August 2017

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Remembering the People’s Princess 20 Years Later

Posted August 31, 2017 by Amanda | One Comment
Remembering the People’s Princess 20 Years Later

Today we remember Diana, Princess of Wales, on the 20th anniversary of her death. On August 31, 1997, Princess Diana died tragically in a car crash in Paris, France. Known as the “People’s Princess” for her compassion and charitable efforts, Princess Diana was beloved all and the world mourned when news spread of her sudden death. In honor of her memory, we take a look back at her life. Image: Wikimedia Commons 1. Diana Frances Spencer… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Richard Gere

Posted August 31, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
Profile of the Day: Richard Gere

Happy birthday, Richard Gere! Today the actor turns 68. The popular actor was born Richard Tiffany Gere in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on August 31, 1949. His middle name comes from his mother, whose maiden name was Tiffany. Gere’s family had deep early American roots. He descends from Mayflower passengers through both his mother and father. As a teen, Gere excelled at gymnastics and even earned a gymnastics scholarship to the University of Massachusetts Amherst. He rose… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley

Posted August 30, 2017 by Hiromimarie | No Comment
Mary Shelley

On August 30, 1797, author Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley was born. She was born in London, England to political philosopher William Godwin, and philosopher and feminist Mary Wollstonecraft. Mary married poet Percy Bysshe Shelley in 1816. Only one of their four children survived beyond infancy, a son named Percy Florence Shelley. She is best known for her first novel, Frankenstein. It was originally published anonymously in 1818 and remains widely read, and has inspired many theatrical and film… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Posted August 28, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
Profile of the Day: Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

On this day in 1749, German writer, poet, and statesman Johann Wolfgang von Goethe was born. He was born in Frankfurt, which was then an Imperial Free City of the Holy Roman Empire. Goethe’s father, Johann Caspar Goethe, was the son of a wealthy tailor and owner of one of the most distinguished guesthouses in Frankfurt. His mother, Katharina Elizabeth Textor, was the daughter of a prominent citizen of Frankfurt. Considered one of the greatest German… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Sean Connery

Posted August 25, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
Profile of the Day: Sean Connery

Happy 87th birthday to Sean Connery! The James Bond star was born Thomas Sean Connery on August 25, 1930 in Edinburgh, Scotland. He was named after his paternal grandfather, Thomas Connery, and was called “Tommy” throughout his childhood. Connery quit school at a young age and got his first job working as a milkman before joining the Royal Navy. After he was discharged for medical reasons, Connery worked a series of odd jobs, from coffin… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Jorge Luis Borges

Posted August 24, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
Profile of the Day: Jorge Luis Borges

On August 24, 1899, Argentine writer and poet Jorge Luis Borges was born. Explore his family tree on Geni.

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Join Geni at FGS 2017

Posted August 23, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
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Next week Geni will be heading to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania for the Federation of Genealogical Societies 2017 Conference. The conference will take place August 30 – September 2 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center. Hosted by the Western Pennsylvania Genealogical Society, this year’s them is “Building Bridges to the Past.” The conference will have a wide variety of sessions available for all skill levels. Geni will be at booth 123 eager to meet attendees, help answer… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Gene Kelly

Posted August 23, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
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Remember watching Singin’ in the Rain? On this day in 1912, star Gene Kelly was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Eugene Curran Kelly was born on August 23, 1912 to James Kelly, a phonograph salesman, and Harriet Curran. At the age of 8, his mother enrolled Kelly and his siblings in dance classes. As a young man, he often created dance routines with his brother to earn prize money in local talent contests and performed at night clubs. Kelly… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Richard III of England

Posted August 22, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
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On this day in 1485, Richard III of England was killed during the Battle of Bosworth Field, bringing an end to the Plantagenet dynasty. Although Richard III would be king for only 2 years, his short reign would prove to be a turning point in history. He came to power after seizing the throne from his 12-year-old nephew, Edward V. After his brother’s marriage was declared invalid, his children were considered illegitimate, thus making the young Edward… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: William IV

Posted August 21, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
Profile of the Day: William IV

On this day in 1765, William IV of the United Kingdom was born. The third son of George III, William became king after the death of his elder brother George IV. William was born at Buckingham Palace on August 21, 1765. As the third son born to King George III and Queen Charlotte, William was never expected to inherit the crown. He joined the Royal Navy at the age of 13 and served in New… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Robert Redford

Posted August 18, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
Profile of the Day: Robert Redford

Happy birthday, Robert Redford! Today the actor turns 81. Charles Robert Redford, Jr. was born on August 18, 1936 in Santa Monica, California to Charles Robert Redford, Sr. and Martha Hart. Redford began his career on the stage and television before launching to stardom in the Paul Newman film, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Since then, he has starred in many blockbuster and critical hits, including The Way We Were and The Sting. Also a gifted director,… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Davy Crockett

Posted August 17, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
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On this day in 1786, American frontiersman and folk hero Davy Crockett was born. David Crockett was born to John Wesley Crockett and Rebecca Hawkins in what is today Tennessee. He was named after his paternal grandfather, who was killed in a Cherokee raid at the onset of the Cherokee-American wars. Crockett gained fame for his many larger-than-life exploits. A skilled woodsman, an excellent hunter, and gifted storyteller, Crockett developed a reputation as a legendary frontiersman. Stories of his exploits… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Elvis Presley

Posted August 16, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
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Forty years ago today, Elvis Presley, the King of Rock and Roll, died at the age of 42. The music legend was born on January 8, 1935 in Tupelo, Mississippi in a two-room shotgun house built by his grandfather. His twin brother, Jesse, died during childbirth. Although he grew up poor, by the time of his death, Presley had become one of the most successful musicians in history. After exploding into the spotlight with his… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Julia Child

Posted August 15, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
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Do you love to cook? On this day in 1912, beloved chef Julia Child was born. Julia Carolyn McWilliams was born on August 15, 1912 in Pasadena, California to John McWilliams, Jr., a land manager, and Julia Weston. Her maternal grandfather, Byron Weston, was the founder of the Weston Paper Company and served as the 32nd Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts. The host of the popular cooking show, The French Chef, Child didn’t learn to cook until she… Read the full story

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New Enhancements to DNA Matches

Posted August 14, 2017 by Amanda | 2 Comments
New Enhancements to DNA Matches

We’re excited to announce some recent enhancements to our DNA features on Geni. These new improvements will make it easier for you to find your connection to relatives based on your shared DNA. Shared DNA Matches   Your DNA matches will now display shared DNA matches between you and your match. By seeing the DNA matches you have in common, you can start narrowing down your connection in the family tree. For example, if your… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Steve Martin

Posted August 14, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
Profile of the Day: Steve Martin

Happy birthday, Steve Martin! Today the actor turns 72. Martin was born on August 14, 1945 in Waco, Texas to Mary Lee Stewart and Glenn Vernon Martin. When he was young, his family moved to southern California. As a teen, he became a cheerleader in high school and got his first job at Disneyland selling guidebooks and performing magic tricks. In 1977, Martin got his big break as a guest host on the late-night sketch comedy… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Andrew Carnegie

Posted August 11, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
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On this day in 1919, American industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie died at the age of 83. A titan of the American steel industry in the late 19th century, Carnegie devoted his last years of his life to large-scale philanthropy, directing much of his wealth towards public libraries and education. Carnegie was born on November 25, 1835 in Dunfermline, Fife, Scotland in a one room cottage. At the age of 13, he moved to America with… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Herbert Hoover

Posted August 10, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
Profile of the Day: Herbert Hoover

On this day in 1874, Herbert Hoover, the 31st President of the United States, was born in West Branch, Iowa. Hoover was the son of Hulda Randall Minthorn and Jesse Hoover, a blacksmith. Sadly, by the age of 9, he was an orphan. He was raised by his uncle, John Minthorn, a physician and businessman. Before the presidency, Hoover worked as an engineer in China. He and his wife, Lou, were in Tianjin during the… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Tove Jansson

Posted August 9, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
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Do you have Finnish ancestry? Today we celebrate beloved Finnish children’s book author and artist Tove Jansson, who was born on this day in 1914. Tove Marika Jansson was born in Helsinki, Finland on August 9, 1914 to Viktor Jansson, a sculptor, and Signe Hammarsten-Jansson, a graphic designer and illustrator. The family belonged to the Swedish-speaking minority of Finland. Best known as the author of the Moomin children’s books and cartoons, Jansson is perhaps one of the most… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Dustin Hoffman

Posted August 8, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
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Happy birthday, Dustin Hoffman! Can you believe the actor turns 80 today? Dustin Lee Hoffman was born on August 8, 1937 in Los Angeles, California. He was the second son born to Lillian Gold and Harry Hoffman, who worked as a set decorator at Columbia Pictures. He was named after stage and silent film actor, Dustin Farnum. Hoffman comes from a Jewish family of immigrants from Ukraine, Poland, and Romania. After dropping out of college, Hoffman pursued acting full… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Charlize Theron

Posted August 7, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
Profile of the Day: Charlize Theron

Today actress Charlize Theron celebrates her 42nd birthday! The South African star was born on August 7, 1975 in Benoni, in what was then the Transvaal Province of South Africa. An only child, she grew up on her parents’ farm outside of Johannesburg and spent her childhood studying dance. Life at home was difficult. Her father was an alcoholic and was physically abusive. When she was 15, her father violently attacked her mother. Her mother… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Barack Obama

Posted August 4, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
Profile of the Day: Barack Obama

Happy birthday to Barack Obama! Today he turns 56. On August 4, 1961, Barack Hussein Obama was born in Honolulu, Hawaii to Ann Dunham and Barack Hussein Obama, Sr. His mother was born in Wichita, Kansas and his father was born in Nyanza Province, Kenya. His parents had met while attending the University of Hawaii at Manoa and married just six months before he was born. Growing up, Obama was not close to his father. His… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Martin Sheen

Posted August 3, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
Profile of the Day: Martin Sheen

Happy birthday, Martin Sheen! Today the actor turns 77. He was born Ramón Antonio Gerardo Estévez on August 3, 1940 in Dayton, Ohio to immigrant parents. His father, Francisco Estévez, was born in Spain, while his mother, Mary-Ann Phelan, was born in Ireland. As one of ten children, Sheen grew up in a large family. When his mother died when he was 11 years old, the family faced the possibility of separation, either into foster homes… Read the full story

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IAJGS 2017 Recap

Posted August 2, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
IAJGS 2017 Recap | Geni

We’re back from Orlando, Florida, where the Geni team attended the 37th IAJGS International Conference on Jewish Genealogy. It was a great opportunity to meet new people and chat with many excited Geni users. The Geni booth before the doors opened The Geni booth was a popular stop during the conference. To our surprise, we ran out of Geni water bottles faster than any other conference! Randy Schoenberg giving his Geni.com World Family Tree lecture On the first… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Henry III of France

Posted August 2, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
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On this day in 1589, Henry III of France died at the hands of a religious fanatic. Henry III was born on September 19, 1551 at the royal Château de Fontainebleau. The fourth son of King Henry II and Catherine de Medici, Henry was never expected to become the King of France. He ruled as the King of the Polish-Lithuanian commonwealth before inheriting the French throne following the death of his brother, Charles IX, in… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: William Clark

Posted August 1, 2017 by Amanda | No Comment
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On this day in 1770, explorer William Clark was born in Caroline County, Virginia. From 1804 to 1806, Clark helped lead the famous Lewis and Clark Expedition across the country to the Pacific Ocean. Clark was the ninth of ten children born to John Clark and Ann Rogers. Five of his older brothers fought during the American Revolution, including his second-oldest brother, George Rogers Clark, who rose to the rank of general. In 1803, Meriwether… Read the full story