Sunday, May 5, 2013

DNA-Could it be the link I need?

I don't know if any of you all haven't researched your family tree, but it can be rather addictive. Some families are proud of their heritage and have passed that down orally while others, like mine, don't know much other than what they can remember of their grandparents. Unfortunately, it is like that for both my paternal and maternal families.

I never really thought much about it because, well, I just didn't. In grad school (teaching program), about 6 years ago, I was taking a multi-culturalism class. In a nutshell, it was basically teaching us how to understand that we will have many cultures in our classroom and to be aware of it. Some things we might take as disrespectful (i.e. looking down and not at you when being reprimanded) is a sign of respect in other cultures. Teaching us that kind of stuff. In that class and EVERY college class I've taken, there come papers. And more papers which means research on top of research on top of research. One section of the paper had to explain our lineage. What makes us who we are. Where did we come from. I had no idea and neither did my parents. This little section enabled me to find a hobby that I didn't know I'd ever like doing. I never thought in a million years I'd still be on after the 14 day trial, nor did I ever think I'd be on ancestry still 6 years later. This paper has helped me understand where I came from, what my ancestors did, and to be proud of my lineage. It helped me join the DAR. Well, like any amateur researcher, you get stuck. I am at a standstill on my great great great grandfather. We are speculating about his parents and where he came from, but we don't know for sure. I've been in contact with someone who has been researching our surname in the United States. We are thinking the real piece of the puzzle is my father. Today, I'm going to visit my parents, and my dad is going to do some swabs. discounts the DNA test with a coupon code for participants in our surname's study. My father is a direct descendant, and we are all hoping his DNA markers hold the key to answering this mystery.

Often times, people just attach what other people have on their trees and figure it's truthful. In all honesty, I did that when I first started out. Then, I quit. You need to research it. Prime example is this situation that my dad is taking the DNA test for. All these people had the names Jacob and Sarah as my great-however many times-grandfather's parents. They even had pictures of their tombstone on there as well. Originally when I started the DAR process I was trying to go through that line, but the more and more I was digging to try to find wills and census records and what not, I could not find where these people left Indiana and came to Arkansas (that's where I needed them to be!). I ended up having to use a different ancestor that I know for a fact I am a direct descendant. Anyway, make sure you research yourself. I ended up finding the grave marker picture on find-a-grave and contacting the contributor who also researches my surname since it was her maiden name. She said my questions sparked her to go back and look through her information. She then realized that the photo she uploaded wasn't from that cemetery at all. She had this tombstone photo saved from researching and accidentally uploaded with the pictures she took when she surveyed the cemetery. She felt so bad that all these people have the wrong information, but she shouldn't. They should have kept researching themselves!

Anyway, we're hoping my dad can solve this link, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed.


Preppy Pink Crocodile said...

Wow- this is so fascinating! Loving these stories.

Odd story but an ex boyfriend, Catman, takes photos and locations of really really old gravestones and uploads them to that site to help folks doing research. Like thousands.


REBrown said...

How fun - I didn't even know you could do this!


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