When I started researching my genealogy in 2011, I only had a few family stories to guide me: stories about a family bar in Dunkirk, New York, connections to the Mayflower and long-lost royal ancestors. Some relatives claimed that my great-grandfather was adopted; others, that he changed the family surname and grew up in Kentucky. One ancestor supposedly owned and operated a penny-candy store in Depression-era New York, while another was arrested for selling bathtub gin during the Prohibition era. In 2011, I hoped to confirm a few stories, find some new family photos and learn my great-grandparents’ names; ten years later, I have traced my tree back to Edward and Samuel Fuller on the Mayflower, found a common ancestor with the Wright Brothers and spent hours learning Polish and searching parish records from Kujawsko-Pomorskie.
I recently graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill (go heels!) where I studied public policy and history, and I use this background to analyze documents and inform the social and political circumstances surrounding my ancestors’ stories. I have a broad range of personal research experience, but I specialize in breaking down “brick walls,” following ancestral paper trails across the United States and searching for immigration records in Eastern and Central Europe. I enjoy meeting new relatives, hearing new family stories and finding new photographs, and while I’ll always be working on my personal family tree, I hope to help others compile their families’ stories and learn about their roots, as well.
Applegate Genealogy is where I’ll share research tips, new discoveries, random thoughts and interesting finds. If you’re searching for research advice and don’t know where to start, please don’t hesitate to reach out! I have extensive experience in genealogy research both in the United States and abroad, and I’m always excited to discuss genealogy. In the meantime, check out my blog or leave a comment below–I hope to hear from you soon!