Native American Ancestry

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an a DNA test help you find your Native American Ancestry? After some study and discussion with participants, I’d say the answer is maybe, it depends. Like any genealogical problem, it helps to have a paper trail to follow. If your paperwork doesn’t show any Native ancestry within the last 5-6 generations, then you may very well be disappointed in your DNA results. On the other hand, you might be able to verify a questionable line with a DNA test and some additional documentation. Either way, it requires work on your part because DNA won’t answer all the questions about your ancestry. If only it were so simple.
Disclaimer: I am not a DNA expert and am not going to pretend to be. I understand the basics of DNA testing for genealogy and
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And the ever more popular Autosomal test, which looks at the 22 other non-sex specific chromosomes, and therefore, both sides of the family. Males and females can take this test.
There are also three major companies that offer DNA testing for genealogy and claim to show the percentage of Native American Ancestry. They are FamilyTreeDNA,, and 23andMe. National Geographic does a test for deep ancestry, not for genealogy, but they have a partnership with FamilyTreeDNA where you can transfer your raw data and get a genealogical analysis.
The autosomal test at all companies gives you a colorful pie chart which shows the breakdown of your ancestry. This article will focus mainly on the autosomal test and it’s ability to determine native ancestry.
Anyone considering a DNA test to prove native ancestry needs to know four things:
1. It won’t tell you which tribe your ancestor came from.
2. No tribe accepts DNA tests as evidence for citizenship.
3. If your native ancestor is 5-6 or more generations back, it may not show up at all.
4. Many tribal citizens are skeptical and untrusting of the testing process and the companies who do
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He is a research analyst for the Cherokee Nation Registration Department and has been a lay advocate for citizenship of Freedmen descendants. He has a degree in biology and yet refuses to take a DNA test. His thoughts are these: “None of the three Cherokee governments have said anything about sharing DNA…I can only tell you why I have not shared mine. First, we can’t trust these labs with our DNA. We have no idea what may be done with it. Second, I don’t want my DNA being used in any way to undermine the sovereign right of our tribes to say who is and who is not Cherokee. Third, DNA cannot show community. A person with some DNA in common with us, but who has never lived with us, is not one of us and can never legitimately speak for
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