Thursday, January 12, 2012

My Family Finder Autosomal DNA Tests - Post 3

I've been writing about my experience with the Family Tree DNA autosomal test results that I received recently. See:

*   My Family Finder Autosomal Test Results - Post 1, where I described finding my autosomal DNA results on the Family Tree DNA website, adding my GEDCOM file and what my "Population Finder" results were.
*  My Family Finder Autosomal Test Results - Post 2, where I described the Matches page and some of the autosomal test matches on some of my chromosomes.

I described finding three test matches on my Chromosome 15 that were three of the five longest continuing strings of DNA markers.  Before I started this series, I received an email from the daughter of one of these persons, and she confirmed that the three persons that I match are known relatives to each other.  Two are siblings.

Two of these persons posted their surname lists for others to try to determine possible relationships.  The two sets of surnames posted were:

*  Leahy (Ireland),  Kerslake (England), Doyle (Ireland),  Flexton (England), Kelly (Ireland),  Collins  (Ireland), Brown (England),  Harris (England), Noad (England),  Allen (England), Edgerley (England),  King (England), Spencer (England), Fell (England),  Daniels (England), Burder (England),  Flaxon (England), Hill (England), Withy (England),  Hunt (England),  Fox (England)

Of these 21 surnames in this person's family tree, the only surname that I match within 10 generations back in time is Hill.  My Hill ancestry is in Wiltshire in England.  Rebecca Hill (1790-1862) of Hilperton in Wiltshire is a third great-grandmother of mine.  If one of her siblings was an ancestor of this Matching Person, then we would be fifth cousins (because our common ancestor would be John and Ann (Warren) Hill of Hilperton in Wiltshire).

Since I have only three great-great-grandparents (out of 16) with known English ancestry in my family tree, and the other known family surnames (Richman, Rich, Marshman, Warren, Ring, Vaux, Palmer, Laver, Terrell) are not in the list above, I'm thinking that the common ancestor with this Matching Person is probably a Hill.

*  Grant ((SC/AL)),  Horton ((AL/SC?/NY?)),  Williams ((AL/NC)), Works ((AL)),  Heald ((AL/GA/DE/ENG)),  Dean ((AL)), Moore ((AL/NC)),  McCartney ((AL/GA/IRELAND)),  Martin ((AL)), Davis ((AL/SC)),  Burns? (GA), Coleman ((AL)),  Cone ((NC)), Bonner ((GA)),  Sansom ((GA)), Banks ((GA)),  Britnell ((SC/AL)), Hinds? ((SC)),  Cross ((NC)), Armstrong ((AL)),  Peacock,  Vann ((GA)),  Marable ((VA)),  Maxwell, Bishop ((SC)),  Arledge ((SC)), Jones,  Alston,  Poellnitz ((AL/SC/Prussia)),  Freeman ((AL)), Williamson ((AL)),  Etheredge ((AL)), Luther ((AL/SC)),  Braswell ((AL)), Hardy ((AL)),  Nichols ((AL)),  Rembert ((AL/SC)),  Rogers ((SC/AL)),  Gibson ((AL)),  Oakley ((AL)), Vice ((AL)), Perry ((AL)), Crenshaw ((AL)), Michau ((SC)),  Pope ((AL)),  Loftin ((AL)),  Bondeli ((Switzerland)), McAllister ((Scotland)),  Miller 

The list of 49 surnames above contains three surnames from my known fourth great-grandparents:

*  I have two Horton fourth great-grandparents:  Hannah Horton (1761-1797) of Eastham, Massachusetts and Phebe Horton (1772-????) of Foster, R.I.
*  I have one Martin fourth-great-grandparent:  Sarah Martin (1792-1860) of Woodbridge, New Jersey and Delhi, Ontario.

The Matching Person's surname list above provides no obvious matching locations in the list or in the family tree provided, but this Matching Person somehow has a significant autosomal DNA match with me.

Family Tree DNA permits a user to search by Surname in the "Ancestral Surnames" listings for the Matching Persons.  Here is a screen shot for the Martin surname:

There are four Matching Persons on my Match list (of 83) with Martin in their Ancestral Surname list.

Of the 32 surnames of my third great-grandparents, the only matches for surnames on my Match list (of those with Ancestral surnames) are Gates (1), Smith (12), Newton (1), Hill (2), White (1), Wade (2), Champlin (1), Carringer (1), King (4), Knapp (1), and Kemp (1).

Of course, the comparisons are only as good as the genealogical research that went into the family tree for each of the matching persons.

I'm not sure where to go next on this project.  I am emailing with my "Hill" cousin, and she has also tested on 23andMe and has much more experience analyzing these results than I have.  Her Hill ancestor is in the Westbury area of Wiltshire in the 1800 time frame, while mine is in Hilperton in the 1800 time period.  The two places are only about 8 miles away from each other.  We have shared our Hill family information already, but have not been able to find a common ancestor to date.  This search is hampered by very spotty records in the Wiltshire parish records in some time periods, especially in this 1750 to 1800 time period.

If someone has ideas on what to do next, I would appreciate your counsel!

The URL for this post is:

copyright (c) Randall J. Seaver, 2012


Judy G. Russell said...

Randy, one word of advice on Family Finder: look more to overlaps of time and place than surname. Surnames mean a lot in YDNA, much less in Family Finder. Think about the son of your mother's sister. He'd show up as a very close relative in Family Finder, but you two wouldn't share a surname. So particularly for your brick-wall and female lines, look for families in the same place at the same time.

Andrew Kemp said...


I am the admin of the Camp-Kemp DNA project on FTDNA, utilising WorldFamilies for the website.

Please consider joining the Camp-Kemp DNA project and we can try and match your results with other lineages.


Unknown said...

Randy, I was wondering if you have added your FF results to ? It's a great free site with many tools for working with your DNA. One thing that I like is when comparing people FTDNA just labels as 4th to remote or 5th to remote it will show you what generation your most recent common ancestor is likely in. This is more helpful then just guessing 5th to something. lol
You can also adjust your matching segment number to find matches that might be just under the threshold FTDNA uses. I have a large number of distant cousins I don't match on FTDNA but I clearly do match on Gedmatch.