How Many Whites Have Hidden African Ancestry?

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hidden african ancestryBy Lechette Walker

Over the investigation in genealogy, there have been a lot of details revealed about the heritage of individuals. The results have indicated that many white Americans have black within their make up in some way. While blacks feel that they have Indian in their blood line, results have shown that most black Americans have more European in them than Native American.

The new season of Finding your Roots will air on PBS in September. This show has traced the DNA and the heritage of its guest ancestry to get a true detail breakdown of their composition.

Scott Hadly reported Kasia Bryc’s findings on the 23andme website on March 4, 2014: “Bryc found that about 4 percent of whites have at least 1 percent or more of African ancestry, known as “’hidden African ancestry.’”

“Although it is a relatively small percentage,” Hadly continues, “the percentage indicates that an individual with at least 1 percent African ancestry had an African ancestor within the last six generations, or in the last 200 years [meaning since the time of American slavery]. This data also suggests that individuals with mixed parentage at some point were absorbed into the white population,” which is a very polite way of saying that they “passed.”

This overall study will definitely alter the thinking of many white Americans that think they are all white, but not. The ideology of the individuals has been so deeply corrupted with the stigma society has placed upon blacks, that it would cause the individual to continue to embrace their white American label.

“Southern states with the highest African American populations tended to have the highest percentages of hidden African ancestry,” Hadly writes of Bryc’s findings. “In South Carolina at least 13 percent of self-identified whites have 1 percent or more African ancestry, while in Louisiana the number is a little more than 12 percent. In Georgia and Alabama the number is about 9 percent. The differences perhaps point to different social and cultural histories within the south.”


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