Ancestry DNA: Part 3

Image source: Flickr user charamelody
Image source: Flickr user charamelody

In Part 1 and Part 2, I took you through the process and results of my own DNA test with – Now it’s Carlos’s turn!

Around this time last year I asked Carlos if I could order the DNA test for my birthday present. Ever since then Carlos has been wanting to do his own DNA test, but has always balked at spending the money on it. I decided that since my birthday is coming up again, this year my present will be Carlos’s test. You may wonder how something for Carlos is a birthday gift for me, but I’m just as curious about his results as he is, and I can think of few things I want that would be this much fun. So we ordered the test today. Below is my interview with Carlos to see how he’s feeling and his thoughts on the topic. Because I already covered the “how to” of the DNA test in Part 1 when I did mine, we’ll skip discussing the technical aspect of Carlos’s test. Part 4 will be posted when we receive his results!

Tracy: How are you feeling about the DNA test? Nervous? Anxious? Excited?

Carlos: I’m not really nervous, more curious than anything else.

Tracy: What do you think you’ll find out? Any predictions?

Carlos: No, I’m not sure. No idea. Maybe that I’m mostly indigenous?

Tracy: Why do you say that? Did anyone in your family speak an indigenous language or anything?

Carlos: I don’t know, because of my skin color, I guess. No one in my family spoke Náhuat that I know of, I don’t know if older generations spoke it.

Tracy: What do you already know, or think you know, about your roots? What family stories, recipes, or traditions did you have growing up that offer clues to your ancestry?

Carlos: I don’t have any clues. My family didn’t pass down traditions the way people do here [in the United States]… I mean, my family’s traditions were like everyone’s traditions – just Salvadoran traditions, Salvadoran culture.

Tracy: Were both sides of your family Catholic?

Carlos: Yes, as far as I know.

Tracy: Who are the oldest relatives you remember, and what do you remember about them?

Carlos: My mom says some of her father’s side of the family was light-skinned, but for my dad I don’t really know anything. My dad looked more Japanese than anything, and his mother looked Asian too.

Tracy: Your mother’s side of the family, as far back as you know, was from Chalatenango and your father’s side was from Ilobasco, right?

Carlos: Right, as far as I know. I don’t know any family history farther than that.

Tracy: Wait, you told me a story once about one of your family members in Europe, didn’t you? Who was that? Was she born in Europe?

Carlos: Oh, that was one of my [maternal] grandfather’s grandmother’s sisters…I think. She was born in El Salvador but she learned French and went to be a nanny in France. During World War II they had to flee and the family got separated. She took the child up to the mountains and kept him safe. When the family was reunited they were so thankful that they took care of her the rest of her life.

Tracy: She stayed in France and died there?

Carlos: No, she came back to El Salvador but they sent her money the rest of her life… Something like that. I’m never sure about these stories.

Tracy: Anyway, you said she was born in El Salvador, so that wouldn’t make you French.

Carlos: No.

Tracy: What if you get a really unexpected result? Do you think you’ll want to explore that culture and your roots a bit more?

Carlos: Yes, definitely.

Tracy: When I got my results I shared them with my sisters so they would know more about their heritage, but you don’t have any full-blooded brothers or sisters; all your siblings are half-siblings. Do you think you’ll share your results with any of them even though they won’t know what parts of your ancestry results are also theirs?

Carlos: No, it’s more for me to know, and for our boys to know the other half of their heritage.


  1. My husband and my sister and I just ordered these to do as well. I’d been wanting to since reading about yours and my sister said the prices were going up so we decided to all do it. My husband is also Salvadoran so it will be interesting to see how his results compare with your husband’s.

    • Yay! I’m so excited for you guys, Julie. Yes, it’ll be super interesting to see how your husband’s results compare to Carlos’s. Does he know anything at all about his ancestry or have any predictions?

  2. I look forward to hearing about his results. I’ve been exploring my family history and have been considering getting my DNA (or my parents’) tested. I might ask for it as a gift as well. :)

    • If you end up ordering it, or asking someone to gift it to you, the code FREESHIPDNA still works for free shipping, (at least it did today when I ordered Carlos’s test.) … I hope you get to do it soon!

  3. Can’t wait for those results
    I’m Salvadoran as well
    My grandmother is Dark skinny
    Indigenous and black features
    Both of my grandfathers were White
    So I believe European decency
    And my other grandmother looked mostly
    Indian. I do wonder hope I do the test one day

  4. My husband, also from El Salvador, did the DNA test last year and had the following results:
    51% Native American
    20% Iberian Peninsula
    10% Italy/Greece
    7% various African regions
    5% European Jewish
    2% Finland/NW Russia
    2% Europe West
    2% Middle East
    1% Pacific Islander

    • Thank you for sharing this, Angela! It’ll be interesting to see if Carlos’s is at all similar. Was your husband surprised by any of his results?

      • He really went into it with no expectations at all. The Native American and Iberian Peninsula were probably expected and I would say the 7% African was probably the biggest surprise. I’m anxious to see if Carlos’s is similar as well since both are from ES.

  5. Looking forward to learning about your husband’s results! In case you’re interested this page feautures the AncestryDNA results of several El Salvadoreans as well as Mexicans and other Latin Americans. The article is focused on their minor African part because this is usually least known and studied sofar. However if you scroll down you can also see the screenshots and most of their other regions.

      • Thank you and congratulations on receiving your husband’s results! Very fascinating, I hope you don’t mind i have posted a screenshot of his ethnicity estimates on my blogpage.

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