Strange Days

From a newsgroup post dated March 21, 2016:

So we got a couple of those DNA test kits from, and used them. I just got my results.

There are mysteries surrounding my great-great grandmother — who was not my great-great grandfather’s wife; he never married. She appears to have been his housekeeper.

We know very little about her. Her first name was Mary, but on everything else, sources conflict. On everything, including her surname, ethnicity, age, etc.

One story said she was Irish. Another said that her father was definitely not Irish, but claimed to be Chippewa. Or maybe only half Chippewa.

Claiming to be Indian was a fairly common ploy escaped mixed-race slaves used to avoid being kidnapped back into slavery, so for a long time I’ve said I might be descended from an escaped slave.

Well, apparently I was right. Genetically, I’m between 1% and 2% Senegalese.

And there’s zero Native American in my DNA, which is mildly surprising in a family that came to America in 1628.

There’s also zero Native American in Julie’s DNA, which is more than mildly surprising, since her family tree shows her being 1/16th Algonquin. (And she looks native American, to some extent. So do most of her siblings.) Either the Sylvestre family tree is completely unreliable, the DNA test is completely unreliable, or her grandmother’s father wasn’t who her grandmother’s mother said it was. (All the other parts of that lineage are female; that’s the only place a cuckoo could be nesting.) Or I suppose maybe she just didn’t inherit any of the genetic markers in that branch, but that’s statistically very unlikely.


And that, dear friends, is the last old post for this blog, though there are still several more progress reports to be copied to the Serial Box.

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