Melungeon-L ArchivesArchiver > Melungeon > 2002-12 > 1040658317
From: "Jack Goins" <>
Subject: Re: [Melungeon] More Genetic Stuff
Date: Mon, 23 Dec 2002 10:45:17 -0500
----- Original Message -----
From: Roger <>
> Hi Brent and List.
> Well Brent, since you and I share the same family lines and are cousins,
> am I correct in saying we share the same DNA? The DNA stuff is
> confusing to me, even though I feel that I have a good scientific mind.
> I suppose it is just too cold and clinical for me to be interested.
> Someone, maybe Jack explained it real well one time and I filed the
> e-mail to refer to as a refresher. I don't know what contitutes a
> bonifide Melungeon, but I do know that the area that most people focus
> on as being the heart of the Melungeon community is no different than
> 100 other places we could name. I could stand at the next Melungeon
> Reunion and speak about growing up here in WV but not mention it was WV
> and everything that I would describe would be the same as Mr. Collins,
> Mr. Mullins, or any other proclaimed Melungeon descendant. No difference
> in mannerisms, food, music, mountain lore, medicines, stories, beliefs,
> etc. My motto is: Melungeons Have No Borders.
## Roger you are exactly right you and Collins have the same common
Appalachian Heritage and may have the same common ancestor. The issue of
ethnicity (from an anthropologist's view) eliminates social isolate groups.
You are included as a member of the group is someone's ancestor came from
the same general geographic area and shared in ideas and practices that were
considered to belong to the group. That means that one does not have to be
blood-related to any of the major lines and that means that one does not
have to have a racial designation such as FPC under the anthropologist view
everyone in the Appalachian area could describe themselves as Melungeon this
descriptions come from an anthropologist word for word as explained to me.
In my opinion this is not right in regard to the Melungeons. We have to
define what a Melungeon is or was. Some families labeled Melungeon migrated
from Hawkins County to Indiana before 1830 so my research agrees with Rogers
statement that "Melungeons have no Borders" This also tells me that everyone
in the Appalachian area were not Melungeons. I am not referring to the
present day group of people in Appalachian area. Everything that we know had
to have a beginning, so did the Melungeons, the question is when? No one
really knows because we don't really know what this term "Melungeon" means,
there is a lot of theories the latest is Joanne Pizzullo malengine. This
could be right someone started calling them malengine, this could be the
word that was first used to describe this group of people and folks
misunderstood the way it was pronounced, so the word became Melungeon, but
it still applied to a certain identified group of people which is the very
reason we are discussing Melungeons today.
In my research I backtracked the head Melungeon families from home to the
various places they lived and as I did this I referred to them in my book as
Melungeons. I trailed these people to Louisa County, Virginia. This group
first migrated to the Flat River area, then around 1767 to the New River
areas. These core groups lived in what would be the border areas today of
Grayson County, Virginia. and Ashe County, NC. There was a group of these
people who migrated from Grayson County to Giles County. Virginia, this was
before West Virginia existed and the other group came to Tennessee. DeMarce
also trailed this group from Grayson County and you can find that in her
research. Also, where ever theses people lived they always left a few behind
that why you can go back the area of the Flat River in Person County today
and see all these core name.
I believe Y Chrom. DNA will prove these people stole those names Gibson and
Collins from the White settlers while living in Virginia before they
migrated to NC etc. Take Goins for example this Y test is showing some with
a common ancestor as European, AA, NA , This is also proven by history and
genealogy and the fact you can find Goins as Cherokee, Melungeon, Lumbee and
almost every clan. Just an example the Collins and Gibson intermarried for
generations but they did not have common ancestors. What if there was 30
families all with different last names took the name Collins and this same
thing applies to the Goins, Gibson.
I define Melungeon by using the old written records. #1- According to my
research no record exist that these people were know or called Melungeon in
any of the places I located them In this migration. They were described in
tax and land records as Mulatto and free person of color. #2- The written
testimony from the men of this time frame tells us that this name was given
to them by their white neighbors who lived here among them. These records
establishes the time period this name was applied to these people as between
1795 and 1813 where it is recorded in the minutes of Stony Creek Church.
A short answer to the questions who were the Melungeons? And where did they
live ? was first defined in a dictionary in 1892. "One of a very dark
people living in the Mountains of Tennessee. By Dr. Isaac K. Funk. New
Standard dictionary of the English Language, p 1548. (The Portuguese Making
of America" by Manuel Mira, page 25).
"They have been derisively dubbed with the name Melungeon by their white
neighbors. They originally were the Friendly Indians who came with the
whites, they came from the Cumberland County and the New River stopping at
various points west of the Blue Ridge, some of them stopped on Stony Creek
where it empties into the Clinch River and settled here between the years
1795-1812. (Attorney Lewis M. Jarvis interview Hancock County, Times
Sneedville, TN April 17, 1903, )
Lewis Jarvis born 1828 knew some of the known Melungeon such as Vardy
Collins and he was a Captain for the Federals during the Civil War. My
research agree with his migration statement and his statement that they were
given this name by their neighbors. Helen Roundtree mentions the friendly
Indians, so by the preponderance of the evidence I have gathered through my
own research I fully agree with the definition as described by Lewis Jarvis.
All these families named by Jarvis in his interview and named and described
by historians can be found on tax, land and census records as "free person's
of color" mulatto. I have seen no records that changes the records I have
used, so this is a challenge to researchers to find records that refute
these old records. The question of who is a descendant and or relative of
these people I will leave for others to argue, discuss, determine etc.
Have a Merry Christmas. Jack
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