I am part of Haplogroup L1b, one of the oldest female lineages on Earth.
Haplogroup L1b, a subclade of L1 which arose about 100,000 YBP (years before present), itself appeared on the African mitochondrial DNA scene approximately 30,000 years ago. It is found in the peoples of north, west and central Africa.
L1b is found in highest frequency (13%) in West Africa most likely due to the Bantu Expansions. In a recent study by Dr. Bruce Jackson et al, areas such as Sierra Leone, have been found to occur in from 12-27% of Mende, Limba and Loko samples tested. L1b is also found in high frequency in the Mandenka, Wolof and Fulani of Senegal. As a result of the Atlantic Slave Trade whereby natives from Sierra Leone were brought to North America and specifically the South Carolina area, L1b is also found in 10% of African Americans.
The mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequence that we determined from you sample shares ancestry with people in several countries today: Balanta and Fula peoples in Guinea-Bissau, the Mende people in Sierra Leone, and the Mandinka people in Senegal.