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  • Famous Ancestor Of The Week : Harry Truman

    Harry Truman


    When Franklin D. Roosevelt died on 12 April 1945, three months into his fourth term, his vice president Harry Truman succeeded him as the 33rd president of the United States. He later won re-election in 1948, defeating Thomas E. Dewey thanks to his Whistle Stop Tour across rural America.

    During his presidency, Truman made many crucial decisions that continue to affect U.S. foreign policy today. He authorized the use of atomic bombs against Japan in 1945. The first bomb was dropped by the plane Enola Gay on the city of Hiroshima on 6 August 1945. A second bomb was dropped on Nagasaki three days later; Japan surrendered on 14 August.

    When the state of Israel was proclaimed on 14 May 1948, Truman officially recognized the new state only eleven minutes after it was declared, citing the Holocaust as the reason for his support of the political Zionist movement.

    During Truman's presidency, the United States joined NATO. Truman was also the propagator of the "Truman Doctrine," taking an active stance against Soviet expansion during the early years of the Cold War.

    You can see whether or not you are related to Harry Truman by going to the Relationship Calculator on the Family Dashboard Page when you login to OneGreatFamily.

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  • Famous Ancestor Of The Week: Lady Diana

    Lady Diana


    Known as Lady Diana or Diana, Princess of Wales, Diana Frances Spencer was the youngest daughter of John Spencer, Viscount Althorp, the eighth earl Spencer. Her father was a descendant of King Charles II through several generations of illegitimate sons, and a descendant of King James II through an illegitimate daughter. The Spencer family had long been close to the royal family; Diana's grandmother was a friend and lady-in-waiting to Queen Elizabeth.

    Prince Charles was romantically involved with Diana's older sister Lady Sarah before he began courting nineteen-year-old Diana in the summer of 1980. Charles and Diana were married in July of 1981 in St. Paul's Cathedral in London. Their first son William was born less than a year later; Harry was born two years after that.

    As well as remaining a devoted mother, Diana became involved in humanitarian work. She was a proponent of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines and from 1989 onward she was the president of the Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children.

    Charles and Diana divorced in 1996 as a result of extramarital affairs. She died in a car crash in Paris in August of 1997. After her death, the International Campaign to Ban Landmines won the Nobel Peace Prize.

    To learn more about Diana's genealogy, read Richard K. Evans's The Ancestry of Diana, Princess of Wales, for Twelve Generations published in 2009 by the New England Historic Genealogical Society.

    You can see whether or not you are related to Lady Diana by going to the Relationship Calculator on the Family Dashboard Page when you login to OneGreatFamily.

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  • Famous Ancestor Of The Week: Thomas Jefferson

    Activist for Independence: Thomas Jefferson


    After attending the College of William and Mary, Thomas Jefferson practiced law and was elected a member of the Virginia House of Burgesses. As a Burgess, he was an agitator for revolution. In 1774 he published a pamphlet, A Summary View of the Rights of British America, in which he argued that sovereignty was inherent in the people and they could throw off any government that subverted their rights. Previous pamphleteers and revolutionaries had just decried the evils of Parliament but not the king; some had even appealed to George III to protect them from the abuses of Parliament. Thomas Jefferson was one of the first to accuse George III of tyranny, and he encouraged the American people to throw off his rule. In 1774 when the Summary View pamphlet was published, Jefferson's views were too radical for most of the American populace and were not adopted by the First Continental Congress. But this pamphlet represented the direction that American thought would take over the next several months. Only two years later in 1776 most Americans agreed with Jefferson and the Declaration of Independence, asserting American rights and rejecting the rule of George III, was passed.

    At the Continental Congress in 1776, Jefferson was one of five men chosen to form a committee to create a resolution for independence (John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Robert Livingston, and Roger Sherman were the other four). Jefferson was the one who actually drafted the declaration; it was signed by the Congressional delegates on 4 July 1776. Thomas Jefferson served his country in many capacities: as the minister of France from 1785 to 1789; as the founder of the Democratic-Republican party; as vice president from 1796 to 1800; as the third president of the United States from 1800 to 1804; and as the negotiator of the Louisiana Purchase in 1803. But the Declaration of Independence is what he is most remembered for and was perhaps his most lasting contribution.

    Click Here To See Thomas Jefferson's Family Tree

    You can also see whether or not you are related to Thomas Jefferson by going to the Relationship Calculator on the Family Dashboard Page when you login to OneGreatFamily.

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  • Famous Ancestor Of The Week: Ulysses S. Grant

    Ulysses S. Grant


    This week we are featuring the famed general and U.S. president Ulysses S. Grant. He was born 27 April 1822 in Point Pleasant, Ohio and given the name of Hiram Ulysses Grant. He attended the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York, where he acquired the name "Ulysses S." or "U.S. Grant." He fought in the Mexican American War. In 1861 he joined the Civil War effort on the side of the Union. As brigadier general and major general, he earned a reputation as a formidable commander. In 1863 he captured the key city of Vicksburg, Mississippi, thus gaining control of the Mississippi River for the Union. President Lincoln then gave him command of all the Union armies. From 1864 to 1865 he waged the Overland Campaign against Robert E. Lee, resulting in a long siege at Petersburg. Finally Grant broke through Confederate lines, captured Richmond, and forced Lee to surrender at Appomattox.

    To view Ulysses S. Grant's Family Tree, login to OneGreatFamily, launch Genealogy Browser, and enter OGFN#588971691. You can also see whether or not you are related to Ulysses S. Grant by going to the Relationship Calculator on the Family Dashboard Page when you login to OneGreatFamily. . You can also see whether or not you are related to by going to the Relationship Calculator on the Family Dashboard Page when you .

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  • Famous Ancestor: John Hancock

    After being orphaned, John Hancock was adopted by his wealthy uncle Thomas Hancock, who had amassed a fortune during the Seven Years' War. In 1763 when Thomas Hancock died, John inherited his fortune, said to be the greatest body of wealth in New England. John received a business education from Harvard College and carried on his uncle's mercantile business with alacrity. In 1768 while his ship, the Liberty, was docked at Boston Harbor, it was seized by British customs officials and John Hancock was charged with smuggling. Popular opinion was on Hancock's side, however: a group of Bostonians stormed the boat and attacked the customs officials. Hancock supported actions like the Boston Tea Party, and in 1774 he was elected as a delegate to the Massachusetts Provincial Congress and the First Continental Congress. As a result of his revolutionary stance, he was on a list of offenders of the British government. On the night of 18 April 1775, Joseph Warren sent Paul Revere and William Dawes from Boston to Lexington to warn John Adams and John Hancock that the British were marching to Lexington. The message was successfully transmitted, and John Hancock was ready to meet the British troops.

    To view John Hancock's Family Tree, login to OneGreatFamily, launch Genealogy Browser, and enter OGFN#514296904. You can also see whether or not you are related to John Hancock by going to the Relationship Calculator on the Family Dashboard Page when you login to OneGreatFamily.

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