Am I Irish?

My Ancestry DNA test contains few surprises. As expected, the results show I am mostly English and Scottish. Also expected is a Northern European connection, pointing to Northern France and Belgium. Family lore maintains that we have Native American ancestors which turns out to be true.

But there are a few surprises. 3% Welsh? I suppose it should be expected but I can’t recall any stories about Welsh ancestors. Swedish ancestry is one of the two biggest surprises in the results. I had no clue about this. The other big surprise is the lack of Irish ancestors. According to Ancestry, I do not have any.

The Scots-Irish and Catholic-Irish don’t intermix? As a melting pot American, I assume that neighbors always mix. My lack of Catholic-Irish ancestors shocks me.

Of course, Americans are the outliers with our cavalier attitude about intergroup mixing. Throughout history relations between neighbors have been characterized by tensions, feuds, hatreds, and war, often genocidal war. The Irish Troubles and the Israeli-Palestinian wars are more typical. So maybe Ancestry’s test results were accurate.

Actually, these results were not accurate. In the latest of their DNA profile updates, what do I find? Ireland 3%.

I’m not sure why they changed their findings after nearly a year. I assume they regularly update their results as new data pour in. So, a good thing.

If you’re contemplating using Ancestry’s DNA testing, keep this variability in mind. If you think their results contradict your family’s lore, trust the lore.

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