Friday, January 16, 2009

My Famous Relations (Pretty far removed!)

My sister Alberta has been continually updating our page on, and has gotten back to the 1600s for some branches of our family. has a cool feature where you can find the famous people you are related to and how far removed they are.  Here is a small selection of my famous "relations":

Georgia O'Keefe (1887-1986)
American Painter
Georgia O'Keefe is well-known for her abstract and close-up paintings of flowers.
Relationship: 7th Cousin 2 times removed

Orville Wright (1871-1948)
American Inventor
Orville and Wilbur Wright were the first people to create a working flying machine, which first flew in 1903. They are also credited with many other aviation inventions.
Relationship: 6th Cousin 4 times removed

 Theodore Roosevelt (1858-1919)
26th President of the United States
Theodore "Teddy" Roosevelt was the first president to win the Nobel Peace Prize. With the assassination of President McKinley he became the youngest president in the nation's history. He brought new excitement and power to the presidency as he vigorously led Congress and the American public toward progressive reforms and a strong foreign policy. His popular presidency had many accomplishments, but he personally considered his greatest accomplishment to be the creation of the Panama Canal. The "Teddy" Bear got its name from President Roosevelt.
Relationship: 8th Cousin 4 times removed

John Wayne (1907-1979)
American Actor
John Wayne, a western film icon, was named Marion Robert Morrison at birth. His parents later changed his name to Marion Michael Morrison. He starred in many different movies including True Grit, The Alamo, and The Green Berets.
Relationship: 8th Cousin 5 times removed

Anna of Russia (1693-1740)
Empress of Russia
Anna Ivanovna reigned as Duchess of Courland from 1711 to 1730 and as Empress of Russia from 1730 to 1740. She strongly disliked and distrusted Russian nobles and created a special police force to intimidate those who opposed her.
Relationship: 15th Cousin 6 times removed

Johannes Vermeer (1632-1675)
Dutch Painter
Known for his incredible use of light, Johannes Vermeer is second only to Rembrandt in fame and critical appraise among Dutch artists. His paintings most often depict the action of everyday domestic tasks.
Relationship: 2nd Cousin 38 times removed


Ishmael said...

I've never understood the "X-times removed" part of relations.... Any chance you have a reference that explains that?

I'm related to some guy who was supposedly the greatest painter in Finland. Though if I ever knew his name, I've forgotten it, and if I did remember it, I probably couldn't pronounce it. He was the nephew of my grandfather, so I don't know how many times removed that is....

Isiik said...

I have no idea how that "removed" thing works. If I ever figure it out I'll post on it. Not that I am trying very hard to figure it out...

devilsclub said...

Hey, we're related-through the Wrights at least. S.O. has been obsessed with the same ancestry site lately. Do you think when you go back far enough the six degrees of separation are lesser? attempts to explain the cousins removed, I still don't get it though.

The Yellow Porcupine said...

The big question, April, is: are you related to Kevin Bacon?

Isiik said...

I wish there was a way we could enter a name and find out if we are related to them! I bet there will be within a few years!

Twofrogs said...

"Removed" means you're from different generations. So, "once removed" means there is a difference of one generation. As in, your mother's first cousin is your first cousin, once removed.