The DNA results came back two days ago; I was surprised, not exactly what I had expected. Considering that my last name traces back to Ireland and a number of relatives on Dad’s side also go back to Ireland or England, I expected I would have a considerable amount of both. Wrong!! Very little: 7 percent Irish and 9 percent English. I have almost as much Caucasus (Iran, Iraq, Syria, Georgia, etc) as I do Irish–4 percent. Once I actually considered that and thought about my haploid group (see previous DNA posting), it made sense. There is a trace of Iberian Peninsula (two per cent) and one of Scandinavian.
I am 77 per cent western European which in ancestry.com terms encompasses, Switzerland, Belgium, France, Germany, Austria, Netherlands, northern Italy (I did find one ancestor from Italy) and some of Denmark. Looking at these results, I went back and looked at what I had learned on Mom’s side since my last DNA post. After hitting repeated dead ends for my great grandfather on her paternal side, I concentrated on the other. My grandmother’s father came from Switzerland in 1844. That makes two great grandfathers from Bern which would give me a certain 25 per cent Swiss even if no one else was from there. I traced more to Alsace and the part of Germany next to Belgium. And then there were the Dutch traced back to New York where they married in the Dutch Reformed Church, Isaac VanDeventer and Saartje Couwenhoven in the early 1700s. I keep coming back, however, to the Swiss and nearby. Once I kept counting all of them, they numbered far more than anything else–names like Kaiser and Werth (the two great grandfathers), Zimmerman, Spainhauer, Fiscus, Rufener, Meyer, Binckele.
Today, a fourth cousin found me through the ancestry site, sent me a message, and the site sent me information on two third cousins. They can actually “match” using family trees.
Although I have discovered the majority of what I wanted to know, I will continue to attempt a search regarding the one great grandfather. While searching, I remembered a story my aunt told me, how she never knew him because the story she was told is this: He went to town one day and never came back, simply disappeared. Eventually, he was declared dead–the ancestry info has a birth date in Tennessee but no recorded date of death. My great grandmother eventually remarried and this husband raised her children by my great grandfather. My aunt even took me to the cemetery where the second husband was buried. I thought I would remember the gravestone, but I could not find it when I returned years later. If I had only written down all my aunt told me.