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Adoption and Genealogy

 
 
Reply Sun 12 Mar, 2006 03:59 pm
My brother has gotten involved in researching our family tree. We have been talking back and forth, and filling in some blanks for each other.

One question has piqued my curiosity. How is an adopted child treated as part of a family tree? Although the adopted child is certainly part of the family through legal and emotional attachments, there is no direct blood line.

For instance, my aunt adopted a child, and there are now grandchildren and great-grandchildren. How would one place these people in the family tree? My cousin has no idea who her biological parents were, so we could not trace her lineage back.

Any genealogy buffs out there, who know how to handle this?
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Type: Discussion • Score: 1 • Views: 3,919 • Replies: 18
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Anon-Voter
 
  1  
Reply Sun 12 Mar, 2006 04:29 pm
Do you really want to separate the child out of the family like that?? I think you treat the child as a natural child.

Anon
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Anon-Voter
 
  1  
Reply Sun 12 Mar, 2006 04:30 pm
P.S.

Take a look at www.ancestry.com and see if they have any guidelines on how it's treated.

Go to "help" and use "adopted child" for your search. It turns up about three pages.

Anon
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Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Sun 12 Mar, 2006 04:35 pm
Anon-Voter wrote:
Do you really want to separate the child out of the family like that?? I think you treat the child as a natural child.

Anon


Of course I don't. My understanding was that a geneology traced bloodlines. I simply wanted to know how the geneologists handled a situation like this.

For instance, if one wanted to trace a certain illness through family lines, one could only treat the original adopted child as the matriarch of her family, and could not utilize the medical history of her adoptive parents.
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fishin
 
  1  
Reply Sun 12 Mar, 2006 04:36 pm
Most genealogy software applications will allow you to identify the relationship between parent/child as "natural", "adopted", "step", "foster", etc...

Most people would want to document both blood and legal family attachments as much as possible.
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Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Sun 12 Mar, 2006 05:14 pm
fishin' -Thanks. That's what I wanted to know. I have never seen a genealogy program.
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Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Sun 12 Mar, 2006 05:19 pm
Showing adopted children in family tree

Got it!
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fishin
 
  1  
Reply Sun 12 Mar, 2006 05:30 pm
As much as there may be some social issues to deal with most people would want to be as accurate as possible when they are documenting family relationships. Once you start getting back to the 1860s and earlier almost everyone runs into a lot of situations where there were adoptions and step children. A lot of women died in child birth and life expectancies just weren't all that long overall. It was fairly common for people to marry 3, 4 or 5 times. Men needed someone to look after their children and women needed the financial security that being married brought them. It was often as much a business arrangement as it was for romantic purposes.

The various links through marriages, adoptions, etc.. can also be a big help in figuring out each step of the way in a search backwards. Adoptions were often done within the over all family so an adopted child might be the offspring of a woman's sister - the immediate genetic relationship may not be apparent but as you trace the siblings it might provide some further insight as to what went on at the time.

Genealogy is as much a study of your ancestor's social history and social interactions as it is about genetics.
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boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Sun 12 Mar, 2006 06:51 pm
Interesting!

Oregon has an "open records" law regarding adoption now and there are many forms that have to be filled out by the biological family regarding health history and family history.

I think this is such a great idea.
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Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Mon 13 Mar, 2006 12:07 am
fishin' wrote:
Once you start getting back to the 1860s and earlier almost everyone runs into a lot of situations where there were adoptions and step children. A lot of women died in child birth and life expectancies just weren't all that long overall. It was fairly common for people to marry 3, 4 or 5 times.


I suppose that depends a lot about what country (of origin) you are talking.

Within my family it happend three times exactly the other way around: there were only daughters
So a man was "imported (we 'exported' them four times as well Laughing ): a male from another 'suitable' family married the oldest daughter, was called at first with his name plus the added ending "called Hinteler" and after a couple of years just overtook the name.
This happend in 15th, 17th and 18th century - from the last time the royal decret is archived.

I'm not much interested in 'family tree' - the history of my own (= name) site is interesting enough, going back to 1287 - and there never have been more than a handful carrying the name ... see above :wink:
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Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Mon 13 Mar, 2006 11:01 am
The two best geneological sources in the United States are the Clark County Library, Fort Wayne, Indiana (don't know why, just know it is so, based on years of casual and private historical research), and the Mormons--although i forget who you have to contact for that. I'd say, go to a search engine and type in "Geneology+Salt Lake City" and see what pops up.
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fishin
 
  1  
Reply Mon 13 Mar, 2006 03:24 pm
The problem with the Mormon's currently is that many, many people have "researched" their family histories and have been encourgaed to submit a copy of their products to the Mormon Archives. Their library is now full of TONS of junk research. There are millions of good solid files as well but it is getting harder and harder to get to them.
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Anon-Voter
 
  1  
Reply Mon 13 Mar, 2006 03:31 pm
fishin' wrote:
The problem with the Mormon's currently is that many, many people have "researched" their family histories and have been encourgaed to submit a copy of their products to the Mormon Archives. Their library is now full of TONS of junk research. There are millions of good solid files as well but it is getting harder and harder to get to them.


This is actually where I started with my searches. We have a huge Mormon Temple in Oakland, where I lived at the time. They were a great start, but now most of our tree is on Ancestry.com. About 4,500 dating back to 1656 in America ... needless to say what they did to keep warm in the winter :wink:

Anon
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boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Mon 13 Mar, 2006 03:31 pm
The problem with the Mormons is that they want the names of all of your dead ancestors so that they can sanctify (I think that's the word they use) into the Mormon faith.

Of course, the dead people can refuse the sanctification if they want to.
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Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Mon 13 Mar, 2006 05:18 pm
None of which alters that the Clark County Library of Fort Wayne, Indiana has the largest geneological collection in the United States.
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Noddy24
 
  1  
Reply Mon 13 Mar, 2006 06:04 pm
Boomer--

Quote:
Of course, the dead people can refuse the sanctification if they want to.




I'm glad that the dead have the right to refuse membership in the LDS. My mother promised to curse any descendent unto the second and twenty-second generation who had her sanctified/sealed against her will.

My mother was a powerful good curse lady.
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Justthefax
 
  1  
Reply Tue 21 Mar, 2006 06:36 pm
I am a genealogist.

Most genealogy programs, (I use several, Family Tree Maker 2006, The Master Genealogist, and The Next Generation Site Building) Allow to record multiple parents for a single person with the relationship established for each parent, only one father and one mother can be set as Natural parents. Others can be set to adopted, step, foster.


Researching adoption can be very difficult, in Maryland USA, adoption records are sealed after 1955, and some by court order before the state law required the records to be sealed.

Maryland also changed the birth certificates to the adopted parent's name.

That being said, I would record the birth parents if known and the adopted parents too.
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mrcolj
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jun, 2006 02:41 pm
phpgedview is my favorite for posting a family tree online. It has all the features of any of the programs. You can find it on sourceforge.net.

PAF (Personal Ancestral File) is the standard for genealogy programs, and it's free, but again from the Mormon church. No, they don't steal any information off your file. It's not as robust as some of the paid ones, but free if you're just getting started, and the absolute standard maker for file formats, etc, which is symptomatic of something...

And FYI, no, they don't use the term "sanctified" except in the abstract way that all Christian religions do. And they have a policy against their members baptizing anyone they're not directly related to. So if you have a mother who died once upon a time, unless she has any descendants that are LDS, and a sufficient time has passed, there's little chance, no matter how much genealogy you do or where you upload it, that anyone will baptize her. Even the upload feature on the church's website is behind a password that you can't register for access to unless you're a member of the church. But that's a whole separate topic.
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wertyiu102
 
  1  
Reply Sun 19 Apr, 2009 10:29 pm
I hope that Phoenix32890 sees this post... I like to read septimus heap and I went on the website for it and saw the family tree... Jenna is adopted. You have all the natural kids on one branch, and the adopted on another...

?+?
?| |???????
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