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Old 24th October 2017, 11:45 PM
wombat wombat is offline
FTDNA Customer
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 275
Originally Posted by TwiddlingThumbs View Post
Good, detailed response SG. I still think you would agree with me that if all one knows is a gd or a TiP between two kits and the surnames, a close gd or TiP is much more likely to indicate a common male ancestor within the genealogical time frame if the surnames are the same than if they are not similar. (I think FTDNA does indicate that in the case of gd's and should also indicate that in the case of TiP.) I think your point is that we need to look at other available evidence besides STR matches to make a determination of of whether non-surname kits belong in matching surname groups.

I fully agree with that, but I think that in and of itself, suggested the need to treat non-surname kits different. If a kit with the project surname matches other kits in the project with the project surname, there is a very strong presumption that there is indeed a relationship there that is only overcome by strong countervailing evidence such as inconsistent SNP results. On the other hand, for a non-surname kit, the probabilities of the meaning of a match are different. In the case of kits with dissimilar surnames, I would say that the presumption should be that they are not related; however, there is no practical difference to just saying that other evidence must be examined before making a decision. Either way, I would say that if the non-surname kit (i) is not claiming male lineal descent from someone with the project surname (e.g., has not listed someone with the surname as his oldest known paternal ancestor), (ii) does not have its closest matches all with kits with the project surname, (iii) has not provided any genealogical evidence to suggest an NPE with a male with the project surname, and (iv) does not have SNP results that either prove or disprove a relationship, and thus the ONLY evidence in favor of a relationship is a low quality STR match, the non-surname kit should just be put in a non-surname group rather than in a group with the matching surname kits.
One thing to keep in mind is that not all areas or peoples have had surnames for a long time. And sometimes when they got them each brother might have chosen or been assigned a different surname. Even in a few parts of Europe that was the case as recently as 1835 (even 1861)!
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