Pinpointing DNA Ancestry in Africa – Part 2

On October 4th I posted “Pinpointing Our DNA Ancestry in Africa” and a link to an article in The Root.com that discusses how DNA testing can connect people of African descent in the Americas to the approximately 46 ethnic groups in West Africa from which the vast majority of enslaved Africans were taken for shipment to the slaveocracies of the New World. Linda Heywood and John Thornton, the historians who wrote the article, also have provided a companion piece—”African Ethnicities and Their Origins“—that lists those 46 key ethnic groups and the West African countries in which they reside.

In a recent follow-up interview in The Root—Getting Closer to Our African Origins—Heywood and Thornton explain how the gradual increase in the pool of West African DNA and online tools like the Transatlantic Slave Trade Database, which contains the records of nearly 35,000 slaving voyages, are improving the ability of people of African descent in the Americans to trace their African ancestry.

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