I remember my Dad working diligently on his Genealogy charts. He traveled overseas to find proof for long lost and long dead family members. Dad spoke of ancestors in Scotland and England,…a few in Brittany. So far as he knew, that was it for his family members. Just “good old Anglo-Saxons” in his chart.
Dad started working on Mother’s ancestry chart as well…but ran into brick walls at almost every turn. He could go back three generations then would find nothing. No census reports, no church records. It nearly drove him mad.
Mother thought the whole ancestor search was foolish and would only lead to frustration or disappointment. She would say to Dad, “what are you going to do if you find a horse thief back there?” Dad would just ignore the question and keep on searching.
When Dad became unable to continue his research, I took over. I found family names in census charts…but they were listed as “property”….that couldn’t be right. Could it?
I connected with a world genome project and had my DNA tested.
This is what I received:
You wouldn’t believe the drama that occurred over these results.
Dad was fascinated. Mother wouldn’t speak to me for three years.
Neither parent would admit to any German ancestors… I still haven’t a clue why not. After all, Dad was related to both George Washington and Elizabeth II (yea….the freakin QUEEN!) and they are both related to Germans so what was the big deal?
Then there is the obvious “problem” for “good old” Southern whites. That African American and Native American blood had to come from somewhere. In the report was a smaller chart that showed where certain DNA sequences were located…that is, if they belonged to a mother or a father.
Turns out mother’s family was the cuckoo in the nest of her prejudices. Mother provided French, English, N. American and African-American to the brew that became her progeny. She was not pleased. As a matter of fact, she was horrified that “the neighbors might find out”. She actually accussed me of “mixing spit with a N$#@” to skew the results in order to EMBARRASS her.
Give me a break! Those three years of silence were her way of “punishing” me for daring to imply her family was anything but white.
I look back now at some of the choices I made…in friendships and in employment and can not help but think I gravitated towards people who were just like me.
Mutts… in the very best sense of the word.