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EVERYONE is welcome and please join us each morning at 7:30 AM PACIFIC
to tell us what you're working on, share your show & tell, vent, whatever you want...  
...this is an open thread. Nothing is off topic.

Where on Earth do you come from? Do you know for sure?

This question should be easy to answer, shouldn't it? Well it would be if you have actual proof. Without true proof however, a fair amount of what I've been told about my ancestry is suspect as far as I'm concerned.

I actually don't know about my ancestry or heritage other than I'm Scots on both sides primarily. There has to be a lot more in me than just that. I suppose I could have my DNA tested to let me know just what kind of Heinz 57 I am. Until I do that, I'm left with what I know now.

I've been told verbally by my father that my great grandfather is said to have been married to a Native North American of the Blackfoot tribe. Is this true? If it is I am then 1/16th Blackfoot. The problem is there are no pictures of my great grandfather or his wife. I've seen no birth or death certificates for them. So I really can't claim I'm 1/16th Blackfoot due to no actual proof. My grandfather would never talk about his father or mother. For some reason he was either very embarrassed by them or maybe they were "dead to him" for unknown reasons. My grandfather's dad and mom didn't exist as far as he was concerned. I wonder what could have been so terrible for him to be like that?

I have seen a picture of my grandfather when he was a boy...and a picture of his brother as a middle-aged man. My father has a picture of my great grand uncle (my great grandfather's brother). In that picture he is dressed in his union uniform for Pennsylvania. He died in the Civil War by having had his leg shot off by cannon ball. I do believe that only because of the picture.

I know we are all related far more closely than most folks realize. And I also know our "blood lines" aren't nearly as nice and tidy as we were likely lead to believe. Since the human genome was deciphered, this is clearer than ever. Wouldn't it be cool if we truly knew how closely related we are? It would be a relief, IMO.

Notice how frequently some people villainize others' race or heritage only to find out later they have that same ancestry in them as well. This always cracks me up. It happened with kos and some whack guy several months ago.

Just a couple weeks ago I read a scientific article stating they've discovered most all people in Europe can genetically be traced to small group of common ancestors from only as far back as about 1000 years ago! This really floored them. They didn't expect that. I guess constant warfare causing folks to flee while others move in to dominate, the Dark Ages, plagues killing more than 1/3rd of the population and marrying for the purpose of creating stability of regions and countries creates a lot of mingling of genes.

So I'm really interested in what you know about your heritage...I mean full heritage. It's all quite fascinating to me. I know silks and figgy are really into this stuff too.

A further discussing about my European heritage after the orange New Day cloud below. If that doesn't interest you, then please check out the list of Kossack meatspace happenings that are coming up and join in the comments.

Latest Updates on Kossack Regional Meet-Up News Below the New Day sunrise cloud

When my mom was alive, she got interested in finding out where she was from. She did what research she could from what records there were. Then she went to the internet but couldn't afford to pay to really get anything in depth. What she was able to find out primarily was where her family had lived in the USA since they arrived here. She was born in east Texas in the town of Longview. Her family had lived in the Appalachian area of the country, which is pretty standard for those of Scots heritage. She never discovered just where in Scotland her clan lived because the records of folks that lived in Appalachia are basically she couldn't trace her family back to Europe.

My father has absolutely no interest in such shenanigans. When he did ask his father about his family history, my granddad refused to say anything. When granddad died, we found an old locked chest which contained letters he'd received in the 1920's from queries he'd made about this subject. The only thing that was certain is his family could be traced to Paisley, Scotland. He never visited Scotland. The only time he was in Europe was during WWI as a Captain (doctor) in the trenches of France.

We also discovered letters he'd saved from a past love in that trunk. Actually it appears he had that relationship when he was in WWI and kept in touch with that women...but kept that secret from my grandmother whom he didn't marry until the mid-1920's. So it wasn't an least not in the Biblical sense...just one of the heart. The last letter he received from her was from 1931.

I never met my paternal grandmother as she died from a brain aneurysm three years before I was born.

From my last name alone, I can figure out the area of Scotland those with my surname lived back in the day. Clans in Scotland were beholden to a more dominant clan that ruled an area. And they were beholden to an even more dominant clan higher up the food chain. That's just the way it Matryoshka dolls (those Russian nesting dolls inside bigger dolls).

From Wikipedia:

The word clan is derived from the Gaelic word clanna, meaning children. However the need for proved descent from a common ancestor related to the chiefly house is too restrictive. Clans developed a territory based on the native men who came to accept the authority of the dominant group in the vicinity. A clan also included a large group of loosely-related septs – dependent families - all of whom looked to the clan chief as their head and their protector.
My mom's maiden name is MacBrayer...a derivative from Clan MacBrayne which, farther back in history comes from Clan Mac a' Bhriuthainn (cripes...anyone know how to pronounce that?) My father's last name is Struthers...a derivative of Strother. Likely both my mother's and father's ancestors came from lesser sub-groups to the more dominant clans for which they are named. Another thing that kept happening as history rolled along, is the lands that once belonged to a clan were either taken by another clan OR simply given away by Kings to other clans. The whole clan thing gets seriously convoluted and weird...pretty hard to follow through history really with the exception of the extremely dominant clans.

I am going to give a brief history of Scotland for a very basic understanding of how it came into being as a country and not just a bunch of tribal clans dotting the landscape. The history of Scotland is interesting as is the history of every place really. Here is my bastardized don't take what I'm about to write to be the exact history of Scotland...OK? It's just to give you a very general idea of how things went.

There were a bunch of DFH's called Picts that lived in eastern and northern Scotland. There were more civilized folks that lived in western and southern Scotland in an area called Dalraida mainly along the western coastal region. Even among clans there was differentiation between the more crude thug-types and those becoming more sophisticated at least in terms of overall organization, the use of seagoing ships and the warfare tactics employed.

The top picture below shows the Pict Kingdoms. The middle picture below shows Dalraida. At Dalraida's peak of power (in the 600's and 700's) they ruled a chunk of northeastern Ireland as well as southwestern Scotland which you can see in the bottom picture below. There were monasteries throughout the region at this time rich with gold and treasure.


The Picts were fairly disorganized in terms of being coordinated fighters as a large group. They made amazing jewelry and carved stones. Clans would join together to fight a common enemy, then go back to infighting among themselves. This was actually the basic history of the Celts of whom the Gaelic were a part. They say the Celts had the potential to rule Europe every bit as much as the Romans eventually did, had they not spent all their time infighting among their various tribes and clans. Squabbling like that all the time really ruins empire building you know...esp. when you have very organized and militarily advanced Romans coming at you from the south and east.

The light green area in the picture below shows the extent of the Celts control over Europe and a tad of the Mid East at around 275 BC. The other colors within the light green area shows some of the different languages spoken such as Gaelic (darker green colors) and Germanic (yellow).


In what was to later become Scotland, people of Dalraida were more uniformly organized than the Picts. They had more of a kingdom-thing going on overall. They were also a seagoing people having reign over a bunch of islands. Picts also had boats, but that wasn't their thing really for the most part. They were the tough scrabble you find in the highlands and the harsh low lands vs. the nicer western coastal areas. For the most part the Picts were a pain in the ass to the folks of Dalraida who viewed them as a bunch of more uncivilized know DFH's.

Vikings invaded the western coast of Scotland in 793 AD to plunder the easy pickings from the monasteries as they'd done in Ireland. That's what Vikings did...plunder and fight. They were incredibly fierce because they were generally larger than other people in Europe AND they had no fear of dying. Their religion taught them the greatest honor was to die in battle (Klingons?). Viking are from Norway, of course. They are named for the word "vik" which is the Norse word for bay. And they were experts at navigating bays with their long ships that were far superior to any vessels anywhere else in Europe at the time.

Why did the Vikings attack Scotland's west coast you ask, since Norway is to the northeast? Because they came from Iceland which they'd settled before, that's why. By the end of the 800's Vikings came to Scotland to make settlements. There are Scot's clans that can trace their roots to intermarriage between Vikings and Scots such as Clan Gunn, Clan MacDonald, Clan McLeod, Clan MacQueen and Clan MacAulay.

Eventually Dalraida itself disappeared as the amalgamation of Norse Vikings and Dalraidans became the dominant group in time. The Pict Kingdoms disappeared too as a united Scotland took hold. You can check out Wikipedia and other sites if you really have interest in more detailed info about how Scotland came into being. It's kinda of a mess to be honest.

WELL, my ancestors on my father's side were from the part of Scotland that was part of the Pict Kingdoms in the southeast area of Scotland. Struthers means "a person who lives near swamps overgrown with brambles" (poor bastards). The precise area Struthers are from was known as Alba (you can see that area on one of the pictures above). Alba is the Gaelic word for Scotland. Well, I guess you can't get more Scots than that. What consolidated this part of the Pict Kingdoms into Alba was a response to Roman imperialism. The specific town associated with Struthers is Fife, Scotland.

Tell me about your family's ancestry

Let's build communities!

Every region needs a meatspace community like SFKossacks.
We take care of each other in real life.
I urge YOU to take the lead and organize one in your region.
Please tell us about it if you do and we're here for advice.


:: Regions Organizing ::
Send a Kosmail to the organizers and ask for an invitation to the group.
Northern Indiana Area: Kosmail Tim Delaney

Long Island: Kosmail grannycarol

Northern Michigan: Kosmail JillS

Nebraska: Kosmail Nebraska68847Dem

Westburbia Chicago Kossacks: Kosmail Majordomo

New York Hudson Valley Kossacks: Kosmail boran2

North Carolina Triangle Kossacks: Kosmail highacidity

Caprock Kossacks (Panhandle/Caprock/Lubbock/Amarillo area) : Kosmail shesaid

West Texas Kossacks (including Big Bend Region and El Paso) : Kosmail Yo Bubba

Note to the above new leaders: Feel free to leave a comment any day reminding readers about your new group. Also, tell us about your progress in gathering members. Kosmail me when you've chosen a good name for your group and have created a the group. Then I'll move you to the NEW GROUPS LIST. When you've planned a date for your first event I'll make a banner for you to highlight your event in our diaries and your diaries.
These are the groups that have started since * NEW DAY * began. Please Kosmail navajo if you have started a group before that.

California Central Valley Kossacks - Formed: Jul 29, 2012, Organizer: tgypsy

New England Kossacks - Formed: Aug 6, 2012, Organizers:
Clytemnestra for Lower New England (Conneticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island)
nhox42 for Upper New England (Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont)

Houston Area Kossacks - Formed: Aug 7, 2012, Organizer: Chrislove

Kossacks in India - Formed: Aug 14, 2012, Organizer: chandu

CenTex Kossacks - Formed: Sep 9, 2012, Organizer: papa monzano

Central Ohio Kossacks - Formed: Sep 26, 2012, Organizer: VetGrl

Kansas City Kossacks - Formed Oct 15, 2012, Organizer: [Founder stepped down]

Phoenix Kossacks - Formed Oct 16, 2012, Organizer: arizonablue

Chicago Kossacks - Formed: Oct 31, 2012, Organizer: figbash

Koscadia the Pacific Northwest coast from Northern California to Alaska  
- Formed Oct 17, 2012, Oganizer: Horace Boothroyd III based in Portland, OR

Boston Kossacks - Formed: Nov 7, 2012, Organizer: GreyHawk

Motor City Kossacks South East Michigan (Detroit) Area - Formed: Nov 10, 2012, Organizer:  peregrine kate

Pittsburgh Area Kossacks - Formed: Nov 12, 2012, Organizer: dweb8231

Salt Lake City Kossacks - Formed: Nov 17, 2012, Organizer: War on Error

Twin Cities Kossacks - Formed: Nov 17, 2012, Organizer: imonlylurking

Dallas Kossacks North Texas - Formed: Nov 21, 2012, Admins: Catte Nappe and dalfireplug. Please contact them to join the group. An Event Organizer needed.

The Southern California Inland Empire Kossacks - Formed: Dec 3, 2012, Organizer: SoCaliana

Los Angeles Kossacks - Formed: Dec 17, 2012, Organizer: Dave in Northridge  

Northeast Ohio Kossacks - Formed: Jan 16, 2013,  Organizer: GenXangster

Kansas & Missouri Kossacks - Formed: Jan 17, 2013, Organizer: tmservo433

I-77 Carolina Kossacks who live from Columbia, SC to north of Winston-Salem, NC. - Formed: Jan 30, 2013, Organizers: gulfgal98 and eeff

Indianapolis Kossacks - Formed: Feb 6, 2013, Organizer: CityLightsLover

Southwest Ohio Kossacks - Formed: May 10, 2013, Organizer: Dr Erich Bloodaxe RN

Northern Arizona Kossacks - Formed:  Jul 5, 2013, Organizer: Sam Sara

Mexican Kossacks - Formed: Apr 14, 2013, Organizer: roberb7

ESTABLISHED GROUPS LIST: (List will grow as we discover them)

SFKossacks Founded by navajo, Formed: May 2, 2005

Maryland Kos Founded by timmyc, Formed: Feb 23, 2011. Contact: JamieG from Md for a group invite.

New York City Founded by Eddie C - Contact the group organizer for meet-up events: sidnora

Baja Arizona Kossacks, Event Organizer: Azazello

Three Star Kossacks Tennessee, Founded by maryKK, Formed: Apr 8, 2011

Nashville KosKats, Founded by ZenTrainer Formed: Jan 30, 2012

Virginia Kos Founded by JamieG from Md, Formed: May 3, 2011

Kos Georgia Founded by pat208, Formed: Feb 13, 2011

Colorado COmmunity Founded by Leftcandid, Formed: Feb 13, 2011

New Mexico Kossaks Founded by claude

Philly Kos Founded by mconvente Formed: Aug 29, 2011

DKos Florida Founded by ThirstyGator, Formed: Feb 14, 2011, Currently organizing: Kosmail Vetwife to be included in next event.

Oklahoma Roundup Founded by BigOkie, Formed: Feb 13, 2011, Currently organizing: Kosmail peacearena to be included.

DKos Asheville Founded by davehouck, Formed: Feb 13, 2011 - Organizing Assist by: randallt

:: Events Currently on the Books for ALL Kossacks ::

I-77 Carolina Kossacks

Monday, August 19th

Inaugural I-77 Carolina Kossacks Meetup for Charlotte Moral Monday

Note: Charlotte traffic is a bear to navigate on a good day so SteelerGrrl tried to set things up so out-of-towners don’t have to stress over parking, getting around or arriving hungry. Anyone is welcome to join us at any time, no worries if you can’t make it early.


• Meet & greet, free parking and carpool to light rail:
TIME: Noon-1:00 PM
LOCATION: SteelerGrrl's home
Send Kosmail for directions • [City?]

• Late lunch and refreshments:
TIME: 2:00 PM
LOCATION: The Common Market
1515 S. Tryon St. • Charlotte
Onsite parking for patrons only
2 blocks from Bland Street Station on Lynx

• Moral Monday Protest at Charlotte's Marshall Park at 5:00 PM:
TIME: Plan to assemble between 3:30 and 4:00, location TBA
LOCATION: Marshall Park
800 E. Third Street • Central Park Region in Charlotte

ORGANIZER: Send SteelerGrrl a kosmail to attend.

1. SteelerGrrl
2. Blazehawkins
3. MsSpentyouth
4. eeff
5. goheelsgodems
Latest diary: [Waiting for linked diary]
Houston Area Kossacks banner
Saturday, August 31st

Houston Kossacks Meet-up

TIME: 1:00 PM
LOCATION: Hollywood Vietnamese-Chinese & French Cuisine
2409 Montrose Boulevard • Houston

ORGANIZER: Send Chrislove a kosmail to attend.

1. Chrislove
2. jmbar2
3. cosette
4. mister mustardhead
5. Bree Davis
6. doraphasia
6. Libby Shaw
7. suesue
8. mr. suesue
Mr. cosette
Latest diary: Houston Area Kossacks: Meet-Up Scheduled for Saturday, August 31!
 photo 9458769247_67df9f567b_b_zps8e4ce86f.jpg
Sunday, Sept 15th

Chicago Kossacks Meet-up at a Powwow!

TIME: 11:30 AM
LOCATION: Chicago's 60th Annual American Indian Center Powwow
Busse Woods Forest Preserve • Elk Grove Village

ORGANIZER: Send figbash a kosmail to attend.

1. figbash
2. broths
3. Mr. broths
4. Satya1
5. Liberal Granny
6. Railfan
7. Expat Okie
8. LeftOfYou
peregrine kate
Millie Neon
Latest diary: Chicago Kossacks Go To A Powwow: Sunday, Sept 15 2013

DeKalb, Illinois Kossacks

 photo LIW_zpsbf83716e.jpg
Saturday, September 21st

DeKalb, Illinois Kossacks Dinner & a Show!

TIME: 6:00 PM
LOCATION: Rosita's Mexican Restaurant
642 East Lincoln Highway • DeKalb

TIME: 7:30 PM
LOCATION: The Stage Coach Players Theater
126 South 5th Street (2 blks. from dinner) • DeKalb

ORGANIZER: Send NormAl1792 a kosmail to attend.

1. NormAl1792 (on stage as Henry II)
2. winifred3
1864 House
Mr. luvs
Latest diary: Northern IL Kossacks Dinner and a Show - Saturday, Sept. 21
Dkos Asheville
Saturday, October 19th

DKos Asheville Kossacks Meet-up

TIME: 1:00 PM
LOCATION: The Bywater
796 Riverside Dr. • Asheville

ORGANIZER: Send randallt a kosmail to attend.

1. randallt
2. davehouck
3. Joieau
4. Gordon20024
5. gulfgal98
6. DawnN
7. Sandy on Signal
8. Mr Sandy on Signal
9. Munchkin
10. Alecia
11. Mr Alecia
12. cultjake
13. flwrightman
Otteray Scribe
Burns Lass
people power granny
One Pissed Off Liberal
Christian Dem in NC
Phil S 33
Latest diary: DKos Asheville - Weekly Open Thread
 photo PhillyKossackLogo_zps9701f239.jpg
 photo stuff-yer-face_zpsa0e4c2a7.png
Sunday, October 20th

MEGA Philly/NJ/NYC Kossacks Meet-up!

TIME: Noon
LOCATION: Stuff Yer Face
49 Easton Avenue • New Brunswick, NJ

ORGANIZER: Send mconvente a kosmail to attend.

1. mconvente
2. belinda ridgewood
3. thankgodforairamerica
4. gchaucer2
5. sidnora
6. rubyr
7. mattc129
8. hayden
9. mallyroyal
10. Avilyn
11. blue jersey mom
aravir and son
No Exit
Latest diary: Philly/NJ/NYC Mega Meetup! Initial Information & Interest Diary
 photo Rant_vertical_zps3c67418c.jpg
Friday, October 25th

LAKossacks & SoCal Inland Empire See Lewis Black!

TIME: 9:00 PM
LOCATION: Agua Caliente Casino Resort & Spa
32-250 Bob Hope Dr. • Rancho Mirage

ORGANIZER: Send 714day a kosmail to attend.

1. 714day
2. jakedog42
3. susans
4. Otoelbc
Latest diary: L.A. Kossacks, Lewis Black Fans in So Cal
 photo j8g55kwz41yhb62p8iex.jpg
Friday, October 25th

Meet the Daily Kos Editorial Staff!

TIME: TBD in the  PM
Address given privately to RSVP'ers • Berkeley

ORGANIZER: Send navajo a kosmail to attend.
You will need to bring Potluck. Stay tuned for assignments.

1. Markos
2. Susan Gardner
3. Meteor Blades
4. Faith Gardner
5. Will Rockafellow
    and many more staff... stay tuned
6. navajo
7. Lusty
8. side pocket
9. paradise50
10. smileycreek
11. citisven
12. norm
13. Lorikeet
14. kimoconnor
15. remembrance +TLO?
16. Glen the Plumber
17. madhaus
18. dharmasyd
19. ceebee7
20. lineatus
21. Dave in Northridge
22. linkage

andrew mcguire
Saturday, November 2nd

SFKossacks BBQ in the Wine Country

LOCATION: Andrew McGuire's home in the Wine Country
Address to be given privately to RSVPs • Windsor

ORGANIZER: Send navajo a kosmail to attend.

Andrew McGuire is Executive Director of California One Care

1. Andrew McGuire
2. navajo
3. Shockwave
4. Hunter
5. elfing
6. Hunter/elfling offspring
7. smileycreek
8. paradise50
9. dharmasyd
10. maggiejean
11. norm
12. Lusty
13. dksbook
14. Mr. dksbook
15. kimoconnor
16. jpmassar
17. side pocket
18. Mrs. side pocket
19. ceebee7
20. ceebee7's sister
21. leema (will carpool from Marin)
22. Meteor Blades

Glen The Plumber


Send navajo a kosmail if you post a diary about an event so we can update our round-up.

Okay. Floor's open.
Tell us what you are doing on this NEW DAY?
tags: community, Navajo's New Day, NEW DAY team, SFKossacks,

Originally posted to Connect! Unite! Act! on Thu Aug 22, 2013 at 07:30 AM PDT.

Also republished by Genealogy and Family History Community and SFKossacks.

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