Happy St. Patrick’s Day to all my Irish Friends and Buddies. According to the DNA testing company 23andMe my brother Stephen and I have a small Irish Ancestry Claim.
Please keep in mind that ancestry is only traced from your mother’s side as only Women carry Mitochondrial DNA which is passed from Mother to child. In order for me to get information on my Dad’s side one of my paternal cousins would have to take the DNA test.
When I was younger and especially when I was a kid I would get stopped on the street all the time by total strangers asking me if I was Native American. Got the same question from a Korean Sister who was giving me a facial. Obviously the African and Native American genes stand out more than anything else. Or at least to friends and neighbors.
Here is the 411 on our family genetics:
Sub-Saharan African 86.9%
East Asian & Native American 1.4%
Northwestern European 8.8%
British & Irish 5.0%
Broadly Northwestern European 3.7%
Southern European 1.2%
Broadly Southern European 1.2%
Broadly European 1.3%
My Maternal Grandmother Hattie Finney Banks
Above photos of my Mom Mable Elizabeth Palmer and my Grandmother Hattie Finney Banks. Below Me and Stephen.
Shall we regard our girl children as Jephthah’s Daughters? How long will we continue to perpetuate the adage, “Women love their sons, but raise the daughters.” Every child deserves the opportunity to succeed in life but success comes through accepting responsibility and learning to be accountable. Any child male or female who constantly lashes out at authority figures in a bid to always be “right” is a child bound for prison or the graveyard. Stop making girls the sacrificial lambs!!
Ladies, let’s love our girl children and stop putting them on the altar in order to save a son who does not wanted to be saved and does not think he needs help or worse some no account man who should not even be a part of our households to begin with. Let us not return to ancient times when girls and women were thought of as little more than chattel or commodities to be bought and sold. (See below for more details on ancient economies)
“One of the unusual things about the Bible is that it preserves some bits of this larger context. … It would seem that the economy of the Hebrew kingdoms, by the time of the prophets, was already beginning to develop the same kind of debt crises that had long been common in Mesopotamia: especially in years of bad harvests, the poor became indebted to rich neighbors or to wealthy moneylenders in the towns, they would begin to lose title to their fields and to become tenants on what had been their own land, and their sons and daughters would be removed to serve as servants in their creditors’ households, or even sold abroad as slaves.
“[This is what the biblical book of Nehemiah is referring to in the passage,] ‘Some of our daughters are brought unto bondage already: neither is it in our power to redeem them.’ One can only imagine what those words meant, emotionally, to a father in a patriarchal society in which a man’s ability to protect the honor of his family was everything. Yet this is what money meant to the majority of people for most of human history: the terrifying prospect of one’s sons and daughters being carried off to the homes of repulsive strangers to clean their pots and provide the occasional sexual services, to be subject to every conceivable form of violence and abuse, possibly for years, conceivably forever, as their parents waited, helpless, avoiding eye contact with their neighbors, who knew exactly what was happening to those they were supposed to have been able to protect. … http://www.delanceyplace.com/view_archives.php?2009
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“Oh, why have your people forced on me the name of Pauline Johnson? Was not my Indian name good enough? Do you think you help us by bidding us forget our blood? By teaching us to cast off all memory of our high ideals and our glorious past? I am an Indian. My pen and my life I devote to the memory of my own people. Forget that I was Pauline Johnson, but remember always that I was Tekahionwake, the Mohawk that humbly aspired to be the saga singer of her people, the bard of the noblest folk the world has ever seen, the sad historian of her own heroic race.”
Nobody knows my name or the real me except Jesus and him alone. Some ancestors unwillingly pulled from the breast of Mother Africa the others walked the “Trail of Tears”. Both had forced upon them the indoctrination of Euro-centric Christianity to the detriment of each noble culture.
A few months ago I traced my maternal ancestry back to Mozambique. When I made that discovery something in my spirit clicked and I knew that one day I had to return to the birthplace of my Great, great, great, great, great Grandmother, her birth name lost to time and eternity. Other ancestors born in this great land have yet to be revealed. Many times I wonder, “What was my African and/or Native American name.” The names of Finney, Halstead, Gordon, Palmer were all given by some distant slave-owner. Who were they and who were they 500 years ago?
Like Tekahionwake I live my dichotomy every day even in my spiritual life wondering about the respective faiths of my African and Native American ancestors. Thinking about how their own unique worship was torn asunder only to be replaced by a Euro-centric “Christian” god who relegated them to a lesser status, below that of their European captors.
Children of an accursed Ham? (Genesis 9:20–27) I think not for the descendents of the great Realm of Ethiopia have risen again to the rightful place in the Diaspora.
New King James Version (NKJV)
42 The queen of the South will rise up in the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and indeed a greater than Solomon is here.
The cries of my people would not be extinguished. The voices of my Native American ancestors called to me for redemption. Through an experiment called Carlisle Indian Industrial School History, really internment in re-culturalization concentration camps Richard Henry Pratt sought to erase the cultural identity of Kiowa, Cheyenne, Arapaho and other tribes through forcing children into complete immersion in Eurocentric culture and identity, effectively erasing their own. Take away a person’s language and belief systems, telling them that how God created them was wrong and had to be fixed only serves to create indwelling images of self-hatred within those lost children. If eradicating my indigenous and African American culture, traditions, ethnicity and exchanging them for dominant white culture will I be closer to God? Will Jesus accept me in this new form?
As I gaze in the mirror as many Native Americans did 150 years ago neither my face nor my features as God made them can be erased. The efforts on the part of European conquerors failed. Nor were the colonizers able to erase the connection to the Great Spirit as he was known long before the white man touched our shores.
White man you tell me that only your version of Jesus can save my soul and deliver me from sin. And just what is my sin? Being born with a brown face, high cheek bones, full lips, long flowing Jet Black hair or locs that rise to kiss the sun. Does my sin lie in the dances my people perform to honor my ancestors and Mother Earth who gives us all sustenance? Am I or my ways at fault because we revere Nature as opposed to destroying the land, fouling the waters, polluting the environment in a never ending obsession to conquer, convert and control? Now who is the savage? Who is the so-called heathen?
Oh European who comes bearing the sign of the cross who is this God of yours that lifts up your customs and traditions but disparages mine? He is not the Jesus depicted in your Old Master paintings from Italy, Spain, France or the Flemish Masters. No, more than likely he was a swarthy man with kinky dark woolly hair, skin darkened by constant exposure to the sun. Jesus was someone whose looks paralleled the populations most of the indigenous tribes of Africa, North and South America.
New King James Version (NKJV)
14 His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and His eyes like a flame of fire; 15 His feet were like fine brass, as if refined in a furnace, and His voice as the sound of many waters;
We Sisters and Brothers from what you named the “Third World” now know that Jesus came for us just as we are. God accepts us in all the richness with which he created us. We Black and Brown followers have redefined and returned Christianity to its original intent and meaning.
No longer do we walk the “Trail of Tears” or the Via Dolorosa. Now we stand together arm in arm marching onward to Zion that beautiful city of God taking our place among those who have been redeemed.
Many female legs responding to my erotica stories on Leda Huguette. The leggs in the forefront wish to befriend me. Along with the set of legs on both sides of yellow sister are going to develop wings on their feet and shoulders whereby I can climb up and fly away. We would all lay and caress for hours until a moan escaped and we’d have an excuse to clothe ourselves once more.
However before such fleet footed appendages appear at their ankles and upon their shoulder blades I tell them there is more way more in underground New York City that they must see. After plying with some of the most perfect Raki ever drunk in Turkey or the rest of Eastern Europe it doesn’t take much convincing on my part that the Troll Market was a must see in terms of underworld tourist sites.
Lilith meet us in Ankara through the bustling city streets and into the building where she and Dagmar labored insensibly through the day. In Ankara officials were often willing to over look necessary paperwork and allowed other documents not as urgently need to be stamped and passed through the never ending red tape.
Dagmar and me around her rather crowded but well organized laboratory. The results of all her experiments were catalogued and contained within glass jars abodes. Encased in one small silicate abode was a petite ballerina, her silk tutu just a bit longer than normal but still short enough that one could see the hair extending over her tiny delicate hooves. She performed an elegant pirouette to Pachelbel’s “Canon in D Major”. Each hoof nail was painted a bright pastel pink further enhancing her feminine qualities which could have been overshadowed by her animal lower half.
Stepping from the filthy foul smelling streets we were ushered into exotic elaborately decorated quarters decorated with expensive Persian rugs, medieval tapestries, silk draperies hung upon windowless walls, tables adorned with Tiffany lamps. A subtle scent of incense permeated the airways. The decorations seemed incongruous yet harmonized together in an irregular yet pleasing manner. Palatial taste a bit ostentatious like a Renaissance bordello. The furnishings were highly articulated and faceted Baroque/Rococo objects, many with deep gouges and gashes suggesting transparency and interior penetration. This room and much of the house as well as the street urchins who passed through seemed to us an Orientalist fantasy. At the far end of the living room hung a painting of a Minotaur raping a woman, this predilection of things to come.
Within this underworld in the Gumrok district known to westerners as the Expatriate district we met our sardonic intermediary in sex slave trade, the mirthless dwarf called,
Apep Angra Mainyu aka “The Snake”. Angra had the face of Peter Lorre and the heft and bulk of a miniaturized Sidney Greenstreet. Apep Angra was scurrilous and scrofulous. His rough skin was spotted with scabies and his body emitted a sepulchral odor.
Angra’s manciple Alva Ahriman was the bodily opposite of his master. Ahriman was six feet tall of bulging muscles, narrow waist and sculpted buttocks. His lack of moral fiber and somewhat limited intellectual faculties innate in most normal human personalities could be easily perceived in his cranial structure and his overall physiognomy. The shock of wild reddish brown hair closely cut on the sides of the head, the high sloping forehead, prominent brow ridges, receding nostrils and thin lips, these features put one in mind of a simian head attached to the body of Atlas. Alva’s nature embodied the seven deadly sins from head to foot.
Despite stunted academic capabilities that could be called into question, Alva had been well trained by Angra and daily attempted to enhance what little he had been granted through unholy experimentation by careful observation of Angra’s hidden lifestyle and techniques. Alva’s bedchambers which were divided into three sections one being the actual room where he slept on an ornate Italian Renaissance canopy bed replete with seraphim, cherubim, and putti on the ceiling looking down seemingly blessing the lewd acts committed in that bed.
However outside of Angra, my wife and myself and the poor unfortunate girls who had the bad fortune to see this mockery of sex and religion, Alva barred even the household servants from entering that portion of his rooms. In fact he took responsibility for cleaning his quarters and putting outside the door soiled bed sheets and remnants of any meals partaken within. Upon entrance it at first resembled an Italian studiolo. Scholarly books that he never read, save those dealing with what he felt was the “new science of photography” lined the bookshelves along the walls. There was a collection of opera records beside the Victrola, which he played incessantly even during he was engaged in some vile sexual act with any of the young girls that came to the bawdy house. In fact during those escapades the music became louder more than likely to mask his grunts and groans plus those of his victims.
Angra seeing how fascinated Alva was with photography gifted him with camera and outfitted the third segment of Alva’s rooms with a photography studio and darkroom. Alva was creative in the sense that he stole items from the main bordello in order to outfit his photo studio into period pieces where he photographed the girls before he had sex with them. After developing the pictures he would catalogue each prize in a book complete with a name he gave her in addition to her measurements and any outstanding physical features. The girls were pretty much always naked save for sparse clothing items that Alva felt made superior her breasts, buttocks or genital area. Alva often requested and received more than one girl from the bordello and had them pleasure each other in the pictures while he shot them in various poses.
Another one of Alva’s prized possessions in addition to his camera was his stereopticon or “magic lantern” in which his bevy of beauties were preserved for eternity on slides which at first Alva just arranged randomly but over time he began to place the slides in logical order to create pornographic narratives. The stereopticon was for his personal pleasure but even that proved not enough and eventually Alva convinced Angra to give him rudimentary film equipment that he rigged up next to his bed to document his demented exploits with the accursed young women.
Often while Alva was arranging the photos in his scrapbook or creating slides from them for the stereopticon he would play his favorite three operas from Richard Wagner; The Valkyrie,Tristan und Isolde and Parsifal. Later these same three operas would be piped into the castle during Alva’s unholy alliances with Leonara and later, much later the blessed houri Evie.
In time while exploring the lower portions of the house we found a sealed entry way through which we could hear the sounds of a type of market. We decided to get a guy name Psycho Kinesis to open that door, the door that would reveal an alternate universe we had been searching for so long.
At first Big Red wants to try his door opening method which is smashing the door in by brute force. Red tries and it doesn’t work only leaving him with a very sore cut up fist. Next one in our group Captain Nebulizer where he just released the latest in technology. Smoke ascended out of his uniform but in a structured manner only waiting to here the orders emanating from his lips. The ether obeyed — a series of locks were undone and a large doorway swung open to a scene that I only remembered from the bar scene in Star Wars but much more grungy.
The Troll Market opens out from Ankara into it current location under the Brooklyn Bridge. It is revealed to be a veritable bacchanalia of mythological, fantasy, and supernatural creatures from all over the world, mainly attracting dragons. The Troll market is the living proof of extraterrestrial/human evolution. On the other end of it is a Dive bar where human evolution coupled with Abstract Expression gave birth to foreverlazy.com
In the back of the club Mr. Magoo lead the way being followed by the others.Patsy Cline, Barry White, Luther Vandross, Aailyah, Missy Elliot, The LeVerts, Mary J. Blige, Sammy Davis Jr. all got together to sing Beautiful Freaks — http://www.jango.com/stations/28
When the Valentines Day party got into the groove along came Iceberg Slim, RalphEllison,
But I’m a beautiful freak with a heart shaped butt that Eiko can’t stop caressing, touching and hugging. Eiko swears she going to immortalize by my ass in stone and call it the Great BaDonkadonk. My BaDonkadonk would be a national treasure wining awards and accolades worldwide from fitness gurus and the most prefect ass ever.
My Maternal Ancestry Tree: The bond and bridge that enable me to crossover from America to Africa
Maternal Ancestry Journey
New King James Version (NKJV)
A Perpetual Covenant of Peace
1 “Sing, O barren,
You who have not borne!
Break forth into singing, and cry aloud,
You who have not labored with child!
For more are the children of the desolate
Than the children of the married woman,” says the LORD. 2 “ Enlarge the place of your tent,
And let them stretch out the curtains of your dwellings;
Do not spare;
Lengthen your cords,
And strengthen your stakes. 3 For you shall expand to the right and to the left,
And your descendants will inherit the nations,
And make the desolate cities inhabited.
The eternal question, Who Am I? Many of us find the answer within our respective Family Trees. It was obvious to me that my ancestry began in Africa, but where in that great continent did my ancestors originate. But for me as an African American some of the branches were broken off and gone missing.
Thus began my quest to not only discover my maternal lineage but my genetic link to Mother Africa. Hidden within the larger search to trace my family history on my Mom’s side was the greater goal to honor my mother and complete myself as a branch of the family tree. DNA can now unlock the secrets and the past giving voice to generations of women, the collective matriarchy that ultimately formed me. Living in a society that often devalues, trivializes and cuts Black Women down, within my personal family history lay the opportunity to validate and reaffirm self.
Family Skeletons Revealed
Hattie Finney Banks was my grandmother. Hattie and Mattie Finney were twin sisters. Mattie Finney moved to Illinois and married a man named Harper. I always wondered what became of Mattie. My grandmother Hattie Banks never spoke of her twin sister Mattie. I always thought that was unusual but I did not ask any questions. Did not want to pry.
About two years ago my brother Stephen and I spent Thanksgiving with our New Jersey cousins. My Aunt told me a family story which might explain the split between the sisters and why they never again contacted each other.
My grandfather Hugh Banks, Hattie’s husband murdered Daniel R. Finney. So Hugh Banks killed his in-law, his wife’s close relative. Hugh Banks died in prison sometime around 1940. My Aunt went to the funeral. She does not know the reason why Hugh Banks murdered Daniel Finney. All this took place in the 1930s. After the funeral Hattie took my Mom, Mable, her sisters and moved to Dayton, Ohio. Hattie told everyone including my mother, her sisters and me that Hugh Banks had died in a coal mining accident.
I suppose she had to make up a false story and hide the truth because of embarrassment, shame or just wanting to forget. From what little my grandmother Hattie Banks told me Hugh Banks was a violent and abusive husband. I guess when she moved to Dayton to be with her brothers Clarence & Willie she just want to forget the past and start with a clean slate. I can’t prove it but somehow, some way this murder was probably behind Hattie and Mattie breakup.
Good Ancestor News: Found out this week that through my maternal line my ancestors were from Mozambique. I belong to the maternal haplogroup L3e2b1a.
I also probably have some Nigerian ancestors. My maternal genetic makeup is 85% Africa, 12% Europe and 3% Asia.
Our ancestry and genealogy are traced through mitochondrial DNA which is only passed down from mother to child. This is fascinating information. By the way the study affiliated with Dr. Henry Louis Gates is free and they are targeting African Americans. I’ve wanted to have my DNA traced for several years and when I saw the ad in Ebony or was it Essence along with the word Free, I immediately signed up. I was so thrilled to find out this news. Now along with my African co-workers feel a more direct connection to the Motherland.
Naturally, I’ll never be connected to Mother Africa the way in which my co-workers from Nigeria, Ghana, Cameroon, Burkina Faso, Togo, and Mali are since they were born there and have a direction connection with the culture, language and respective tribes, I feel now more of a blood tie. Now I can plan for my pilgrimage to this country of my ancestors in the next five to ten years.
I’ve shared my findings with a select group of like-minded co-workers and when I return to work on Sunday will continue to do so.
As I previously stated, Hattie Finney Banks was my maternal grandmother. I’m in the process of writing a book honoring my mother, Mable Elizabeth Palmer, Hattie’s eldest daughter. Right now I’m trying to locate the birth certificate of either Hattie or her twin sister Mattie Finney. I want and need to know who their mother, my great grandmother was. I need that piece of information for not only my research but for my literary work. I know plenty about my Dad’s family history but almost nothing about my Mom’s side. Also there is something in me which needs completion.
When I look in the mirror I see Mable Elizabeth Palmer. I see unknown people from my collective past begging me to tell their story. I must answer their cries to be heard. Before I travel to Mozambique, South Africa I’ll have to visit West Virginia and examine birth, death, prison and military/Armed Forces records that may be available.
Then in 2012 back to Ancestry.com for more research on my maternal family tree. My maternal ancestors from Mother Africa call me and I willingly answer the call. Our patriarchal society bows down to the greater stronger Matriarchy for only females carry the mitochondrial DNA that enable all of us to trace our roots and find our origins. The Journey continues!!
National Geographic also offers a similar test but it costs $99.95. That will have to wait until I receive my Federal income tax check next year. I want to see if genetic lineage test comes up with the same result as 23andme. I would think that for $100 the testing would be more wide-ranging and comprehensive. My goal is to find out more about my maternal lineage. My ultimate goal is to deepen my connection to my mother, grandmother and of course Mother Africa.