In my regular job, I tend to meet a lot of people.
Have I mentioned I come from big Chicago-based Polish family?
And have I mentioned that everyone had like 10 kids each?
(Obviously either they really liked each other, or just had nothing else to do.)
And did I mention that since everyone lived in the same neighborhood (that even though it seems close to inbreeding, it's not... ) They all kind of married each other? 2 brothers married 2 sisters, an uncle and a nephew married 2 sisters. It even gets weirder that an oldest brother had a son that was the same age as his youngest brother and they married 2 sisters.
Craziness. Get out of your own neighborhood people.
Imagine my surprise the other morning at work when I recognized a last name and I joked to the woman,
"You have one of my family tree names, it's....., we must be related."
"Oh really?" I could tell she was totally humoring me.
"Yes, the first name was Bernard."
That stopped her dead in her tracks.
"That was my grandfather!"
"Was he raised my his aunt because his mother died in childbirth?"
So this stranger who just walked off the street is my second cousin through one side and my third cousin through the other because 2 first cousins and married a brother and a sister. Who happened to be our Great-great grandparents.
Who would have thought it?
It's a small world after all.
P.S. if you are looking to research your family tree, you can find censuses and other info at Ancestry.com. Even though it's paid service, it's really reasonable and really good.