Ancestors on Facebook?

Janet Hovorka, the Chart Chick, had a link to her sister’s blog.  Her sister talks about how great it is to use Facebook to meet up with old friends and plan a family reunion.  Then she asks an intriguing question:

…wouldn’t a genealogical version of facebook, devoid of time and space, be intriguing? Locate family members, link generations, pictures, tidbits, get to know your long losts…. I’d love to “friend” my 3rd great-grandmother Magdalena Straubhaar Schwendiman and have a bit of wall-to-wall with her. And I’m sure I’d love the status reports from my great-grandfather Joseph Hatton Carpenter. He had some jolly songs and anecdotes and was somewhat of an English character. Hmmmmm…

You had to do it…here I am off from work on a snow day and feeling in a creative mood.  Well, let me think…what would it be like to have my ancestors on Facebook?  See my take on what it would be like if my ancestors were on Facebook (click on the image to see a larger view):

Maybe we don't really need more family in our life - LOL!

Maybe we don't really need more family in our life - LOL!

I can see it now…what groups would my grandparents join?  Would my grandmother “friend” her sisters that did not get along?  Would the feuding brothers be friends?  Further back, would the German-speaking ancestors befriend the Polish-speaking ones because they share common descendants?  Who would be addicted to bumper stickers, flair, and games?  What would my great-grandparents be “fans” of?

The “what-if” possibilities are endless – and humorous! If we could communicate with our deceased ancestors, we’d not only have more Friends, but more people commenting on our status, photos, and friends. Hmm, maybe we all already have enough advice in our lives!


10 thoughts on “Ancestors on Facebook?

  1. This is fantastic and quite creative! I don’t think I would have time to Facebook with all my ancestors, but it would make my family history much easier:-)

  2. Love it! Love it! Love it! Now this is the stuff that could get me interested in reactivating my FB page! LOL!

    Oh Donna, you’ve got me chuckling good this time. 😀

    It would be absolutely splendid to be able to interact with our ancestors on FB. It really is interesting to ponder how it would play out, isn’t it?

    I’m so glad you had a snow day today. You made my day 🙂

  3. well, Sweet Bobby Jindal! I am assuming you either Photoshopped this or you actually set up email accounts for each ancestor, then FB accounts. That would be time consuming but kind of fun! I could foresee:

    – my great-grandmother Frances Pressner “teasing” me with wall posts such as “Thomas. Guess where my parents are? Wouldn’t you love to know?

  4. I’m always happy to provide a chuckle. Thomas, it’s bad enough I spent the time I did with Photoshop – I’m not whacko enough to set up fb accounts for all of my dead relatives! That would be interesting to see what they’d “say” on your wall. I had more ideas, but ran out of allotted goofing off time. Maybe I’ll “friend” Frannie and try to sweettalk her into letting ME know who her parents are. 😉

  5. Remember Footnote’s Person pages, and the joke that it was “Facebook for Dead People?” I think that is where the “Mother of All Genealogy Databases” will end up – a wiki with millions of person pages – each with input from as many people as have data on the person, and linked to images (either from online sources or from personal files).

    When I was at Ancestry in January, this was one of the visions that Andrew Wait, their President (?) had – they would create a wiki person page for each person in the Public Member Trees and then invite people to modify the information and attach images. has the “critical mass” to do this if they can find the bandwidth.

    This is also what New FamilySearch will likely end up being – a person page with data provided by users and images attached. FSI also has enough “Critical Mass” to do this – they’re still sorting out how to deal with many versions of the same person.

    We’re probably a year or two away from all of this IMHO.

    Good post, Donna. Funny too…

  6. “Are you married yet dear?”

    This was brilliant and besides being very funny it isn’t a bad idea. Sort of an interactive genealogy program. Ah! to channel the dead.

    Now if we could just get a celestial twitter!


  7. Wow, so creative! I’m in awe!! Thanks to Randy for giving you one of his 10 spots this week, otherwise I’d have missed this wonderful post.

    Keep your creative juices flowing, this was fabulous.

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