One of our wedding gifts was an Ancestry.com DNA test (thanks James!). We recently got our results back. I will discuss Lindsey’s first, since they were not all that surprising. Not being mean or anything, but her family says they are of Polish descent. And guess what? Her DNA is mostly Eastern European (72%), Irish (10%), Western European (9%), Iberian Peninsula (4%), Scandinavia (3%), Great Britain (1%), and Italy/Greece (<1%). So basically, lots of Polish folks, and then a small mix of those other countries.
That brings me to me though and oddly enough, some of the stories about my family are a little off. Remember how I said our family came from England? That is probably somewhat true, but that might not be the full truth. So allow me to give you the full background story that I was always told.
My Mom’s grandfather came to this country and we were always told from Russia. Her mother’s family came from Slovakia. The story goes that the family left Russia in 1917 and they fled to America basically in the middle of the night. I have always pretended that maybe my great-grandfather was some kind of Russian aristocrat, how else would he have the money to book passage to America on short notice right at the time of the Russian Revolution? However, none of my family really looks like your typical Russian. So I always figured they were either from somewhere near Turkey or maybe further west like one of the Stans (Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan…).
On my Dad’s side, we have always been told there was a bunch of English, maybe some Italian and a probably a little German. The story I told about them was mostly what I had heard before as a kid. So naturally I was a little shocked when I got my results
For those of you having troubles deciphering the map, here is the breakdown: Eastern European (42%), Scandinavian (20%), Western European (12%), Irish (11%), Italy/Greece (6%), British (3%), Iberian Peninsula (2%), European Jewish (1%), and Finland/Russia (1%). Also, you can break it down a bit more and there is some Northern African in there and a little South Asian as well, but it is even less than 1%.
So, the idea that my great-grandfather came from Russia seems to be pretty much wrong. Maybe he was Ukrainian or Belarusian. I have no clue. Also, I wonder if on my Dad’s side if the story about the ancestor coming from England, I mean it is probably true, since there is a bit known about the Croyle name (especially around Johnstown). So many questions now…
I guess Ancestry.com has me hooked.