As long as my grandpa has been alive, he’s had, two sisters. That was, up until 6 weeks ago when 23andMe proved him otherwise. I never thought my family would be one of those shocking stories about DNA genealogy tests. But we are. And this is the story:
Amongst the black community, these genealogy tests generally aren’t looked upon with quite the same excitement as other cultures. This is because most of us don’t want to spend the $100-200 only to find a big question mark in our lineage back a hundred or so years ago.
Genealogy companies like African Ancestry are changing this stigma. And DNA Weekly, the genetic testing kit review site, provides a knowledge base of DNA test-related articles and results. However it’s still not that easy to see very far into African American lineage.
Nonetheless, one of my great aunts took the test and waited for the results. When they came back, it seemed to have a mistake: it said my grandpa had three sisters.
This was obviously wrong. Not only did it say my grandpa had an unknown sister, but she lived just 20 minutes away!
With my great-grandparents gone, there was no one to ask if this were true or not. So one of my grandpa’s “known sister” reached out to the “newfound sister” and they actually met up with her to confirm this seemingly absurd finding.
Unfortunately, my grandpa’s newfound sister passed away shortly after meeting her sister – leaving this ambiguous gap of uncertainty in our family tree.
Given the situation my family experienced, I figured there must be a better way of getting to know a family member you never knew without publicly sharing your personal information on an unsecured social network.
So how would we do this?