Sunday, 29 March 2015

Sunday, 1 March 2015

The Scots-Irish: Barry Vann and South's Celtic Heritage

The Scots-Irish: Barry Vann and South's Celtic Heritage: University of the Cumberlands’ (UC) Director of Education program and professor of Higher Learning and Geography, Dr. Barry Vann, recen...

Thursday, 26 February 2015

Finding the McCains

Finding the McCains

Finding the McCains, is an account of a man’s 40 year odyssey to find the McCain family in Ireland.  Senator John McCain and his cousin, novelist Elizabethan Spencer, both include a short history of the McCain family in their respective memoirs Faith of our Fathers and Landscapes of the Heart.  Their history is a romantic tale of Highland Scots who supported Mary Queen of Scots and who fled to Ireland after her downfall in 1568.  The search for the McCains became a mystery story with clues, false turns, many adventures, and then ultimate success through Y chromosome DNA testing.  In 2008 the McCains were reunited with their family that remained in Ireland, after 289 years of separation.

The McCain history includes people and events familiar to readers of Irish and Scottish history; Redshanks, Iníon Dubh, Mary Queen of Scots, the Earls of Argyll, the Ulster Migration, and the Scots-Irish, are all part of this family’s history.  Faint memories of this past were told for generations in Mississippi and as the research progressed the facts behind these memories were uncovered. 

The Y chromosome DNA results revealed that the McCains of Mississippi, which include Senator John McCain’s family, are the same family of Wallace and Harrison McCain, the founders of Canada’s McCain Foods, one of the most successful corporations in the world.  They are also the same family as James McKeen who organized the 1718 fleet that began the great Ulster Migration to the English Colonies.  All these families are paternally related and they all descend from one Gaelic man named Mac Eáin that lived in Kilmichael Glassary parish, in mid Argyll, in the Scottish Highlands, in the 1400s.

The book tells of the author’s many trips to Ireland in search of his distant cousins there.  There are anecdotal stories, some humorous and others involving “famous” people; such as, Phil Robertson of Duck Dynasty, Mary Coughlan (Irish Tainste or vice president), Cindy McCain (wife of Senator McCain), Seán Mac Stiofáin (1970s head of the IRA) , Alan Heusaff (WW II German officer in Dublin who later became president of the Celtic League), and Muhammad Ali.  There is even an encounter with a Bean Sí (faerie woman) on the windy cold hill of megalithic stone ruins at Loch an Craoibh.  All presented from the perspective of a native Mississippian.

Another theme in the book is the Scots-Irish.  Contemporary histories about the Scots-Irish present stereotyped and romanticized accounts of this dynamic group.  Finding the McCains reveals a more complex history and shows the cultural conflation common in Scots-Irish popular history.

Finding the McCains is an excellent read for all interested in Irish and Scottish history and is an how-to guide for those interested in how-to guide for those who would like to use genetic genealogy to locate their family in the old country and recover lost family history.

To purchase from Amazon: Finding the McCains

To purchase from Ulster Heritage directly send US $20 (postage paid) to:
Ulster Heritage
PO Box 884
Oxford MS 38655

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

The Scots-Irish: Haplogroup R-S1051 Project

The Scots-Irish: Haplogroup R-S1051 Project: ( Many Scots-Irish are in R-S1051 haplogroup.  A lot of research going on with this haplogroup; they appear to be indigenous to central Scot...

Monday, 16 February 2015

The Scots-Irish: Native Tribes of Britain

The Scots-Irish: Native Tribes of Britain: The majority of the Scots-Irish are descendants of the native Celtic tribes of north Britain.  Here is a link to an article on the BBC Histo...

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

The Tweedy Family: Tweedys in Scotland and Ireland

The Tweedy Family: Tweedys in Scotland and Ireland: We need Tweedys (by any spelling) to participate in DNA testing.  Our goals are to locate the Tweedy family in Scotland and Ireland and reco...

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

The Scots-Irish: Scots-Irish Books

The Scots-Irish: Scots-Irish Books: Three centuries of life in a Tyrone parish. A history of Donagheady from 1600 to 1900, by William Roulston (USD $ 12.95) Format Ebook.  ...

Saturday, 10 January 2015

Greenland and the Celtic Vikings

Recent DNA research reveals there was a considerable Celtic presence in the Norse settlement on Greenland; link to article:  Celtic Norse

Sunday, 21 December 2014

Winter Solstice 2014

The marking and celebration of the Winter Solstice is the oldest holiday tradition in Ireland.  Today is the shortest day of the year and soon the Sun will start is climb in the sky.  It is a day of joy, of a glass of Jameson and lighting of candles and making merry. 

Link:  Winter Solstice in the Northern Hemisphere

Monday, 8 December 2014

Donegal Magazine, new E-zine issue

                                                                                                             Welcome to the Donegal in Touch e-zine.  This e-zine is part of the Donegal Diaspora Project. Through this project Donegal is reaching out and connecting with people in all parts of the world who have a connection to or interest in Donegal.  This e-zine is sent to people in all parts of the world.
To access the Donegal Community in Touch Ezine please click on the following link:
Please feel free to pass this e-zine on to others that you feel might be interested in it. Any views, comments or contributions to the e-zine are very welcome.    
For further information on Donegal or on the Donegal Diaspora Project, please visit the website at
The Donegal - community in touch / Dún na nGall - pobail i d'teagmháil Publication Team
Máire Ni Fhearraigh
EU & Strategic Policy Unit
Community & Enterprise
Tel Ext: LK 264, Lifford 435

Monday, 17 November 2014

The Scots-Irish: Tim Clarkson & Viking Age Strathclyde

The Scots-Irish: Tim Clarkson & Viking Age Strathclyde: Tim Clarkson's new book on Viking Age Strathclyde  is now available and highly recommended.  Strathclyde and the Anglo-Saxons in th...

Monday, 27 October 2014

The Scots-Irish: The Cracker

The Scots-Irish: The Cracker: Cracker Cattle What is the etymology of the term Cracker?   We all know what a Cracker was (or is).   A Southern Anglo-Celt, usually ...

Thursday, 23 October 2014

AncestryDNA and 23andMe (V3) Transfer to Family Tree

(more information on the transfer offer from Family Tree DNA.)

Family Tree DNA is now allowing people that have taken an AncestryDNA™ or 23andMe© (V3) test to transfer their raw data to the Family Finder database for FREE by visiting!
That’s right!  Pass this news along to your friends and family members that have tested with or 23andMe so they can discover new matches in the world’s largest genetic genealogy database for FREE!  
Note: Autosomal raw data cannot be transferred to an account that already has Family Finder
What’s in it for You?
After transferring, you’ll get your top 20 matches, complete with their surnames and relationship predictions.  You don’t have to do anything after uploading your data to see these matches.  You’ve got nothing to lose!

You can unlock ALL of your matches and myOrigins results for free by recruiting 4 other relatives or friends to transfer their results using a link we’ll provide!

Unlock Right Away for Just $39
If you do not want to wait for 4 others to transfer, we are also permanently reducing the price to unlock all of your matches and myOrigins results to just $39!  
Once a transfer has purchased or referred 4 others they will unlock the full Family Finder experience!
How Does it Work?
New customers must enter their name and email address to get started.  If you already have an FTDNA account, just click Already have a Family Tree DNA account?

Next, click ‘Upload Raw Data’ to select and upload the raw data file from AncestryDNA™ or 23andMe© (V3) from your computer.  It is not necessary to unzip the file prior to uploading it.  If you don’t have your raw data file handy, instructions on how to download it will be available.

The first round of results processing will take about an hour and an email notification will be sent to the registered email address after we are done processing the raw data.