It’s been about ten years since I got the bug… uncovering the Crypto-Jewish roots of my ancestors. I fell in, head over heels. What’s not to love? Images of medieval men and women, affluent, informed, in period costume, posing as deacons in a church or as Huguenots during the Reformation. Religious scholars arguing about messianic theology, translating Hebrew Bibles and investing in shiploads of exotic spices.
I can’t say there is no shame in it because there was. The people who came before us exploited Natives for their own selfish pursuit of wealth. The Golden Era of Amsterdam was built upon that exploitation. Much of the architecture that we admire throughout the world was built by slave labor. No one can escape that reality.
I am grateful that today, genealogists are sharing the history of medieval times and the Renaissance era, including bringing our Crypto-Jewish ancestors into the light. There is no shame in that.
Suellen Ocean is the author of Secret Genealogy – A How-to for Tracing Ancient Jewish Ancestry. Available here:
… and The Lion’s Trace Available here:
The Lies of the Lion (Book 1)