Sunday, July 31, 2016

Initial Exploration of a Family Tree for a Common Ancestor of All U.S. Presidents

  • This is a weekend work-in-progress and there might be errors introduced (and these are my responsibility) - please feel free to send corrections!
  • Viewing and exploring this tree currently requires a powerful computer and a large monitor.

I recently read of how some folks had determined how all of the U.S. presidents are related. It got me to wanting to create such a tree to include as a sample with the Family Tree visualization tool.

T. Dowling has compiled a ton of information on the ancestry of U.S. presidents, and so I was able to make use of his data to see what the full tree might look like. This was kind of exciting because I had never seen this tree shown in a single view.

In this tree (which contains about 3300 individuals), all presidents with the exception of Martin van Buren seem to be direct descendants of King John of England (1166-1216). Martin van Buren is a grand-nephew (via John's half-sister Maria Capet). So, I included King John's mother Eleonore of Aquitaine (1122-1204) to capture all of the presidents as descendants of a single person.

You can go directly to this tree using this link:

(Click image to view larger version)

Friday, July 22, 2016

Some Family Trees Based on Starz Outlander

My wife loves the show Outlander, and I have begun to watch it with her. Based on the story, I was interested in looking at the family trees for the various characters in the family tree visualization tool.

The extra Outlander trees are available in the family tree visualization tool via a few more samples that are enabled if you add something special to the web address (and there are a few direct links to specific Outlander trees):

Extra "Outlander" Samples Available if You Use Right Web Address

Warning - I have not read the books, but there are doubtlessly spoilers below. So be warned.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Handling BC Dates in a Family Tree Viewer

I came across a reddit thread where someone mentioned that there was a lot of inbreeding in Cleopatra's family tree. I had never known that, and after learning some more I decided that this would be a nice sample to include with the Family Tree visualization, available at

Cleopatra VII's Family Tree

Here, by "Cleopatra" I mean Cleopatra VII. During the Ptolemaic dynasty, it was common that the queens were named Cleopatra and the kings were "Ptolemy". It was also common for brothers and sisters to marry each other.

All of the dates for her family tree are BC, and I needed to update the tree viewer to handle this.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Features of a Web-Based Family Tree Visualization Tool