Author Topic: Y-DNA Test  (Read 593 times)

Offline tdgower2

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Y-DNA Test
« on: Saturday 17 February 18 21:30 GMT (UK) »
Hi roots chatters, I'm just here to work out how these DNA Tests work and what results I can get from them.
I would like to take a Y-DNA test as my great-great grandfather was illegitimate. I was hoping that this test would help me find out who his dad was. Is that possible?
Sorry if I sound a bit thick but i'm new to this side of genealogy.

Cheers, Tom
Gower, Barker, Mayhew, Blomfield - (Norfolk/Suffolk)
Cook, Carter, Smith, Musk, Moss, Staples, Sparkes, Lister, Woollard, Scrivener, Marsh, Arnold, Hazelwood- (Cambs/Suffolk)
Grimwood, Shinn, Fitches, Sustins, Harvey, Sangster, Capps, Blake, Kimmance, Rans, Watts, George, Denny- (Suffolk)
Rix, Balls, Porter, Leach- (Norfolk) Patton, Slater, Lewins, Forster, Miller, Daglish (Co. Durham)
Taylor, Element, Barnett- (Worcs) Colley, Dobson, Thornton, Priestman, Harper, Spence, Plewes (E. Riding Yorks)

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Offline davidft

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Re: Y-DNA Test
« Reply #1 on: Sunday 18 February 18 10:25 GMT (UK) »
In theory its possible but it would be a bit like looking for a needle in a haystack and most importantly someone in a male line descent from your great great grandfathers father would also have to take the test and be a spot on match. Even if all that happened you would then need to construct a good paper trail on both lines to back up the findings of the test results. As a word of caution I took a yDNA test about 5 years ago as hopefully a way of helping with my paternal line that peters out around 1750 in rural Northumberland, to date its not yielded any helpful results.

If you do take a yDNA test to try and help with this then I would say a 12yDNA and 37yDNA test would not be helpful and you really need to take a 67yDNA test at least. This helps eliminate the possibility of false positives which would be particularly likely with the 12yDNA test. The test work by testing a number of markers, or "short tandem repeats (STRs)", on the Y chromosome so obviously the higher the number of markers the more chance of a meaningful result. Also if you take the tests the more DNA comparison sites the results are on the more likely you are to get a match as it will bring in people who test with other companies.

As I said at the beginning its a long shot but if you go ahead good luck and hope it proves useful though it will probably take a long time to match.

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Online Ruskie

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Re: Y-DNA Test
« Reply #2 on: Sunday 18 February 18 11:00 GMT (UK) »
It is also possible that if you find a DNA match which appears promisingly close, you may not be able to find the paper connection, or even worse, as I have found with my father's results, a promising match did not supply any contact details. I think the 12 matches are nigh on useless, and the 25 not much better, so if you do decode to test, go for the 67 or higher as David recommends.

Like David I tested my father and my partner several years ago with no useful connections found yet, and my partner has an extremely common surname. Some people get lucky though ...

Online familydar

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Re: Y-DNA Test
« Reply #3 on: Sunday 18 February 18 11:26 GMT (UK) »
You might also wish to consider an autosomal test, perhaps instead of the Y test.  Cheaper and becoming more and more mainstream, offered by a variety of companies.  It would provide you with matches on your maternal as well as paternal lines, and estimate how far back you might need to go to find the common ancestor, whereas with Y testing if you get a close match there's not really any way of telling how far back it goes.  With Y testing you might get lucky with a table full of all the same surname, but the only good match my father got with someone of the same surname was his known cousin, all his other matches are a complete mix of surnames and not close anyway (the chromosome slowly mutates and for these other matches the mutation is quite significant).

Bear in mind that the advertised promises are on the optimistic side and dependent on matches having accurate trees on their DNA databases.  If you don't have a tree and your top match doesn't have a tree then the name of the elusive MRCA (most recent common ancestor) isn't going to materialise out of the ether.

Jane :-)
ALLEN
BARR, BARRATT, BERRY, BRADLEY,BRAMLEY,BRISTOW,BROWN,BUGBIRD,BUTLER
CAIN,CARR,CHAPMAN,CHARLES,CH*LTON,CHESTER,COCKETT
COLLASON,COLLYER,CORKERY
DARLING, DENYER,DICKERSON,DOLLING,DURBAN
FARMER,FURNELL
GIBSON,GILES,GROOMBRIDGE
HALL,HAMBIDGE,HARMES,HART,HICKS,HILL,HOLLOWAY
JACKSON
K*AT*S
LANCASTER,LINTON
MCDONALD,MCFADEN,MEARS,MILLARD
NICOLAS,NOAK,NORTH
PARFIT,PORTER
RIPPINGALE,ROBINS
SEARLE,SPENCER,STEDHAM
TYLER,TILLY,TUCKWELL
WADE,WAGER,WALKER,WATSON,WEBB,WITHRINGTON,WOOD

Offline davidft

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Re: Y-DNA Test
« Reply #4 on: Sunday 18 February 18 15:38 GMT (UK) »
Another thought. Have you found the baptism of your great great grandfather as sometimes (OK I admit this is rare) the reputed father of an illegitimate child is named in the baptism. I am estimating that your gg grandfather was born around 1870 and this is certainly a period when such an event might be recorded thus.

I have a case in my tree of one of my great grandmothers being illegitimate and I did not expect to find out who her father was. From the earliest census record she was on when she was 2 1/2 she was with the family that were later to adopt her. Leading on from a tip on here I decided to look for a baptism for her but there was nothing in Anglican records. Eventually I wrote to the county archives and asked them to do a search for a baptism for her. I told them what I knew and the fact that this persons daughter was a Methodist. They did the search and found the record amongst some Methodist records which I would most likely not have found on my own.

So in short I would advise looking for a baptism. If you cannot find one then it may be worth writing to the county records office concerned seeing if they can find it. If you do tell them what you know including such things as if a different religion might be involved. My search request mentioned above cost 15 from memory but it was quite tightly specified and I was very happy with it as it got a result.

Good luck.

Offline tdgower2

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Re: Y-DNA Test
« Reply #5 on: Sunday 18 February 18 17:58 GMT (UK) »
Thank you for the replies everyone.
With regards to davidft, my Great-Great Grandfather was William Gower and was born in 1868 in Pulham Market Workhouse (Depwade Union Workhouse). He was born to a single mother, Martha Gower, and was then I believe adopted by James and Charlotte Blanch from Beccles, Suffolk. He is in the 1871 census as William Blanch, then becomes William Gower from 1881.
I had a suspicion that James Blanch was the father but I went up to Norfolk Record Office a few years ago and they were very helpful. We found the baptism with just the mother's name and no father.
I think i'll put the dna test on hold for now, i might choose to do one in the future when there is more chance of me finding a match.

Cheers, Tom
Gower, Barker, Mayhew, Blomfield - (Norfolk/Suffolk)
Cook, Carter, Smith, Musk, Moss, Staples, Sparkes, Lister, Woollard, Scrivener, Marsh, Arnold, Hazelwood- (Cambs/Suffolk)
Grimwood, Shinn, Fitches, Sustins, Harvey, Sangster, Capps, Blake, Kimmance, Rans, Watts, George, Denny- (Suffolk)
Rix, Balls, Porter, Leach- (Norfolk) Patton, Slater, Lewins, Forster, Miller, Daglish (Co. Durham)
Taylor, Element, Barnett- (Worcs) Colley, Dobson, Thornton, Priestman, Harper, Spence, Plewes (E. Riding Yorks)

Online Ruskie

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Re: Y-DNA Test
« Reply #6 on: Monday 19 February 18 01:03 GMT (UK) »
Although you have heard a couple of stories of people having no useful results from their DNA tests, the more people who test, the more results there will be, so it is a double edged sword.

It is still an interesting exercise nevertheless.

Maybe dip your toes in the water and take an autosomal test as suggested by Jane. Autosomal tests can be very useful if your maternal and paternal lines originate in different parts of the world (like mine do - I can tell which of my "matches" belong to which side of the family). :)