On Monday, a team of genealogists from Ancestry.com reported that President Obama, by way of his white mother Stanley Ann Dunham, is related to one of the first documented black slaves in the American colonies. The team says Obama is the descendant of John Punch, an indentured servant who in 1640 was punished to a life of slavery for trying to run away from his colonial masters, becoming the first black slave in the state of Virginia. The researchers say Dunham's link to Punch shows the extent to which the two races have mixed over the course of centuries. Furthermore, the study appears to upend a long-held assumption that Obama, whose father was from Kenya, is unrelated to black American slaves.
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