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Genealogy Blog

12 July 2012

Earliest Americans Arrived in Waves, DNA Study Finds

North and South America were first populated by three waves of migrants from Siberia rather than just a single migration, say researchers who have studied the whole genomes of Native Americans in South America and Canada.

Some scientists assert that the Americas were peopled in one large migration from Siberia that happened about 15,000 years ago, but the new genetic research shows that this central episode was followed by at least two smaller migrations from Siberia.

Source & Full Story

25 June 2012

Irish Origenes Interactive Castles of Ireland Map Part of Project to Pinpoint Irish Ancestors

The Irish Origenes website is designed specifically to show people with Irish ancestry how to use the results of a commercial ancestral DNA test to pinpoint where their Irish ancestors lived and it contains all the resources one will need to achieve this goal.

However only about 60 percent of people with Irish ancestry will be related to the pre-Christian Celtic tribes, so if your recent Irish ancestors originally arrived in Ireland with the Vikings or later in 1169 AD with the Normans it can be difficult to pinpoint those ancestors to a specific location.

Source & Full Story

3 May 2012

Discover Your Irish Genetic Ancestors

Whose blood courses through your veins? Could you be a descendant of a Viking warrior or a Berber pirate? Or perhaps you are related to the Uí Neill chieftains or the kings of Laighin (Leinster)? If so your genes will carry the proof, and a new company set up by scientists offers a service that can reveal your genetic heritage.

Today sees the launch of “Ireland’s DNA”, a direct to customer genetic ancestry service. “We are planning it as a national project. The more people that get involved, the more we can understand about Irish history from the resulting dataset,” says Dr Gianpiero Cavalleri, one of three founders of the company.

Source & Full Story

24 April 2012

Genes Reveal Secrets of Ancient Peruvian Families

Genetic analyses of individuals buried in funereal monuments near a volcano in southern Peru have revealed the family relationships and burial traditions of ancient Peruvians that lived before Christopher Columbus sailed to the Americas.

The ancient Peruvians buried their dead in "chullpas," structures resembling vertical tombs, which can be up to 6.5 feet high. Researchers hadn't known how the individuals buried within one chullpa were related.

Source & Full Story

19 April 2012

DNA Tests Aim to Identify 17th Century Swiss Hero - and Killer - Jürg Jenatsch

Archaeologists have reopened a grave in Switzerland to see if DNA testing can confirm it contains the body of 17th century Swiss hero - and killer - Jürg Jenatsch.

Jenatsch is believed to be buried under the flagstones of Chur Cathedral in eastern Switzerland. A body purporting to be his was already exhumed in 1959 by the anthropologist Erik Hug, who identified him on the basis of the clothing and the large blow to the skull.

Source & Full Story

18 April 2012

Study Reveals 'Extraordinary' DNA of People in Scotland

The DNA of people living in Scotland has "extraordinary" and "unexpected" diversity, according to a new study. The Scotland's DNA project, led by Edinburgh University's Dr Jim Wilson, has tested almost 1,000 Scots in the last four months to determine the genetic roots of people in the country.

The project discovered four new male lineages, which account for one in 10 Scottish men. It also found that actor Tom Conti is related to Napoleon Bonaparte.

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28 March 2012

Irish Kelly Clan Gathering to Hear of Genetic Links to Australian Outlaw Ned Kelly

The genetic links of one of Australia’s most notorious and controversial outlaws – Ned Kelly – will be the focus of the next Kelly clan gathering in Dundrum, Co Tipperary, in May.

Kelly was born in Australia about 1854 and earned a reputation as both a cold-blooded murderer as well as a freedom- fighting folk hero. He was captured and hanged in Melbourne in 1880 for his crimes.

Source & Full Story

26 March 2012

30 Indonesian Women Founded Madagascar, Maybe by Accident

The land of freaky animals and amazing biodiversity, Madagascar was also one of the last places to be settled by humans. And new research suggests that didn't happen until about 1,200 years ago.

The colonization might even have been an accident, the researchers say. A small group of Indonesian women settled the island in one fell swoop, possibly making their way there after their trading vessel capsized.

Source & Full Story

27 January 2012

Following Genetic Footprints out of Africa: First Modern Humans Settled in Arabia

A new study, using genetic analysis to look for clues about human migration over sixty thousand years ago, suggests that the first modern humans settled in Arabia on their way from the Horn of Africa to the rest of the world.

Led by the University of Leeds and the University of Porto in Portugal, the study is recently published in American Journal of Human Genetics and provides intriguing insight into the earliest stages of modern human migration, say the researchers.

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Native Americans Hailed From Siberian Highlands, DNA Reveals

For nearly a century now, most scholars have agreed that the ancestors of Native Americans likely hailed from Siberia, trekking across the Bering Strait to Alaska via a long-gone land bridge.

But certain aspects of the historic migration—including the settlers’ specific region of origin, when exactly they left it and what drove them to seek new lands—remain matters of debate to this day. A new DNA-based study published today in the American Journal of Human Genetics offers new insight into these questions.

Source & Full Story

24 January 2012

With DNA Testing, Suddenly They Are Family

Growing up, Khrys Vaughan always believed that she had inherited her looks and mannerisms from her father, and that her appreciation for tradition and old-fashioned gentility stemmed from her parents’ Southern roots. But those facets of her self-image crumbled when she was told, at age 42, that she had been adopted.

She began searching for her origins, only to find out that her adoption records had been sealed, a common practice in the 1960s. Then Mrs. Vaughan stumbled across an ad from a DNA testing company offering to help people who had been adopted find clues to their ancestry and connections to blood relatives.

Source & Full Story

12 January 2012

DNA Evidence Links Murder Case With Mayflower-Era Family

Forgive Seattle-area sheriff’s deputies if they spend a little time in the history books these days. Or start asking a lot of questions about a 17th-century Massachusetts family.

As deputies work to solve a 20-year-old Federal Way, Wash., murder, DNA has linked the suspect all the way back to the family of Robert Fuller, who was related to two people who came to the U.S. on the Mayflower. Unfortunately for law enforcement officials, Fuller first settled in Salem, Mass., in 1630.

Source & Full Story

11 January 2012

South American and Mayan DNA Discovered in Southern Appalachians

Southeastern Indians were irate after several non-Native Americans mocked their traditions while commenting on an archaeological discovery of Maya place names and apparent Itza Maya ruins in the Georgia Mountains.

The Creek Indians of Georgia went on the warpath after an Atlanta Journal-Constitution article about the discovery only interviewed four non-Native Americans, who had no professional backgrounds in Mesoamerican archaeology and architecture.

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19 December 2011

Chinese Scientists Finish Sequencing Genghis Khan Descendant's Genome

Scientists said on Sunday that they have finished sequencing the genome of a direct descendant of Genghis Khan. Zhou Huanmin, project leader and head of the biological research lab at the Inner Mongolia Agricultural University, said Sunday that this was the first individual genome sequencing of a Mongolian.

The blood donator was a male only identified as one of Genghis Khan's 34th-generation offspring from the Sunit Tribe, which is based in the Xilingol league (prefecture) in Inner Mongolia.

Source & Full Story

7 December 2011

Massive Population Drop Found for Native Americans, DNA Shows

The number of Native Americans quickly shrank by roughly half following European contact about 500 years ago, according to a new genetic study. The finding supports historical accounts that Europeans triggered a wave of disease, warfare, and enslavement in the New World that had devastating effects for indigenous populations across the Americas.

Using samples of ancient and modern mitochondrial DNA—which is passed down only from mothers to daughters—the researchers calculated a demographic history for American Indians.

Source & Full Story

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