WASHINGTON // Many people know that Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama's father was from Kenya and his mother from Kansas. But an intriguing sliver of his family history has received almost no attention until now: It appears that forebears of his white mother owned slaves, according to genealogical research and census records According to the research, one of Obama's great-great-great-great grandfathers, George Washington Overall, owned two slaves who were recorded in the 1850 census in Nelson County, Ky. The same records show that one of Obama's great-great-great-great-great-grandmothers, Mary Duvall, also owned two slaves. The Sun retraced much of Reitwiesner's work, using census information available on the Web site ancestry.com and documents retrieved by the Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives, among other sources. The records show that Overall, then 30, owned a 15-year-old black female and a 25-year-old black male, while Mary Duvall, his mother-in-law, owned a 60-year-old black man and a 58-year-old black woman. (Slaves are listed in the 1850 census by owner, age, "sex," and "colour," not by name.) An Obama spokesman did not dispute the information and said that the senator's ancestors "are representative of America." "While a relative owned slaves, another fought for the Union in the Civil War," (one has nothing to do with the other, but OK)campaign spokesman Bill Burton said last night. "And it is a true measure of progress that the descendant of a slave owner would come to marry a student from Kenya and produce a son who would grow up to be a candidate for president of the United States." (I know, heartwarming ain't it?) "If you have a white Southern mother, or a mother from the middle states who has ancestry in the South, it doesn't strike me that that should be very surprising," he said. While the majority of such families did not own slaves, many with some wealth did, Roberts said. (yeah, actually slaveowners were a tiny minority) Anyway, I couldn't care less who owned slaves but this is going to make for a fun media sheetstorm.