How to Capture Family Stories Before They’re Lost – An Interview with Rachael Rifkin: Episode 137

By Family Tree Editors

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This episode, Lisa talks with author Rachael Rifkin about preserving our family history before it’s lost to time. Plus: some great online writing tools and pointers from our DNA expert on opting in (or out) of DNA research studies.

Ep. 137: May 2020

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In this episode:

Tree Talk (01:35)

Listener Jennifer Reyes shares what she discovered about her ancestors known as the Potato Germans of Denmark.

Share your story of discovery and you may just hear it here on the Family Tree Magazine Podcast! Email your story to: with “Tree Talk” in the subject line.

Rachel Rifkin on Capturing Family Stories (05:05)

Lisa talks with author Rachel Rifkin about her Good Housekeeping article called We’re Losing Generations of Family History Because We Don’t Share Our Stories. Rachel share her ideas on how to get your kids, siblings, and parents talking.

Need some inspiration for your family history interview? Check out the article below for some questions to get you started.

DNA Deconstructed: Opting into DNA Research Studies (15:55)

In today’s DNA Deconstructed segment, Your DNA Guide, Diahan Southard joins Lisa to explain what DNA research studies are and your options for opting in or opting out.

Best Genealogy Websites: Writing Your Family’s Story (24:55)

Getting started writing family stories is arguably one of the most-popular genealogy goals, and yet one that can so easily fall prey to procrastination. Thankfully, it’s easier than ever to save and preserve our precious family memories online. Whether you want to document the important moments in your own life or remember the lives of your ancestors, author Lisa Alzo has some of the latest websites and apps to make writing and sharing family stories a snap.

Websites mentioned in this interview:

Editor’s Desk (37:14)

Amanda Epperson, the eLearning Producer at Family Tree University shares some terrific new opportunities for you for learning at home.

View all the current courses at

Your Host: Lisa Louise Cooke

Listen to Lisa Louise Cooke’s Genealogy Gems Podcast in your favorite podcasting app or with the Genealogy Gems Podcast app in your app store, and visit her website for great research ideas, podcast episodes and videos.

Have fun climbing your family tree!

Lisa Louise Cooke, host of the Family Tree Magazine podcast.