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Old 01-02-2015, 10:17 AM
 
Location: Milwaukee
3,451 posts, read 3,398,911 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hobbesdj View Post
You would have to prove that a majority of the 100 direct ancestors you have since 1870 are German; few people can do this. So when you go to England or Scotland it is no coincidence that people's faces look like Americans. Go to Germany or France and people look much more different.
Can do, not true for the area I grew up in. Heavily German and Polish (with Belgians mixed in).
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Old 01-03-2015, 04:28 PM
 
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I know Happy Days was in Milwaukee
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Old 01-03-2015, 05:36 PM
 
Location: Minneapolis (St. Louis Park)
5,991 posts, read 8,318,361 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hobbesdj View Post
The British, and predominantly the English, are the dominant group in the US. Don't take the census seriously. A guy with one German grandparent identifies as a "German-American". Or someone who discovers that their ancestors came from Amsterdam in 1815 claim to be "Dutch". If you have an ancestor who came around 1800, you stastically have anywhere between 64-256 other ancestors to account for. Can we really say that German is the largest ancestry when they immigrated into a largely British country? Of course not, if America was that German we would have a heavy influence from the German language or our culture. Instead we are very close to the British and Australians in culture, and almost the same compared to English Canada (which remained part of the British Empire). For example, the average family tree of someone claiming to be "Dutch" for example tends to look something like this:



Simply put, the English came to America early on and multiplied like rabbits. That one German ancestor you claim descent from probably married a mostly English-American, and their offspring probably married a mostly English American. The only way Germans could be such a large population is if all of your ancestors since 1870 (or whatever date) married only other German immigrants. You would have to prove that a majority of the 100 direct ancestors you have since 1870 are German; few people can do this. So when you go to England or Scotland it is no coincidence that people's faces look like Americans. Go to Germany or France and people look much more different.
It totally depends on what generation you are. If you're 2nd or 3rd, then you can pretty easily and reliably link your grandparent's heritage to your own. If you're 8th or 10th, then your point makes more sense. Italians and Poles, for instance, are two of the more recent groups to immigrate to America, and many of the heirs of the original immigrants still speak part or all of the language, and partake in part or all of the cultural traditions.
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Old 01-03-2015, 08:45 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh, PA (Morningside)
12,427 posts, read 11,929,235 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hobbesdj View Post
So when you go to England or Scotland it is no coincidence that people's faces look like Americans. Go to Germany or France and people look much more different.
This might just come down to where you have lived in the U.S. versus me, but this rings as a very false statement to me. I lived in England for a year, and English people have a very distinctive (and sadly often homely) look to them. Lots of long faces, jutting chins, noses and cheekbones, and buck teeth. Nearly everyone I saw who "looked American" ended up being half something else (Dutch, Italian, Greek, etc). Further, outside of southerners I haven't seen too many Americans who would "pass" as Englishmen. Not that German-looking faces are very common either - Germans tend to have robust, heavy features and wide faces which aren't super common either. But overall Americans seem rather soft featured - which perhaps isn't surprising given most White Americans are a mixture of several ethnicities, which would tend to smooth out the extremes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
Except most Germans immigrated later than that, from the mid 19th to early 20th century. It's not hard to go back that far in family history. For example on my mom's side, I can rather confidently say she's three-quarters German going by her grandparents. The other quarter with no immigrant background was probably all or mostly English. I'd guess a large portion of the German population could do similar.
Indeed. I'm half German. One quarter of this comes from my maternal grandmother, who had both of her parents immigrate from the same small (then) ethnic German village in Transylvania in the early 20th century. Both of my paternal grandparents were half German, with all of their German ancestors migrating to the U.S. from Germany in the 1850s to 1860s. Their German heritage was still strong enough that my grandmother used to force my father (much to his chagrin) to wear lederhosen to school as a child in the 1950s.

In contrast, I'm an eighth English - I think. One of my English ancestors immigrated to the U.S. from England rather late (in 1861 or 1862). The other one (a great-great grandmother) died young, with her husband (a Sephardic Jew on the down low, it turns out) remarrying, so we know next to nothing about her. I don't even know her surname. Given she lived in New York around 1905, I think it's unlikely she was entirely colonial stock however.
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Old 01-04-2015, 10:12 AM
 
Location: West Coast
9 posts, read 5,864 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
I lived in England for a year, and English people have a very distinctive (and sadly often homely) look to them. Lots of long faces, jutting chins, noses and cheekbones, and buck teeth.
I've spent long periods of time in England, and came across lots of English people that didn't fit that description. Yes, there are people that do -- but it's unfair to suggest that the majority of the county look like, Mr Punch.

Punch and Judy - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Anyway, I think we are more English than German. Not surprised to see most people that argue this are from the Midwest. Yes, it's the single greatest German/Scandinavian part of our country, but I think people underestimate the amount of British blood in that region.
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Old 01-07-2015, 02:48 PM
 
1,068 posts, read 736,696 times
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I think Eschaton ( sounds German) is being rude and over generalising.
Britain now is not the Britain of Sherlock Holmes! After years of class warfare and easy stereotypes Britain is a confident countr,y ( though are 3x countries do have a lot of banter). I would say we are very good looking country ( well I am):but he has a small point. We are a nation of dark/brown hair, blue, green eyes and either round faces, or angular ( I think that's what he meant). He is still watching too many Sherlock Holmes movies. We are not your typical blonde haired American WASP types you think we are. Our DNA matches Ireland more than any other country, as does our love of humour, self appreciation, sometimes boastful, and a love of horse racing! Come to visit and you will see our teeth are as good, if better than yours! cheeky sod
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Old 01-30-2015, 09:48 AM
 
Location: Curitiba
217 posts, read 234,038 times
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Much more english no?
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Old 01-30-2015, 10:29 AM
 
1,689 posts, read 2,225,423 times
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German
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Old 01-30-2015, 11:02 AM
 
Location: Curitiba
217 posts, read 234,038 times
Reputation: 49
English numbers could be very underrated or no? 55 millions of pure german descendant?
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Old 01-30-2015, 03:08 PM
 
350 posts, read 608,012 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hobbesdj View Post
The British, and predominantly the English, are the dominant group in the US. Don't take the census seriously. A guy with one German grandparent identifies as a "German-American". Or someone who discovers that their ancestors came from Amsterdam in 1815 claim to be "Dutch". If you have an ancestor who came around 1800, you stastically have anywhere between 64-256 other ancestors to account for. Can we really say that German is the largest ancestry when they immigrated into a largely British country? Of course not, if America was that German we would have a heavy influence from the German language or our culture. Instead we are very close to the British and Australians in culture, and almost the same compared to English Canada (which remained part of the British Empire). For example, the average family tree of someone claiming to be "Dutch" for example tends to look something like this:



Simply put, the English came to America early on and multiplied like rabbits. That one German ancestor you claim descent from probably married a mostly English-American, and their offspring probably married a mostly English American. The only way Germans could be such a large population is if all of your ancestors since 1870 (or whatever date) married only other German immigrants. You would have to prove that a majority of the 100 direct ancestors you have since 1870 are German; few people can do this. So when you go to England or Scotland it is no coincidence that people's faces look like Americans. Go to Germany or France and people look much more different.
I agree with the mutiplication theory. I would say it also applies for Scotch-Irish because I don't believe there are just 5 million in America. Colonial ancestry is very underestimate
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