Meet the Blue Fugates: Real-life Humans With Mysterious Blue Skin
The Blue Fugates, a family that lived in the hills of Kentucky were famous for having blue skins. How’s that possible?, you’re asking yourself. Read on to find out.
It’s one thing to see people with black, white, brown skins but I can almost guarantee that you’ve never seen someone that looks blue. Literally.
This is not about the “Smurfs” or anything you’ve seen in cartoons but real-life humans.
This is why so many people were fascinated by the Fugate family.
The uniqueness of their skin caused the family to shy away from the rest of the world and for most of their lives, they remained hidden in the faraway hills of Kentucky.
The Blue Fugates, as they were commonly called for obvious reasons had a hereditary trait that caused most of their descendants to have blue skins.
Origin Story of the Blue Fugates
It all started in 1820 when a man, Martin Fugate relocated from France to start a new family with a bride Elizabeth Smith in America.
The Blue Fugates settled down in a faraway hill in Kentucky which made it difficult for them to access other people.
Although, both were unrelated and white, they had recessive genes that they did not know about, which changed their lives forever.
The couple had no knowledge of their mysterious genes until they started having children. Four of the seven children of this union being born with blue skin.
Since it was hard to leave and socialize with others due to their location, many of the Fugates began to marry and have children within their own bloodline.
The genetic isolation from the incest caused the continued reproduction of descendants with blue skins in the Fugate family.
This continued for many years, resulting in a larger extended family of blue babies.
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What caused the Blue Skin?
According to research carried out in the 1960s, the Fugates suffered a rare blood disorder that resulted in high levels of methemoglobin in their blood.
Methemoglobin is a blue version of the hemoglobin that gives the EB blood its color.
The Fugates had such skin color because the excess amount of methemoglobin in their blood turned their skin blue.
The methemoglobin is recessive and as such both parents need to have the gene for it to be passed to their offspring.