Welcome to a new installment of “Meet our Members.” It’s time to get to know another awesome member of our community: Meet Robert (Bob).
Robert Keniston has been a member of our community since August 2013. He is quite active in projects such as U.S. History, Database Errors and the Rangers. He has also written over 50 biographies in our Bio Builders challenges and has been a winner in our Sourcerers and Connections challenges.
Surnames you are researching?
Keniston and all the variants, Harrington, Marine.
Locations you are researching?
Massachusetts, and County Galway, Ireland.
When and how did you get interested in genealogy and family history?
The genealogy bug bit me in 1977, with the mini series “Roots”. It’s all Alex Haley’s fault.
Who’s your favorite ancestor and why?
My favorite ancestor is my 2nd great-grandfather, Isaac Kennaston. He is the earliest of my ancestors that I have a picture of. It is a family picture taken in 1895. It’s interesting to see similar features in the faces that are the same as current family members.
Tell us about a brick wall you were able to break down.
I’ve only had one real brick wall, my 3rd great-grandfather, Daniel Kinnaston. He is still a brick wall, but I’ve put a few cracks in it. He was born in Vermont, about 1795. Vermont records are really scarce, unless your family was memorialized in a published genealogy.
If you could pick one person in history to be related to, who would it be and why?
Actually I’m already related to a noted person in history, Nathan Hale. He was willing to give his life for a principle, and the freedom of future generations.
What are some of your interests outside of genealogy?
I enjoy woodworking, reading, computers, and walks with my wife, Susie. The woodworking keeps me out of trouble, and the walks are great exercise.
How long have you been on WikiTree and how active are you?
I joined WikiTree August 22, 2013. I’ve been pretty active right from the beginning. The day after I joined WikiTree, I joined the Profile Improvement Project (PIP). I’m really involved in it. I’m currently involved in all three challenges that fall within the boundaries of PIP: Sourcerers, Biographers, and Connectors. I’m also a Ranger, Data Doctor, Coordinator for Massachusetts in the US History Project, and I do a little Mentoring.
What are some of the features/aspects of WikiTree that you love/don’t love as much?
I enjoy the collaboration and assistance that you get when you join WikiTree. I can’t say there is anything I don’t like, but I wish we had more sort options on lists.
Any tips for someone just starting out on WikiTree?
When in doubt or confused, ask for help. It’s out there for everyone. Remember, the only stupid question is one that is not asked.
If you could leave one message for your descendants, what would it be?
Get records of everything.
To get to know Bob even better, catch him in this Saturday’s (1 April) LiveCast at 3pm EDT.