Genealogy, Uncategorized

April Sauceda AncestryDNA Family Tree

Santa My mom, April Sauceda, agreed to do yet another DNA test as a Christmas gift this year!  Here’s her family tree.  I purposefully attached National Geographic Genographic Project’s image of the cute little girl with the skis to everyone like Thomas Benton Brummit who should be our mtDNA matches so people would be like, “Whaaaat?!” and stop to look.  #trainwreckgenealogy


A possible lead?

I’ve been entering different search terms into Google during my son’s naps and it may have finally paid off.  I stumbled upon this yesterday and am wondering if this could be Sarah Jane Taylor’s family.  If not, how huge of a coincidence is this?

I’ve been interested in this book that I’ve seen on CD on Ebay.  I have since found it is available on free.

I found this entry for a Mr. James Taylor:

“Mr. Taylor has been three times married. His first wife was Polly Ann Brumnitt who died at Utica, Missouri. One of her three children survive: Mrs. Sarah J. Artega [sic], of Santa Fe, New Mexico. Mr. Taylor’s second wife was Jeraldine M. Dennison. Her heirs are: Samuel G. Taylor, of Canon City, Colorado, and John W. Taylor, who died in Iola March 31, 1901. Mr. Taylor’s present wife was Maggie Shuey, whom he married in Johnson county, Kansas. To them was born one son who has been an invalid all his life.”   [source]

Crazy, right?


Dolores Romero Martinez April 18, 1927-August 1, 2014

My grandmother passed. We were very close.

Dolores Romero Martinez

There are many things that could be said about my grandma. She was interesting, strong, supportive, and many other adjectives. Despite this, it’s difficult to express the enormity of her as a person. She was beyond words.

She flipped through many facets of her personality regularly. Sometimes she was boisterous, attending live wrestling events and taking joy in heckling the wrestlers. At other times she was more reserved, observing members of her family to ensure that everyone was happy and thriving.

She will be missed for many reasons, a few of which involved Halloween. She was always very generous to the children who came to her door, having taken the time to pack sizeable treat bags with good candy for each child. No cheap candy! Every Halloween-eve was spent putting the final touches on her hand made decorations and lovingly packing those bags.

For us, that spirit of generosity and care for others is what stood out about her the most. She was a loving and supportive mother, grandmother, and great grandmother who worked hard to provide for her children. She always thought of the wellbeing of her family first.

She also had a fire in her that coloured everything she did. Every song she sang, every dance was flavoured with that intense light. It is in this spirit that I would like to share an excerpt from a well-known poem by Maya Angelou that describes grandma in ways we could not:

“Now you understand
Just why my head’s not bowed.
I don’t shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing,
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It’s in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
The need for my care.
’Cause I’m a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.”


Genealogy Corrections and Updates

Hola readers!  It’s been a while since I’ve written to you.

Have you heard that Family Tree DNA is updating their Population Finder?  I’m so excited for this because my grandma has an account there and I didn’t have the heart to ask her for a spit-sample for 23andMe, hahaha.  She wouldn’t be able to produce that much saliva!

My cousin Ben Blea from New Mexico found my blog and gave me a ton of information; he’s so sweet.  :)  Shoutout to Ben Blea!  He corrected my assumption that Sarah Jane Taylor was born in Tula or Tooley’s Ferry Kansas as his grandfather Celestino Ortega had the love letters exchanged between my third great grandparents, Dionisio Ortega and Sarah.  The letters from Dionisio were mailed to Iola, Allen County, Kansas.  You can see her death certificate says she was born in Iola, I need to update my glasses, haha.  Unfortunately the letters were thrown out after Celestino’s death.  Such heartbreak knowing that the letters are gone, I’m sure you genealogists are familiar with that.

In addition to that bit of information, he provided actual pictures and clues.  Words can’t express how much appreciation and affection I have for Mr. Blea for reaching out to me and sharing his family pictures and documents.

Sarah Jane Taylor and Dionisio Ortega with their daughter Beatrice/Beatriz and two other people.

Sarah Jane Taylor and Dionisio Ortega with their daughter Beatrice/Beatriz and two other people.

There they are!  Sarah Jane Taylor and Dionisio Ortega
There they are! Sarah Jane Taylor and Dionisio Ortega.  Their marriage certificate states they were married in the Territory of New Mexico January 8, 1892 in Santa Fe.

Mom’s Autosomal DNA


Two things surprised me about her autosomal results: her 10% nonspecific Northern European (in addition to 3.7% British & Irish and .9% French & German), and her low amount of Middle Eastern and North African.  It makes me think my Family Tree DNA results are off.

V7I wrote about my mom’s mitochondrial haplogroup here.


Dr. McDonald Interprets Grandma’s Data

Most likely fit is 58.1% (+-  0.2%) Europe (all Western Europe) and 19.3% (+-  0.1%) Mideast (all North Africa) and 22.6% (+-  0.3%) America (various subcontinents)

The following are possible population sets and their fractions,
most likely at the top
  French= 0.579 Egyptian= 0.192     Maya= 0.229 or
  French= 0.584 Egyptian= 0.193 Columbia= 0.223
But in fact it looks Latin American … the “Egyptian”
is probably more western North African (at say 10%) with 23 % Maya
and the rest Spain.
“Spot on the Map Plot”: Here the data is plotted as a summary. The green spot represents the average location of all ancestry except Native American and Oceanic. Note that for people with significant sub-Saharan African ancestry this green spot is essentially meaningless. But for people with just European, Mideast, and sometimes South Asian ancestry it is usually quite accurate as far as their average ancestry goes. The geographic map plot shows each continent’s average location, as well as  an overall average (green) excluding the American and Oceanic ancestry.
I asked about why Grandma, a few cousins, and I were getting these strange Eastern European/Russian results:

Eastern Europe in Latin Americans has always been a big problem for Family Finder (which I wrote) as well as my newer versions, which I use here. I know why it does it, but using a single program for everybody makes it near-impossible to fix.  In some people even the new 23andme stuff has the problem. There is a test I do, graph attached, that shows in fact that France (or Spain) is more likely. Other than that, it is very ordinary Latin American.

Grandma.  She and her sister got dressed up this day and took pictures of each other in front of the garden.
Grandma. She and her sister got dressed up this day and took pictures of each other in front of the garden.
Grandma's sister.  I don't have the original of this photo, just this cropped version.
Grandma’s sister. I don’t have the original of this photo, just this cropped version.