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Thread: Ancestry DNA Update of Ethnicity Estimate

  1. #1
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    Ancestry DNA Update of Ethnicity Estimate

    Got my update this morning. I know I have a lot of Scottish ancestry on both sides of my tree, but . . .

    Ancestry DNA ethnicity estimate_rms2_12 Sep 2020.jpg

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  3. #2
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    Ancestry gives me 25% for Scotland, 6% for Wales, and 4% for Ireland, which adds up to 35%. Interestingly, this is not terribly far from my British & Irish at 23andMe: 32.1%. It's somewhat lower than my paper trail calculation, which is 40.6% -- but it's a heck of a lot closer than what you end up with when you add Ancestry's 58% England & Northwestern Europe into the mix.

    What that suggests to me is that -- at least in my own case -- it's likely that very little of this category has anything to do with England. Please keep in mind that I'm not saying this is true for everyone, or even for most people. It's just that I know that I have a great deal more ancestry from "Germanic Europe" than the mere 5% Ancestry assigns me; and I have ancestry from Spain and France that aren't reflected in the slightest in Ancestry's calculations.

    In fact, at 23andMe I get 36.5% for French & German. "Germany" (Hesse and North Rhine-Westphalia) is shown as a "likely match", as is "Switzerland" (Grisons). And looking at my 3rd great grandparents, 14 out of 32 had German surnames. It's obvious that most of this ancestry is showing up as "Northwestern Europe" and therefore being lumped in with "England".

    What's worse, though, is that Ancestry has completely dropped my Spanish ancestry. I'm only an eighth, with two of my 2nd great grandfathers having immigrated with their parents and siblings from the island of Menorca, but that's still a lot more than zero -- or even the 1% I'd gotten in the 2019 update.

    The big problem here is that some Ancestry customers elect to only show their matches "in common" ancestries. That means that when I had even 1% Spanish, I could still see Spanish for matches who choose this option. Now there will simply be a missing percentage.

    Another peculiar thing is that Ancestry is now showing 1% "Indigenous Americas - Mexico" and <1% "Indigenous Americas - North". The "peculiar" part is not that Ancestry is saying I have Native American ancestry -- I do. And 23andMe's number is 2.1%, which is very close to my paper trail percentage.

    No, the problem is how this ancestry is now being characterized. In 2018, Ancestry said 2% "Native American". In 2019 it was 1% "Indigenous Americas - North" and no other "Indigenous Americas" percentage. So for my matches with a different Indigenous Americas category, I could only see their percentage if they elected to show their matches all ancestries. If they had "Indigenous Americas - Mexico", I couldn't see that.

    So I guess it's an improvement in the sense that I should now be able to see two "Indigenous Americas" categories even when my matches choose to only show in-common ancestries. But surely Ancestry realizes -- or they should -- that the same Native American ancestors are likely to test in multiple categories. Therefore, they really ought to treat all "Indigenous Americas" categories as a single category for the purpose of the "in-common" or "all ancestries" election.

    Anyway, I'm sure some people will find the new estimates more accurate. I just don't happen to be one of them.

    EDIT:

    I should probably have mentioned that 23andMe gives me 20.6% "broadly Northwestern Europe" and 0.6% "Finnish" in addition to their "French & German" and "British & Irish" numbers. 23andMe only gives me 4.7% for "Southern European", which is a lot less than my paper trail -- but of course much better than 0. (And 23andMe also gives me 2.9% as "broadly European".)
    Last edited by geebee; 09-12-2020 at 03:18 PM.
    Besides British-German-Catalan, ancestry includes smaller amounts of French, Irish, Swiss, Choctaw & another NA tribe, possibly Catawba. Avatar picture is: my father, his father, & his father's father; baby is my eldest brother.

    GB

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  5. #3
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    My ethnicity estimate from Ancestry seems pretty good. I don't have any real reason to dispute it, although the Scotland estimate (66%) seems a bit high. A fairly knowledgeable friend of mine said he thinks "Scotland" currently includes some of Northern England. I haven't read any white papers on how Ancestry is arriving at its estimate.

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    I cannot even begin to explain how flamboyantly awful the update is. Per actual recorded ancestry, I am 37.5% English, 22% German, 19% Irish, 12.5% Italian (Sicily), 6% French (Acadian), and the remaining 3% is split between Welsh, Scottish, and Micmac. Screen Shot 2020-09-12 at 12.33.07 PM.png

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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeyP37 View Post
    I cannot even begin to explain how flamboyantly awful the update is. Per actual recorded ancestry, I am 37.5% English, 22% German, 19% Irish, 12.5% Italian (Sicily), 6% French (Acadian), and the remaining 3% is split between Welsh, Scottish, and Micmac. Screen Shot 2020-09-12 at 12.33.07 PM.png
    Of course, you're speaking for yourself.

    Odd how a company will be off on one person's ethnicity estimate and yet pretty accurate for those of others.

    For me, Ancestry has always been the best when compared with the estimates I get from FTDNA and 23andMe. Others prefer 23andMe.

    Different strokes, I guess.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rms2 View Post
    My ethnicity estimate from Ancestry seems pretty good. I don't have any real reason to dispute it, although the Scotland estimate (66%) seems a bit high. A fairly knowledgeable friend of mine said he thinks "Scotland" currently includes some of Northern England. I haven't read any white papers on how Ancestry is arriving at its estimate.
    All the details have been hashed out within the preview thread
    https://anthrogenica.com/showthread....r-results-here!
    Paper trail ancestry to the best of my knowledge:
    English (possibly containing some Welsh ancestry) 31.25%, Scottish 17.96%, Scotch-Irish 12.5%, Eastern German 12.5%, Eastern European (Likely Polish possibly including Romanian) 12.5%, French 7.81%, Native American (Saulteaux and Assiniboine) 2.34%, and Colonial American, 3.125%, which cannot be traced with certainty. With certainty, there is Dutch (at least 1.36%) and some English.

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  13. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by sktibo View Post
    All the details have been hashed out within the preview thread
    https://anthrogenica.com/showthread....r-results-here!
    Wasn't really interested in a thread that was already too long (well over 400 posts). I also didn't need a preview when I had the actual results this morning, and the details of my results haven't been hashed out there. Thanks anyway.
    Last edited by rms2; 09-12-2020 at 05:23 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rms2 View Post
    Wasn't really interested in a thread that was already too long (well over 400 posts). I also didn't need a preview when I had the actual results this morning, and the details of my results haven't been hashed out there. Thanks anyway.
    In regards to the Scotland category, yes they have.
    you are far from the only one to get a huge Scotland percentage. the information is in there in case you get bored.
    Paper trail ancestry to the best of my knowledge:
    English (possibly containing some Welsh ancestry) 31.25%, Scottish 17.96%, Scotch-Irish 12.5%, Eastern German 12.5%, Eastern European (Likely Polish possibly including Romanian) 12.5%, French 7.81%, Native American (Saulteaux and Assiniboine) 2.34%, and Colonial American, 3.125%, which cannot be traced with certainty. With certainty, there is Dutch (at least 1.36%) and some English.

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  17. #9
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    Mine didn't change from the hack as expected. Being as how I'm from South Carolina, and as far as I know my dad's entire side is basically from Georgia the Scottish could be accurate?? I would only have to assume Scots-Irish but I do not know. My mom is from Ohio and even though my dad has a bit Germanic in his results (3%) my mom has 19% and I think I get a majority of that from her. My mom's side is the 'exotic' side in that Germans in my tree left there between the 1820s-1840s as far as I can tell - haha.

    Capture.JPG
    AncestryDNA: 48% England & Northwestern Europe, 29% Scotland, 12% Germanic Europe, 11% Ireland
    23andMe (v5.2 - 50% Confidence phased with 2 parents): 53.9% British & Irish, 22.7% French & German, 3.1% Scandinavian,
    17.2% Broadly Northwestern European, 1.5% Spanish & Portuguese, 0.4% Broadly Southern European,
    0.5% Broadly European, 0.2% Senegambian & Guinean, 0.2% Angolan & Congolese, 0.2% North African, 0.1% Unassigned

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    I got the update this morning. I was a little surprised--it actually showed Wales for the first time, at 8%, one of my great grandmothers was Welsh. The European Jewish took a jump, a little confused there. I have one Jewish great grandfather but now Ancestry shows 18% European Jewish, up from 11%. Another oddity is that Sweden and Norway are nearly equal, at 19% and 17% respectively. I have one Swedish 2x great grandfather, while I have a Norwegian great grandmother and a 2x great Norwegian grandmother. There are a couple other quirks--so while the nationalities are more accurate now the percentages are somewhat odd.

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