Ancestry On The Web For St. Patrick’s Day

The popular saying Everybody’s Irish On March 17th is perhaps more true in America than anywhere else in the world. Along with lots of green, shamrocks, and parades, St. Patrick’s Day is arguably the most celebrated ethnic holiday in America. With ethnicity being a characteristic that people often identify with, Spock took a closer look into just how Irish people are on March 17th.

In analyzing the claimed ancestry of Americans on Spock (both living and deceased), one of the initial findings was that most Americans claimed at least two ethnicities, meaning that more people were likely to claim themselves as Irish and German American as opposed to only Irish American. With America established as a proverbial melting pot of ethnic mixing, there’s little reason to believe this trend won’t continue. Using a sample size of several million, the top three countries of claimed origin were Italy at 16%, France at 21%, and Spain, where 25% claimed Spanish origin. One of the more difficult ethnicities to determine was English, where people who would otherwise classify as English, preferred to specify themselves as WelshScottish, etc. Other ethnicities that were prevalent were JapaneseChinese, and Russian at 6%.

Looking specifically at Irish Americans, who include people such as Conan O’BrienStephen ColbertBill Clinton, and John F. Kennedy, a surprising 1.5% claimed Irish ancestry. Thus, as a common identifying characteristic, there are far fewer Americans identifying themselves asIrish American.

While being Indian American or Italian American certainly doesn’t exclude you from enjoying a Guinness or wearing green on St. Patrick’s Day, you may want to consider wishing someone a happy Bastille Day next July 14th.

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