I first went down the genealogy rabbit hole about ten years ago. My family tree is about as Southern as it gets, with just one maternal line going back to colonial New England. With the exception of that one line, I can trace very few people “back to the boat.” Nearly all my other documented lines begin in 18th century North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia. View my public family tree on Ancestry.
My DNA shows British, Irish, and broader Western European ancestry along with mysterious dashes of Spanish, West African and South Asian. I’m definitely no DNA expert, but feel free to look me up on Ancestry, 23andMe, MyHeritage or GEDmatch if you think we may be cousins.
Slavery was unfortunately a big part of my family’s story. There are dozens of slave holders among my ancestors. There are also many African-Americans who share our surnames (particularly Bembry) and African-American cousins among my DNA matches. I share all the slavery records I unearth in order to complete the picture and to assist descendants with their research.
I am always happy to share my information, and welcome any tips, photos, or leads from other researchers or family members. If you have information to share, please post a comment! Or email me at email@example.com.
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Kelly Bembry Midura