“I Have My Family Tree Back to Adam and Eve”

January 10, 2013  - by 

Warning. Contains spoilers. Have you ever heard these words uttered “I Have My Family Tree Back to Adam and Eve”? When asked if it is possible for living people to extend ancestral lines back to Adam and Eve, Robert C. Gunderson, Senior Royalty Research Specialist, of the Church Genealogical Department, stated:

“The simplest answer is No. Let me explain. In thirty-five years of genealogical research, I have yet to see a pedigree back to Adam that can be documented. By assignment, I have reviewed hundreds of pedigrees over the years. I have not found one where each connection on the pedigree can be justified by evidence from contemporary documents. In my opinion it is not even possible to verify historically a connected European pedigree earlier than the time of the Merovingian Kings (c. a.d. 450–a.d. 752).

“Every pedigree I have seen which attempts to bridge the gap between that time and the biblical pedigree appears to be based on questionable tradition, or at worst, plain fabrication. Generally these pedigrees offer no evidence as to the origin of the information, or they cite a vague source.”

Source: Robert C. Gunderson, “I Have a Question,” Ensign, Feb. 1984, 31.


Don’t miss the follow-up: “I Have My Family Tree Back to Adam and Eve” Part 2

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  1. My family tree has been taken back to Adam and Eve. Getting past the fires of England was a bit of a challenge. All the way back to my family line in Scotland. Then back to the tribes of Israel which are also known as the sons of Abraham and I’m directly back to the begotten in the Bible.

    If you would like a point of reference of my family, it becomes very easy to research William Veitch family out of peebleshire in Scotland. My family history is 100% complete and published. It is fully accessible to the public. If you have been involved with genealogy for many years and have not discovered one family my opinion is you’re doing something wrong because I have met three other families whom also have complete lineage.

    The true key is devoting your life to genealogy. my grandmother devoted 25 years, about 10 years devoted by my mother and I have done almost 15 years now.

    The most amazing thing is the churches these days try to claim it’s impossible and when you try to show them the proof they thumb through a couple pages and say “oh that’s cool” or “that’s amazing I would love to sit down with you and learn more” and never happens. If you or anyone is truly interested I would gladly correspond with you.

    From my personal entries on familysearch. Org my family tree goes back to the year 207 A.D. that’s well beyond your “In my opinion it is not even possible to verify historically a connected European pedigree earlier than the time of the Merovingian Kings (c. a.d. 450–a.d. 752).” But I do understand where you’re coming from many family lineage are unable to make it past the great fires. Please let me know if I can be of further assistance.

    1. Nobody can trace back to “Adam and Eve” because there is no evidence that such a pair of individuals existed, and if they did it would have to predate homo-sapiens which means their names probably would have been one syllable grunts at best — certainly not anything close to an “Adam” or an “Eve”. Any genealogist worth his salt knows blind faith is no substitute for verified recorded proof.

    2. Mr. McCulloch, is there a link that you can provide to a GEDCOM file of your tree or on Ancestry.com? About 20yrs of my research was lost after the Geneology.com and Ancestry.com merger, so looking to fill the gaps left. Much appreciated.

      And for those who doubt the veracity of a tree going back to Adam & Eve, even if part of a tree is based on tradition, that should not invalidate the hard work of the researcher and the validity of their data past a certain point. The Mayflower Genealogy (that ties all passengers of the Mayflower to Adam & Eve) has many questionable points, but is still useful as a reference point.

  2. I have my genealogy back to Adam. I entered it into Geni.com, no problems, but, over the years they have taken much of it out claiming it to be “mythical”. I believe my genealogy is real. There are names, births, deaths, burials. I believe that man is so determined to do away with the genealogies because they don’t want to believe in God and they don’t to believe that Adam was real. They want to say it is all mythological in order to disproof the Christian faith. But, I choose to accept them as real, not myth. The first thing to do to destroy a “people” is to take away their history and that is what Hitler did to destroy the Jews, he took away their history. In today’s societies is to to destroy the Christian faith and they are starting it by taking away our histories. If they can say our histories are a “myth” then they can say they aren’t real and are made up and do away with all the history, labeling the Christian Faith as all mythological. I refuse to accept this. It is a huge trend to do so now. They just want to remove the history and make it all a lie so they can do away with the religion itself. But, there are those of us who will not allow that to happen. I will pass my genealogy on to my children and pray that it continues to grow and be passed on for many generations to come. I will not allow atheist to destroy my history of where I come from, where all mankind come from. All Christians need to be aware that this is happening. The sources I have, which was once deemed reliable and supported by sites like Geni.com, are no longer considered to as such, they are changing the to made up, lies, myths, etc. It is just another step in destroying the Christian faith. The truth is you either accept the written genealogies as truth or you don’t. People the person who wrote this article are among many who want to wipe out the Christian histories and the Christian faiths. Many of these genealogies were recorded by years of Kings and handed down generation to generation and now they are being called liars, but, how can names, birth records, death records, and even historical burial sites all be lies??

    1. You “choose” to accept mere legend as historical fact, but it can and will never be respected as such — not officially nor by anyone to be taken seriously . I could choose to believe I was descended from Hercules and it would be no less credible than your claim, which is to say: it would lack any and all credit. This cannot destroy your faith, as it isn’t intended to. Rather, It is necessary to separate diverse religious ideology (including countless contradictory sects in Christianity ) from all official, important matters such as historical science (obviously). The very definition of faith is simply to believe something that cannot be proven, EVEN (and usually because there is) despite evidence to the contrary, and in more than a few cases — in outright contempt of the very idea of evidence. In the real world we don’t get to use assumptions in court rooms, college classes, science labs, or as genealogical findings. It just doesn’t work.

      The written genealogical records you speak of are largely non-existent in their original forms. How can they be verified? Copies of copies of copies for thousands of years is the epitome of inaccurate and unverifiable. How many times did some ancient king, historian, or librarian modify the record for their own purposes? How many translations did these texts undergo throughout the years? Every single word that has been included in the modern Bible (including the notoriously skipped “begat” chapters in the old testament) has suffered the same cherry-picked corruption — not to mention the key authors whom failed in putting pen to paper until many years after their allegedly perceived experiences, DECADES after in many cases. How much could they recall from their senile, biased minds? Exactly where did they downplay this event and embellish another (as is our minds’ natural subconscious tendency) ? And that’s even BEFORE we can factor in the massive edits, overhauls, rewrites, and all the subtle little nuances unquestionably lost in translation…

      Maybe next time instead of resorting to the played out and oh so very tired “persecuted disciple” card you could “choose” to consider things a bit more deeply (i.e. with facts and truth and stuff).

  3. Charlemagne is my 42nd great grandfather, who has a well established lineage of the male line to Adam and Eve making Adam my 151st great grandfather.

    1. I have just done a line of Heritage and also have births, death dates and burials plus all fathers full names the whole way back to ADAM

  4. I just reached Adam and Eve through my Family Tree….
    Issac Ben Abraham-L5L2-43N
    Isaiah ben Amoz ha David-LT7X-W36

  5. This new site family search has out, it is strange how many people I am related too and have not found the connection. And just found out I am related to half of the members at my branch, non on any side of my family ever came to Washington State.

  6. I’ve been at this 20 years, I am to around 1500 in France, that has been very hard, as for Adam and Eve,! I do not believe that is a possibility.