Genealogy, have you done yours?


#1

Has anyone done their family’s ancestry and genealogy stuff? I’m doing this now for a line of my family. Has been quite a interesting process. I can reasonably go back 1000 years on some lines, 400 years on quite a few, and at least 200 years for most of these lines.

Have found heaps of reverends, merchants, slave traders, and nobles.


#2

I’m from Pomerania, Prussia. Land at the Sea.


#3

Actually, Rum puppy, since I like you so much, I’ll screen shot my ancestry spit results and share. -when I’m able.


#4

I did 23andMe over the winter break and because I’m Vietnamese, it doesn’t come up with much. Just shows this:
prax-dna

My husband however, SUPER WHITE:

It identified maybe ~400 4-5th cousins for me, but none that I really know of course, and about ~1k relatives for my husband because these sites just tend to have better western european records. I wasn’t actually interested in the ancestry aspects, but moreso the health parts, so not a big deal for me.

Ancestry.com is better for geneaology in general though. I thought it was cool that it also checked for slave records in the case of people with ancestors who were forced into slavery.


#5

I did. It’s interesting how the mind mythologizes this whole ancestry thing. Because when you start to count: 2 parents, 4 grandparents, 8, 16, 32, 64, 128 … and it gets out of hand mighty quick.

Let’s suppose that every immediate ancestor of yours had his child of your line at the age of 30. I can trace my roots down to fourteen generations so in my case it means that this ancestor I know of is only one of… 8192 others. And let‘s say I would be able to trace myself to this one person, who lived in 14th century. He would be one of a million. And if I’d go two generations deeper, I’d have more direct ancestors than there are people living in my country at the moment.

So, if you can reasonably go back 1000 years on some lines, you can have as much as 4 billion direct ancestors there. Add one generation and you have the current population of the whole fucking Earth as you ancestors. And how many of them do you know? Like, really know? Like you know this cousin of yours whom you don’t even care to know, because he’s so not ancient (-:

Nevertheless, I love genealogy! The imagination of it. It’s crazy.


#6

i love that stuff. I don’t have to do a thing because I have Mormon family members so I can just trace everything back on ancestry.com or whatever, it’s all been done. Followed a line back to 300 BCE the other day, Romans.

My favorite bit though is the grant family, Matthew grant, 16xx, came to New England. His third great grandsons = Ulysses S in one branch and Jedediah M Grant in another, first mayor of Salt Lake City, polygamist with 6 wives, and preacher with an argument that it wasn’t a big deal to be dramatic and verbose—“for all who [complain that Brigham young and I are being too terse and violent] I feel to say, damn all such poor pussyism.” my third great grandfather, wahoo!


#7

Hm, I only know what my family has told me in regards to what’s in my blood.

If I had to guess, I generally thought I was like, 73% Black, 25% Native American, and 2% Irish and German.

I probably am slightly deceptive in regards to my phenotype because I look an abhorrent amount like my mixed Father (Black and Native American).

So, I would garner I am statistically more Black than anything, but my genes make me look more racially ambiguous (somewhat? Eh, I definitely have brown skin though).

The kind of people I would probably find my in bloodline going back a couple of centuries are slaves, probably some religious people, and hm, maybe a Native American chief. Lol, maybe even the occasion revolutionary.

Ah! I probably would definitely find a slave owner of one of my ancestors. I think one of my early ancestors took their last name from their old slave owner.

Eh, that’s all I got.


#8

Praxomatic, did you do the health thingy too?


#9

Great grandparents from Lidice, CZ so nothing left to trace that line. I have a cousin who’s into genealogy on my dad’s side. She’s traced some a few hundred years. I like to listen to her talk about these long dead ancestors (we have Puritans and an accused and acquitted witch) at family gatherings , but my eyes glaze over when the other cousins tell me stories about their kids.


#10

Yeah of course I did! No genes for a buncha deadly diseases is pretty reassuring! lol


#11

It helps if your family has rare or unusual surnames. My partner can go back hundreds of years because of this, but my family surnames are quite common (like me, I suppose) so can only go back a few generations.

I’m not that concerned, as I’m more future-focussed, but I know my ESFP mother has done a lot of research on our ancestry and she has promised to bequeath me her records. The most interesting part for me was confirming that I have strong Celtic ancestry. My grandfather (who I never met as he abandoned my father’s family during WW2) was Welsh, and other great-grandparents were Scottish and Irish. Based on this I am over 50 percent Celtic by ancestry, so I can legimately say: “I am Stewart Leonore Gielgud, of Ancient Druid Origins…”. (Sorry, souldn’t resist slipping in yet another tedious Troll 2 reference).

My paternal granny used to tell us of a “Sergeant Gairns”, who had flaming red hair and an impressive beard to match. Apparently, he met Queen Victoria whilst on parade, and she complimented his beard. Granny had Alzheimer’s at the time, so I took this with a pinch of salt, but it turns out that Sergeant Gairns was her Scots father, so the story is probably true.


#12

And by coincidence, my partner’s family have a connection to Queen Victoria as well. One of his great grandparents lived in Shooters Hill, near Greenwich. The story is that Prince Albert was on his way to London to marry Victoria, but the rigours of 19th Century travel caused him to faint at Shooters Hill. Partner’s ancestor came to his rescue and saw him safely on his way. Albert was so grateful he invited the whole family to his wedding! More impressive than my Sergeant Gairns story, which is typical of an ENTP!


#13

Yeah but you will find most ancestors will repeat themselves, i.e. pedigree collapse, i.e. incest between cousins, or incest between distant families (which isn’t quite incest), you’ll find you will have much less ancestors than first mathematically thought. Especially once you get back before the Industrial Revolution where most lineages just end up in one small town for a thousand years.


#14

Especially Welsh names. Welsh names are all Thomas, Jones, Williams, Hughes, Lewis, Davis, etc. Scottish bit more easier to trace. Irish difficult to trace because so many Irish about the place, especially in migration records.

Celtic is such a broad designator though. The French can be considered Celtic and perhaps the people who are now English were once Brythonic (Celtic).

But there are some who say that when the Anglos and Saxons (and Jutes) came over they genocided all the native Brythonic Celts and pushed beyond the mountains of Wales. They say that the modern Englishman has more DNA in common with Northern Germans than they do with the Welsh.

But DNA studies conflict. And it’s always troublesome reconciling ethnicity/nationality with DNA.

Scotland for example is a difficult case. Today we see one ethnicity called ‘Scottish’. But originally Scotland was inhabited by the Picts who were probably Celts.

And then the Irish invaded from the West and into the Highlands, these became known as the Scots. And the Anglo-Saxons held the land of Northumbria which includes Southern/Lowland Scotland.

Eventually the Irish Scottish Kingdom absorbed the Pictish Kingdom erasing Pictish language and culture within a few decades. Then the Scottish Kingdom took over both the Anglo-Saxon Kingdom in Lowland Scotland and the Brythonic Kingdom of Strathclyde next to that.

Hence Scotland is really a story of Irish Gaelic Warlords coming over in boats and taking over land from three other peoples: Picts, Anglo-Saxons, Brythonic.

But the Anglo-Saxon community under Scottish (Irish) rule continued to use their own language, a form of Old English now called ‘Scots’. And this Scots speaking community expanded and resisted Gaelic domination, and spread throughout Scotland.

Most ethnographers define ethnicity by the language one speaks and identifies with. Most people who have been Scottish in history were Scots speakers* not Gaelic speakers. I.e. they were a Germanic speaking people.

So my point, that Scotland shouldn’t be so readily identified with Celtic.

Also generally, most of the Germanic speaking Scots are the Protestants, while Gaelic heritage Catholic.

*Primarily post the middle ages and before the 19th century when received pronunciation and standard English English became the norm.


#15

I have a common Welsh surname, like the ones on your list, so yeah, no hope of getting vary far on that side.

And I’m familiar with the complex history of the migrations and conquests of Britain and Ireland up to and including the Norman Conquest. In fact, it’s one of my areas of interest, so I’ve studied it extensively. Whilst I’m not particularly interested in the nitty-gritty of my own ancestry, I adore ancient history in the broader scale of mass migrations, sweep of empires, etc.

I was being a little facetious with regard to my Celtic ancestry, as I know how complex the real admixture of tribes were, that made up modern Britain and its constituent nations.

DNA tests could reveal more, but IMHO are a waste of time, as they don’t account for the subtleties of cultural or historical associations and tribal identities. Still, I’ve always felt an affinity with the pre-Roman peoples who inhabited Britain that goes beyond mere logic or evidential proof. It’s more of an Ni-thing with me, a strong conviction that my ties to the British Isles go way, way back.

So I wasn’t surprised to discover that I’m less “English” than, say, my New Zealand partner who can trace his ancestry back to a specific band of Anglo-Saxon invaders. He has a very rare Anglo-Saxon surname, and there’s a single village near Durham with the same name, probably deriving from the chieftain who founded it. The village suffered badly in subsequent invasions of marauding Scots, Picts, Danish and other Vikings, as is mentioned by the venerable Bede in his writings. Eventually the whole area was laid waste by William the Conqueror in his infamous “Harrying of the North”.

His family somehow survived the massacres (they must have been devious ENTPs as well), and later resurfaced in a very specific part of Essex. And it’s from this single surviving family group that anyone with his surname originates, including the adventurers who left Britain for its colonies (probably restless ENTPs once again…).


#16

I just get knowledge of my european ascendence. My grand grandfather was from Aragon, his son too, his son married a Catalonian, then my grandfather was born there, he moved to Mexico as a refugee of the spanish civil war with her mother, and that’s it. From my mothers side it’s a little bit more turbulent, I guess. Well, they all come from Mexico but they mostly don’t have a “latin” physiognomy, so I don’t know where does it comes from. I know that most of my mothers family was into teaching and medicine, while my fathers side was into arts, specially, visual arts.


#17

I’ve been trying to find more information about ancestors in Pre-Norman and Post-Norman England and I’m shocked by how just how little info there is on the internet (but that I know there is out there in real life books). You tend to forget just how little is published / posted on the internet and how there’s so much #fake history out there.

But thankfully America is full of babyboomer armchair genealogists who are trawling through the archives of records trying to find their connection to royalty. So hopefully more info will be added soon.


#18

Have you heard of the theory that the Pre-Anglo Pre-Roman population of Britain were German and not Celtic? Or at least that there was already a significant Saxon presence in South East England when the Romans arrived?

It’s quite an intriguing theory. I think it the theory became prominent in Stephen Oppenheimer’s book the “Origins of the British”. It was was also based on linguistic analysis by Peter Forster which suggested that the English language split off from Continental German before the Dark Ages. I.e. it’s earlier than the language that the Anglos and Saxons would have brought with them.

Also Caesar when commentating on the Belgae tribes that inhabited North of France and some of England at the time categorised them as “Germanic”.

And I think people usually point to the fact that there’s no Celtic/Brythonic words at all that have survived in the English language. Like maybe 10 or 12 words in our language come from Celtic.

Edit: I just stumbled across a website dedicated to the [conspiracy] theory that the Pre-Roman Britons were German and spoke ‘proto-English’.

http://www.proto-english.org/

Whether it’s true or not it’s fascinating how it makes you review truths you thought were true.

Like I’ve always known that the original inhabitants of Britain were Britons (Celtic), and that they were colonised by the Romans, and then the mean Anglo-Saxons came over and pushed the Celts back beyond Wales and Cornwall.

But how much of this do we know for certain? I’ve always assumed that we have lots of Roman documents and evidence that support the claims that the native inhabitants of Briton were Celts and spoke a Welsh like language before Latin? Maybe this is wrong.

But what about Queen Boudica? King Arther???


#19

The point I was making was that people often just label Scottish as ‘Celtic’ when in fact one could even say they’re German. It’s really strange how people tend to just forget that the Lowlanders were always thought of as ‘Saxons’ by the Highlanders. And that Old English or Scotch has just as right a claim to being Scotland’s native language as Gaelic.

It becomes a highly politicised issue when things like independence referendums happen. Scotland’s politics these past few decades has become highly Gaelicised. The Gaelic lobby is very powerful!!! First they put up the road signs in Gaelic and then they brainwash young minds into thinking “Scotland is a Celtic country perennially oppressed by the English, we must rediscover the spirit of William Wallace and fight for independence!”

30% of BBC Scotland’s budget goes to its specialist Gaelic language stations. And only 1% of Scotland speaks Gaelic. Where’s the funding to remember Scotland’s lowlander Saxon heritage? Why does the BBC bow down to the Kings of Ireland?


#20

It can also be argued that the eastern half of the Scottish Borders region (Anglo-Saxon Lothian) between the cities of Edinburgh in the North and the River Tweed in the South contains the “purest” remaining population of Old English people (Anglo-Saxons). The city of Edinburgh was said to have been founded by the Angles,as evidenced by its name:

Though not exclusive, Anglian influence predominated from the mid-seventh century to the mid-tenth century, with Edinburgh as a frontier stronghold. During this period Edinburgh became a place where the Northumbrian dialect of Old English was spoken and its name acquired the Old English suffix, “-burh”.