more of my heritage.
I'm planning on making my stairwell a collection of both Sir Luke's and my family history photographs. I want our children to grow up knowing from where they stem. I think it's so important.
Keep turning our hearts to the fathers. Where do you come from?