Archive for the ‘Paternal Line’ category

Blue for Valdez

August 5, 2017

Here is the tee shirt design I created for this year’s Valdez Family Reunion. The color blue has been the color worn by the members of my mom’s paternal line from Las Aguitas, New Mexico.

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Lujan Brothers

November 19, 2014

I loved this photo my uncs sent out today of the jacona browns snagging sin Harry. Where u at Harry?? There is a long line of handsome Lujan men on my paternal line. 🙂

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~My Uncle James, my Dad Gilbert and my Uncle Rick. "Cool Ass Selfie" by James Lujan• November 2014~

Artistically Alive

September 7, 2013

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Today I had a chance to visit with my grandma. It is always fun to spend time with people who love art as much as I. I grew up making art with her. She is a Virgo like me and the characteristics of those under this sign are evident with her attention to detail in each piece.

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We exchanged views of our newest works of art. She showed me many new acrylic, colored pencil, and multimedia pieces she lovingly signed~~ Emily Lujan. She has been experimenting with a high gloss, pour-on epoxy finish and she was excited to show me that. Of course I have to buy some now! The epoxy looks like glass once it dries. It is supposed to equal 60 coats of varnish in one pour!

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I must say that she still does a fantastic job despite the fact that she has macular degeneration. It is sad to see a degenerative disease afflicting a woman who uses her eyes to create as if they were themselves part of the masterpiece. She was so proud of a machine my dad bought her to help her eyes see and the fact that she is teaching a weekly art class at her local senior center.

I left with one of her comments on my mind. She said “if I couldn’t make art, what good would my life be?” I feel the same. Creativity pumps through my heart with the labor of love. I find it interesting how sometimes it is indeed the arts which keep us alive.

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Three Peas in a Pod

November 11, 2012
From left to right: my lil bro Thomas, my grandma Emily, and my brother Brian (retired USAF)

From left to right: my lil bro Thomas, my grandma Emily, and my brother Brian (retired USAF)

Today I thought about 11s since it is 11.11, but I also took time to think about our veterans. These men and women who are serving and who have served our country are special people. This weekend, my older brother is visiting from Arizona. He recently retired from the United States Air Force. Today I take the time to remember all of the veterans in my family. I also take the time to thank them for my freedom.

What’s In a Day?

June 20, 2012

*****MY HOMETOWN*****
“Pojoaque,” New Mexico by Edward Curtis (1905)
Image No. LC-USZ62-118930m
Library of Congress– Prints and Photographs Division
Washington, D.C. 20540 USA

Today I spent my lunch and an afternoon break looking at the 1940 United States Census. I have been so excited to take a closer look, so I figured that today was a good day to start. I decided to take the day off from the gym. What?? Unfortunately, yesterday I lost one of my iPods. It was a particularly delightful topper on my already painful day. Since I use that iPod everyday, I turned into SuperB. I spent today detaching from my lost data and connecting with new data.

At first glance of the census data for New Mexico (Mora and Santa Fe Counties), I was a bit disappointed. I didn’t spend very long, but I didn’t see anybody I was looking for? Maybe I was not focused on the task at hand?? I will need to sit down, concentrate, make a plan. I found myself wondering why the National Archives and Records Administration archivists or technicians, or project managers, didn’t think about sorting the precincts chronologically before undertaking a costly microfilm/preservation project? I know it couldn’t have been the archival principals  of provenance and original order?? It is beyond me, but then again I am a Virgo and the first thing I would have done is sort things out!  

I checked the 1940 census for: my paternal line (Nambe for the Ortiz and Garduno families, Pojoaque and San Ildefonso Pueblo for the Lujan and Roybal families; and then my maternal line (Mora for the Valdez and Brazil families, and La Cueva for the Garcia family). I quickly realized that I need to formulate a better plan before I jump in next time. I will make an organizational chart. The chart will have the family names, the lines, and where they should have been in 1940 (which precinct and maybe ages). 

I did see some interesting things that I wasn’t looking for. Maria and Julian Martinez, the famous San Ildefonso potters were captured. I saw other family members (not the ones I was looking for). There were several people listing their jobs as “common.” How sad is that? What I found most interesting is that people were still calling humans “servants?” I did note that every entry I came across listing a servant was not someone from New Mexico. Almost every person keeping a servant was from the East Coast.  

Anyhow— maybe another day will be better, and I will find more? I know I probably will not find my beloved iPod, but I don’t want to think about it because I will just cry!

My Ancient Celtic Tongue

June 17, 2012

The Celtic Torc

On Friday, June 15, I attended a lecture to learn more about the Celt-Iberians and my yDNA (paternal). The lecture was in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and was held in conjunction with the 2012 Genealogical Society of Hispanic America Conference. I was thankful to Kathy Archuleta for allowing me to attend, and I will need to remember to call her and thank her personally.

The presenter started off by playing Spanish Celtic music which featured a Spanish bagpipe or Gaita. The artist was José Ángel Hevia Velasco, known professionally as Hevia. The majority of the presentation focused on a documentary about the Celts in Europe. The Celtic tribes were called “a great civilization” and the documentary featured ancient “galleries of rock art” which were used for rituals. The rock art depicted dwellings, hunting scenes, and tribal warriors with “exaggerated phallic displays.” An interesting archaeological excavation uncovered over 150 iron swords, spearheads, and daggers from the Lake Neuchatel site (La Tene, Switzerland).

Other archaeological discoveries included: royal tombs; Celtic art such as beautiful and intricate gold jewelry; plates with swirling patters and motifs; head dresses; gold vases; mirrors; bronze shields; and imagery of part animal/part human creatures. Some of the art work was called “nightmarish,” and was just my style. I am apparently a Spanish Celt at heart!! 🙂 The artworks featured monsters, and there was one piece with a human head in a monster’s mouth. The commentator of this documentary said that this was “the art of the elite,” and that it “expresses authority.”

We learned about how the Celtic tribes plundered the Greeks, and the Gods were said to have intervened at the sacred site of Delphi. That is why I wrote about the Oracle last night. I learned that the Iberian Peninsula has been a problem for scholars for several reasons. Some of the ancient structures built by the Celts included: pit traps; defensive towers; circular dwellings; and hill forts for protection (many of which go back to the Bronze Age). We learned some about migration from the documentary, though there is apparently no evidence of mass immigration. I saw the first written record of land ownership carved in stone.

I love that warfare was an intrinsic part of Celtic life. I may write at some point about the carnyx, which was made of bronze, and was the Celtic “instrument of war.” The instrument made an eerie sound, known by all as a warning. One scholar interviewed in the documentary said that the Celts “made great slaughter and decapitated enemies.” They had “the ability to kill and kill and great numbers,” and were “a powerful and organized society.” I would also like to learn more about the torc, as a symbol of authority. This was an open-ended ring of metal worn around the neck.

A couple of interesting thoughts I came away with…

I must get some traits from my ancient forefathers. I was glad to learn that art and music were very important to the ancient Celtic tribes. I had never thought about this until Friday, but for years people from outside of New Mexico have asked if I was from Europe. Many people have asked if I was Scottish or Irish. Yeah I know— New Mexicans– strange ha? I have always thought it was funny, but as it turns out, maybe my tongue actually makes sounds indicative of an ancient Celtic nation? Apparently, “during the 1st millennium BC,” Celtic languages “were spoken across Europe,” and “in the Iberian Peninsula.” Hum? Another thought was how very appropriate it was that I was learning about my yDNA just a couple of days before Father’s Day!

Summoning my Inner Intellectual Warrior

June 14, 2012

*****Celt-Iberian Mercenary*****
The “S” is for “SUPER” Hahahahaha!

I am looking forward to attending a special lecture in conjunction with the Genealogical Society of Hispanic America Annual Meeting & Conference. This year the conference is titled Santa Fe –Where Trails and Cultures Meet, and Angel Cervantes will be presenting his research on the Celt-Iberians tomorrow. Angel is the administrator of the New Mexico DNA Project, and he has a research group for the Iberian Peninsula. My familial Y-DNA was connected to Haplogroup R1b1a2 in 2011. I am excited to see what Angel has learned since then. DNA has established that my ancient forefather was a Celt-Iberian. These Celtic people were living in the Iberian Peninsula in what is now north central Spain. It makes some sense that I would be connected to the Celt-Iberians, as I do hope my ancient forefather fought for what he believed in. I am a fighter— and I continuously summon my inner intellectual warrior. The article I included below was written a few days ago by the Senior Editor of Big News and Live Events for the Huffington Post. Craig Kanalle is apparently my contemporary, ancient cousin! 🙂

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What a DNA Test Revealed About My Family History

by Craig Kanalle, Senior Editor, Big News & Live Events, The Huffington Post

Posted: 06/11/2012 5:31 pm

I’ve been researching my family tree since 1998, and I’ve long been curious about DNA as a way to learn more about your roots. The technology has come a long way in the last decade, and it’s become more affordable too. Finally, I went ahead and ordered a Y-DNA test (for my paternal line).

On Friday night, at 1:30 a.m., the results popped in my email inbox from the FamilyTreeDNA lab in Houston, Texas!

When I logged in to see the results, 29 “matches” popped up — these are living people today with whom I share a common direct male ancestor with in about the last 1,000 years. (To be clear, the Y-DNA only passes father to son, so this traces my father’s father’s father, etc., and same for them.) These matches live in Ireland, England, Scotland, South Africa, the United States and presumably elsewhere (some don’t list a location).

2 CLOSE MATCHES!

Of course, for any matches to come up, I need to have living blood relatives through the male line who took DNA tests themselves. And I’m so grateful and excited that two people I’m about to address did…

I had two close matches, genealogically-speaking, and the rest were more distant. The surnames to those closest matches? A Kennelly and a MacNeely, variations of my own last name. They both live in Ireland!

My relationship to the MacNeely, who I learned is about 28 years old today and lives in County Mayo, Ireland, goes back to a common male ancestor with the surname Kennelly (sometimes Mac an Fhaili in Ireland), MacNally, or McAnally who lived around the 1600s.

My relationship to the Kennelly is closer. He lives in Ireland today in County Cork near the border with County Limerick (where my great-great-great-grandfather Thomas Kennelly was born — he immigrated to Canada during the Potato Famine). We seem to both descend of a Kennelly born in the 1700s.

What makes the connection to these two men so interesting is that most Irish genealogical records burned in fires in Dublin and don’t exist today. Without them, it’s hard to trace Irish roots any further back than the 1800s. But nonetheless I’ve made links with long lost cousins, prior to that time so many Irish researchers hit a brick wall.

I’ve written emails to both of them and hope to hear back!

MORE LINKS + THE ‘ADAMS’ FAMILY

The rest of the matches are more distant, though interestingly I found both a McKee and a McGee, with whom I have a common male ancestor in Ireland who lived around the 1400s or earlier. Also a McSorley, a Koster, a Walker, a Crauford and a Hannon who all share common male ancestors with me back around the same period.

But what I found most interesting of the distant matches — the ADAMS connection. Three of my matches were males with the last name ADAMS. There was also one female whose maiden name was ADAMS (likely submitting a male relative’s DNA) and one Smith who says he traces back (father’s father’s father, etc.) to a male Adams. There was a second Smith who I suspect could also go back to an Adams.

In all, that’s five Adams descendants, possibly six, in my 29 matches. And sure enough, I learned the DNA subgroup / family group of former U.S. presidents John Adams and John Quincy Adams matches my own.

John Adams and John Quincy Adams trace their Adams roots back to southwestern England, right across the water from southern Ireland, where my Kennelly roots lie.

My matches showed that my genealogical relationship to the Adams family lies in a common male ancestor way back, around the 1100s or 1200s. It’s my best guess that an Adams, or a member of the same family in which male relatives took Adams as a surname, migrated from southwestern England to Ireland around that time period or shortly after, and that my Kennellys descend from this family.

It’s also possible, however, that the connection goes back to before surnames were used at all, as they were just sprouting up around that time.

Either way, there is no doubt that I am blood related to the Adams family if you trace back through Y-DNA (my father’s father’s father, etc., and theirs). Eventually, we hit a single male figure who we both come from. And that’s pretty cool.

ANCIENT HISTORY

I did some more research on my Y-DNA haplogroup, R1b1a2, and if you keep going back (through my father’s father’s father, etc.), my direct male ancestors were Celtics. They seem to have lived in Western Europe at the time of Jesus Christ and the Ancient Romans and Ancient Greeks likely saw them as uncivilized barbarians. They were likely tribal people in B.C. times, nomadic herders, moving around as famines and droughts hit.

Migration patterns show that my DNA group likely originated in western Asia, in the Middle East or Black Sea region (modern day Turkey), living there 20,000 and 30,000 years ago. There are relatives with similar DNA going thousands of years back in what is now Iran, India, Syria, Israel and Turkey. This family group also branched off into Africa, where the Y-DNA is alive and well in Central Africa. One branch ended up in Egypt specifically, and the Egyptian Pharaoh King Tut belongs to the same haplogroup as I.

After the Ice Age around 10,000 B.C., the larger haplogroup I come from R1b is believed to have brought agriculture to Europe from western Asia. It ended up becoming one of the most popular family groups in Europe, with some 50% of Western Europeans and Americans tracing back to them and 90% of those in Ireland.

My more specific subgroup R1b1a2a1a1b4 seems to have lived in southern Ireland, northern Ireland, and southwestern England in the last 1,000 years or so.

WHAT’S NEXT?

I was so excited by these results that I upgraded my account to trace my maternal line too. I also put in a “Family Finder” request so it gives me a rough overall breakdown of my genealogical DNA (what percentage I am Western European, what percentage other origins, etc.).

My DNA is already at the lab, so now I just have to wait another month or so, and I’m sure to find more interesting things.

Until then, I hope to hear back from my Kennelly and McNeely cousins overseas, who I emailed as I said earlier. I may contact some of these more distant relatives as well.

And later on, in November, I’m going to Ireland for the first time ever. I hope to track down Mr. Kennelly, Mr. MacNeely or at least more of my roots based on the new evidence I’ve uncovered. The power of DNA… it’s really something.


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