Genealogy thread

Buzz Rules

To Infinity and Beyond
Joined
Feb 7, 2005
Hey Buzz, thanks for starting this thread. I have done some research on Ancestry and some in the family have taken the DNA test, not sure if anyone on this thread knows the answer since the question is related to DNA results, rather than the research part. But wondering the following question:

If someone has a black parent (father), and a white parent (mother)....is it possible for their DNA result to come back with only 1% "black"? The other 99% is English/Scottish/ etc. To me, that would be impossible and that her father is not who she thinks it is ??

Does anyone have advice or knowledge to share on this?
https://www.ancestry.com/dna/en/legal/us/faq

DNA in general can vary. It’s not an exact 50/50 split. Does the person in question have siblings? Can their parents be tested as well? How far back have you traced both of those lineages? If the black parent had European DNA enter the gene pool either through biracial marriage (older generations) or through unfortunate means during the slavery period, might mean the European genetics were more dominant instead of the African DNA (this isn’t a sure thing, just a possibility). If you have a black parent who had black parents and then married a white woman who had a kid with that man, I would think that kid would have more than 1% African DNA. There are rare cases when a biracial couple has a completely white looking baby but I don’t know what the genetic make up of those kids are.
 

Deb

DIS Veteran
Joined
Aug 20, 1999
actually it is 50/50 for your parents, it's after that that it's more random. You get 50% of you dna from each parent. But that 50% is not split evenly from their parents so you might get

27% paternal g father
23% paternal g mother

35% maternal g father
15% maternal g mother

and your siblings also get 50% from each parent, but unless they are your identical twin, it's a different 50% and a completely different % from each grandparent.
 

Buzz Rules

To Infinity and Beyond
Joined
Feb 7, 2005
actually it is 50/50 for your parents, it's after that that it's more random. You get 50% of you dna from each parent. But that 50% is not split evenly from their parents so you might get

27% paternal g father
23% paternal g mother

35% maternal g father
15% maternal g mother

and your siblings also get 50% from each parent, but unless they are your identical twin, it's a different 50% and a completely different % from each grandparent.
Thank you for explaining it better than me. :-)
 
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Cannot_Wait_4Disney

Viscount of Vidalia
Joined
May 18, 2005
Hey Buzz, thanks for starting this thread. I have done some research on Ancestry and some in the family have taken the DNA test, not sure if anyone on this thread knows the answer since the question is related to DNA results, rather than the research part. But wondering the following question:

If someone has a black parent (father), and a white parent (mother)....is it possible for their DNA result to come back with only 1% "black"? The other 99% is English/Scottish/ etc. To me, that would be impossible and that her father is not who she thinks it is ??

Does anyone have advice or knowledge to share on this?

Yes it is very possible. But it doesn't mean what you're thinking it does.

99% of human DNA is common enough that you cannot identify any sort of thing from it as to being unique enough to identify as uniquely from an ethnicity or origin. That leaves less than 1% that shows any differences that are readily identifiable as to being in common with certain ethnicities or places of ultimate origin.

1% black is not accurate. DNA doesn't work like that. You can't chop it up and say this bit came from here, and this bit came from there. You cannot say well that bit of DNA is black DNA and that there bit of DNA is white DNA. It means 1% of what was tested has variations in common with the people from Africa they've also tested. It doesn't mean you're 1% black.

So no. It doesn't mean mom was playing tic tac toe. Nor would "But the kid only came up 1% black on 23 and me" ever hold up in court. That requires genetic testing of a much more comprehensive sort where they can look for matches for all kinds of things rather than just those that lend themselves to being exclusive to certain ethnic groups.

Further, DNA reshuffles and reorganizes with every transfer, Just because you got half from your mother and half from your father does not mean you got 1/4 from each of your grandparents. When the part of you that came from your mother is formed it isn't OK all of Grandpa's DNA get into chute A and all of Grandpa's DNA get into chute B. Ok each egg gets 50/50 from each chute. Neither is it 50/50 on the father's side. In fact, someone with a great grandmother who is Cherokee may have gotten absolutely no identified variations as Cherokee in common with her.
 
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Buzz Rules

To Infinity and Beyond
Joined
Feb 7, 2005
I'm questioning my Ancestry DNA findings, at least as to ethnicity estimates. Last year it increased my Scottish to around 50%, which struck me as unusual because I haven't found any ancestors with Scottish-sounding names. Then it added a little more to where it was over 50%. Today I look and they've reduced it to 12%. It's also now saying I have 1% Finnish and 1% Jewish ancestry. :confused3 I think it would be very cool, but again, haven't found any connections there.

Anyone else had big swings in their DNA estimates a few months or years after getting your first results?
Each update has more data added to come up with more accurate estimates. I would only pay attention to the updates that happen at the end of the year with the latest technology. As far as not finding Scottish names, do you have Anglo names in your tree? Many Scottish people changed their names to sound English when coming to America. Also, a great grandmother or something might have had a Scottish ancestor that changed their surname and therefore would not have a Scottish maiden name. Just a theory.
 

Praying Colonel

DIS Veteran
Joined
Aug 16, 2004
Each update has more data added to come up with more accurate estimates. I would only pay attention to the updates that happen at the end of the year with the latest technology. As far as not finding Scottish names, do you have Anglo names in your tree? Many Scottish people changed their names to sound English when coming to America. Also, a great grandmother or something might have had a Scottish ancestor that changed their surname and therefore would not have a Scottish maiden name. Just a theory.
Yes, that's the post I deleted. Turned out I was looking at DW's results by mistake. :sad2: Mine is basically the same--upped my Scottish a little.

Something I noticed with Ancestry is the region they draw for possible Scottish ancestry is very large--includes not only Scotland but northern England and Northern Ireland. So I could see where they might be from there (need to look into that more). I have a lot of Irish names among my ancestors: O'Brien, McGuire, Murphy, etc.
 









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