Super Sleuth

Super Sleuth
Digging Up The Past One Relative At A Time

Sunday, April 17, 2016


When I married my husband almost thirteen years ago, my father-in-law playfully informed me that the warrantee would be up in three months.  That meant I could not return my husband after three months for any reason.  This is what I get for marrying into an FDNY family and I wouldn't change it for anything.  Having already been very interested in genealogy and family history research for some time, I was very excited at the fact that my husband was 100% Irish descent because I was 100% Italian descent.  It was a good mix--shamrocks and meatballs.

I am able to trace my roots throughout Italy for at least 500-600 years.  I am American-born, but I certainly have cannoli in me, since my grandparents were born in Italy.  My mother-in-law was doing a little family digging around the time of our marriage, but really didn't come up with anything monumental.  My aunts-in-law had a book that showed my husband's great-grandparents and their farm in Ireland.  Their names were John Joseph Campbell and Margaret Quinn.  Here they are below...

The first thing I noticed was how similar my husband's features resembled his great-grandfather's.  My husband is 6'3" tall and has the same exact face shape.  It really is uncanny.  I decided to help my mother-in-law trace some roots and we got to work.  After a couple of months, we weren't able to locate an abundance of information, but what we did discover was the fact that my husband wasn't 100% Irish descent after all.  No sir, he also had Scottish, French, German, and Canadian in him.  Hmmmmmmm...that is not purebred at all, is it?  I had to bust my father-in-law's chops on this one, so at a family barbecue about two years after my husband and I were married, I mentioned to him that I had to return my husband to him because I was "sold" a purebred and ended up with a mutt.  My father-in-law, in his wise guy fashion, smiled slyly at me and responded, "The warrantee expired."  I must say though, I love my mutt!

Now, as I stated earlier, I can trace my Italian roots back 500-600 years, but one Christmas, I received a 23andme DNA kit.  In New York, we are not allowed to take the test or mail it out from our own state, so I traveled to New Jersey, sat in front of the Post Office spitting in a tube to the horror of the onlookers, and mailed it out to be processed.  I was really shocked at my results, because according to the test, I'm only 71% Italian!  That means that somewhere down the generational line, I had relatives from other parts of the world that traveled and settled in Italy.  

Roughly 89% European
Roughly 10% Middle Eastern and North African

Well, I'm pure for at least 600 years that I know of!  

Shamrocks and meatballs seem to work for us.  We had the pleasure of traveling to Italy two years ago to meet some of my relatives and my husband absolutely loved it.   Here he is basking in the glory of Positano...

Thanks for reading and happy hunting!

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