The White Pine Association will be offering Free DNA testing on March 20 and 21, 2009 at the gym in Haverhill Town Office Building on Main Street, North Haverhill, NH. Hours for testing will be Friday March 20st  11 am to 7 PM.  Saturday March 21st from 10 Am to 5 PM. Requirements to take part in this program will include that your family has lived within 25 miles of the historic areas known as the Koas or Oxbow  in the Haverhill NH, Newbury Vermont areas since the 1800’s. If you no longer live in the area but have direct genealogical ties to that area you are also welcome to take part in this program.

 Some ways to show proof of historic family ties can be used from the following list:  birth certificates, US census, death certificates, marriage certificates, family bibles, pages from history of community which identifies your family as being in one of the communities and/or written out oral family history. Copies of proof of long term family residency in the area will be required to take part in this program. Your historic residency to the area documentation can be sent to the White Pine Association (WPA), PO Box 42, Newbury Vt 05051 in advance or you are welcome to bring it with you at the time of the testing.  For people who would like to take part in this program that have historic ties but live out of the area now can still take part in the program via mail.  Just send above documentation into the WPA that shows your family has had early residency in the area and your name and address will be given to the lab to mail your DNA kit to your home.

Testing results will be confidential between the participants and the lab. The laboratory will give your DNA tests a number and your name will not be used for any other purpose except to have so your confidential test results can be returned to you.  The White Pine Association will not be given the result. “We are  only offering and coordinating this free of charge program to the general public rooted within the historic area because so many people have reported they have unsuccessfully tried to find documentation and proof of the Indian heritage in their families, “ states the board of trustees. “ Many had exclaimed they wish they could take a DNA test to help with their pursuit.  There is also a very strong background of many cultures in the area. The WPA is dedicated to celebrating and preserving the rich historic and cultural make up of our homeland for the future generations and helping our communities today with preservation, educational programs, health and human services and more.”

DNA testing does have some draw backs.  Indian heritage for enrollment into a tribe is not determined by DNA markers only.   DNA tests are not complete if the gene crosses from male to female. For instance the test may be negative if the Indian heritage goes from mother to son or father to daughter with the mtDNA and Y-chromosome testing WPA will offer. There is another DNA test that would show this cross over if an individual would like to choose to have it at their own expense.  The genetic make- up needs to follow male to male and female to female in the family line. Also, Indian heritage may not say the exactly tribe a person’s markers come from.  Although DNA testing alone cannot be used to gain enrollment into a tribe it can be a useful tool.  DNA will show markers of heritage whether it is Irish, Scottish, Indian, Italian etc etc. We all have mixed heritage and this gives the people of the Newbury Vermont and Haverhill NH area an opportunity to embrace the colorful past of who they are!

An example of enrollment into the Koasek Traditional Band of the Koas ( Newbury, Vermont and Haverhill, NH ) for example  would include even with DNA positive results; birth, death,  marriage certificates,  US census that identify a Native American / Indian of that region and you can trace your heritage directly to that person; a family tree with supporting documentation; Persons who demonstrates tribal community involvement  historically and consistently to recent times; family surnames that  are already known to tribal communities and you can trace your linage to that family; person already proven Native American who have lived for generations in or near Newbury, Vermont and Haverhill, NH or have had family members show residency there in historic times which you can show clear relationship to. Family members mean someone sharing a relationship by blood. Near means within 30 miles of North Haverhill or Newbury and finally the person must not already be enrolled in another tribe.

The White Pine Association is very pleased to have this opportunity in bringing this program to North Haverhill, NH to help people find another piece of their genetic puzzle. The scientists and associates will be on location to answer your questions in person on March 20 and 21, 2009.  The same DNA testing has been successfully utilized for the past thirteen years and has characterized mtDNA and Y-Chromosome variation in the East Asian, Siberian and some Native American populations. Other current projects are studies of genetic diversity in modern Aleuts, Indigenous Siberian Peoples, and Neolithic populations from Lake Baikal region by this same team of scientists.

The White Pine Association is a not of profit organization who’s board of trustees are Native and Non Native residents of Haverhill NH and Newbury VT who are dedicated to helping their community with education, preservation and celebrating the uniqueness of our home.

For more information call 802-392-8006 or visit website www.koasekabenaki.org