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More Maps of the American Nations
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  1. Jay, in your (fabulous) analyses of the “American Nations” you overlook an interesting dimension of US history and genome: the Forest Finns of the 17th century in the mid-Atlantic. They came to be known as the Delaware Finns, and one reason you probably haven’t heard of them is that they were lumped in with their imperial absorbers in Sweden and recorded as Swedes, not Finns, in colonial records in New Sweden and later under Dutch and English rule.

    But in local records of the time, they were very much recognized as Finns, and as extremely different from the more agricultural/urbanized Swedes in New Sweden, and later Dutch and English. They manifested the close-in breeding of pre-postmodern Finns, and were recorded by the Dutch, British, French, and others as incredibly robust, fecund, self-sufficient, feisty, wicked smart, slightly spooky/dangerous, outstanding toolmakers, and in cahoots with the Lenni Lenape (local “Indians”).

    It was on this pre-existing loom that the English wove their colonial presence.

    Their (our) origins: between 1638 and 1656 a small but coherent and ultimately impactful migration of metsasuomalaiset proceeded from upper middle Sweden (mostly Varmland and Dalarna counties), of these indigenous Finno-Ugric people from today’s Eastern Finland (Savo and Karjala provinces) who had previously been removed from their forestlands where they practiced huuhta (swidden) agriculture. Those lands were wanted by Swedish royalty for manufacture of charcoal for use by the burgeoning steel and arms industries. Also around that time, Finns were fighting as mercenary cavalrymen in the Thirty Years’ War, and Sweden was beginning to persecute and outlaw as witches menfolk who practiced the older animist/pagan/song-and-drumming-based religion.

    These several hundreds of metsas located to the Delaware Valley, became extremely successful farmers and pioneers, some intermarried with Swedes and a few Dutch and English (and others), and many radiated out from there, particularly after “The Quaker Invasion” of the 1680s. Most of them stayed close in in Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey, and Maryland, and “close in” is relative given that these Finns engaged in the “long hunt” tradition that could take them far away on boat-and-portage hunting, trapping, fishing, and gathering expeditions.

    A significant movement of them proceeded into the Appalachians and then farther west still. In PA/NJ they were among the American Revolutionaries (including ancestors of mine), and in fact Finns had been agitating for the colonies’ independence from Europe back into the 1600s.

    You might enjoy the late Terry Jordan’s and Matti Kaups’s book on the topic, The American Backwoods Frontier. Jordan (a geographer at UT-Austin) long argued that there is a coherent, westward flowing complex of material culture evidence for Forest Finns being the only eastern seaboard colonial people from the Old World who were genetically and culturally pre-adapted to enter and open a largely forested new continent.

    If you drop me a line, I can share more and connect you with fairly extensive resources. It might be an interesting line of inquiry for you. It’s not certain how many Americans can trace ancestry to these people, but it’s surely in the millions…and those of us who were still in the valley in the 1980s had quite coherent lineages. I come from an unbroken paternal line going back ten generations, so I also inherited a bunch of stories that didn’t make much sense till I learned in the past decade just how coherent this migration and its people were. Thank you for taking the time to read this.


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  2. The North Korea regime collapses tomorrow and there’s miraculously no civil war or humanitarian crisis. The two countries begin a long and painful process of reunification, like East/West Germany on crack. ~70 years of despotic Communism and famine have left their mark on North Korean culture and even their bodies (Norkies are several inches shorter than their Southern cousins), but what about genes? Are 3-4 generations of zero introgression and (possibly) insane selection pressures on conformity enough to make Northerners notably genetically distinct from Southerners? How might this impact re-integration?

  3. “Today these Finnish-Americans appear to be generally more Left-leaning, much like their cousins across the Atlantic.”

    Actually, much of the Finnish-American population descends from leftists who left Finland because of anti-left persecution. Tons of socialists moved to the United States (and other countries of the Americas) because they allowed greater freedom for socialist movements than either the Tsarist empire or newly independent Finland which up to the 1930s was extremely hostile to anything even remotely left-wing. (Long story short, independence was followed by a left-wing coup, a Civil War which the left lost and tens of thousands of Reds died in the White revenge terror. After the Civil War the victors were extremely hostile to the left and large numbers of Red Finns moved to the US to “build socialism” there when even mentioning socialism in Finland could get you beaten up.)

    There was also mass migration of Finns from the US to the Soviet Union between the world wars:

    It ended badly and that also ended much of the right/left hostility in Finland, the left stopped being pro-Soviet after all those massacres right over the border. Finland has a really bizarre history after WWII which has left us with a really unusual society where we’re much more right-wing than, say, Swedes but we’ve gone even further with the Swedish social democratic model because of Soviet pressures. It’s unraveling now and the left has been slowly collapsing since the USSR fell.

  4. Wow, one of the longest Jayman’s posts since ages. Very interesting read, in addition.

  5. My apologies for being off topic, but I found a document online that may interest you. I came across it while searching for “behavioral genetics phrenology,” because after first coming across (a couple of months ago) b.g. being called phrenology I have seen it several more times. So, here is the RationalWiki (as in, I suppose, anyone who does not agree is irrational) entry on Biological Determinism. It is a sort of compendium of the sorts of things that your and related blogs seem to be struggling against. It may be useful as specimen collection, or just entertaining. In the past I have considered writing a parody document along this line, but I have been summarily preempted. I am sending a similar/identical comment to several other blogs, this is too good not to share.

  6. Anonymous says:     Show CommentNext New Comment

    Jayman, on the map of counties where Obama got less than 20% of the white vote, four of the five Illinois counties are counties with large state prisons. I wonder if Edison Research got confused when looking at the counties demographics. For example, Logan County gave 33% of its vote to Obama. Its largest city is 93% non-Hispanic white & other than the state prisons, the remainder of the county is surely far whiter than the 93% non-Hispanic white county seat. Yet because of the two state prisons, the Census Bureau lists Logan County as 87.7% non-Hispanic white & 11.4% institutionalized.

  7. […] More Maps of the American Nations – from jayman. […]

  8. Woodard tried to say recently that the Democratic trend in tidewater Virginia was due to the “noblesse oblige” of the Virginia Cavaliers. Incredible. I wonder how many more facts he has stretched to accommodate his bullshitted theory.

  9. I was just looking inside Putnam’s book at Amazon. Was struck by how he quickly moves from brief description of old urban centers made up mostly of white ethnic (Irish, Ukrainians, Jews,etc.) neighborhoods to the the displacement of those same ethnic groups to “homogeneous” white suburbs. Funny how you can lose your ethnicity by moving a few miles. Putnam may be a sub rosa white nationalist.

  10. […] I have recently updated two key posts, my post More Behavioral Genetic Facts and More Maps of the American Nations. […]

  11. […] my series on the American nations, particularly my earlier post, More Maps of the American Nations, I noted the great regional variation in guns and crime. Let us look at some of these again, […]

  12. Reblogged this on bbbatez and commented:
    Maps of American nations. Well done and very interesting look at the political and cultural differences geographically.

  13. @bbbatez
    Reblogged this on bbbatez and commented:
    Maps of American nations. Well done and very interesting look at the political and cultural differences geographically.

    Thank you!

  14. Outstanding. Another post to bookmark for sure, what a rich collection of maps you’ve put together here. I cannot imagine the time this must have taken. This is critical data that is missing from almost all analysis on ‘American’ cultural questions. I have to say that reading ‘Albion’s Seed’ this winter really opened my eyes to so many things. Your series on the American nations is, as far as I can tell, unique in the blogosphere. Chapeau bas, I look forward to reading more.

  15. […] More Maps of the American Nations – Bigger and badder than the original, with more maps solidifying the distinction between the different American nations, with genetic evidence of these differences to boot. Also some discussion of the history of each, and the founding of certain areas. I also include personality data showing that the American nations don’t just exist on paper or in the voting booth. I use these to talk about the importance of self-sorting, founder effects, and Cochran’s & Harpending’s “boiling off” model to explain some of the differences we see. I also touch on immigration and the canard that immigrants “assimilate,” showing that that is pretty much a myth. A must see if you have not. […]

  16. […] you should definitely check out! i don’t even know where they all are, but you can start with one of the most recent ones, if you haven’t seen it already. […]

  17. […] of illustrating this theory is by using maps of ethnic correlates, maps I’ve come to think of as JayMaps, for obvious reasons. In this case I looked at vegetarianism and English ancestry in America. For […]

  18. Good map which shows NE movement across North America.

    • Replies: @JayMan

    Good find, but those were featured in the antecedent post to this one, Maps of the American Nations.

  19. @Patrick C. Wentz
    Good map which shows NE movement across North America.


    Good find, but those were featured in the antecedent post to this one, Maps of the American Nations.

  20. And yet another great climate zone map which you can clearly see most of the American Nations! Not sure why I am so fascinated about this but I am!

  21. […] Civil War New England, no. But assortative migration has been powerful (see previous link) and continues on to this […]

  22. […] differently on various social indicators. A great many of these indicators were featured in my post More Maps of the American Nations (as well as in the earlier post Maps of the American Nations). The pattern we see above (and many […]

  23. […] and, of course, jayman has been all over american nations issues for the past couple of years (see here and here, for […]

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