Nationality vs. Ethnicity
3/5/2010
In your Czech and Slovak ancestors' world, borders shifted and ruling powers changed, so how they identified themselves ethnically might differ from their official nationality. Use the tips to sort out such identity crises.

 "Who Are You?" When The Who posed this lyrical question in their 1978 hit song, they could have been singing directly to Czech and Slovak roots seekers. The region's diverse population and repeated power shifts have blurred the lines between ethnicity and nationality — leading many genealogists to experience an identity crisis.

As you investigate your ancestry, beware of the "nationality trap": Even though Great-grandpa's naturalization papers say he emigrated from Hungary, his village might be in present-day Slovakia. Czechs may discover German in their family lines, while Slovaks may uncover Carpatho-Rusyn, Hungarian, Polish or Ukrainian ancestry. So use these four D's to delve deeper into your heritage: