There is a powerful quote from Stephen R. Covey in his book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People which in part explains why genealogical research resonates with so many of us.
A strong intergenerational family is potentially one of the most fruitful, rewarding, and satisfying interdependent relationships. And many people feel the importance of that relationship. Look at the fascination we all had with Roots some years ago. Each of us has roots and the ability to trace those roots, to identify our ancestors.
The highest and most powerful motivation in doing that is not for ourselves only, but for our posterity, for the posterity of mankind. As someone once observed, “There are only two lasting bequests we can give our children – one is roots, the other wings.”