I’ve always been drawn to the Native American culture, my best friend being half Lakota Sioux, we went to a local pow-wow years ago.
I loved the sound of the drum beat, the chanting and songs, along with the many dances, clothing, the four colors of yellow, white, black and red, each with a meaning. I felt a real pull on my soul, wanting to enter the circle of dance but I couldn’t as a white person, enter that sacred circle. Why was I feeling this pull??
This past year I decided that I wanted a DNA test to take me past my 35+ years of genealogy research, hoping to break a brick wall. As far as I knew, I was half German, and the other half was a Scotch-Irish mix. When my test results came back, I was shocked to find out that my maternal side was barely German! I am 100% Northern European, mostly British Isles, Scandinavian, German and a few other nonspecific.
My halogroup is V a pretty small group. I am part Sammi or Sámi, an indigenous people’s who lived in the Northern areas of Sweden, Finland, Norway and Russia during the last Ice Age. They were and still are reindeer herders. They beat drums and sing, chant and dance very much like Native Americans!
I still have a brick wall to knock through but now I know that my great-grandmothers through all of time were strong women. I know now why I still love the cold weather while living in the desert. I long for winter each year, wearing sleeveless clothing when everyone else wants a coat or long sleeves. My great-grandmothers ended up in Scotland and then Ireland before emigrating to the USA in the late 1800’s. They left the forest and the reindeer behind but I will never know why? Was it due to the hatred toward them from the people who took their land?
The Saami have lost their native lands just as the Native Americans have in the USA. At least the US Government gave the Native Americans some of it to do with it as they please, to govern as their own. The Saami people still are fighting for this right. Loggers are stripping the trees from their forest, leaving no trees or lichen for the reindeer to graze. The Saami are losing the way they have lived since the ice age due to greedy logging.
I’m proud to finally find out part of who I am, who made me what I am today. I hope that I get to meet others of Saami heritage in the future and share our stories.
Here is a wonderful Blog that has tons of WONDERFUL info about the Saami. http://saamiblog.blogspot.com/