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Everybody is related to everybody else. Really. Most religions teach that the human race is all one giant family, and social scientists have come around to the same view. Take a look at what Alex Shoumatoff writes in The Mountain of Names:

"Most geneticists are in agreement that, as the science writer Guy Murchie explains, 'no human can be less closely related to any other human than approximately fiftieth cousin, and most of us are a lot closer . . . [that, in other words] the family trees of all of us, of whatever origin or trait, must meet and merge into one genetic tree of all humanity by the time they have spread into our ancestors for about fifty generations.' The 'family of man' which has been posited by many religions and philosophies -- it was a central concept of the Enlightenment -- actually exists. . . . 'It is virtually certain . . . that you are a direct descendant of Muhammad and every fertile predecessor of his, including Krishna, Confucius, Abraham, Buddha, Caesar, Ishmael, and Judas Iscariot,' Murchie writes. 'Of course, you must also be descended from million who have lived since Muhammad, inevitably including kings and criminals, but the earlier they lived the more surely you are their descendants.'"

We have verifiable, if extremely distant, connections to a few famous Americans, including Presidents Richard M. Nixon, Rutherford B. Hayes and William Howard Taft, as well as Harriet Beecher Stowe (not to mention Mrs. Stowe's more controversial brother, Henry Ward Beecher). These distant cousins are all related to us through our common descent from the Foote family of England and New England.

Return to Patrick's Family History Page

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