On Wednesday I spoke to our 400 Freshmen on the heritage of Grace College and Seminary. While most of them know nothing beyond the American evangelicalism they’ve been raised in, I sensed they could begin to connect our institution’s present identity with its pietist and Anabaptist roots. Evangelicalism has been most visible to be sure, but its easy to see how much of the present is still shape by the past. I used a clip from Who Do You Think You Are? – a 2010 NBC series that follows celebrities as professional historians help them trace their family heritage. It worked well – I think we can all relate to a desire to understand ourselves through exploring the historical contexts of our family backgrounds. For me, a desire to understand myself within a broader context was my first motivation to study history.