Tracing French-Canadian Ancestry… How’s That DNA Test Working for You?

My husband’s mother came from a colorful line of French Immigrants dating back to the 1600’s, when brave people sailed from France to New Canada. Funny thing is, he doesn’t identify with it. And because I’m the one doing the research (and I have a bit of French ancestry) I’m the one who is developing the bond.

The French genealogical community is very colorful and culturally rich. Whether it’s from the descendants who remain in Canada after generations or those who reside in Louisiana’s Acadiana in Lafayette, the determination to keep the culture alive suffers no boredom or apathy. I am impressed by the details kept through the years by the Catholic church. Those details are found on genealogical websites, (ancestry.com geni.com, etc.) and include pictures of graves, churches, homes and home sites as well as wedding pictures. In Louisiana, the Cajun community is one of the most active social groups I’ve ever seen. Talking about sticking together, they do. The Cajuns in Louisiana are the descendants of the French who were exiled from Canada by the English in 1765 and years following. The name Nova Scotia is British but it was an Acadian homeland before that. Many of New France’s descendants are also found in Quebec.

Did you get your DNA tested and if so, how’s that working out for you? Did you find that you had the French ancestry that you expected? Was it more or less so? And what else did you find? Any surprises? And did you come across any cousin matches? If so, were they friendly? It seems like an association with the Cajun communities in the United States and Canada would be a genealogical treasure. When my brother-in-law, with his dark, curly hair, picks up the mandolin and plays it like he’s been playing for a thousand years, I become more determined. One of their French ancestors was wild on the violin. A DNA test will convince them of the need to acknowledge and explore further, the culturally rich heritage of their French-Canadian ancestry.

Suellen Ocean is the author of Secret GenealogyA How-to for Tracing Ancient Jewish Ancestry, Secret Genealogy IIUncovering the Jewish Roots of Our Christian Ancestors, Secret Genealogy III From Jewish Anglo-Saxon Tribes to New France Acadians, Secret Genealogy IV – Native Americans Hidden in Our Family Trees, Secret Genealogy V– Black, White and Hamite; Ancestors of Color in Our Family Trees and Secret Genealogy VI – Freemasons, Jewish Conquistadors and the Holy Family. Available here:

Secret Genealogy:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/0965114082

Secret Genealogy II:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/1484053222

Secret Genealogy III:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/148407579X

Secret Genealogy IV:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/1500756105

Secret Genealogy V: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01HJ622DU

Secret Genealogy VI: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MY35VCP

Who Were the Nordic Giants that Went to Ireland? Our Ancestors?

Legend has it that during the days of Viking marauding, some very large people went to Ireland. They are known as the Fomorian which means “giants.” Who were these early giants of the sea? Some call them “Gaelic sea spirits of darkness.” Their history seems to engulf Ireland, Scotland, Scandinavia and the Mediterranean. Archaeologists see them as giants of Nordic origin from the Hebrides (islands off the northwest coast of Scotland) who came from the Mediterranean on ships.

Who were the Fomorian that arrived early to Ireland? They are for many, the ancient ancestors. What did they believe? Were they Pagan? They arrived from the Mediterranean, were they Muslims or Jews? Or were they Vikings who went from Scandinavia to the Mediterranean and then sailed to Ireland? It was a very long time ago. And since humans have always been known to conquer, assimilate and conquer again, they were no doubt a composite of many ancient civilizations. Today, as genealogists, we want to pick their history apart and analyze the separate pieces. Because in the pieces, we find the stories or our ancestors. Those whose flesh and blood we are made of. In many respects, they must have been very different than we are today. But surely, we have physical attributes and personality traits that we would recognize… if only we could see them – touch them. This is as close as we can get.

Suellen Ocean is the author of Secret GenealogyA How-to for Tracing Ancient Jewish Ancestry, Secret Genealogy IIUncovering the Jewish Roots of Our Christian Ancestors, Secret Genealogy III From Jewish Anglo-Saxon Tribes to New France Acadians, Secret Genealogy IV – Native Americans Hidden in Our Family Trees, Secret Genealogy V– Black, White and Hamite; Ancestors of Color in Our Family Trees and Secret Genealogy VI – Freemasons, Jewish Conquistadors and the Holy Family. Available here:

Secret Genealogy:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/0965114082

Secret Genealogy II:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/1484053222

Secret Genealogy III:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/148407579X

Secret Genealogy IV:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/1500756105

Secret Genealogy V: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01HJ622DU

Secret Genealogy VI: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MY35VCP

Here Come Those Iberians Again…

Oh geez, those Iberians are confusing but I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to discuss a little bit more about them. A lot of people come to my blog searching for Iberian information so I had to tell everyone about the Firbolg.

The who? The Firbolg were an ancient Irish ethnic group, going way back in time. So far back, ethnologists refer to them as the Irish aboriginal people. They had dark hair and long heads. (I see that a lot in reference to the Scots and Scots-Irish, the long-headed bit.) The Firbolg were not Aryans. (Some would say Aryan means blond and blue-eyed, others would argue, rightfully so.) The Firbolg were Iberian, meaning that they originally came from the Iberian Peninsula, the area known today as Spain and Portugal. The Firbolg were subdued by the Milesians, a Celtic tribe from Britain. The most common definition of the meaning of Firbolg is bagmen. I have no idea what is meant by that as I have not researched that aspect of it. Who knows, maybe they used sheep bladders as bags. The picture that comes into my mind is Scottish men in crude clothing with bagpipes. But, that’s just me.

To read more about the Iberians see Secret Genealogy V– Black, White and Hamite; Ancestors of Color in Our Family Trees. Available here:

Secret Genealogy V: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01HJ622DU

Vikings… Are You Related to the Ancient Scandinavian Heros? Ask the Icelanders to Read the Genealogies to You

Today, Denmark, Sweden and Norway have their own separate languages but long ago, they shared the same language. If you want to hear the closest thing to that ancient language, go to Iceland. Many Icelanders speak a similar version of it today. With that preservation of the language came the preservation of Scandinavian oral history, because it eventually got written down. Those writings, today are known as the ancient sagas.

When Viking explorers landed on Iceland, they were speaking their ancient language. Strange gods and human heroes of old Scandinavia live within the old literature that told their stories long before they accepted Christianity. Included in these early stories are genealogies where one might find clues to ancient ancestors. With the acceptance of Christianity came the introduction of a new language, Latin, causing a lapse in literature for the Scandinavian countries for four-hundred years.

Suellen Ocean is the author of Secret GenealogyA How-to for Tracing Ancient Jewish Ancestry, Secret Genealogy IIUncovering the Jewish Roots of Our Christian Ancestors, Secret Genealogy III From Jewish Anglo-Saxon Tribes to New France Acadians, Secret Genealogy IV – Native Americans Hidden in Our Family Trees, Secret Genealogy V– Black, White and Hamite; Ancestors of Color in Our Family Trees and Secret Genealogy VI – Freemasons, Jewish Conquistadors and the Holy Family. Available here:

Secret Genealogy:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/0965114082

Secret Genealogy II:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/1484053222

Secret Genealogy III:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/148407579X

Secret Genealogy IV:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/1500756105

Secret Genealogy V: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01HJ622DU

Secret Genealogy VI: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MY35VCP

Looking for the Answers to Iberian Ancestry?

If you are looking for the answers to Iberian ancestry, you are not alone. I’ve done a lot of research on this and it’s complicated. It’s also interesting. I’ll warn you though, you’ve many options but it probably means that you have British ancestry, especially Scottish and/or Irish. Maybe even Welsh. It might stop there but it didn’t begin there. The history of our Iberian ancestors goes back to the history of ancient people. Kings… queens… Bedouin traders… fishermen… I write about it in my new book.

Genealogy is great fun. Once I started uncovering my ancient ancestors, I was never the same again. It’s just plain fun to learn about the long chain of people who came before us.

BLOG Size FRONT Canva Cover Secret Genealogy VSuellen Ocean is the author of Secret Genealogy V – Black, White and Hamite; Ancestors of Color in Our Family Trees.  Available here: https://www.amazon.com/Secret-Genealogy-Hamite-Ancestors-Family-ebook/dp/B01HJ622DU

 

Native American Genealogy…Sometimes a Photo is all We Have

Kindle COVER Secret Genealogy IVGenealogy websites are swarming with people whose oral history describes the Native Americans in their family tree. When the government relocated the Indians, families were scrambling to both hold on to their land and hide that they were part Indian. Imagine, standing in the shadows of the trees that graced your land and looking at the color of the skin on the back of your hand wondering, “Will they take us away?”

If our vulnerable ancestors were clever (and lucky) they blended in with European settlers who were so busy surviving, they didn’t have time to pry. Or were kind and kept their mouths shut.

Picture the ancestors throwing documents into the fire, or beloved keepsakes, anything that would expose them as Indian. Fast forward to today. We would give anything to see a document that proves that our ancestors were Indian as the family oral history professes. But there comes a time when we must accept that those documents may never be found, because they do not exist. Maybe they never did.

Some families are fortunate to have photos of their ancestors. Many of us do not, especially since photography didn’t hit mainstream America until the Civil War era. By that time, Grandpa was only one-quarter Indian. Wouldn’t we love to see a photograph of his parents or his grandparents, one of whom was entirely Indian? DNA may tell us more about our family genetics but in the end, sometimes all we have are old photos to stare at, as the oral history plays in our mind.  Suellen Ocean is the author of Secret Genealogy IV – Native Americans Hidden in Our Family Trees. Available here:

http://www.amazon.com/Secret-Genealogy-IV-Native-Americans/dp/1500756105

French Canadian Genealogy… What Does “Dit” Mean?

SecretGenealogyFrontCoverMy husband’s French-Canadian ancestors have some very long names. One of them is “Marie Madeleine Dupuis Dit Montpellier.” It’s hard to tell what Marie’s surname is. Is it Dupuis or Montpellier? Well… it may be both. “Dit” means that Marie is called or named Montpellier. But Montpellier is probably not the original surname. It could be the name of the region from where Marie originated, it could be her mother’s surname or it could be a nickname. Montpellier could be anything. The only thing I know is that Marie is known as Montpellier. Her father was Joseph Dupuis Dit Montpellier. A quick Internet search for Montpellier tells me that it is the capital of the Languedoc-Roussillon region of southern France, so I imagine there’s a connection. Paul W. Truax, in his book, “LaForce Descendants in North America,” explains that it was a way for New France (Canada) colonists to imitate European nobility by attaching titles to their expansive land grants. It brought prestige when used in business transactions, marriage and baptism records. Truax uses the expression quasi-nobility and also self-proclaimed and his research leads him to believe that these “dit” titles, were viewed with great importance, even more than the original surname, which was often abandoned for the “dit” name. Truax’s candidness gives personality to these people who lived in another era.

SecretGenealogyIIFrontCover

Suellen Ocean is the author of Secret GenealogyA How-to for Tracing Ancient Jewish Ancestry, Secret Genealogy IIUncovering the Jewish Roots of Our Christian Ancestors and Secret Genealogy III From Jewish Anglo-Saxon Tribes to New France Acadians. Available here:

Secret Genealogy:  http://www.amazon.com/Secret-Genealogy-Volume-Suellen-Ocean/dp/0965114082

Secret Genealogy II:  http://www.amazon.com/Secret-Genealogy-II-Christian-Ancestors/dp/1484053222

Secret Genealogy III:  http://www.amazon.com/Secret-Genealogy-III-Jewish-Anglo-Saxon-Acadians/dp/148407579X

Hand Painted Roses Cover Sec Gen III