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View Full Version : Siblings, first cousins, nth cousins. Most distant relative you could identify?



swampyankee
2013-Sep-28, 01:38 PM
Another thread (http://cosmoquest.org/forum/showthread.php?146402-Were-royal-children-that-fragile-from-ancient-to-late-1800s) started veering into family relationships and degrees of consanguinity. For this poll, I'm only concerned with the most distant relative that you would know, say from meeting him or her at a family reunion, wedding, or funeral. In my case, it's my mother's second cousins, who (If I get this right....) would be my second cousins, once removed.

Trebuchet
2013-Sep-28, 02:17 PM
I'm a third cousin once removed to former US Attorney General Nicholas Katzenbach. If deceased relatives count, I'm also a distant, many removes cousin of both George Armstrong Custer and Herbert Hoover. And my wife is a descendant of King Henry II.

Buttercup
2013-Sep-28, 03:01 PM
I'm directly related to Daniel Boone, but not sure exactly how (to what degree a cousin or uncle).

Gillianren
2013-Sep-28, 04:03 PM
If family tradition is correct, my several-greats uncle was Robert E. Lee. This means I'm something like sixth cousins with Robert Duvall, Lee Marvin, and a former manager of my apartment complex. For cousins I know with certainty are cousins, I'm Facebook friends with a few of my first cousins once removed (Simon's second cousins), though I've only seen one of them since they were all babies.

ngc3314
2013-Sep-28, 04:12 PM
I know a second cousin, after we sat down and worked through part of the family tree. Some Southerner I am, being usually unable to get the whole once-removed, twice-removed thing.

swampyankee
2013-Sep-28, 05:03 PM
I know a second cousin, after we sat down and worked through part of the family tree. Some Southerner I am, being usually unable to get the whole once-removed, twice-removed thing.

I finally figured it out when my daughter was doing a genealogy project in high school. My father's family came to North America a long time ago (1635). We found ancestors who were Revolutionaries and Tories in the War of Independence and in both the US and Confederate armies in the Civil War. I'm sure that everybody whose family came here in the 17th Century would have the same sort of story.

Romanus
2013-Sep-28, 06:48 PM
I have four half-siblings I've never met. Aside from that, both parents were adopted, so no dice.

Buttercup
2013-Sep-28, 07:03 PM
Aside from that, both parents were adopted, so no dice.

Really? That's interesting. I wonder how many people have parents who were both adoptees. :) It's probably quite rare.

AstroRockHunter
2013-Sep-28, 08:01 PM
Jean-Baptiste Charboneau. "Pompey" the baby of the Lewis and Clark expedition.

I've been looking into my family for a couple of years, and I've noticed something that I find very hard to believe. It seems that all of the Charboneau's and Charbonneau's in the U.S. and Canada seem to be descendent's of one immigrant to Canada who arrived there in abt. 1659.

As I say, I find it very hard to believe that only one married couple immigrated to this continent and populated it so throughly.

ETA: Gee, I hope this doesn't get kicked over to ATM.

Solfe
2013-Sep-28, 08:07 PM
I met two of my great grand parents on my dad's side and lived with two of my great grandparents on my moms side. Every year I would visit my great grand mother's sister and brother. For a time, I lived with my great grand mother's Sister's children and grand children. (My iPhone insists "Sister's" always capitalized.)

Jeff Root
2013-Sep-28, 09:21 PM
I've never met the baby (who now has children of her own), but
my grandmother, her daughter (my aunt), her daughter (my first
cousin), her daughter (my first cousin once removed), and her
daughter (the baby, my first cousin twice removed) were in a
photo together in the newspaper because somebody thought
it was interesting to show five generations in which the oldest
child was female.

-- Jeff, in Minneapolis

Tobin Dax
2013-Sep-29, 01:47 AM
A math teacher at my high school was the granddaughter of my great-grandmother's cousin (I think). I don't recall what that makes us (Xth cousins, Y times removed).

I do believe that another relative of that same great-grandmother was Lawrence Welk's wife.

And I could probably claim astronaut Alan Bean as a very distant relative, since we're both Clan MacBain. He took a piece of the clan tartan to the moon with him. :)

swampyankee
2013-Sep-29, 12:29 PM
Jean-Baptiste Charboneau. "Pompey" the baby of the Lewis and Clark expedition.

I've been looking into my family for a couple of years, and I've noticed something that I find very hard to believe. It seems that all of the Charboneau's and Charbonneau's in the U.S. and Canada seem to be descendent's of one immigrant to Canada who arrived there in abt. 1659.

As I say, I find it very hard to believe that only one married couple immigrated to this continent and populated it so throughly.

ETA: Gee, I hope this doesn't get kicked over to ATM.

There are, at last count, about 40,000 people in the US (plus a few more in Canada) with my surname who can be traced to one man who immigrated in 1635. There may have been non-relatives who took the same surname (some of my ancestors may have been slave owners, although I don't think the ones in New England had enough money) and non-relatives who immigrated later. I've heard, somewhere, that being descended from somebody on the Mayflower is not as special as some people think: about 25% of the people in the US fall into that group.

grapes
2013-Sep-29, 09:57 PM
I've never met the baby (who now has children of her own), but
my grandmother, her daughter (my aunt), her daughter (my first
cousin), her daughter (my first cousin once removed), and her
daughter (the baby, my first cousin twice removed) were in a
photo together in the newspaper because somebody thought
it was interesting to show five generations in which the oldest
child was female.

Newspapers often show four generational pics. My son, my wife, her mother, *her* father and his mother appeared once.

A math teacher at my high school was the granddaughter of my great-grandmother's cousin (I think). I don't recall what that makes us (Xth cousins, Y times removed).

One of your parents and the math teacher are third cousins then, right? You'd be fourth cousins with a child of the math teacher.

My brother shared a house with three guys, found out later one was a third cousin.

HenrikOlsen
2013-Sep-30, 10:21 AM
Taking "you could identify" as meaning recognizing and greeting as family when we meet:
I got to talking to an American trainee once who mentioned that she'd visited a graveyard and found the grave of the brother of one of her ancestors who'd emigrated to America, upon hearing which graveyard I realized that we were probably related, and that I could find out how, as I not only know I'm descended of most of the population of that small island if we go far enough back, but I also knew that all the records had already been computerized (by my father).
So I've met an American where we managed to identify a common ancestor who was born in the last part of the 1600's, making us thirteenth cousins or so, I can't remember the exact detail any more.

Apart from that, I'd guess it's fifth or sixth cousins.

Nicolas
2013-Sep-30, 02:56 PM
These days, I stick with family members starting from my mother (borthers, sisters, and their offspring). I'm the youngest of many children, so was my mother. My grandfather was (IIRC) nearly 90 years older than me! So one generation above my mother, I hardly know anyone.

R.A.F.
2013-Sep-30, 03:04 PM
This poll needs additional options....for instance, I'm an only child, and both my parents are dead...and I haven't spoken with my first cousins since the early 70's....just lost touch...

In other words, none of the options given applies to me.

Chuck
2013-Oct-01, 04:13 PM
My mother's sister married my father's brother and they had three sons. Are they my zeroeth cousins?

NEOWatcher
2013-Oct-01, 04:43 PM
Nope; still first cousins. You have to traverse one generation to get to them.

Trebuchet
2013-Oct-01, 06:01 PM
My mother's sister married my father's brother and they had three sons. Are they my zeroeth cousins?

Double first cousins, in fact.

Since first cousins share common grandparents, I guess zeroeth cousins would share parents, in other words, siblings.

It hasn't come up yet in this thread but since many people don't understand the difference between nth cousins and removed cousins:

Nth cousins are in the SAME generation from the common ancestor. First cousins share grandparents, 2nd cousins share great-grandparents, and so on back.
Removed cousins are from DIFFERENT generations. If your grandparents are my great-grandparents, we're first cousins once removed. The removal can be in either direction. Your first cousins kids are first cousins once removed. Her grandkids are twice removed.

Chuck
2013-Oct-01, 09:46 PM
Is the degree of removal different in different directions? My first cousin's son is my first cousin once removed but I'm his second cousin once removed, right? Our common ancestor is one generation farther back for him than for me.

JohnD
2013-Oct-01, 10:06 PM
My great-great-great-grandfather had three brothers. He stayed in Wales, one brother went to the US, one to Australia and one to Argentina.
I have dozens of cousins in Beunos Aries, but the one I am in contact with lives in the Napa Valley, Ca. thre scion of the family branch that went North.
Weird thing is he is my age, but he is of the generation of my children. Generations roll faster in America!
That makes us fourth cousins . In fact we are no more likely to share common genes than a random member of the public with either of us - but we are Family!

John

pzkpfw
2013-Oct-01, 11:05 PM
Voted "Siblings, parents, grand parents".

We emigrated from the Netherlands to N.Z. when I was 1.5; so while I've met some of the extended family and have even hosted cousins who've travelled to N.Z. - I really wouldn't recognise any of them.

Growing up, I always thought it was kind of weird that people had cousins and uncles and such.

Gillianren
2013-Oct-01, 11:07 PM
Is the degree of removal different in different directions? My first cousin's son is my first cousin once removed but I'm his second cousin once removed, right? Our common ancestor is one generation farther back for him than for me.

Nope. It isn't how far back the common ancestor is; it's the generation of descent. My first cousin is of the same generation as I am. Likewise my second cousin, third cousin, and so forth. But my first cousin's son is a generation away from me, and his children will be two generations away and so forth. His children will still be my first cousins, but they'll be first cousins twice removed. Each "remove" is a generation. Each level of cousin is a further level since the common ancestor.

Trebuchet
2013-Oct-02, 12:02 AM
Is the degree of removal different in different directions? My first cousin's son is my first cousin once removed but I'm his second cousin once removed, right? Our common ancestor is one generation farther back for him than for me.

No, like Gillian says, you are first cousins once removed to each other. Glad you asked, this is why I put that on here. Your children, if you have any, would be second cousins to your cousin's son.

Hornblower
2013-Oct-02, 03:07 AM
The most distant ones I have known personally are second cousins once removed.

The relationships are sometimes confusing on my mother's side of the family because of the enormous age range. Her mother was one of 10 siblings over a period of 21 years, and their children were born over a period of over 40 years. Aunts and uncles who were younger than some of their nieces and nephews were not uncommon in this extended family.

If we add my father's stepfather to the mix, his mother was a great-grandmother figure to me.

Gillianren
2013-Oct-02, 05:02 AM
A couple of my first cousins just turned fifty-something the other day. (They're twins.) They are over fifteen years older than I am, because their mom married early, and my dad married late. On my mom's side, the youngest of my first cousins are starting college. On my dad's side, the oldest of my first cousins once removed have been in college for a few years. Simon has second cousins on that side ranging from about seven to somewhere in their twenties. (The only one whose age I'm certain of turns twenty-two in December.) In none of these cases has the issue been large families, however. I think the largest family is my aunt's; she had four sons. It's just that we start our families at ages ranging from seventeen to forty-something, have a couple of kids, and then stop.

Nicolas
2013-Oct-03, 11:56 AM
A couple of my first cousins just turned fifty-something the other day. (They're twins.) They are over fifteen years older than I am, because their mom married early, and my dad married late. On my mom's side, the youngest of my first cousins are starting college. On my dad's side, the oldest of my first cousins once removed have been in college for a few years. Simon has second cousins on that side ranging from about seven to somewhere in their twenties. (The only one whose age I'm certain of turns twenty-two in December.) In none of these cases has the issue been large families, however. I think the largest family is my aunt's; she had four sons. It's just that we start our families at ages ranging from seventeen to forty-something, have a couple of kids, and then stop.

My sister has a grandchild that is older than my son. No teenage moms involved.

Trebuchet
2013-Oct-03, 02:59 PM
An my wife has an uncle younger than she is. Her Mom was the first child in the family and her uncle was an afterthought.

My wife was just contacted by a second cousin looking for family history information. He's thrilled to find someone who has some.

We've met lots and lots of very distant cousins at assorted family reunions while doing our genealogy research.

Noclevername
2013-Oct-03, 03:08 PM
My mother does a lot of genealogy research, and has traced her family tree supposedly back to Italian royalty. My father's father's side of the family apparently came to the US by jumping ship at the turn of the century under an assumed name, so details are obscure before that point.

I recently learned that my paternal great-grandparents were first cousins, which makes me a little uncomfortable, but apparently it was not that uncommon at the time.

Gillianren
2013-Oct-03, 03:15 PM
My wife was just contacted by a second cousin looking for family history information. He's thrilled to find someone who has some.

One of my first cousins recently had the same reaction, which I find odd. Both of my grandfathers were seriously into genealogy; how did she not get a copy of Grandpa's research when I did? (Answer, probably, because I was in high school and she was like seven.) But she didn't even know where our grandfather was born, which I've known since I was a kid. She was visiting some genealogy website, and her father told her to just call my sister, who has all of Grandpa's research. I told her to give me a chance to dig around and see if I can find it, and if not, I'll call my sister for her. I have her phone number.

grapes
2013-Oct-03, 04:02 PM
Recently, I tracked down the grandson of the sister (who lived in Illinois) of the wife of the brother of my grandfather (who all lived in Wyoming). After exchanging a few emails, we realized that we both lived in the same town (in North Carolina). We're not really related though.

Trebuchet
2013-Oct-03, 04:54 PM
A few years ago, I got excited at finding some of my ancestors in a website. A little further study revealed the identity of the poster, who had gotten the information from me in the first place.

Genealogy is a fun, but sometimes frustrating hobby. We haven't been actively doing much with it for quite some time and need to get back to it, especially with some of the newer web resources.

BigDon
2013-Oct-03, 09:42 PM
My first North American ancestor who immigrated here. He earned a "dit name" for being extraordinarily lucky, which became my family name.

And the luck seems to be passed down genetically, considering all the things I've survived. Which was how my ancestor earned his new name. Survived an incredible spat of hardships and dangers that impressed all the other colonists. Stuff *I* wouldn't have survived.

closetgeek
2013-Oct-05, 02:08 PM
I have met my mother's cousins and aunts/uncles, but I certainly wouldn't recognize them now. My recognotion goes as far as my cousin's kids. As far as family history, the heritage book my paternal grandfather had, puts us as direct descendants of James Lynch. My family has always had a deep respect for tough love. ;)