Hillary’s great-great-great-great grandmother, Frantiska Kadrmas. Not much is known of her life because history so often focuses on men.
During the holiday season many families spend extra time together. As multiple generations gather, it is the perfect time to exchange stories. As a young girl I was always interested in hearing stories from my grandparents and great grandparents. Now that I am older I am especially glad that I took the time to listen and learn. One of my favorite things to learn about from my older relatives is our family tree.
Looking into your ancestry can be an exciting journey that can be shared with the whole family. I found many interesting stories in my family tree, which I was able to trace back as far at 54 AD! During my research I found that it was difficult to find information on women and girls. Now I know that patrilineal descent patterns are much more common, and also easier to trace because the surname is usually passed on, but I was still shocked to find so little information about the females in my family.  So, I went on a search for the HERstory in my family history.  Hopefully I will be able to find out more about the lives of my female ancestors.
I hope that girls spend time with their older relatives this holiday season and learn more about their past. When those older generations are gone, a rich history often dies with them. I especially encourage girls to find out more about their female relatives and ancestors, so that their stories can be passed on to future generations. Stories from girls are just as important as those from boys, so let’s make sure not to lose them.
-Hillary Hanel
Junior Girl
Girl Museum Inc. 

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