It’s time for an updated Wyneken family tree

The last “official” complete Wyneken family tree — a miniature version is pictured at the top of this page — was created and shared in 1877 / 1878. That was 140 years ago. A lot has happened in the family since then. If you say that a generation is on average 30 years, that means that we today are about 4 2/3 generations farther on.

I think it’s about time to make a new family tree. My Wyneken database provides me with the information I need to make one. I’ve had this on my to-do list for the last two years but I’ve finally gotten to a spot where I think I can do it.

Before I can start actually making a tree there are a number of organizational matters that will have to be addressed:

  • Ensure that private information is not revealed on the internet.
  • Find out who is interested in receiving a copy.
  • Decide what kind of tree, or possibly even several trees?
    • Only last name “Wyneken”.
    • Include descendants of daughters, i.e. other names besides “Wyneken”.
    • Separate trees for individual branches.
  • Perhaps organize helpers.
  • Estimate the cost of a copy of a printed tree.

Warning: Don’t hold your breath

First off, though, I need to warn everybody that this will probably take a while to complete because I have to do everything in my spare time between work and family duties.

Privacy is of utmost importance!!!

I would like to emphasize the importance of making sure that none of the copies of the tree, including any intermediate versions, should ever be posted publicly anywhere on the internet. The tree will include personal data for living persons and that kind of information should not be freely available on the internet. I would like the final product to be only in printed form. PDF versions will be used to create the printed version, and it might be necessary to share some of these PDF files, but I will make every effort to ensure that these versions are not posted. And I would ask anybody who works with me to do the same.

The reason I make such a big deal of this is that there are probably relatives who are reluctant to share their details because they’re afraid that the information will appear in the internet. I want to do everything possible to make people feel safe about sharing their information. Otherwise the tree would remain incomplete.

Who is interested?

The first step in the tree making process is to find out who would be interested in receiving a copy of the final tree or trees, thus:

Anyone who is possibly interested in receiving a copy of the updated tree when it’s done, please let me know. I will gather the names and keep a list. Just drop me a line by e-mail, Facebook, postcard, telephone or carrier pigeon, whatever.

Please also ask all your family members and relatives if they might be interested, especially if they don’t know about my on-line sites. If they’re on Facebook you can point them to the Wynekens World-Wide group. If they don’t do Facebook have them look at the page you’re looking at now. If they’re not particularly internet savvy, they can just get in touch with me at mawyn@gmx.de. And if they prefer old-fashioned communication they can get in touch with me at my address and phone number.

Further communication

I’m trying to figure out a way to organize the communication that will be necessary to organize this project. There are so many options that I think I’m just going to have to start with something and see how it works. If there are problems I will have to make changes as needed.

I’ve decided to set up a Google e-mail list. I think the easiest way to join the list would be to send a message to wynekentree@googlegroups.com saying that they would like to join. I will then add the person to the list and they will receive any further communications.

Alternatively, people with a Google account should be able to join the list by visiting https://groups.google.com/group/wynekentree and signing up. People with a Google account will also be able to view the archived messages at this address.

If you would like to be involved but do not want to be listed in a Google mailing list, just let me know and we’ll try to figure out a way for you to keep in touch.


I’ll be taking this step by step. If anyone has any ideas or something they would like to say about this project, just get in touch with me. I look forward to any kind of input!

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