I love family history. And while finding the family lineage back generation after generation is interesting, what I really like is thinking about the real story behind the people.
Sometimes those stories are easy to come by - an ancestor was noteworthy and there are records of his or her life. Or perhaps prolific and left a written record, an autobiography, letters, something of that sort.
But there are also the people whose stories we may never know. Think about the great-great-grandfather who came to America from the old country. Perhaps it is amazing to know his name at all. But what about his mother? Do we know who she is? If we have a name do we have a story? What did she think when she found out she was going to have a child? Was the great-great-grandfather her first child or her 12th? Was her husband her one true love, or was it an arranged marriage?
The lives of people a hundred years ago were very much like the lives of people today. True, they didn't have TV, internet, cars or a host of other modern conveniences, but they fell in love, they got married, they had children, they had hopes and heartaches.
Everyone has a story, whether it is our ancestor or our neighbor. And I love a good story. Don't you?