ethnicity estimates ~ 9.16.20

Barbara’s latest ethnicity estimate from Ancestry DNA

Eastern Europe & Russia 41%
England & Northwestern Europe 26%
Scotland 12%
Germanic Europe 9%
Wales 7%
The Balkans 3%
Norway 2%

Tim’s latest ethnicity estimate from Ancestry DNA

England & Northwestern Europe 71%
Ireland 13%
Scotland 6%
Wales 6%
Sweden 2%
Norway 2%

It’s only been 9 months since our last DNA ethnicity results have been updated! See last ones here.

As you may know, we’re constantly evolving the technology and methods behind AncestryDNA®. Using a combination of scientific expertise, the world’s largest online consumer DNA database, and millions of family trees linked with DNA results, we’re releasing our most precise DNA update yet.
~ AncestryDNA email

Of course I find it terribly exciting to make note of all the fine-tuning that has been done. Ireland and Scotland got separated and I wound up with no Irish, but with 12% Scottish ancestry. Baltic and Italian heritage disappeared, but Norwegian held steady at 2%, and new are Wales (7%, separated out from the old England, Wales and Northwestern Europe grouping) and the Balkans (3%). Eastern Europe & Russia percentage stayed about the same, but the map extended much farther east. In the years to come perhaps there will be more fine-tuning of my Ukrainian roots, as I have so little to go on for my father’s ancestry.

Wales got separated out for Tim, too, at 6%, and he’s still plenty of English, Scottish, Irish and Northwestern Europe. New for him is Sweden at 2%. He maintained his 2% from Norway.

And now, to see how it plays out for one of our children:

Nate’s latest ethnicity estimate from Ancestry DNA

Germanic Europe 26%
England & Northwestern Europe 20%
Eastern Europe & Russia 18%
Scotland 12%
Ireland 6%
Sweden 5%
Wales 4%
Norway 4%
Baltics 3%
France 2%

If we try to add up the percenatges, they don’t add up. 🙂 Nate has more Germanic Europe than we could possibly have given him! (Thank goodness he turned up as our son, though, on the DNA test – phew!) And the Baltic which disappeared from my estimate showed up on his at 3%. And where on earth did France come from??? (Although, on my first DNA test estimate 2% Iberian Peninsula showed for me. And one of my ancestors was said to be a French Huguenot.) Yes, these are definitely estimates, subject to further change, but the gist of it does seem to follow the paper trail. 🙂

It’s important to remember, too, that even though we give half of our genes to each child, each child gets a different mix of half our genes. Tim’s brother doesn’t show any of Norway or Ireland, but has a lot more of Scotland than Tim does. (Maybe someday I will get my sister on board with getting a test!)

Until next time!

19 thoughts on “ethnicity estimates ~ 9.16.20”

  1. DNA is way too scientific for my mind, Barbara, so I don’t understand the whys and wherefores of the breakdown either. My latest update on ancestry gives me a percentage of Scottish too, and has spread my Scandinavian estimate to both Sweden and Norway now, when before it was just Sweden. My husband has a high percentage of Irish, which we knew about before his DNA results came in, but no Scandinavian, so it’s interesting to analyse the DNA of the two of our children we have the DNA results for.

    I talked my sister into having her DNA tested a few years ago and her reaction when I first asked her was classic – she was worried that our parents might not be who we thought they were! I hadn’t even considered that, but when I thought about it, it doesn’t change who you know yourself to be, regardless of your DNA. I just love that the testing has helped me expand my family tree. 🙂

    1. The other day I had an ah-ha moment concerning genes and why these estimates keep changing. Our genes stay the same but the analysis of where a certain gene originated changes as they compare more genes from more people and compare known migrations with new discoveries in local gene pools. Not the most scientific way of grasping it, but it works for me!

      I see you’re having fun comparing the data for your family, too. 🙂

      The DNA test helped my cousin’s husband find his birth parents, but he already knew he was adopted. I imagine it would be a terrible shock to find out your parents weren’t genetically yours. My sister is more concerned about privacy issues in general.

  2. How interesting! I have pondered doing this but never have. We were always told that my grandma’s grandma was Native American but our nephew had this done and didn’t show any native blood. Would be nice to find out.

    1. My mother, who loved Native American culture the way I love all things Norwegian, was told there was a Native American in her ancestry. She went to her grave believing that and looking for the evidence. But when I got tested there was not one bit of Native American DNA in me. If you can be okay with whatever is discovered you should go ahead and do it!

      One has to be careful with people’s sensitivities, though. I still regret telling my dearly loved grandfather that his grandparents had divorced and that his grandmother had wound up in the poorhouse. (He had been told his grandmother had died.) I will never forget the look on his face. Some secrets are better left alone…

    1. Identifying the genes is precise, but deciding where they originated is still an educated guess. Determining who is related to you is certain. AncestryDNA linked me to my cousin and she sent me a message saying, “Hey, cousin, I guess it works!” I have been enjoying meeting more distant cousins through AncestryDNA and then we often exchange more information. 🙂

        1. Would your Swedish family take you in? Fleeing sounds so tempting about now. Things did get markedly worse with the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg. I’m dreading what might be ahead of us.

          1. Lately I do think of leaving although the problems involved in the logistics of doing so seem too great to overcome. I do know one person who fled to Bulgaria…

  3. My friend has undergone DNA testing and also is very active in genealogy, having traced every relative back several hundred years and hired European genealogist to help get this accomplished. That is interesting that you can tell all this information. My friend offered to do my “tree” when I mentioned I had a French-Canadian grandfather and he hailed from St. Jerome, Quebec and her grandfather also originated from the same area. It turned out that we were related 16 generations ago. She sent me an e-mail where she spun out this info … I was just amazed she found out all that info on the “Ancestry” site.

    1. The Ancestry database is pretty amazing and probably less expensive than hiring a genealogist. It does have its limits but it is always adding new resources. It has a lot of Norwegian record collections but not Ukrainian ones, at least the last time I had the World Explorer Membership. (At $300 a year extra I couldn’t afford to keep it forever.) Maybe someday I’ll try again. North American ancestors are comparatively easy to trace. That’s so cool you found yourself related to your friend, distant cousins! 🙂 It turns out my husband and I share a couple of early New England ancestors, too. 🙂

      1. I had no idea what the cost was and I have known three people who have traced their ancestors back many generations using Ancestry software, but Carol has tirelessly chased down leads or hired the project out if it was a foreign country, all efforts to find the info to complete her tree. She posts pictures on Facebook similar to what you have – the vintage pictures are just incredible aren’t they? I inherited the family album which has been around for a while. I have no siblings, so i do have a treasure trove of photos. My mother sat down with me and explained who was who.

        1. Do you have cousins, Linda? Recently one of my cousins on my father’s side started using Ancestry and has been posting all the pictures in her mother’s albums. Up until she retired she had no interest in family history. Her mother (my aunt) is the youngest of my father’s sisters, and the only surviving one at age 92. (One of them lived to be 101!) What a treasure trove this is going to be for future generations of curious descendants. 🙂

          1. I do have three cousins Barbara, but I only saw them one time. They live in Canada. My mother was an only child from 1926 until 1937 when my grandparents didn’t think they could any more children, so they adopted a brand-new baby from an unwed mother. Then my grandmother became pregnant. Shortly after becoming pregnant, my mother (at age 11) was in a serious car accident and was in the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto for the next four years. So, essentially these two kids were not part of her life until she returned home at age 15. With all the years between them, they were not close. My grandmother passed away in 1986. My aunt has since passed away.

            My uncle and his wife had three kids, so yes I have cousins, but only met them at my grandfather’s funeral in 1969 and never again. I don’t consider any of them family since they’ve never been part of my life. I have no family. My friend Carol is like you and every discovery she makes, she is very excited about it and posts the info/notes and pictures if available.

          2. I’m so sorry about your mother’s terrible accident and spending so many years of her childhood in the hospital. What a terrible trauma for the whole family. Having you must have been the source of so much joy for her. And you seem to have a very full life from how little I’ve gotten to know you so far. Families can be made up of people we’ve chosen, too. Your friend Carol is also your cousin. 🙂 Thank you so much for sharing your mother’s story.

            My mother-in-law was cut off from her family by her father and his second wife. When my husband went to his grandfather’s funeral, after never seeing him for over 30 years, having only a dim memory from his childhood, that second wife refused to shake his hand. Like you, he has cousins on his mother’s side he’s never met. So sad, but you never know, maybe it is a blessing. I leave those spaces empty on the family tree.

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