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Are the majority of Americans related?

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  • #16
    I think that Americans with roots in the colonial era do have a number of interesting kinships that are very different from Europe, especially if they come from families that moved into the interior of the continent in the 19th century.

    Consider this, we all know that we have 256 g-g-g-g-g-g grandparents (or at least places for them on the family tree). Go back a few more generations & we are talking about 4,096 or 8,192 or 16,384 ancestors. It is at about this level that many of us find our ancestors crossing the Atlantic.

    Consider this: the population of all 13 colonies in the first half of the 18th century was less than 1 million & a lot less in the 17th century. Natural selection (aka, differential reproduction) has been working on the descendants of these immigrants. Some have huge numbers of descendants, numbering in the tens of millions. Others have only a few thousand descendants. I wouldn't be surprised if the 80/ 20 rule is at work here. Chances are, most Americans of colonial descent are really distant cousins to one another, because the odds of finding someone who doesn't share at least one of the 8,192 ancestral couples from the 1600s is really low. I think that many of the 5th to Distant Family Finder matches are people who share multiple lines of descent across the spectrum of each of their ancestries. Many of these lived in the 1600s & haven't been found yet by modern genealogy; thus, the all too often occurance of check a matches tree & saying, "Nope; nothing in common here."

    In Europe, things are a lot different. Imagine having a lineage that has been bottled up for centuries in a modest sized town. You get back to that generation with 16,384 ancestors & realize that 90% of them live in a town today that has fewer than 5,000 people. Then you realize that 90% of the ancestors of the 16,384 have been in that same village for at least as long. Cousin intermarriage occurs frequently, in many cases to 1st, 2nd, or 3rd cousins. If most everyone in town is this closely related, the odds of randomly finding a spouse who is unrelated are remote. People are a lot more closely related to one another in a European village, in terms of shared genome, but only very distantly related to others outside of the village.

    In America, people are a lot less closely related to their closest relatives (in terms of shared genome) than those in Europe, but are a lot more likely to find distant cousins scattered throughout the general population. If most people are distant cousins, odds are a person's spouse will turn out to be a distant cousin.

    Of course, there are a minority of cases in America where the two spouses were first cousins. 4 of my 32 g-g-g-g grandparent couples in America were first cousin marriages. In each case, the first cousin marriage vastly amplifies the distance that autosomal DNA can detect. On a line of ancestry without a cousin marriage, the odds of finding a match from earlier than say 1800 is a lot less than if two of my g-g-g-g grandparents were first cousins who married one another. Matches shared through such a first cousin intermarriage many times have a MRCA as far back as the early 1700s or 1600s.

    In terms of shared autosomal DNA, white Americans of colonial descent are a lot more likely to find black cousins who are more closely related to them than anyone in Europe. This trend is, of course, becoming more prevalent & obvious with each passing generation.

    Timothy Peterman

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    • #17
      Originally posted by georgian1950 View Post
      The Native American and African in the ancestor 200 years ago was already diluted by at least a couple of generations of white fathers, plus some of the slaves were mulatto to start with. What I carry in me now is only a trace amount of color, maybe one percent (African and Native American). It's probably the same with you.
      Not the same for me at all.

      myOrigins - 59% Southern European, 36% Asia Minor, 5% North Africa (no sub-Saharan African or Native American)

      AncestryDNA - 69% Italy/Greece, 10% Middle East, 7% Caucasus, 4% Iberian Peninsula, 3% Great Britain, 3% European Jewish, <1% Europe East, <1% Finland/Northwest Russia, <1% Ireland (no sub-Saharan African or Native American)

      23andMe - 75.1% Italian, 2.3% Balkan, 1.3% Iberian, 15.5% Broadly Southern European, 0.2% Broadly Northern European, <0.1% Ashkenazi, 1.6% Broadly European, 3.4% Middle Eastern & North African, 0.1% East Asian, <0.1% Broadly East Asian & Native American, 0.1% Oceanian, 0.1% East African (probably related to Middle Eastern)

      As you can see, my Origins and AncestryDNA give me no Native American or sub-Saharan African. 23andMe gives me a miniscule amount of Broadly East Asian & Native American and East African. It's not the 1% you claim I would have from ancestors living around 1800.

      If you want to propose the elaborate theory you've proposed, that's fine. But please don't use my results and misrepresent them to support your theory. The fact that using your thresholds for small segments has you and I sharing segments is by no means support for you theory. As I've already written, it's more a refutation of your theory as leading to false positives.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by MMaddi View Post
        Not the same for me at all.

        As you can see, my Origins and AncestryDNA give me no Native American or sub-Saharan African. 23andMe gives me a miniscule amount of Broadly East Asian & Native American and East African. It's not the 1% you claim I would have from ancestors living around 1800.

        If you want to propose the elaborate theory you've proposed, that's fine. But please don't use my results and misrepresent them to support your theory. The fact that using your thresholds for small segments has you and I sharing segments is by no means support for you theory. As I've already written, it's more a refutation of your theory as leading to false positives.
        Admixture programs are tremendously unreliable at small percentages, but that being said, MDLP k23b has your Native American at 0.25% and your sub-Saharan at 0.14%.

        If you cannot stand the heat of a rebuttal, maybe you should not have posted in the first place.

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        • #19
          Georgian, as you yourself have said, admixture programs are notoriously unreliable at small percentages. Do you truly consider it more plausible that one of MMaddi's ancestors was a refugee from a slave ring in the Carolinas that ended up in Italy? I find it more likely the Am Indian or Sub Saharan percentages are either noise or population based.

          Using the same calculator, MDLP k23b my Irish grandmother has no Sub Saharan but she has 1.68% Native American. It isn't possible. It's much more likely that 1.68% DNA is either noise or DNA that was in the general population prior to the migration of the people who became Native Americans.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by suttonwho View Post
            Georgian, as you yourself have said, admixture programs are notoriously unreliable at small percentages. Do you truly consider it more plausible that one of MMaddi's ancestors was a refugee from a slave ring in the Carolinas that ended up in Italy? I find it more likely the Am Indian or Sub Saharan percentages are either noise or population based.

            Using the same calculator, MDLP k23b my Irish grandmother has no Sub Saharan but she has 1.68% Native American. It isn't possible. It's much more likely that 1.68% DNA is either noise or DNA that was in the general population prior to the migration of the people who became Native Americans.
            At least we agree on admixture programs. Myself, I look at about three of them, add up the African and Native American breakdowns as a measure of my color, and then average them. I think it puts me at about one percent color, but I don't try to be too precise about that. Having said that, Eurogenes k13 has MMaddi at 0.28% American Indian, 0.75% Sub-Saharan, and 0.70 NE African (MDLP k23b had additional African breakdowns for him that I did not list).

            Considering I have a number of good cases of migration to New England and Maine in particular plus the Maritime Provinces and several good cases of going to Mexico, I think my escape by sea scenario is entirely plausible. Recently I picked out a few kits from from a Sicilian discussion on GEDmatch Forums to compare against and found ones with high enough totals for matching segments to conclude that I was related several ways.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by T E Peterman View Post
              I think that Americans with roots in the colonial era do have a number of interesting kinships that are very different from Europe, especially if they come from families that moved into the interior of the continent in the 19th century.....

              Timothy Peterman
              Thank you Timothy for your reasoned response. When I first got into the autosomal DNA comparisons, I very quickly noted that I might need to look for more than one connection since the population was so limited.

              I think there is little doubt that in early Colonial times, women for wives were in short supply. You had Tobacco wives in Virgina and casket girls in Louisiana. Looks like a lot of settlers moving west to Tennessee and Kentucky, bought a bride in North Carolina from this ring.

              I'm closing in on specific males, and I think I will be able to bring some identity to the mothers even If I can't know their names. If people overlook something that seems to be a large factor in genealogy, we might as well give up on figuring out the rest.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by Ann Turner View Post
                A very high percentage of 1 and 3 cM segments are what I call pseudo-segments in my 'Satiable Curiosity column in JoGG "Identity Crisis: Identical by State or Identical by Descent?"

                http://www.jogg.info/72/files/Turner.htm

                They would disappear if you used phased data.

                See also illustrations in this article showing how small segments don't behave as you would expect over the span of several generations.

                http://www.yourgeneticgenealogist.co...gments-as.html
                Thank you Ann. I am glad to see an expert here. Perhaps you can figure out that with all of these pseudo-segments that I am getting with my 250 SNP's and 1.0 cM minimum segment size parameters why I can get a (0.0, 0.0) comparison with someone like the person who has both sets of grandparents from Nigeria?

                Oh yes, CECE's 12/3/2015 blog. I am very aware of it, and it is very flawed. Basically, all the people she used in her examples were more related to each other than she realized, thus causing the growing matching segments with child cases that she attributed to pseudo-segments. I would be glad to discuss her study privately with you if you wish.

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                • #23
                  Georgian, we know MMaddi's ancestors were born in Italy and the earliest any of them arrived in the U.S. was in 1889.

                  MDLP k23b has MMaddi's Native American at 0.25% and his sub-Saharan at 0.14%. Eurogenes K13 has MMaddi at 0.28% American Indian, 0.75% Sub-Saharan, and 0.70 NE African.

                  Despite his known family history, at best trace SS and AmInd percentages, and small segment matches this has led you to the conclusion he has an immediate ancestor who escaped from the Carolinas and made his way to Italy where he eventually provided DNA that led to MMaddi?

                  I will give you a few examples calculator percentages of non-Colonials who doubtlessly also share small segment matches with you:

                  Eurogenes K13
                  Paternal Irish grandmother
                  Amerindian 1.97%
                  Sub Saharan 0.25%

                  Half Irish/Half Belgian Father
                  Amerindian 1.61%
                  Sub Saharan 0

                  Maternal grandmother Norwegian/Alsatian/Eastern European
                  Amerindian 0.24%
                  Sub Saharan 0

                  Do you believe they also had a direct ancestor who escaped from a slave ring in the Carolinas and made his way to Poland, Belgium, Norway or Ireland? They have much higher AmInd % than MMaddi does.

                  In contrast, I have 3 more immediate family members who do have Colonial ancestry. Each Colonial example has less AmerInd traces according to the calculators than those with purely Irish or Irish and Belgian ancestry.

                  1 Colonial line Great Grandparent
                  Maternal Aunt
                  Amerindian 0.65%
                  Sub Saharan 0

                  Self
                  Amerindian 1.10%
                  Sub Saharan 0.44%

                  1/2 Colonial + 1 Colonial 3X great grandparent
                  Son
                  Amerindian 1.04
                  Sub Saharan 0.17%

                  I don't think anyone would disagree that Colonials are in the main related. That's very different from the belief that the majority of Colonial Americans and even apparently Europeans with Amerind and Sub Saharan percentages/small shared segments are direct descendents of a Carolina slave ring.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by suttonwho View Post

                    Using the same calculator, MDLP k23b my Irish grandmother has no Sub Saharan but she has 1.68% Native American. It isn't possible. It's much more likely that 1.68% DNA is either noise or DNA that was in the general population prior to the migration of the people who became Native Americans.
                    Obviously, she must be a refugee from the same slave ring in the Americas, like my Italian ancestor. I'm sure that when they got away from the slavemasters they sailed as far away as possible, probably even to China.

                    I hope that OP does not resort to that very unparsimonious explanation in your case too!

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      Originally posted by georgian1950 View Post

                      If you cannot stand the heat of a rebuttal, maybe you should not have posted in the first place.
                      I have no beef with your theory. I'm sure there are some Americans with colonial ancestry and some small amount of Native American and SSA who have some connection to the slave ring you're theorizing.

                      But you're obviously grasping at straws when you try to make us believe that my Italian ancestors were fugitives in 1800 from this slave ring. The only reason you come up with this wild explanation is that I tried the test at gedmatch you requested and came up with these small segments with not many SNPs that match you and there's no plausible way that they come from a common ancestor in a genealogical time frame.

                      Your test failed and showed that segments with these thresholds are unreliable. Just admit it and keep your larger theory, which probably has some validity.

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                      • #26
                        I guess I'll have to test my Chinese spouse to see if she also descends from the Carolina slave/wife-selling ring . . .

                        But they scoffed at Galileo and Columbus too, so maybe Georgian1950 will be proven right eventually.

                        Personally I am entirely on his side in regard to his very early statements on Gedmatch that small segment matches may be indicative of a genetic connection. The difficulty comes with trying to separate the meaningful segment matches from the noise. Until such time as the noise can be reliably and consistently identified or is shown to be relevant (and, therefore, not really noise) there is really no point in taking the things as far as G1950 is trying to do.

                        Whether or not Cece's presentation suffers from flaws as G1950 contends, she did demonstrate with her small sample that small segment matches can be misleading. I don't believe she said that small segments are necessarily worthless - she only said that you can't rely on them and demonstrated why she reached that conclusion. G1950 has said above that her sample people are really more closely related than Cece realizes. I'm sure she would welcome knowledgeable discussion on that point. G1950's statement above that he'd discuss his argument regarding her flaws privately is not acceptable in my opinion. I contend that he should not make such a statement publicly if he is unwilling to post his arguments publicly. If his reasoning is sound, it should be able to withstand review and critiques just as Cece's should.

                        As has been suggested here, its highly likely that any two individuals with colonial American ancestry will have some kind of genetic connection. It's also perfectly possible that the connection will show up only in small segments (which my own autosomal tests can show relative to some cousins). But extrapolating that to the point that G1950 has taken it does not seem to me a productive use of resources.

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                        • #27
                          I haven't gone into DNA much; over my head plus computer trouble. So I have not down-loaded data.
                          Having said that, I spend quite a bit of time on my research trees at Ancestry. Sometimes I drop a line/branch and start up another. Regarding colonial ancestors from the British Isles, etc, they seem to connect way back there centuries ago. I bump into ancestors that I dropped earlier. And royalty connections are also there indirectly. I have a new offshoot line that goes back to Rosslyn Castle in Scotland, via a Sinclair line. There is a King Henry in there, but scotch; not English. I haven't tried to research that line much. And so it goes...

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                          • #28
                            Are the majority of Americans related?

                            When you compare cars to fish at first the task seems ludicrous.

                            But then when you broaden the criteria of the comparison you start to make connections.

                            Both require fuel to operate in their own fashion. Both have appendages the swing from their sides. Both utilize water and oxygen. Both expend exhaust. Both have armored exteriors.

                            It is obvious then that cars and fish are related, isn't it?

                            If you keep adjusting the goalposts, eventually you will score amazing results.

                            As for the points made in this particular discussion, I think traditional genealogy will serve most individuals in refuting the slave circle theory, DNA will not be required.

                            As for the larger theory, are the majority of Americans related, I would have thought that discovery had been made long ago. Modern DNA has been redundant in proving the overall theory, and very useful in proving certain particulars, such as:
                            1) All homo sapiens, regardless of skin color, are humans,
                            2) All humans are related and inter-related,
                            3) All humans have at least a slight ability to reason ,{though admittedly this particular is still much in debate}
                            4) It is a proven that despite the ability to reason, not all humans make use of the ability, and those who do may use it in unconventional manners,
                            and finally 5) A variable subset of humans will persistently seek out what may be broadly termed "Conspiracy Theories" and cling to those theories despite seemingly overwhelming evidence opposing those theories. {personally, I believe The Maker puts them amongst us for His/Her own amusement}

                            I am my own brother, sister, father, mother, cousin, aunt, uncle, grandparent, et al. I am as surely related to the readers of this post as I am to the just stated relationships. . . . . and I like God's humor.
                            .
                            .
                            .
                            .
                            .
                            .
                            .
                            well, most of the time.

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                            • #29
                              Hi Georgian. I agree with Haggis, I don't believe in discussing this privately. You've made a public claim and have been replied to publicly. My family kits that I admin are available and both my grandmother's kit numbers are visible here under Duffy and Kern:

                              https://iowadnaproject.wordpress.com...mall-segments/

                              Duffy is the Irish kit and Kern is a Norwegian/Eastern Euro/Alsatian. Neither have any colonial ties. As Mmaddi has said, I would also hope that you would not use my kits as 'evidence' in supporting your theory that Europeans with Amerindian/Sub Saharan values are descendents of an American slave ring. Our genetic matches support our traditional genealogy many times over.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by suttonwho View Post
                                Hi Georgian. I agree with Haggis, I don't believe in discussing this privately. You've made a public claim and have been replied to publicly. My family kits that I admin are available and both my grandmother's kit numbers are visible here under Duffy and Kern:

                                https://iowadnaproject.wordpress.com...mall-segments/

                                Duffy is the Irish kit and Kern is a Norwegian/Eastern Euro/Alsatian. Neither have any colonial ties. As Mmaddi has said, I would also hope that you would not use my kits as 'evidence' in supporting your theory that Europeans with Amerindian/Sub Saharan values are descendents of an American slave ring. Our genetic matches support our traditional genealogy many times over.
                                Thanks. I'm tied up this weekend so it will be a while before I can give a complete reply. OK, so both grandmothers were born outside of the USA and you have documentation of when and where they landed? Do you have a tree that is accessible?

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