Have you ever wondered where you come from?  I'm not talking about the meaning of life or anything spiritual, I'm talking about where you actually come from. Like, where did your ancestors leave from to come to the United States?

I received one of those DNA tests a few years back for Christmas and waited for weeks in anticipation of my results.

My dad's side of the family is very German. In fact, both of my paternal grandparents could trace their roots back to Germany, which is why my wife and I visited Germany a few years back. I had a desire to see where my people came from and to learn a little bit about them.

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So you can imagine my surprise when the results showed that I was only 17 percent German.

Photo by Rachel Davis on Unsplash
Photo by Rachel Davis on Unsplash

So where do Montanans come from? What is our heritage? What makes us who we are? Let's take a look, shall we?  Here are the percentages of the ethnic heritage of Montanans, according to Statistical Atlas:

  • German—27 percent
  • Irish—14 percent
  • English—11 percent
  • Norwegian—9.3 percent
  • Italian—3.4 percent
  • French—3.4 percent
  • Scottish—3.1 percent
  • Swedish—2.9 percent
  • Dutch—2.3 percent
  • European—2.1 percent
  • Polish—1.9 percent
  • Danish—1.3 percent
  • Welsh—1 percent
  • Russian—1 percent

Montana is quite the melting pot, huh? However, as you can see, the top 3 are Germany, Ireland, and England. I was a little surprised to find that Montana had such a high percentage of folks with German heritage, especially when you consider that Butte is the second most Irish city in the U.S.

Photo by Mark de Jong on Unsplash
Photo by Mark de Jong on Unsplash

Wherever you come from, it's always fun to learn about the history of our families and get a sense of who we are and what makes us, well...us. Do you know your heritage?  Do you have any interesting stories about your family?


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