Some anthropological characteristics of hybrid populations

Some anthropological characteristics of hybrid populations

The Eugenics Review
Volume 30, Number 1 (April 1938)
pages 21-31

J. C. Trevor, Leonard Darwin Research Fellow

It should be explained that “hybrid” is used here in its restricted zoological sense, viz. as relating to intraspecific rather than to interspecific crosses. The adjective “mixed,” though convenient, can be misleading, since there is no acceptable definition of what constitutes a “pure” human race. For the purposes of the present discussion, “hybrid” will be taken to apply to crosses between races comprised within different major divisions of mankind such as the “varieties” of Blumenbach and the main “groups” of Haddon, Hooton and other anthropological systematists…

..The nine hybrid series concerned in this paper may be briefly described as follows:

(1) Norfolk Islanders, 113 adult male and female subjects, the descendants of six mutineers of H.M.S. Bounty and from ten to twelve Polynesian women from Tahiti and possibly two of its neighbouring islands, measured and described by Shapiro (1929). They are compared with 153 male and female Society Islanders, whose measurements were taken by Handy and reduced by Shapiro, and with 6,975 “English” and 381 Oxfordfshire villagers, whose measurements were taken by Galton and by Buxton and Blackood, respectively, and reduced by the writer. The genealogical records of the Norfolk Islanders have been carefully kept since about 1790, and any influx of fresh blood invarably been noted.

(2) Half-Blood Sioux, 77 adult male subjects including some described as a quarter and others as three-quarters Indian, whose meaurements were taken by Boas and eight assistants and reduced by Sullivan (1920). European ancestry is said to be French, Scotch, English and Irish. They are compared with 540 full-blood Sioux, measured by the same observers, and with 727 “Old American” Whites, measured and described Hrdlicka (1925). Herskovits (1930) has provided several constants of variation for the last series, and the writer a few others.

(3) Ojibwa-Whites, 8o adult male subjects, principally from Minnesota, representing various degrees of intermixture between women and French and Scotch which has been “continuous and cumulative” since 1660. They are described by Jenks (1916) and have been compared with 24 full-blood Ojibwa (all that could be obtained) and with 100 Minnesota French and 50 Minnesota Scotch, also measured by them. The constants of variation of these four studies have been computed by the writer.

(4) Yucatecans, 88o adult male subjects, a product of intermixture between Spanish immigrants into Mexico and Maya Indians during a period of some 350 years, measured and described by Williams (1931). They are compared with 77 presumably unmixed Mayas, measured and described by Steggerda (1932b), and with 416 Andalusians measured and described by Hulse (1933), for stature, and 79 subjects from all parts of Spain, whose measurements were taken by Barras and reduced by Williams, for cephalic and facial characters.

(5) Jamaican “Browns,” 165 male and female subjects of mixed White and Negro ancestry from Jamaica, measured by Steggerda and described by Davenport and himself (1929). They are compared with one series of 100 Whites of British and German descent and with another of 105 full-blood Negroes, also measured by Steggerda, both coming from the island of Jamaica and its dependencies. The Whites cannot be said to represent ideal comparative material, and as a large proportion of immature subjects is included in all three series, means based on their absolute measurements would appear to be unreliable. Consequently only indices, which are less likely to be affected by possible growth changes, have been used in the present comparison. It is unfortunate that the means and constants of variation provided by Davenport and Steggerda were determined by very crude statistical methods and that mistakes also occur in their computation.

(6) American Negroes of Mixed Blood, 254 adult male subjects of European and Negro ancestry, principally from various parts of the United States, measured and described by Herskovits (1930). Genealogies were obtained from each subject, who was then classified with regard to the proportions of White and Negro ancestry he possessed, three main divisions being recognized: (i) more Negro than White, (ii) approximately equal amounts of Negro and White, and (iii) more White than Negro. The number of individuals in each of these divisions makes them, in general, adequate for separate statistical treatment. They are compared with an unmixed American Negro series of 109 individuals, also measured by Herskovits, and with Hrdlicka’s “Old Americans.”

(7) Boer-Hottentot Crosses (the so-called “Bastaards” of Rehoboth), 74 adult male subjects of six or seven generations of mixed Boer and Hottentot descent from South-West Africa, measured and described by Fischer (1913). Fischer, like Herskovits, divides his material into genealogical classes representing different proportions of Boer and Hottentot ancestry. None of these, however, is really large enough for statistical purposes, and the measurements have been pooled to form a general Bastaard series, which is compared with 74 Hottentots, measured by Schultze Jena (1928), and, in default of local Boers, with 70 Dutch, whose forbears come from the northern provinces of the Netherlands, measured and described by Steggerda (4932a). The general Bastaard constants of variation and those of the Hottentots have been computed by the writer.

(8) Kisar Mestizos, 132 adult male and female subjects of mixed Dutch and Indonesian ancestry from Kisar, a small island in the Sunda archipelago, some thirty-five miles east of Timor. They were measured and described by Rodenwaldt (1927), who ascribes their origin to the seventeenth century. The mestizos are divided by him into genealogical classes, but these are too small for satisfactory statistical analysis, and the material has again to be treated as a whole. For comparative purposes, 64 Kisarese, also measured by Rodenwaldt, and Steggerda’s Dutch are used.

(9) Anglo-Indians, “new style,” 145 adult male subjects of mixed European and Indian ancestry from Calcutta, whose measurements were taken by Annandale, first reduced by Mahalanobis (1922-31) and later, with the exclusion of some immature individuals, by the writer. There is almost a complete absence of reliable information concerning their origin and it has been found impossible to select suitable material from Indian senes for a comparison of means, though in view of their very complex racial antecedents they can be retained for the study of variability…

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