Explore the Different Ways to View Descendancy Lines
It is said that if you pick an ancestor back ten generations, there would be close to one million descendants. Many of us probably have those "Aunt Marys" in our family that traced our ancestral lines back to "Noah", or at least back into the 1500-1600s. These will be our "ANCESTRAL" lines.
Around 2012 or so, an emphasis on finding all the collateral line descendants, our cousins, was introduced. This is called "Descendancy Research". If you were to pick an ancestor just four generations back (a great-great grandparent), there will SIXTEEN collateral descendant lines to research. Sorry…just when you thought that your family history was done! Actually, it is quite exciting to think that we can work on finding new people in these lines, AND during a time period when records are more easily found. Don't forget that your collateral line living cousins may often have photos, histories, or other information about your family members just waiting to be shared with you.
You will find that doing research on descendant lines is much easier now with all the records coming on line. It is certainly much easier than trying to find your ancestry lines before the 1800s.