An Ancestor's Unique Talent

Having the family tree with a listing of each branches’ names, dates and locations is a good way to organize the basic information. Yet, these ancestors were real people with real living lives and most importantly, each had at least one unique skill, talent, special interest or ability. Those unique items may not have made them famous or wealthy, but it was unique for them in their life.

To define a talent: A talent (or gift, or aptitude) is the skill that someone has to do something very well that people usually like and that is difficult. It is an ability that someone is born with or they have practiced and become good at. Some people become quite good at something even if they do not have much talent, but if they are willing to work very hard at the skill.

Some examples of unique talents include: empathy / feelings, a good listener, a seamstress, singing, artwork, magic, creative imagination, a good speaker, volunteer, organization, storyteller, very friendly, writer, energetic, musical instrument, excellent speller, teacher, creative, sense of humor, memorize, patience, a swimmer, woodworking, mechanical, knowledgeable, cook, knit, carve wood, honesty, team player, handle conflict, learn a foreign language, a leader, problem-solving, making crafts, gardening (‘green thumb’), sports player, performer, and a risk-taker … just to name a few.

As you learn about each ancestor, see if you can identify their own unique skills or talents. Talk to family members who knew the ancestor, examine their career choice, see if there are any letters or diaries written by them, and make sure you investigate any hometown newspaper articles about the individual. There might be a news article about the ancestor winning the hometown 6th grade spelling bee. They may have never won any other spelling contests, but they did win that one. That is a talent. Might find a grandmother won a blue ribbon at the county fair for a winning chocolate cake. That is talent.

Locating any of each person’s talents will give you more insight about them as a person. Plus not just direct ancestors (parents, grandparents, etc) but also check extended family members; a cousin, aunt or uncle. You might even discover you share a similar talent with a relative.

Photos: 1920s Card Tricks; 1930s County Fair Ribbons; 1910s lady crocheting and 1920 male singer.

Related Blogs:

Hidden Family Talents

Lost Skills

Outstanding Skills

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