Family Tree Builder

100 Family Tree Quotes

Genealogy is an exciting hobby that can tell us so much about our past. Here are 100 family tree quotes that will make you think and also make you laugh as well about this favorite pastime.

Family Tree Quotes

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Where known I have given credit. If there is a quote that you feel needs crediting then please comment at the end of the post.

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Family History Proverbs!

1. To forget one’s ancestors is to be a brook without a source, a tree without a root. — Chinese Proverb

2. He who has no fools, knaves, or beggars in his family was begot by a flash of lightning. — Old English proverb

3. You live as long as you are remembered. — Russian proverb

Genealogy Quotes To Make You Laugh!

4. Where there’s a will there’s a genealogist.

5. Genealogy is not fatal but it is a grave disease.

6. Eventually all genealogists come to their census.

7. Genealogist: We do precision guesswork based on unreliable data provided by those of questionable knowledge.

8. Only a genealogist thinks that a step backward is progress.

9. Genealogify: To skillfully and imperceptibly turn a conversation to the topic of genealogy.

10. Genealogist: Because freakin miracle worker is not an official job title.

11. I’m a genealogist: I run around in circles and chase my own tale.

12. Genealogy: It’s all about the roots.

13. Genealogy: Chasing your own tale.

14. So many ancestors, so little time.

15. Genealogy is my therapy.

16. Family Tree Hugger.

17. Genealogists are relatively obsessed.

18. Genealogy: Proving once and for all, that insanity is hereditary.

19. Extreme Genealogy: Leave no stone unturned unless it’s a tombstone.

20. Some Grandmas knit, real grandmas do genealogy.

21. Friends come and go, but relatives tend to accumulate.

22. Genealogy: Where you confuse the dead and irritate the living.

23. I come from a long line of dead people.


Family History Quotes To Make You Think!

24. Anybody can make history, only a great man can write it.

25. I am bound to them, though I cannot look into their eyes or hear their voices. I honor their history and I will cherish their lives. Their story will be told and I will remember them.

26. We are who we are because they were who they were.

27. Every time an old person dies it is as if a library burns down.

28. Your ancestors count on you to remember them.

29. Respect your ancestors for you are the result of a thousand loves.

30. Who will tell your story when you’re gone?

31. Knowing family history expands perspective.

32. There is a fine line between a packrat and a serious family historian.

33. Genealogists do not gather facts but breathe life into all who have gone before.

34. Facts get recorded. Stories get remembered.

35. Genealogy is like a magic mirror. Look into it, and pretty soon, interesting faces appear.

36. My ancestors are always with me. So I am never alone.

37. Remember that when a family member passes away, they take a library of memories with them.

38. The roots of a family tree begin with the love of two hearts.

39. Family. A link to the past and a bridge to our future.

40. Our family. Like branches on a tree we all grow in different directions, yet our roots remain as one.

41. Remember and honor the family who have come and gone before you. Because they had a hand in shaping who you are.

42. Divine genealogy is not limited to royal or priestly families but is extended to all who would come unto Christ.

43. Not only do we honor our ancestors but we live honorably because we are somebody’s future ancestors.

44. We are the chosen. In each family, there is one who seems called to find the ancestors. To put flesh on their bones and make them alive again, to tell the family story and feel that somehow they know and approve. Doing genealogy is not a cold gathering of facts, but instead, breathing life into all who have gone before. We are the storytellers of the tribe.

Meme Attention Deficit Genealogy Disorder

More Genealogy Quotes To Make You Laugh!

45. You know you are addicted to genealogy when … you are more interested in what happened in 1813 than in 2013.

46. What was that one thing that always interferes with my genealogy obsession? Oh yeah … life!

47. When I die I give my friends to change my Facebook status to “Is visiting with ancestors”!

48. It’s just a matter of time before they add “syndrome” after the word Genealogy.

49. Whoever said “seek and ye shall find” was not a genealogist.

50. Some family trees have beautiful leaves, and some have just a bunch of nuts. Remember, it is the nuts that make the tree worth shaking.

51. Genealogy: It’s not the size of the tree that matters. It’s the quality of the nuts you find on there.

52. I collect dead relatives and sometimes a live cousin.

53. My ancestors must be in a witness protection program.

54. I shook my family tree and a bunch of nuts fell out.

55. There are no limits to what you can accomplish in your genealogy research when you are supposed to be doing something else.

Meme Genealogists

Credited Family History Quotes!

56. We all grow up with the weight of history on us. Our ancestors dwell in the attics of our brains as they do in the spiraling chains of knowledge hidden in every cell of our bodies. — Shirley Abbott

57. Preserve your memories, keep them well, what you forget you can never retell. — Louisa May Alcott

58. I don’t have to look up my family tree because I know that I’m the sap. — Fred Allen

59. We don’t own our family history. We simply preserve it for the next generation. — Rosemary Alva

60. We need to haunt the house of history and listen anew to the ancestors’ wisdom. – Maya Angelou

61. I wish I had realized that family history is a perishable commodity. It disappears with time, as memories fade, and as loved ones pass on. I wish I had known that the most important aspect of family history is preserving a record of the present for the future. — Guy Black

62. Research is what I’m doing when I don’t know what I’m doing. – Wernher von Braun

63. If we tried to sink the past beneath our feet, be sure the future would not stand. – Elizabeth Barrett Browning

64. If you want to understand today, you have to search yesterday. — Pearl S Buck

65. Family faces are magic mirrors. Looking at people who belong to us, we see the past, present, and future. — Gail Lumet Buckley

66. People will not look forward to posterity who never looks backward to their ancestors. — Edmund Burke

67. We all carry inside us, people who came before us. — Liam Callanan

68. There are only two lasting bequests we can give our children – one is roots, and the other, wings. — Hodding S. Carter

69. We’ve uncovered some embarrassing ancestors in the not-too-distant past. Some horse thieves, and some people killed on Saturday nights. One of my relatives, unfortunately, was even in the newspaper business. — Jimmy Carter

More Credited Family History Quotes!

70. A man who thinks too much about his ancestors is like a potato—the best part of him is underground — Henry S.F. Cooper

71. If you don’t know history, you don’t know anything. You are a leaf that doesn’t know it is part of a tree. – Michael Crichton

72. Every man is a quotation from all his ancestors. — Ralph Waldo Emerson

73. We are the children of many sires, and every drop of blood in us in its turn … betrays its ancestor. — Ralph Waldo Emerson

74. What people are ashamed of usually makes a good story. — F. Scott Fitzgerald

75. Don’t revise history to be politically correct. — Liz Calloway Gooch

76. Every family has a story that it tells itself, that it passes on to the children and grandchildren. The story grows over the years, mutates, some parts are sharpened, others dropped, and there is often debate about what really happened. But even with these different sides of the same story, there is still agreement that this is the family story. — A.M. Hames

77. In all of us there is a hunger, marrow-deep, to know our heritage. To know who we are and where we have come from. — Alex Haley

78. If you look deeply into the palm of your hands, you will see your parents and all generations of your ancestors. All of them are alive in this moment. Each is present in your body. You are the continuation of each of these people. — Thich Nhat Hanh

79. The thing that interests me most about family history is the gap between the things we think we know about our families and the realities. – Jeremy Hardy

80. Those who forget their past are destined to repeat it. — Robert A. Heinlein

81. There is no king who has not had a slave among his ancestors, and no slave who has not had a king among his. – Helen Keller

82. Stories have to be told or they die, and when they die, we can’t remember who we are or why we’re here — Sue Monk Kidd

83. Southerners are so devoted to genealogy that we see a family tree under every bush. — Florence King

84. I don’t know who my grandfather was, I am much more concerned to know what his grandson will be. — Abraham Lincoln

Even More Credited Family History Quotes!

85. When our hearts turn to our ancestors, something changes insides us. We feel part of something greater than us. — Russell M Nelson

86. Everyone has ancestors and it is only a question of going back far enough to find a good one. — Howard Kenneth Nixon

87. When we research our own lines we become interested in more than just names. Our interest turns our hearts to our father. We seek to find, know and serve them — Boyd K Packer

88. It is a desirable thing to be well-descended, but the glory belongs to our ancestors. — Plutarch

89. Genealogy: Tracing yourself back to people better than you are. — John Garland Pollard

90. Genealogy is like a scavenger hunt and a jigsaw puzzle all rolled into one. — Dolores J Rush

91. When a society or a civilization perishes, one condition can always be found. They forgot where they came from. — Carle Sandbur

92. We inherit from our ancestor’s gifts so often taken for granted. Each of us contains within this inheritance of soul. We are links between the ages, containing past and present expectations, sacred memories, and future promise. – Edward Sellner

93. If you cannot get rid of the family skeleton, you may as well make it dance. — George Bernard Shaw

94. People are hungry for stories. It’s part of our very being. Storytelling is a form of history, of immortality too. It goes from one generation to another. — Studs Terkel

95. History doesn’t move you more than when it’s in the iron of your own blood. — J.R. Tompkins

96. Why waste your money looking up your family tree? Just go into politics and your opponents will do it for you. — Mark Twain

97. Most of our ancestors were not perfect ladies and gentlemen. The majority of them weren’t even mammals. — Robert Anton Wilson

98. Nothing has really happened until it has been recorded. — Virginia Woolf

99. Grandchildren are the dots that connect the lines from generation to generation. — Lois Wyse

100. Genealogy lets you find your ancestors while you learn about your past. — Owain Couch

The Neverending Journey

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Further Quotes!

If you want to check out more quotes then please head on over to Lonetester HQ. There you will find more quotes that Alona has shared with her visitors to her site.

Thank You and Please Leave A Comment

I hope you enjoyed this post giving you 100 family tree quotes to make you laugh and also to think about. If you have any questions or comments then please leave a comment below.

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Article Name
100 Family Tree Quotes
A collection of 100 Family Tree Quotes that will make you think and laugh about the enthralling and often addictive hobby of genealogy.
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The Genealogy Guide
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16 thoughts on “100 Family Tree Quotes”

  1. Hi Owen
    Thank you for your quotations – many smiles and much truth! I wonder if anyone has come across the following:
    “Family history is a dish of selected cuts, sliced thin, served cold, bloodless, halal” It’s for a friend, but neither of us can find the attribution. Could it be from, “Midnight’s Children?”
    All help appreciated!

  2. This is great! I shook my family tree and a bunch of nuts fell out. Hahaha. Thanks for making us laugh. We need it
    I will share these for sure.
    I have to say that the older generation in my family likes to tell stories. The less older does not which is a bit problematic for the younger generations. Why is it that people in their 40s and 50s don’t like to share? Anyways that’s for me to find out (but I would appreciate some suggestions).

    1. Haha, that does seem to be a popular quote doesn’t it. I am glad that I made you laugh.

      It does seem strange that the less older ones in your family don’t seem to want to share. Similarly it does seem that older people do tend to trace their ancestry more than the younger generation. I’m glad that I started tracing mine at a fairly young age, (early 30s).

      I would say most people are interested in their family tree. But some people are just not into it I’m afraid. It therefore means that other people in the family need to take up the mantle and do the research. Otherwise any stories, tales, anecdotes and memories will be lost in time forever. Such a shame.

  3. This is a good read. Studying genealogy must be really fun indeed. ” I shook my family tree and a bunch of nuts fell out” that’s a good one. Loved the cartoons about genealogy as well. Especially ADGD. Though, I never thought much about my tree, now I am starting to consider to track down my tree as well. Thanks for the fun post.

    1. Glad that you liked it Veena and I am glad that it inspired that it has inspired you. I wonder if you have any nits in your tree. Only joking. All the best with your research.

  4. Wow Owain!

    No way did I expect you to have that many quotes on genealogy. Where did you get them all?

    This is a great post. I think humor is important. You should get a lot of great visitors here as a result of this post.

    I always love visiting your site, even though no one in my family looks very far into our family tree without learning something they didn’t want to know! (We’re related to George Washington… and Benedict Arnold, for instance.) Folks usually drop the subject after a few hours research!

    Thanks for the laughs!

    1. Hi Elizabeth. I knew for my 100th post that I wanted to find and write 100 genealogy and family tree quotes. I wanted to step aside from the usual informative posts and bring something different to my site. It did take a while though to find them all and put them altogether.

      Genealogy can be an overwhelming hobby at times. We can find so much about our ancestors and sometimes it can become quite a headache to put in order. But there are times when we have to laugh about it all as these quotes do.

      That is fantastic that you’re related to such famous people. That must give you lots to talk about.

      Thank you for visiting my site.

  5. I love #50 the best Some family trees have beautiful leaves, and some have just a bunch of nuts. Remember, it is the nuts that make the tree worth shaking. that’s awesome.

    I actually bookmarked this and I will be referring back as needed as these are all awesome

    you mush have worked hard getting this altogether. thank you for your hard work.

    1. Thanks Brent. It did take a while to put all this together. As I was putting it together I knew that I had to put these quotes into their relevant parts. There are some that will make you laugh but also some that will make you think. And some will inspire you to trace your ancestry as well.

  6. This article is hilarious! It gave me a good laugh. I’m from the Philippines and now I wonder where my roots really came from. It will be interesting to know that I came from an odd race.


    1. That’s great that I have inspired to trace your family history Ronald. Apart from making you laugh and think, that was my other intention with this post. There are some really inspiring quotes in this post that really get your mind wondering. Wondering who our ancestors were and find out all about them.

  7. These have made me laugh so much!
    I have loved working slowly but surely on our family tree. It was amazing to find so many ancestors with the name Isabella. It is my middle name, my daughters name, my grandmothers name ( all of which were not a surprise LOL) but also Isabella’s are in our family (on both mine and my husbands side) way back over 200 years ago.
    I truly can say it is an old family name!

    1. Well that really is interesting that the name Isabella has been going strong in your family for over 200 years. And in both sides of the family as well. I see quite a few names that feature in both sides of my family. Common ones include John and Jeremiah.

  8. I really laughed when I read them. These are really funny and I especially love the Extreme Genealogy’s tombstone quote.
    And I have to give credits to Mark Twain too. I thought that digging up politicians’ past only happens in my country but after that quote I am sure it happens everywhere.

    1. Thank you Furkan. Genealogy is such an enjoyable hobby. I wanted to share this enjoyment with these quotes, they really do make you think and laugh as well. But also I think they will inspire anyone to look into their family history.

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