Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Our Swiss Anabaptist Roots by Bonnie Schrack (SAGA)

There has been a small number of people for years who have tried to promote the idea that Amish and Mennonites have secret Jewish origins, but they have never been able to produce a shred of evidence that I've heard of.
Hal Cross and I established the Swiss Anabaptist DNA project to investigate the ancient origins of the people who became Anabaptists. So far we haven't seen any matches with Jewish families for our project members, to our knowledge. Certainly none of our three the J haplogroup lineages are at all similar to Jewish ones.
As far as the possibility of Inquisition refugees fleeing to Switzerland, that is something that one could confirm or deny by historical research, and I'd love to find some evidence of it. However, the considerable reading I've done on this has never mentioned Switzerland among the destinations of these refugees. Many of them settled in France, the Netherlands, Italy, Turkey, and the Balkans. Perhaps another member of the list could comment on how tolerant and welcoming Switzerland would have been as a destination in 1492.
Click here for the Flemish American site, then click Anabaptist for a wealth of historical information