Monday, August 13, 2012

"We Wuz Robbed"

George Santayana wrote;
"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."
You might want to remember this next time you find yourself tempted to copy and paste something from the recent Melungeon paper, or the genealogy of President Barack Obama published by Or Paul Heinegg's "" website, or the hundreds and hundreds of websites that are now copy and pasting this information as if it is documented. 

No, there is no evidence John Punch left descendants, just as they said there is no evidence William Bunch of the 1665/66 record left descendants. They don't tell you who twenty year old Eliza Bunch was that came over in 1635 or what happened to her.  They don't tell you Jeremiah Bunch was imported to King William County in 1671 or what happened to him. Or John Bunch who was imported (probably from South Carolina)  by Robert Hix, Captain of the Saponi Fort,  in 1716, or the mulatto (Indian?) slave who 'went by' John Bunch in the 1719 deposition. 

And you will also find copy and pasted all over the internet now the Melungeons descend from Sub-Saharan men and white women. The authors, knowing this is in error, has done nothing to correct this, and so it will be copied as the Melungeons were Turks, the Melungeon diseases, the Melungeon squat and the hundreds and hundreds of other myths spread across the internet today. 

There is evidence, oral and historical documents that show the Melungeons had Native American ancestry. There are no records to prove the word was first used at the Stoney Creek Church, the original has never been seen and could read as 'harboring Mcclungs' as well as harboring Melungins.

George Gibson of Orange County, North Carolina is NOT the son of Gilbert Gibson of Louisa County.  Jack Goins has been given the documentation at least twice proving this is misleading Gibson researchers, and still they used it in their report, and it is being copied and pasted

Paul Bunch was NOT called before Governor Johnson with Gideon Gibson in 1735 and Vardy and Valentine Collins were not brothers no matter how many times they wrote it in their report or who said they were.  Their DNA proves they are not brothers. Valentine is NOT even a Collins, his DNA matches the Bunch family, yet these researchers instead of correcting the misinformation continue to spread it. 

Remember this next time you are tempted to copy and paste something from the internet. Check for sources and if you can't find them don't copy it. Speculation is fine, just note that it is speculation. 

Few if any names in genealogical circles draw the outrage that Anjou enjoys. He presented himself as a professional genealogist, and his services were employed by many East Coast families in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Anjou initially earned a reputation for providing copious amounts of research to back up his findings, much to the delight of his clients. For his "findings," Anjou's services were expensive for the day and he became quite well off.
However, scholarly investigation of Anjou’s findings has revealed flawed research with the intent to defraud. A 1976 article by George E. McCracken[1] is one of the most widely quoted sources on the Internet about Anjou's fraudulent works. McCracken's article also names other authors of "suspect" genealogies, although none come close to Anjou and his activities.
In 1991, genealogists Robert Charles Anderson and Gordon L. Remington wrote companion articles on Anjou in the Genealogical Journal, a publication of the Utah Genealogical Association.Anderson's article. "We Wuz Robbed, The 'modus operandi' of Gustave Anjou"[2] discussed the manner in which Anjou fabricated his genealogies. Anderson wrote:
"A typical Anjou pedigree displays four recognizable features:
1. A dazzling range of connections between dozens of immigrants to New England; for example, connections far beyond what may be seen in pedigrees produced by anyone else.
2. Many wild geographical leaps, outside the normal range of migration patterns.
3. An overwhelming number of citations to documents that actually exist, and actually include what Anjou says they include and
4. Here and there an invented document, without citation, which appears to support the many connections noted under item 1 above."[3]
Remington's article, "Gustave We Hardly Knew Ye: A Portrait of Herr Anjou as a Jungberg,"[4] revealed Anjou's true identity through exposing who his biological father really was.
Anjou's fakery has also been well documented by the late Donald Lines Jacobus, founder of The American Genealogist.
As a result of this research, Anjou’s findings are not respected in professional genealogical circles.
Anjou died on March 2, 1942 at Tottenville, Staten Island, New York, and was buried in Fairview Cemetery (at West New Brighton, Castleton Corners, Richmond County, New York). He was predeceased by both his Swedish-born wife Anna Maria Anjou (Oct. 21, 1860–July 6, 1922) and by his only child. (Wikipedia)


  1. Good morning,

    I have been researching my family history on & off for the past few decades. With the kids grown and my time has freed up, lately my research is more "on". My focus primarily has been on my 3rd great-grandparents, Nathan & Jemima (Mayes) Collins primarily because the stories we've been told by my great-grandma Rosetta (White) Pitts, granddaughter of Nathan & Jemima. She said she was full-blood Cherokee from Tennessee (however, she was born in Missouri) and that her family had to lie and say they were "white" when asked about her families race.

    I have a lot of documentation on Nathan, thanks to his pension files. But I do not have anything on his parents except for the names listed on his death certificate. Last month my husband & I went on vacation/anniversary/genealogical searches where I met a few distant cousins, family historians & genealogists. First at the East Tennessee Historical Society in Knoxville, both the librarian & family historian who overheard my conversation (& who happened to be a Collins) suggested I check into the Melungeons of Hancock County, TN. At the time I did not know what a "Melungeon" was. I had never heard that word before. So, after a few more conversations with a few more folks plus the Internet, I learned a lot more on this group of folks, who may very well be related to me. According to his pension files, Nathan was 6'1" with Black hair, Black eyes & Dark complexion.

    Nathan Collins was born 19 April 1815 in Claiborne County, TN. He married on 7 March 1843 in Claiborne County, TN to Jemima "Mima" Mayes/Mays who was also born abt. 1825 in Claiborne County, TN. They are listed in the 1850 Claiborne County, TN census.

    The 1860 Union County, TN, District 10 (Loss Creek) lists Nathan Collins, age 43, m Day Laborer, b. TN *Note: Nathan had been marked "M"-mulatto, but it was scratched out. However all 6 of their children plus a Cassa Collins, were "mulatto".

    The family moved to Kentucky during the war which left Nathan sick with disease. I'm guessing the Madison County area because that is where my 2nd great- grandmother, Mary Collins married William H. White. They migrated to Lawrence County, Indiana where they are found in the 1870 & 1880 census records. From Lawrence County, IN, Nathan, Jemima & some of their children moved to Crawford & Phelps counties, Missouri. According to Nathan's obituary, sons Issace Newton, John & Scott Collins remained in Indiana. Jasper remained in Roane County, TN.

    Jemima passed away 02 November 1897, Nathan on 29 January 1912. Both passed away in Crawford County, MO & are buried in a small family plot on the private farm of Joseph Carter Hawkins (b. Greenville, SC in 1797-1860), Phelps County, MO. It is unclear to both researchers of JC Hawkins & myself why Nathan & Jemima are buried here. According to the information provided by my 2nd great-grandfather, William H. White on his death certificate, Nathan's parents were Amos Collins & Allice Mosier, both born in Union County, Tennessee. However, estimating the time of Amos & Allice's birth, between 1780-1795, I believe Union County, Tennessee would have been part of North Carolina or the State of Jefferson.

    So far my research has yielded nothing for an Amos Collins & Allice Mosier. I am stuck and need help! I have thought of participating in the Melungeon DNA project in hopes of linking up with distant cousins. But I'm unsure what that will tell me about Amos & Allice. Ugh! If you can point me in any direction, well, that would be most appreciated.

    Have a wonderful day!


    1. I know this is way late...but I am curious if you found anything else out? My grand mother was born around 1912 or so and was a Collins(paternal) and a Bunch(maternal). She is from Union county (Luttrell to be specific) and we have always been rumored to be melungeon. We have the typical hair, dark skin, light eyes...etc.

    2. Nathan Collins is a son of David Collins and Phoebe of Claiborne County Tn. I have never heard of Amos and Alice.

    3. Dear Anonymous,

      As it so happens that since my comment to Joanne's blog, dated 10 Nov 2012 new contacts were made and leads followed, yes indeed, it is believed that David (son of Moses "Moze" and Anna (Botts) Collins) and Phebe (lnu) Collins were in fact parents of Nathan Collins (1815-1912). DNA seems to be confirming this belief.

      I have been searching for Rosetta's aka Rosa White's ancestors for going on three decades now. She has always been my main inspiration for research. I have studied every document I could obtain for decades and had been at a stand still on her lines, so it's certainly exciting for new information to begin flowing in.

      But I don't understand how you could never have heard of Amos and Allice. Nathan Collins' (1815-1912) death certificate clearly states that Amos Collins and Allice Mosier of Union County, East Tennessee.

      The person who provided such information was in fact William H. White, Nathan's only son-in-law of 47 years, so I assumed that information would be accurate. After all, Nathan's ACW Pension files information were spot on.

      Thanks to Joanne, Kathy J., David C., Dwight C., Sean W. and so many others to the dedication to the research of our Collins ancestors.

      MJ Joye

  2. Hi, I had my DNA done with 23andme and I show no native american DNA. However I show 1.3% Sub-Saharan African. My great grandmother was also Rosa Pitts who claimed cherokee ancestry. I have 0.0% Native American DNA. Needless to say I was a little shocked. I believe that our Collins ancestors were Melungeon and we are not Native American but a mixture of black and European as the studies suggest. DNA doesn't lie.

  3. Dear Anonymous - You need to read up on DNA abd ethnicity results etc. I tested my brother, my sister and myself. I have almost 2% - my brother has 3.5% and my sister has NONE ..that was with 23 & me - according to and FTdna I have no Native American but I have a much higher percentage of NA when uplaoded to gedmatch. You do not carry the DNA of every single ancestor. Just going back 10 generations, which is just 1763, you have 1024 ancestors, You will get some DNA from some of them, your siblings others. 1.3% Sub Saharan -- that is probably one African ancestor 500 years ago, I don't see that amounting to a hill of beans in the grand scheme of things. If your 1.3 makes the Collins African then my measley 2% means my Gibsons are Indian. Both statements are ridiculous. This might explain your dna a little better

  4. Dear Joanne, I. Will forgive you your rudeness in reply to my post. I didn't say that my Collins ancestors were all black, but they had some in them. If not why all the false stories in my family!? Don't bother to reply, you would surely offend me again anyway.

  5. Dear Anonymous, I did not feel I was being rude so I will not apologize for what you *feel* was rudeness... I will apologize in advance for being rude now. I did NOT say you said your Collins were ALL black nor did I convey that. You said they you believed your Collins ancestors were Melungeons and NOT Native American -- and you concluded this from a Family Finder test that showed you have NO Native American DNA. I said that was a ridiculous statement and I stand by it. There is no way you can possibly know where 1.3% of Sub Saharan DNA entered your body by an autosomal test. Period. For instance Jack Goins who runs the Melungeon Project has announced that although both his Goins and Minor family have Sub Saharan DNA Family Finder results says he has ***0%***** African ancestry. DNA does not lie but it does not tell the entire story. Why do you suppose because Rosa Pitts 'might have been African' that she couldn't have been Cherokee? Do you think the Cherokee never mixed with Africans or do you believe if Cherokees had 'one drop' they were no longer Cherokee but Africans???? You get only 1/2 of you father's DNA and only 1/2 of your mother's DNA -- that means there is 1/2 of your father's you DID NOT get [like NA] or 1/2 of your mother's you DID NOT get [like NA] -- which means you could have a much higher percentage of African DNA as well. You may find this rude and offensive but these are the facts and facts don't lie.

  6. If you are on facebook and would like to join our Melungeon Research Page just click JOIN THIS GROUP here

  7. I've never had an official DNA test but I do know that I have documents and American Indian ancestry I'm not I'm a melungeon but I do have white black and American Indian ancestry I don't understand why so many people are under the impression that having black ancestry automatically makes you non Indian. As for the percentages DNA tests can't do - 100% accuracy. There are many variables for instance the most common haplogroup for y-dna and Cherokee Indians is haplogroup Q which originates in Europe even among so called for what did Indians we can't act like Europeans came to the Americas and gave people certificate degree of Indian blood. I am what is called a class four descendant I don't see how I am any less Indian than someone in Oklahoma that is enrolled in a federally recognized tribes that might have way less Indian blood than me. My honest opinion is that some of this group probably has Indian blood some of it probably doesn't some of it probably has more than other groups to me I think that question is irrelevant it is still an interesting piece of history and if you are part of that group I think you should have a humble sense of pride in it


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