Thursday, June 20, 2019

Waiting on the Y-DNA Results

I took advantage of the Father's Day sales at FamilyTreeDNA to order the Y-37 marker test to explore my deep paternal ancestry.

I don't have enough time in the day to work on the autosomal results from the various testing companies, but I have been thinking about having a Y DNA test done for several years.

I'm not expecting any surprises, but I would be interested in seeing if I match with others in the Lemaster study to confirm the line of descent.  I had previously written about my paternal haplogroup here, from my test results at 23andMe.

With my paper-trail genealogy not being able to complete to my satisfaction the descent from Abraham Lemaster of St. Mary's County, Maryland.  The proposed line was described here initially, but given in more detail in this Surname Saturday post.  As always, I'm looking for additional information to tie the branches together.

Perhaps this Y-DNA test will help me determine whether or not my ancestor dropped out of the sky in 1804 Mason County, Virginia.

Monday, June 10, 2019

Sifting Through the DNA Matches

I continue to sift through mom's AncestryDNA matches, making identifications and grouping them into family groups using the shared matches feature.  I've been pleasantly surprised at how accurate and helpful this feature has been.

For each match that I can identify how they are connected with mom, I am looking at the shared matches and marking each of the shared matches with a note of my hypothesis of how they are connected.

For example, mom's maternal first cousin has tested at AncestryDNA, and their MRCA (Most Recent Common Ancestor) couple would be Lambertson-Gilliland.  I am then theorizing that any of these shared matches between mom and her first cousin would also share ancestry somewhere along the upline of this couple.  In essence, this should give me places to expect to find the connection.

By taking a look at each of these 'shared matches' and seeing if they have a tree where I can make a connection, I can bolster my theory.  For those who do not have a complete tree, I can create a 'Quick & Dirty' tree at Ancestry to see if I can get the automated system to generate a tree back far enough to make a connection.

Depending on how far back the identified match goes, I could move shared matches 'up-the-line' as far the hypothesis goes for which branch they should be on. 

I have currently worked my way through all of my mom's DNA matches down to the 20 cM level.  I'm using that as my cut off for now.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

What You'll Find on my Public Tree

I've hemmed and hawed through the years about whether to make my family tree at Ancestry public or keep it private.  I've finally decided that it should remain public, though I've added "Working File" to the title to make sure that fellow researchers know it is an evolving file.  I sync my RootsMagic database with Ancestry fairly regularly with my results.

I'm not getting any younger, and I want to make sure the research is out there for someone else to pick up the torch.  The link to my public tree is here. There are several types of information in my tree:

  • Cumulative research on my direct family lines, started back in the 1980s when I was a young Boy Scout;
  • The ancestry of my wife's family lines;
  • The ancestry of my daughter's family lines (ex-wife's);
  • The ancestry of my step-children's family lines;
  • One name studies - such as LeMaster families that are either distantly or not yet connected to my main lines.
  • Place name studies - such as records of related families in locales such as Madison or Jay Counties, Indiana where I have concentrations;
  • Quick & Dirty trees of DNA matches that have undiscovered connections to my main lines (before I learned to keep them separate)
In a nutshell, there is a little bit of everything in my tree, which has grown quite large - over 40,000 individuals.  My citations and facts from RootsMagic are tied to the profiles in Ancestry, though I haven't uploaded documents in every case to attach.  Some of that I am hoping to get around to adding - I have Dropbox files for each surname of the families I am researching where I keep the images.

I'm hoping that by keeping it public, more researchers might reach out to me to share information.  What has been your experience with public versus private trees?