BLAHNIK Family From Bohemia (Czech Republic)
(Modern coat of arms)
Web updated 7/21/2014
Family tree Database Update 02/15/2014
*Nase Rodina Article on Blahnik DNA Dec 2013 Blahnik DNA Project
Origin of the Name
The tabs located on the top of the
page discuss different Blahnik branches that have been located. Not all of
them have had a Y-DNA cheek swab test to see if they connect with other branches
at this time.
(1) In any case, it appears as though last names began to be more accepted for usage in Czech by the late 1400's to early 1500's. This is what makes genealogy prior to this time so very difficult if not impossible. It is most likely that more than one biological family chose the last name Blahnik and were not in fact blood related to another Blahnik family other than being Czech. This is most likely why there could be 5 different haplotypes in our current study.
(2) A second possibility is that there could have been an interrupted male line for the Blahnik family. The DNA test used to establish the paternal lineage comes from the Y chromosome and will show the direct genetic path from father to son. If that path were ever interrupted, then the name Blahnik and the Y DNA would no longer match.
This possibility would include something like a family carrying on an adopted name rather than direct bloodline name of the father. A Blahnik could have adopted a son and the son took his last name. We do know about one case of adoption by one of the Algoma Blahnik immigrant sons.
Another possibility at any point in time could have been for a son choosing to use the mother's last name of Blahnik. That would have made the child a Blahnik by blood, but not show up on the direct Y DNA information in our DNA test. In checking the archives it was not uncommon for Czech women (centuries ago who were unmarried) having their children baptized with her last name. This has been seen in the Czech record archives. Additionally there is a family story that Joel Blahnik reported indicating at least one situation where the family chose to take the mother's name of Blahnik rather than the father's name. Joel recounted that there was family belief that during the time of Napoleon there was a man who deserted the regiment and married a Blahnik woman in Chodsko. In order to avoid being detected as a deserter from Napoleon's army, he purposely took on his wife's last name of Blahnik and raise his children as Blahnik. This again would have the name Blahnik without the Y DNA match directly to that name.
The only thing we know at this point in time is that we have Y DNA showing at least 5 different Blahnik root families. We suspect they are all different Czech male families who chose to use the last name of Blahnik and are united by the fact that all of them are Czech families.
It was discovered that among the 2011 Wisconsin residents, a majority of them had their oldest known ancestor coming from SW Bohemia in the area of Domazlice to Klatovy. One family (Smrzovice) had a genealogical tree going back to the 1400’s and ancient Chod Heritage in Czech.
The break down for known Blahnik immigrants shown below by the State that the families settled.
Wisconsin gained it's statehood in 1848. This occurred about the same time as the serf statues was lifted in Bohemia. There was a great deal of advertising in Czech and German newspapers encouraging people come to settle this new state. This is probably why there were so many Czechs coming to Wisconsin between 1850-1880. In 2011 the White pages the people with the last name of Blahnik had grown to 821 from these 118 immigrants. One third of these Blahniks were still living in Wisconsin. Wisconsin had the most Czech immigrants in the 1860 & 1870 census records for the US. More than half of our Blahnik families did immigrate to Wisconsin and the Midwest, but we have settlements as far away as Canada too.
In 2011 the greatest number of Blahniks in Czech continued to live in this same SW area of the Czech Republic. Domazlice to Klatovy has the highest population of Blahniks from land line phone records. In 2011 the land line records in Czech showed 519 listings while the US showed 821 listings. Wisconsin still showed the greatest number of Blahniks and had increased from 66 immigration families to 303 homes some 150 years later.
A note should be made here about how the numbers gathered for this comparison. Cell phones are more common in Czech currently than Land Lines are, so it is possible that this is not as direct of a comparison as one might think. Still, the Blahnik immigrants definitely established themselves on the North American continent.
In 2012 a DNA group was up to see how we might all relate. The information will be presented by the name of the oldest known ancestor from each Blahnik family. Currently five different families (Male family lines) have been discovered.
Although 65 Blahnik families were identified at the time of immigration, it was discovered that some of them were related to others and also that some families died out with the Blahnik name (having either no children or daughters only).
In 2011 there was a Blahnik family reunion held at Blahnik Heritage Park in Algoma, WI. Blahniks from all over the world were invited to attend. From this reunion the idea establishing a Blahnik DNA group was discussed. Three Blahnik men initiated this group and had no common ancestor back to the 1700's. All three of these men were from a short distance from each other in NE Wisconsin. They all turned out to be related. Other Blahnik males joined the Y-DNA group to test for their paternal ancestry line.
So far, fifteen different male Blahniks from what seemed like separate families took the DNA test which resulted in these five different groups. The groups are being identified by the oldest known ancestor and the Haplogroup affiliated with them. The majority of Czechs have an “R” or R1b Haplogroup (roughly 36%). None of our Blahnik families belong to this group. “R” is often associated with the Celts and the Boii tribe was said to have been pushed over the Alps into Czech (Bohemia) by the Romans. Three of our Blahnik families came from the "I" group mutation while the other two come from "L" and "N".
The Five DNA Haplo Groups
1- Haplo I2a or I-P37.2 Lipkov,
Bohemia includes families from Czech villages
Vitovky, Myto (PA) and Loucim, CZ. Also immigrant locations for Winnipeg
Canada, Algoma WI are included with
this group. This includes both American
and Czech DNA samples. The oldest known ancestor
was Ondra Blahnik c1455 Libkov (between Domazlice and Klatovy) -after
This appears to be the largest Blahnik family both in Czech and North
America. See ancestral migration map below and the
known genealogical tree that we currently have available. There were some branches that split off the
trunk earlier which are likely the Kout, Vitovky and
Loucim Blahniks. Though they are connected genetically, the
genealogical connection has yet to be found.
2- Haplo N1C1 or N-M231 has been found for two different families. There is an immigrant family named Blahnik who settled in Ashland, WI. Their oldest known ancestor was Jan (John) Blahnik c1825 possibly Chodska Lhota, Bohemia. There was also a man in Prague, Czech Republic that match his DNA with this Wisconsin family whose oldest known ancestor was Frantisek c1875 from the Village Trhanov (near Domazlice) Bohemia.
Mike Glime estimates that these two branches shared the same direct ancestor in the late 1700's. There is also a third party match with a man whose last name is Stanley. This means the family split between the Blahniks and this man's family probably occurred before the standard use of last names. The N Haplogroup is frequently found among the Turks, Russians, Finns, Baltic, Eastern Prussia and even in Russia. The exact path of this family to Czech has not been determined at this time. Perhaps the most likely place could be from Eastern Prussia which is close to Czech. I should be noted that there is an FTDNA direct match with a Mr. Stanley in Slovakia. The split with the Blahnik may have happened before last names became commonly used.
3- Haplo I1 or I-M253 belongs to one of the immigrant families that settled in Iowa. The oldest known ancestor for this group is Georg (Jiri) Blahnik b: in Bohemia estimated birth 1840. He married Dorothea (Janva) Janca Janda and they lived in Mlynec, Klatovy in the mid 1800’s.
There are a few Blahnik immigrant families that came to Iowa. One family has been tested so far. The FTDNA program suggests the I1 lineage may have started in northern France. It was found most frequently in the Viking/Scandinavian area of NW Europe and spread from there down to Central and Eastern Europe. This Haplo DNA marker is not shown in great frequencies in East/Central Europe but is likely how this Blahnik group came to Czech.
4- I2b1 or I-M223 is the Haplogroup for an ancestral Blahnik family from Ledvice. The oldest known ancestor of this group is Joseph Blahnik 1875 Ledvice, Bohemia. This family emigrated to France before coming to America in the next generation. Descendents can be found in IL and WI.
The basic migration map is similar to both the Libkov Blahniks and the I-M253 Iowa group since they all come within the "I" group mutation. From the basic "I" mutations they took slightly different paths. FTDNA suggests that I2b1 may actually have had its roots in Northern France like I1. This group probably took a similar path as the I-M253 Blahniks since it is a genetic subgroup. Haplo I2b1 external link.
5- Haplo L-M61 was found for the group known as the Volduchy Blahniks. The oldest known ancestor was Matej Blahnik b: c1775 Bohemia. The family lived in Litohlvy (just east of Plzen) in the early 1800's. Two generations later Frantisek left from Minnesota USA in 1906.
The L-M61 is an interesting Haplotype for this Czech family. One source suggests that 50% of the men living in southern India have this marker. It should be noted that it is also common in the Middle East among the Turks, Saudis and Pakistanis. Perhaps the Volduchy Blahnik group came through the Middle East making their way up to the Czech Republic. Research continues and this current path may alter. Certainly India is where most people with this L Haplo are now living .
Not all Blahnik lines have been tested to see how we all connect.
This project is looking for a
Blahnik male from the family lines of
A basic $60 test would indicate which of the 5 family lines belong to them.
The Blahnik DNA group is open for more testing. There are Blahniks in other European Countries as well as other immigrant families who have not been tested. We invite any male Blahniks (also spelled Blacknik and Blamick with some American immigrant families) to join and connect with your Czech Cousins.
Feel free to contact this author
Bob Blahnik continues regularly search obits in the Wisconsin papers and they are updated in the family tree.
2007 GEDfile indexed 6811
Flag correction per Ludmila Nová http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bohemia I would have a little correction for your web site: so, the Czech / Bohemian flag looks like this: the red colour is down and the white colour up on the flag (the teachers say to the small children at school this "key": "the blood is falling down, but the peace dove is flying up". -Thanks Ludmila!
This web page is meant for all members of the
Blahnik family and its descendents. There is also information pages
about the American Immigrants, History of the family and Blahnik names we have
not yet connected to the main tree. I'm entering the Blahnik names I have
located in the County Register of Deeds
offices, Census records and Pilzn
Archives and trying to connect them to the tree as well. Any
assistance with information is greatly appreciated.
© Lori Dollevoet 1999