“He loved chivalrye, Trouthe and honour, freedom and curteisye.” — Geoffrey Chaucer, Canterbury Tales
This is the genealogy blog of Justin Howery Swanström, with information about genealogy, heraldry, chivalry, and more.
I am a writer, historian, and genealogist with degrees in law and history. My academic specialty is Descents from Antiquity, particularly the early blending of history and myth.
I have a lifelong interest in the ways stories shape and re-shape the identities of people and groups. The stories we tell about our ancestors, and our own reactions to those stories, are one of the ways we define our place in the world.
Our ancestors also told stories about their place in the world. Through modern research, we now know that many of those stories weren’t true, at least not in the way we moderns expect history to be true. This comes as a surprise to many people.
I have been doing genealogy since 1967 and have been a professional genealogist since 1983. I am the author of several family histories and many articles about genealogy. I was early adopter of DNA for genealogy (1998). I created the Hauri yDNA Project, one of the earliest DNA surname projects.
I was a founding member and first Vice President of the American Heraldry Society, as well as a founding member and first Secretary of the Scottish Prisoners of War Society. I was also a volunteer Curator at Geni.com from 2010 to 2020.
I currently serve as an Administrator of the Scandinavian yDNA Project and several other haplogroup and family projects.