DNA proves author Alex Haley had Scottish roots





DNA tests have proved that Alex Haley – the black American author whose book Roots traced his family origins from the slave plantations of the US back to Africa – was of Scottish ancestry.

The tests have established that Haley – whose work is credited with helping transform the self-image of millions of black Americans – is directly descended from a Scottish paternal bloodline.

The findings came after a sample of DNA from Haley's nephew Chris Haley matched that of his distant cousin June Baff-Black, who lives in Wales and whose shared lineage starts in 17th century Scotland.

Until recently, Chris Haley had only word of mouth family history to show that his great, great-grandfather had been born of an African slave mother and white Scottish father, both of whom lived and worked on a slave plantation in the US.

The findings, by the website Ancestry.co.uk, are the first scientific confirmation of Alex Haley's own research in which he traced his ancestry back to William Baugh (a variation of Baff) – an overseer of an Alabama slave plantation – who was thought to have fathered a child with a female slave, called Sabrina, or "Viney".



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