President Obama and California Professor Share Melungeon Ancestry

President Obama and California professor D. Emily Hicks, a professor of Chicana/o Studies at San Diego State University, share Melungeon ancestry. Both are related to Melungeons and to the following families: Balls, Washingtons, Eltonheads.
By: D. Emily Hicks, Ph.D.
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Sept. 20, 2011 - PRLog -- San Diego State University professor D. Emily Hicks has discovered that she and President Obama share Melungeon ancestry.  Melungeons are one of over 200 mixed ancestry groups in the United States.  The most famous book about Melungeons was written by N. Brent Kennedy.  It is entitled The Melungeons, The Resurrection of a Proud People.  Melungeon Studies is an emerging field that includes the analysis of Melungeon characters in literature as well as works by Melungeon authors.  Katherine Vande Brake, dean, School of Arts and Sciences, King College, Tennessee, is a leading scholar in this area.  The surnames Bunch and Collins are found in many families that define themselves as Melungeon.  President Obama is a descendant of Mary Collins, of Orange County, Virginia, and other Melungeons.  SDSU professor D. Emily Hicks, who teaches in Chicana/o Studies and English and Comparative Literature, claims Melungeon ancestry through her maternal grandmother.  There is a link between Professor Hicks's and President Obama's ancestors:  an Obama ancestor was a witness for a will of an ancestor of Professor Hicks's.  Obama is a descendant of Edwin Conway, Sr. and Martha Eltonhead.  Their grandson, Col. Edwin Conway, was a witness for the will of Richard Doggett.  Col.  Edwin Conway was a coroner.  Richard Doggett (1692-1721) was married to Elizabeth Bushrod.  Professor Hicks is a descendant of Richard Doggett and Elizabeth Bushrod.

Obama is a descendant of  Mary Collins (1776-1820), of Orange County Virginia as well as of Nathaniel Bunch (1793-   ), of Louisa County, Virginia and of John Bunch (1665-   ), of New Kent, Virginia.  In 1755, Melungeon families were taxed in Orange County, Virginia.  In the generation of Obama's gggggg grandparents, including Mary Collins, we find the following surnames, all of which have been associated with Melungeons:  Bunch, Martin, Perry, Perkins, Tarleton.  A Y-DNA  test subject descended from Obama's ancestor Nathaniel Bunch, founder of the Arkansas branch of Bunches, was found to carry the E1b1a haplogroup.  Recent research suggests its origin in East Africa;  however, its highest distribution is in western sub-Saharan Africa.  The slave trade brought this haplogroup to colonial America.

Professor Hicks is completing a book on Magna Carta and mixed ancestry  She is using models developed in her earlier book, Border Writing, the Multidimensional Text, published in a prestigious series by the University of Minnesota Press,  Hicks is focussing on human rights and those of mixed ancestry in colonial America.  

Recently, Hicks discovered the work of Anita Wills, author of two books related to Free Persons of Color.  Combining her findings with those of Wills, she was quickly able to identify relationships between several generations  of servants related to the Monroe and Washington families and her own ancestors, including Sarah Ann Doggett (1745-   ).  Wills has found relationships between Melungeons and the Minqua in the Welsh Mountains of southeastern Pennsylvania.  Hicks hopes to find evidence of intermarriage between Native Americans who were part of the Powhatan Empire, including Wicocomico King Taptico, and Mary Chilton Monroe, the daughter of the white indentured servant Lydia HIllard and an unknown African American father.  Mary Chilton Monroe  worked in the household, as an indentured servant, of the great-grandfather of President James Monroe (1758-   ).  

Edwin Conway, grandson of President Obama's ancestor Edwin Conway, Sr. and Martha Eltonhead, married Ann Ball.  The Doggett, Ball, Washington and Bushrod families were intermarried.  Mary Ball was the mother of President George Washington.  Ann Ball and Mary Ball were half- sisters.
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Tags:American presidents, Obama, Mixed Ancestry, Melungeon, Ball, Monroe, Washington, Literature, Eltonhead, Emily Hicks
Location:California - United States
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Page Updated Last on: Sep 26, 2011
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