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Archiver > Melungeon > 2002-12 > 1040673030

From: "Dennis Maggard" <>
Subject: Re: [Melungeon] DNA question
Date: Mon, 23 Dec 2002 14:50:30 -0500
References: <004901c2aab6$d3a32750$447ffea9@pat>

From: "Pat Elder" <>

> Hi Ernie.
> If we don't know when the "Melungeon" line entered a family (Melungeon
> family by a definition of your choosing), how can we know which DNA test
> product to use in order to make a statement about Melungeons? Let's say my
> earliest Goins ancestor is John Goins, who was listed as fpc and would be
> Melungeon. What if the Melungeon genes were introduced into John Goins's
> line by his great-grandmother Fifi Smith, who I don't yet know existed.
> What if the factors that make a person a Melungeon came from Fifi's
> grandfather? It won't mean much either for my male cousin to use a
> Y-chromosome test for the same reasons will it?
> It still seems to me that we need to know when the so-called "Melungeon"
> genes entered otherwise it is just a sample of selected people from
> Appalachia but I may be wrong.

There are no Melungeon genes. There are no Melungeon genetic markers of any
kind so far as anyone knows and it's hardly possible that there could be.

The Melungeons and their descendants are, however, a group of people -- a
population -- with a common ancestry. DNA analysis can be done to determine
that ancestry. That's a population study, and that's what the Melungeon DNA
study was all about.

> Even with a super-duper documented pedigree chart, "Melungeon" testing
> have to stop with the last person who can be identified as a Melungeon.
> if you or I define "Melungeon" as "Native American" it might be
> understandable that you can group the results with the products from
> DNA testing but then you have the problem of tribal affiliation and not
> tribes were alike. This is why I gave the Sizemore family data as an
> of what great things can be done with DNA testing but I don't think they
> claiming anything about being Melungeon by using the data. I think they
> looking at Sizemore family group data. Maybe I'm wrong.

There is no test for "Melungeoness" and almost certainly never will be. This
appears to be a message that can't be repeated often enough.

Dennis Maggard

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