Blood Lines, Family Ties, and Blurred Tales
My wife became interested in researching my Gibson family line and connecting lines in about 2006. Since then I’ve been able to find my son. Not my biological son, but rather the young boy I raised until adulthood. He always only knew me to be his father. His mother and I divorced and I lost all contact with him and his sister who I raised as my daughter. Thanks to my wife’s searching she found them both on facebook by 2009.
PBS’ Frontline some years ago did a show about the Blurred family lines of the Gibson family. Since then with DNA testing we have found that not all the facts in this show are correct. It is the work of this Frontline show that has led to our continued work to correct the record regarding our family. What we’ve uncovered in the process is that we have to be open not just to racial lines being crossed, but the fact that some children were taken by relatives or neighbors after the death of their parents and given the surname of the new family. So we have to respect that some our history is not DNA based but rather the ties forged by those with whom we live our daily lives. So while DNA can give you a map to your blood lines, it is important to study the person to see what role their family connections played in shaping their future, and be alert to the fact that whether it’s a matter of race, social standing, or undisclosed purpose the roots of your past may be entangled with roots that will require an open mind.
DNA tests are showing that perhaps I descend from the Morrill family or Couch family, rather than the Gibson clan. Although I can document my Gibson line back to 1762, I cannot find my true connection beyond that. In the process however I’ve at least been able to learn about my family ties and discover that some of my grandparents also had different parents than we were told in our family history.
Your show is wonderful and gives us great ideas for new places to look and reasons to continue our search.
Woody Gibson aka
Langston E Gibson, III