A few posts ago I wrote about how I recently decided to take Ancestry.com's DNA test. I've been using the site for a while now, building out my family tree, sorting through old census documents and public records to expand on the family history that I've been taught all my life.
I took the test mostly for fun because my research findings have actually proved consistent with what my parents and grandparents have told me all along, but of course there's that part of you that wonders...what if?
So, I ordered the test, it came in the mail, I spit in a tube, and 6 weeks later a report was emailed to me that detailed my results. The majority of it was no surprise: Eastern Europe, yep, knew that; Southern Italy, uh-huh, just what Grammy had said, but then I paused...wait a second, where was Ireland? My grandfather's name was Francis Stevens Joseph O'Connell for God's sake—is there even a more Irish name than that? How in the world is that part of my genetic makeup just not showing up?
My "Ethnicity Estimate" according to Ancestry:
68% Eastern European
25% Other regions (what does that even mean?!)
So, I'm not really sure what to think. I have census documents from a few generations back that list Frank's relatives as having emigrated from Ireland, so it seems as it they did indeed come to America from there, but were they perhaps not ethnically Irish? Could they have been Eastern Europen by decent but lived in Ireland for a short time before emigrating once again? Maybe? Or is it possible that these test results aren't accurate at all and I can still genuinely celebrate St. Patrick's Day? Does DNA lie? Does anyone else have experience with this?
I don't know exactly what this all means, but what I do know is that Frank was always a wild card, so it's not surprising that it's his side of the family that's causing the stir here. I'm hoping that maybe with a little more research that I can get to the bottom of it though...