British Columbian genealogist Ken Aitken thought tracing his lines back to the 1600s was pretty good. That is, until he met Tangaroa Alia.
At age 21, he visited the Cook Islands in the South Pacific and met a man named Tangaroa Alia.
Alia, a friend’s father, told Aitken the history of his family from memory. Aitken had a collection of genealogies with him and could follow along as Alia listed his ancestors.
“He paused for a break somewhere around 1100 and he caught his breath and tried to remember what was next,” recalled Aitken. “He took it back to about 890 or 900 to a man just called Tangaroa who was considered a great navigator in the Pacific. ... He had new information on the family that predated 875.” [Link]