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We examine surname distribution, origin, and association with Y-chromosome haplogroups in native communities from the Aleutian archipelago. The underlying hypothesis is that surnames and Y-chromosome haplogroups should be associated because both are paternally inherited markers. We used Lasker’s coefficient of relationship through isonymy (Rib) to identify the distribution of 143 surnames in the Aleutian Islands. The geographic distribution of surnames was explored both through frequency distribution and through the use of Mantel tests. Multidimensional scaling, chi-square, and Mantel tests were used to examine the relationship between surname and Y-chromosome markers. Overall, we observed that the distribution of surnames in the Aleutian archipelago is culturally driven rather than being one of paternal inheritance. Surnames follow a gradient from east to west, with high frequencies of Russian surnames found in western Aleut communities and high levels of non-Russian surnames found in eastern Aleut communities. A nonsignificant correlation (r = –0.0132; P = 0.436) was found between distance matrices based on haplogroups of the nonrecombining portion of the Y chromosome and surnames, although an association was found between non-Russian surnames and the predominantly non-Russian haplogroups (R1b, I1a, and I).

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