At least eight participants have discovered that their maternal ancestor was of Amerindian origin. This is due to their mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) test results that placed them in haplogroup A, B, C, or D. Several others have results indicating possible Amerindian heritage. They have haplogroup X or U in the case of mtDNA test results and haplogroup Q or Q3 in the case of Y-DNA test results.
Contrary to all the information given in her genealogy, Marie Rundquist discovered through the results of mtDNA testing that her haplogroup was a type "A", typically Amerindian; her ancestral or matrilineal mother was therefore an Amerindian. That discovery prompted her to revisit her genealogy and she subsequently discovered documents confirming that one of her first Acadian ancestors married an American Indian.
"I have been tested in the National Geographic Genographic project; my results have been transferred to Family Tree DNA. I am a member of Haplogroup A. My lineage is French/Cajun (through my mother's line); my Ancestral/Native routes are found in Nova Scotia, where a French settler, René Rimbault, married an Amerindian woman, known only as Anne Marie. It is through this union, that occurred in the mid-1600s, that my Native American and French lineage can be originally traced. I had no knowledge of my Amerindian lineage before participating in the Genographic project; I was totally knocked out of my chair when I read the results on line.
Mind you, I NEVER knew anything about the female line of my family until my mtDNA results came in as "Native American". This revelation caused my dad (and others) to get their DNA tested. I've learned alot about my background since; and thankfully have met others who have helped me solve all these mysteries in my own family's background." (Contributed by Marie Rundquist - 26 Jan 2006). For the complete story
Many European Americans whose names were modified or whose great grandparents had taken new family names at the time of their immigration to the USA, are rediscovering their original family names by comparing their DNA signature to that of distant cousins who remained in Acadia, Quebec, or France/Belgium/Switzerland. This is the case of Stone (Lapierre), Nugent (Bernier), Beno (Benoit) Caple (Caplette), Sherbondy (Charpentier) and many others whose names had been Americanized
Others discovered that they were not the biological descendant of the ancestor which their genealogy indicated. There are many possible explanations:
- An incorrect genealogy. The genealogies put together by amatuer genealogists are most unfortunately not always done with great care and accuracy. Many errors are made including clerical errors and they are taken up by other amateur genealogists happy to profit from the work of others. Therefore you must always verify and document your work.
- An ancestor could have been mistaken for someone else or simply have been forgotten. For example, the Daigles of North America, according to the "official" genealogies, all descend from Olivier D'Aigre, born in France (Aigre region, Charente-Poitou) about 1643 who settled in Acadia. His descendants were dispersed, some to Quebec, some to Louisiana (Cajun), and others to Belle-Isle in France. But, there were other "Daigle"s who immigrated to Quebec later (3 brothers of St. Malo apparently the sons of Olivier and M. Blanche Robichaud who had returned to that country), as well as the Dedge/Degme's (aka Lallemand from Vienna, Lower Germany-Austria) who all have the name Daigle today. At least two of those Daigle lines have different Y DNA signatures and belong to different haplogroups (I and R1b). Genetic Genealogy will be able to tell us if any of the other Daigles have different origins.
- A non-parental event as an adoption, a quiet assimilation, a change of name or identity.
Participant Alice Fairhurst after years of researching had reached a roadblock in her pursuit of her maternal Raymond lineage. She could not identify which of the Raymond lines her ancestor belonged to. We already had a Raymond with YDNA results in our project who could document his ancestry back 200 years to France and so Alice convinced her Raymond cousin to DNA test. Guess what? The results show that her Raymond cousin was an exact match to the other so now she can be sure that her line traces back to 1640 Angoulème, France. Her Raymond relatives were ecstatic!
Boucher is a surname that has various origins: French, English, German. Prior to the start of our French Heritage project there was an "English" Boucher project. A participant in that project was a J. Boucher whose DNA signature did not match any of the other Bouchers. One of the first members of our French Heritage DNA project was Marc Boucher, a documented descendant of Marin Boucher and Julie Baril. The "English" Boucher project administrator discover that her J. Boucher's DNA signature matched Marc Boucher's exactly and so through YDNA testing, J. Boucher has found the home of his paternal ancestor. He is now proudly of "French" origin!
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