Category: Genealogy travel

Ben Roethlisberger traveling to Switzerland to learn about his family

Ben Roethlisberger (Big Ben among football fans) is traveling to Switzerland to uncover his family’s ancestry in the Bernese Emmental region (the Bernese Emmental region is Switzerland’s cheese capital).

I’m not sure how I ended up on the Switzerland tourism mailing list, but they sent me an email on this story with a link to the Big Ben interview with They ask him a few questions and he says he wants to know more about his ancestors. Here’s an interesting excerpt:

Swiss Roots: We’re trying to arrange a trip for you to go to Switzerland and show you the sights, including a visit to your great-grandfather’s town in the Bernese Emmental.

Ben Roethlisberger: That’d be awesome! If that town is known for their cheese, then I should take my dad: he loves cheeses, and he actually used to work in a cheese factory, so I know he’d love that.

Swiss Roots: What do you think about maybe meeting Miss Switzerland or playing tennis with Roger Federer?

Ben Roethlisberger: I’m sure the people of Switzerland would love it if I eventually married Miss Switzerland! It’d be awesome to meet those people, though I’d have to brush up on my tennis skills if I’m going to play Roger. I’d like to try and just see one of his serves!

By the way, for you travelers who don’t follow American football, Big Ben is the Steelers quarterback. The Steelers recently won the Super Bowl and Big Ben is the youngest quarterback to do so. He’s also the first quarterback of Swiss descent to win the Super Bowl.

Meeting cousins in Eastern Europe

Here’s an interesting account of some travelers going to Eastern Europe and meeting distant family in Slovakia. Their travel plan went something like this, but be sure to read it for yourself to get the personal experiences and follow the link for the photo album:

Paris (short stopover), Budapest, Bytca (via Bratislava) where they met the cousins, Rajecke Teplice, Auschwitz, Paszkowka, Krakow, and finally Vienna. I know I’m jealous!