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How genealogy research can open up ‘Pandora’s box’

Apparently 1 in 8 people who have researched their genealogy have reported conflicts with relatives that have arisen out of their research.

For building a family tree combines the need to retain the sharp mind of a personal investigator with a love of the past.

But now academics are warning that many people who take up genealogy might uncover more than they bargained for.

Delving into one’s ancestry can open up “a Pandora’s box” of secrets that can lead to serious family rows, according to sociologists who have studied the popular passtime.

It can reopen old wounds and shatter illusions about a family’s “respectable” history.

Illegitimate children, hidden affairs, troubled finances and deceit all await those determined to piece together their family’s past, found Dr Anne-Marie Kramer of Warwick University.

[Full story]

2 thoughts on “How genealogy research can open up ‘Pandora’s box’

  1. All that intrigue is the fascinating part of genealogy!

    The only negativity I’ve experienced comes from distant living relatives, and a few near relatives, who hoard information or suck you dry and then cast you away.

    Research can entail a lot of hours spent in county courthouses and libraries around the country, hours on the computer and the purchase of expensive trips and books containing family data. I love to share information with family, but I hate the grasping and selfish attitudes that some people have.

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