One of my genealogy presentations is entitled Brushes with the Famous and Infamous. It deals with the historic figures that some of my ancestors [direct and collateral] came in contact with over the years. Some were ancestors. Here's a list of nine and how they tie in.
(1) John Winthrop Jr.: Physician and Connecticut governor. If it weren't for him, you probably wouldn't be reading this post. He commuted Hannah Wakeman Hackleton's death sentence back in 1665/6!
(2) Roger Williams: Founder of Prvidence Plantation [Rhode Island] and a direct ancestor.
(3) Wilhelm Rittenhouse: Mennonite minister and papermaker in colonial Pennsylvania; direct ancestor.
(4) Rebecca Towne Nurse: Hanged as a witch at Salem Village in 1692; direct ancestor.
(5) George Washington: Surveyor, Commander in Chief of the Continental Army andFirst President of the US; he stopped at the home or inn of Casper Rinker near Gainsboro, VA on a surveying trip.
(6) Nathanael Greene: Revolutionary War General; a distant cousin.
(7) Henry Jerrell: He was a member of the Reno Gang. The Renos were credited as the first train robbers in post-civil war Indiana. Henry was a 4th or 5th cousin.
(8) David Crockett: Tennessee congressman who was killed at the Alamo in 1836. Robert Cunningham, 1st cousin 5x removed, was also an Alamo defender.
(9) Al Capone: Chicago crime boss. One of the federal agents who helped bring down Capone was David Nolan, intelligence officer for the US Treasury [1st cousin 2x removed].
There are several others. If your genealogy society needs a speaker and the topic is of interest, drop me a line. I do single and multiple sessions.