Caution: Do not open the All the Stories app if you have anything else to do. I opened it just to get an idea of what it is so I could write a review of it later. After two hours of sitting in a chair I didn’t like, my back hurt so much I finally stopped.
All the Stories is an amazing app. You sign in, allow access to your family, and a list of all the stories anyone has posted on your family tree comes up. It’s as user friendly as anything I’ve seen: easy to access, no setup, instant results, and the results are important.
I couldn’t possibly spend the time necessary to find all the stories from my family history that were instantly listed by using this app. Genealogy and family history have always been available to me. Every side of my family has pioneer history, so it’s easy to take for granted. If curiosity strikes, I just log on to FamilySearch.org and check something out. But that’s a fairly focused view.
My grandson and I recently traced a couple of my grandmother’s lines back over 2,000 years. It was fun for both of us. We saw some names we thought were amusing, such as Odin Wodin. It’s been fun to talk about how we had relatives in Troy, but there wasn’t much to personally identify with.
When I started reading to my family from All the Stories, I found relatives, names, times, and places I had never heard of. I’m a direct descendent of a man who made Joseph Smith’s boots. I’m descended from another man who gave Joseph Smith water when the Prophet was on his way to jail.
I found ancestors who fought the Indians and the French before the revolutionary war. Some accounts documented travel aboard ships from England to America. Others gave first-hand memories of life in Nauvoo and of the persecution those folks suffered. Others chronicled the trials of the pioneer treks to the Salt Lake valley.
I found confirmation of my dad’s grandfather working for Brigham Young as a baker and then being assigned to guard against Indian attacks at Guard Knoll in Ephraim. And I thought all my Ephraim roots were from my mother’s side.
A concise description explains how the person in the story is related to you. For example, “Jane Doe is your mother’s 5th great grandmother.” This detail makes the family history more personal that would otherwise be another piece of research I’d have to wade through. Also, links to FamilySearch.org connect that person and that particular story.
My only suggestion for the app is to put the relationship at the beginning of the story instead of the end. I know that’s a small detail, but it would help those of us who are spoiled and lazy family researchers.
I’ve enjoyed a number of the FamilySearch.org apps. All the Stories deeply touched me. It provides an intimate connection through the words of relatives from the past. It also opened up information I’d never been able to confirm. I’d always heard there was a French connection in my family history. Thanks to All the Stories, I now know it was Norman.
Try this app out. There’s no learning curve, no technical challenges, and no forks in the trail. Just make sure you’re in a comfortable chair and you have a few hours.