I was born in New York City to Hermine Diaz and Jim Clark. I never met my father or his family and my parents were never married. As far as I knew, I was an only child. On 28 December 2016 I learned I have a sister, Mary Colleen Evans , who found me through WikiTree. Together we found our brother, John Fitzgerald Clark, on 30 Jan 2017. I was raised by my mother, her sister Rosemary Diaz and my maternal grandmother Virginia Rosario in New York City. I grew up in Washington Heights and now reside in the Upper West Side of Manhattan with my aunt. I've worked in political campaigns and received my BA in political science from Fordham College and my JD from Harvard Law School. I've never been married and have no children.
According to my Ancestry.com DNA tests and cousin matches, my ethnicity breaks down this way:
Origin: Las Piedras, Puerto Rico
Ethnicities: 16% Spanish (family legend is the Canaries); 14% Italian (probably Corsica given known migration); 14% African (Mali, North Africa, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Cameroon, Congo, Benin, Togo, Senegal, Bantu--usual Atlantic Slave trade origin countries); 4% Native American (Taino); < 1% Middle East
Ancestral Surnames: Diaz, Rosario, Medina, Lozada, Rodriguez, Lopez, Vazquez, Cruz, Agosto, Castro, Velez, Ayende
Notes: Puerto Rican Public Records only go back as far as 1885: I haven't found an ancestor on the maternal side not born in Las Piedras, Puerto Rico, going back to the early 1800s.
Ethnicities: 26% Great Britain; 10% Ireland; 5% Scandinavia; 4% Germany/France; 3% Finland/Russia; 2% Eastern European.
Origins: Baltimore, Maryland; York, Pennsylvania; Reading, Pennsylvania, Loudon County, Virginia; Duncannon, Pennsylvania; County Clare and County Cork, Ireland; Bavaria, Germany
Ancestral Surnames: Clark, Saylor, Tuttle, McSherry, Magaha, McCarthy, Shearer, Daily, Ross, Fesler, Heuisler.
Notes: I haven't found anyone originating in Scandinavia, Russia or Eastern Europe. Supposedly those of British and Irish heritage do have a good percentage of Scandinavian ancestry--we can blame the Vikings--so that might account for that. The Tuttles come from County Clare, Ireland and Ross from County Cork, so that accounts for the Irish. I have found much more German on my paternal side than the DNA test would predict, and given fluid borders perhaps they account for the Russian/Eastern European. John S. Shearer comes from Germany, Maximillian Heuisler from Bavaria, so that accounts for the German. There are ancestors on my father's side that fought in the American Civil War.
Trace Jewish can be from either my paternal or maternal side, but I haven't found evidence of it yet.
In the case of my maternal Puerto Rican side, the skeleton of my tree came from my taking down information from my maternal grandmother Virginia Rosario when I was 14 years old before she died. Her information, even about her husband's family, has proven accurate. I may have filled out cousins and in-laws, but the maternal ancestors on my tree thus far come entirely from her and confirmed by DNA matches and records on Ancestry.com and FamilySearch.Org.
My father's largely Anglo side is a different matter, and much of the headway I've made with it I owe to a professional genealogist who generously donated his time and expertise, Christopher T. Smithson of Maryland. My mother knew my father only 6 months, I never met him and had only a brief conversation with his mother when I was 14. The information given to me by my mother was almost entirely wrong--I didn't even have the right maiden name for my paternal grandmother or given name for my paternal grandfather. A friend on Ancestry suggested I send for my father's Social Security Application. However, the transcription from the application was inaccurate, giving his mother's maiden name as "Saxon" and records I found suggested it could be Sailor or Taylor. The DNA matches and a cousin Family Tree on Ancestry.com seemed to suggest Saylor. Misinterpreting the tree of another DNA match I also grafted someone who didn't belong on my tree causing a hopeless tangle. Smithson's researches cleared up Mary Clark's tree, as well as finding records establishing my Irish roots come from Agnes Tuttle, my father's grandmother who married Arthur Fenton Clark and an obituary for my maternal great-grandmother Mary Saylor established her maiden name as McSherry.
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