First online reader response


This was posted a couple of weeks ago on a yahoo group by Dan Jensen:

I finished Pell Mellers Saturday. That’s one casual read-through plus a fair bit of rereading and scanning the index to make up for my inability to retain names in my head! Add some time with a couple atlases and Google to make up for my ignorance of the neighborhood.

The book kept my interest on several levels, in spite of its complexity and attention to detail. The racial issues surrounding the Civil War and the deep/lost heritage of many Americans is of course a fascinating topic. The idea, for example, that many of the more isolated groups of the South are likely to be
multiracial (though dilute) is largely new to me. One can never be reminded enough that many/most American Blacks are multiracial. Of course the “one-drop rule” is why we need to be reminded. It’s remarkable how deep-set that racist thinking is—I don’t think it’s unfair to say—in most Americans.

As much as I don’t want to spend too much time on someone else’s genealogy (it’s bad enough that I do my own!), I found myself doubling back trying to figure out if there might be a route to some informative mtDNA, say through Susannah Butler (I quickly resolved it’s unlikely you’re going to be able to follow her mtDNA to the present) Thanks for the edifying read!

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