The Melungeons blog

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Brent Kennedy Not a Melungeon ?

Don Collins, a possible Melungeon desendant, said that Brent Kennedy is NOT a Melungeon, according to his post on the Melungeon List. Collins made this statement shortly after a post regarding Time Magazine article, Can DNA Reveal Your Roots? by Anita Hamilton.

Brent Kennedy told the Time Magazine reporter that he became so interested in his heritage that he wrote a 1994 book called The Melungeons. But it wasn't until he took the DNA test, Kennedy said, that he felt he had unlocked the mystery of his ancestry."

On the Melungeon List, hosted by, Mr. Collins indicated that there is a big difference between his ancestry (Brent Kennedy's) and Melungeon ancestry.

In the past week Brent Kennedy has been verbally attacked after his appearance on June 2, 2007, in New York to attend the University of Istanbul Alumni Association-USA. The theme was “The Place and Importance of Melungeons for Turk-American Relations."

Most of those who make are against Kennedy's ancestry are people who separate themselves from others. They want to be recognized as Historic Melungeons. This group theorizes that the only people who are-were Melungeons are those who lived on Newmans Ridge, Tennessee. The group isn't many in their number.

Among this offshoot Melungeon group are well respected serious Melungeon researchers, Jack Goins, Penny Ferguson and Joanne Pezzello. These three have brought forth many documents from the old crumbling records of Hawkins, Tennessee. They recieved a grant from the governament to aid in preserving and housing the Hawkins County, TN vital records.

Getting back to New York, The Melungeon Panel featured talks by several well-known guests, including Former Consul General in Istanbul H. E. David L. Arnett, The Melungeon Heritage Asscoiation President S. J. Arthur, researcher Richard Kennedy, Turker Ozdogan PhD, producer Julie Dixon. The evening concluded with Melungeons ethnic musical concert by the Kennedy Brothers Emsemble and a short screening of a documentary "The Melungeons."

Can DNA Reveal Your Roots? Tuesday, Jul. 05, 2005 By ANITA HAMILTON,9171,1079508-1,00.html


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