Friday, February 5, 2016

Are Whipples Descendants of Scandinavians and Normans?

On the Whipple Website Facebook group this morning, a Whipple posted the following:
After watching the series “History of Britain,” it seems to me that Whipple’s may either originally be from the Scandinavian countries (viking hordes) or from Normandy in northern France, who were also from Scandinavia originally …..anyone who’s a direct line descendant, who’s had a DNA profile, did it show either of those ethnic origins, along with Britain?

I was about to post a long reply to the Facebook group, but decided it might be better to post it here (and refer the Facebook group to this post). … So here goes:

Sometime during the past 10 years (or so) I owned (and read cover-to-cover) a book entitled Bloody Foreigners: The Story of Immigration to Britain by Robert Winder. From what I recall, it basically concludes that everyone in modern-day Great Britian is a “foreigner.”

Captain John Whipple ( is my 8th great grandfather. He is one of my (mathematically speaking) 1024 different 8th great grandparents. (If none of them were duplicates because of cousins marrying cousins, that would mean that I have 512 8th great grandmothers and 512 8th great grandfathers.)

Captain John Whipple immigrated to New England from England aboard the Lyon in 1632.

Thomas Whipple ( is the 12th great grandfather if my wife. He is one of her (mathematically speaking) 16,384 different 12th great grandparents. (If none of them are duplicates because of cousins marrying cousins, that could mean that she has 8192 12th great grandmothers and 8192 12th great grandfathers.)

I haven’t yet spent money on Ancestry’s DNA tests, which could potentially find information from the origins of all 1024 of my 8th great grandparents. See my earlier post about their tests being an "autosomal" DNA test. Although it doesn't test the Y chromosome, but can tell you loads of information about your relatives.)

I HAVE spent money on the Y chromosome DNA tests from Family Tree DNA in Houston, which showed my patrilineal YDNA haplogroup as being R1b1b2. Many other male patrilineal descendants of Captain John of Rhode Island have “similar” YDNA haplogroups (R1b…)

Purportedly patrilineal descendants of my wife’s 12th great grandfather have reported being from YDNA haplogroups T, T1, and I2b1. The “T…” haplogroups have been reported to me more frequently than the “I…” haplogroup. (Since my wife is female, she has no Y chromosome, so the YDNA test doesn’t work for her …)

After reading Bloody Foreigners: The Story of Immigration to Britain, I’m 99% certain that “most” Brits of the 15th through 17th centuries likely had ancestors from both Scandinavia and Normandy—and many other places.

Page 83 of the book Trace Your Roots with DNA (ISBN 1-59486-006-8) summarizes the origins of some YDNA haplogroups:

The I, I1, and I1a lineages are nearly completely restricted to northwestern Europe. These would most likely have been common within Viking populations. One lineage of this group extends down into central Europe.
Haplogroup R1b is the most common haplogroup in European populations. It is believed to have expanded throughout Europe as humans recolonized after the last glacial maximum 10 thousand to 12 thousand years ago. This lineage is also the haplogroup containing the Atlantic modal haplotype.

Just this past week I have been receiving emails from a patrilineal male Whipple who is a descendant of Henry Whipple ( His YDNA haplogroup is R1b, yet the Whipple Genweb shows him as a descendant of Thomas Whipple (my wife’s ancestor). Based on Henry’s descendant’s YDNA haplogroup of R1b, I’m guessing that the Whipple Genweb has misidentified Henry’s father. (Another task to add to my “to do” list …)

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