I’ve shared on the blog before about how I had my DNA tested through Ancestry.com.
My results came in August of 2016.
After I wrote that post, I received questions about the process for testing and I shared that process in this post.
My mother and I even planned part of our first overseas trip together to walk the streets of our family lines. That journey can be found here: Going back to my roots.
Just as a quick share, this was the overview of my results:
Even this screenshot is a slightly updated version of the original estimates.
You can find the original estimates in my Are You Irish post. That post also talks a little more about my known ancestral line and also some GEDMatch ethnicity results.
For the result locations that aren’t as obvious, Europe West is predominately Belgium, France, Germany, Netherlands, Switzerland, Luxembourg, and Lichtenstein. Europe South is predominately Italy and Greece. The Iberian Peninsula is primarily Spain and Portugal. And the Middle East is Syria, Iraq, Jordan, Oman, Yemen, UAE, Lebanon, and Israel.
My Husband’s Results.
So before we get to my children’s results, you would also need to know my husband’s results.
For easy viewing, here is a screenshot of those:
Now I found my husband’s results much more exciting than mine.
My results were close to what I expected. My mother had taken the test already and she had also done quite a bit of genealogy work.
We thought that my husband’s test might show something interesting because I like to joke about how his booty (which doesn’t see the light of day) is darker than my legs on a tan day (if you are new here…surprise, I have very fair skin). We thought that it would turn out to be Portuguese or Greecian in nature.
Needless to say, the section we were most surprised by is the Africa Southeastern Bantu.
To cover the areas not included in my results, Caucasus is primarily Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Turkey. And the Africa Southeastern Bantu covers South Africa, Kenya, Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Angola, Tanzania, Mozambique, and Uganda.
His paternal aunt had done quite a bit of genealogy work already. So we knew anything outside of Dutch and English was likely from his mother and we didn’t have very much genealogy from her side. I had joined Ancestry in order to work on our family tree and the ability to search records opened up quite a bit of information.
That coupled with a website I stumbled across which spoke about Bertie County, NC (and thought was in my bookmarks, but can’t seem to find…if it’s you and you stumble across me, let me know and I’ll update this) led me to believe that the Africa portion of his DNA is what is referred to in America as from Melungeon heritage.
Melungeons are considered a mixed race of African, Native American, and Caucasian. According to the information in this article, the Africans were often African-Americans who had come here through indentured servitude (I have an Irish ancestor who made their way to America through this process) and were now free. It wasn’t until later that slavery was introduced according to the article. In fact, there are census records that state race as Free Black, and then later this changes to Mulatto. The Africans were free to hold land, etc. so as the Jim Crow laws came into effect and began to jeopardize all that they had worked for, they began to say that they were Portuguese, which was considered white, and you begin to see a change in census records from mulatto to white.
My mother-in-law’s family has deep roots in Bertie County, NC, which is known to have Melungeon roots. The Melungeon’s of Bertie County supposedly do not have DNA ties to the more well known Tennesse Melungeons.
This makes it a little harder for me to know which line leads to this DNA. I had assumed it was his great-grandmother, Mary Winefred Collins (1850-1918) because her parents were James Collins and Martha Bowers, according to her death certificate, and Collins is one of the Melungeon surnames. However, I cannot trace Martha Bowers any farther. In fact, all records bring up James Collins married to a Martha Luten (at a later date). Interestingly, that wedding is performed by Jeremiah Bunch Jr. And Bunch is also a known Melungeon surname.
However, I did run into some questions posed by a Shuford/Ramsaur connection (the other side of his mother’s line) that made me wonder if I was following the wrong line.
In the end, all information points to a Melungeon connection though.
So we decided to have our children tested, just to see what it would say. They are all teenagers, so they had the option of deciding to opt out. They all decided that they would like to see it. The boys finished their test a day prior to Miss Sunshine. I was excited for the results so I dropped theirs in the mail a day early. However, timing decides what it wants. They all were received, but Miss Sunshine’s processed much more quickly.
Here are her original results:
Miss Sunshine’s Results.
So most of us know that DNA results can have an interesting mix. Parents don’t throw in an even amount of each portion of each area. Yes, you are 50/50 of your parents, but not from an ethnicity standpoint.
However, I was a little confused as to how she could be 23% Scandinavian when I was 5% and my husband was 5%. Now, it was possible for her to be 10%, which would be more than either of us separately, but I didn’t think she could be 23% unless I’d misunderstood something. Honestly, I was thinking that perhaps they’d done mine wrong all along since we know that I think that I’m secretly more Scandinavian.
I was excited to see that she’d gotten a piece of the husband’s Africa Southeastern Bantu because I think diversity is AWESOME.
But then I was also a little confused by the European Jewish, also known by Ashkenazi Jew, because neither my husband or I showed up with that. I had planned to call Ancestry to ask them about it when the boys’ results came in.
Big Mr.’s Results.
As you can see, they’ve changed their estimates. They added more samples and slightly changed the regions.
They changed Scandinavia into both Norway and Sweden.
Apparently, Big Mr’s DNA shows Norway.
Given the fact that he stands close to 6’6″, I thought that sounds about right.
Mr. D’s Results.
So, Mr. D is the most fair-skinned of my three and is my redhead. I wasn’t overly surprised by his results.
However, you can see that they sifted out the low confidence regions.
I would have liked to have seen results similar to Miss Sunshine’s so that I could see if I thought the trace regions were relevant.
Miss Sunshine’s Updated Results.
Because we go back and gather Miss Sunshine’s updated estimates and:
Suddenly, her Scandinavia drops (makes sense since she shouldn’t be over 10%) to Sweden 2%. However, she loses that Africa Southeastern Bantu completely. A segment that historically actually makes sense.
Husband’s Updated Results.
So you may be thinking, well the updated results of the husband may have wiped out those historical facts.
Shifted their definitions and lowered them, yes. Eradicated them, no. The map area covers a more defined region, but it is still there. It makes me question the fact that they removed it from Miss Sunshine’s updated results and we’ll never know if it was on Big Mr. and Mr. D’s older results.
But what about my updated results!
Well, here they are.
I decided to include the map portion.
They took away all of my lower confidence regions along with my Scandinavian portion.
So we can definitely see why my heart loves it when I visit the UK.
Questions I have.
However, one of my main issues with these newer results is that both my husband and I lost our Scandinavian estimates.
And yet, Miss Sunshine shows as 2% Sweden and Big Mr. shows as 3% Norway?
And just in case anyone wants to throw out that random question, yes, the DNA results show that both my husband and I are the parents of all three teens.
Not that either of us was concerned.
But just in case you might be…
I also know that my Van Hoose line originates out of Schleswig-Holstein on the Germany/Denmark border and that I show no Northern Germany, even though certain segments on DNA matches would seem to reflect the fact that I do indeed have a large portion of this DNA.
I think that this process is getting better and they are learning more on a constant basis. I find DNA to be absolutely fascinating. However, given the discrepancies between the results of my children as compared to their parents (aka the hubby and me), I think there is still some fine-tuning to be done.
Also, I should note that ethnicity is still an area that is a work in progress. They are always getting new sample populations and redefining the regions.
Plus, they are able to match you to relatives which is fascinating as well and helps tremendously with genealogy research.
I am just referring to where the ethnicity accuracy stands at this point.
Have you had DNA testing done?
What was your experience?