6 Generations of the Mertens Family


I share a great appreciation for our family’s history with my Great Uncle Jack. I’m fortunate that through his many years of researching, I have access to a great collection of written history and photographs of the Mertens family. He has pictures and information on my direct lineage that goes back 6 generations.

I took some of the photos he’s collected and put them together so I could see everyone at once. I quickly realized that no one in this family is escaping a receding hairline (my son, I apologize to you in advance). I spent a great deal of time looking at the 3 pictures to the right and reading about their lives.  My great-great-great-grandfather (first picture on the right) was a Belgian immigrant. It was interesting reading about his life in Belgium and his eventual journey to Alexandria Louisiana. Anyway, as I read more and stared longer at these pictures it made me realize that one day in the very distant future (hopefully) I’ll be an ancestor to someone just like the 3 gentlemen to the right are to me now. I’ll just be a collection of photographs and information that someone reads about. I suppose that’s reason enough to make sure it’s interesting to read.

I’m glad I put these photos together and I’m going to try to make this a tradition. When my son gets older he’ll add his photograph, then teach his son to do the same. With any amount of luck, in the year 2345 a young Steven Mertens (I’m assuming that name will come back around, this time spelled the “wrong” way)  can admire his lineage in a large grid of photos during his interplanetary commute to work.

Do you have any ancestry traditions like this? If so, leave me a comment, I’d love to hear about it.


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