The major project, MaritimeHeritage.org, created in 1997, is a history of passengers, ships, captains, merchants and merchandise sailing into California during the mid-to-late 1800s. The site illustrates the importance of a global awareness; the health and wealth of nations was formed by individuals who migrated seeking refuge and opportunity.
Odds are your ancestors travelled by sea or via extensive overland routes during the 1400s, 1500s, 1600s, etc. No matter where you live now, the chances are great that you are from elsewhere.
We recently had our DNA tested to determine just where we began. While we know about our Irish and German ancestors from the early 1800s-on, we had no information prior to 1830. Turns out It’s fascinating.
Here’s our map; much to our surprise, our heritage also includes Sweden, Norway, Denmark AND Italy and Greece. Family research/stories included Germany, Ireland, England, and France. But nothing about other countries.
|Trace Regions: European Jewish (4%), Iberian Peninsula (3%), Europe East (1%)||8%|
WEST ASIA: Middle East
Do you know how far back you go and from where? 23 pairs of chromosomes define you.
This service combines advanced DNA science with the world’s largest online family history resource to predict your genetic ethnicity and help you find new family connections.
Find out what percent of your DNA comes from populations around the world, ranging from East Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, Europe, and more. Break European ancestry down into distinct regions such as the British Isles, Scandinavia, Italy and Ashkenazi Jewish. People with mixed ancestry, African Americans, Latinos, and Native Americans also get a detailed breakdown.
Recently, scientists used the technology to confirm the identity of a skeleton buried beneath a parking lot in Leicester, England, as King Richard III, who died in battle in 1485. The scientists matched the bones to two living maternal-line relatives, according to the University of Leicester, which conducted the analysis along with radiocarbon dating and a skeletal exam.
Closer to home, not everyone is excited about the DNA technology, as some remain cautious about privacy or simply don’t see the need. But for others who are adopted or are trying to explain a gap in their family tree, the tests may provide a crucial breakthrough.
“I think a lot of people find it of use to them, personally, especially if they are searching for a form of identity they are able to uncover in this way,” said Noah Rosenberg, associate professor at Stanford University’s Department of Biology and expert in evolutionary biology and genetics.
“Many people have a missing relative or have a parent die young and are searching for some kind of connection,” he said. “We see a significant trend where African-Americans are searching for some understanding of the populations from which their ancestors originated from Africa.”
New tests have also turned DNA into a popular tool for determining ancestry. As DNA is passed down from one generation to the next, some parts remain almost unchanged, while other parts change greatly. This creates a link between generations and it can be of great help in reconstructing our family histories. While it can’t provide you with your entire family tree or tell you who your ancestors are, DNA testing can:
- Determine if two people are related
- Determine if two people descend from the same ancestor
- Find out if you are related to others with the same surname
- Prove or disprove your family tree research
- Provide clues about your ethnic origin
DNA tests have been around for many years, but it is only recently that the cost of genetic testing has finally come down into the realm of possibility for the average individual interested in tracing their roots. It is now possible to map your global origins with the most complete coverage of your DNA through home DNA test kits which can be ordered through the mail or over the Internet.
They usually consist of a cheek swab or mouthwash to easily collect a sample of cells from the inside of your mouth. You send back the sample through the mail and within a month or two you receive the results – a series of numbers that represent key chemical “markers” within your DNA. These numbers can then be compared to results from other individuals to help you determine your ancestry.