Journal of Cape Verdean Studies


Anna Lima


Thanks to the internet, discovering one’s ancestry is just a few clicks sway. Family histories and genealogies with intricate family trees filled with dates of birth, marriage dates, and death dates are meticulously documented for posterity. This process entails hours of research through census, immigration, baptism, and obituary records if you’re able to access them. There’s nothing greater for a genealogist to discover another generation of previously unknown ancestors and to tell the rest of your family. One would think that genealogy is a very new area of research since our ancestors obviously didn’t bother to pass this information on to us, right? This article will show that genealogy is a practice as old as civilization but the recent social structures have changed the way family histories and genealogy is passed from one generation to the other. It will also demonstrate how knowledge of one’s family history and genealogy plays a part in one’s identity and connection with one’s community.