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  • Best way to proceed...

    I'm trying to figure out who my grandfather was. My Dad was adopted in 1937 and before he died he was able to obtain his original birth cert. So we know who his mother was, but the father was not on it. I'm really mostly interested to know what his name was and his nationality. I have kids and it would be nice to give them a better picture of their true heritage than I've had. I took the Y-DNA 37 test but it was confusing. It came back with haplogroup T, which is apparently kind of rare and not too many matches and none in the vicinity I would expect (Pennsylvania). I've taken the Ancestry DNA test and I ported that into Family Finder on FTDNA. I'm not sure what to believe as the results were somewhat different. Has anyone had success in a similar situation ? If so, what's the best path forward. And the other issue is, even though I know my grandmother's name, I've not been able to see a picture of her as she didn't have any other kids and died in 1954. It would be awesome to see what she looked like but even though I know where she lived and her name I'm not sure the best way to find a picture. Thanks !

    *Y-37 Results showed no matches. Closest was 25 Marker Distance 2. What I've read in other posts is that 25 marker distance of 2 may or may not be related. Feel free to confirm if you know. I'm very new to this.
    The haplogroup came back predicted T-M70 which I understand is kind of rare in Europe...Y Ancestral Origins attached

    Attached Files
    Last edited by malloyjp; 24th January 2018, 11:17 AM. Reason: more info

  • #2
    You have important information with that rare haplogroup T. But in your case you now need to switch gears and go to autosomal DNA. Take either FTDNA's family finder or Ancestry DNA and see if you get any second or third cousin DNA matches with haplogroup T.


    • #3
      Hi, I did do Ancestry DNA first and recently I did Family Finder. I do see a 2nd cousin on Ancestry that I highly suspect is on my Father's side. However, the guy didn't reply when I tried to contacted him. I didn't mention anything about adoption or anything like that. I was just trying to see how we might be related. He hasn't logged into his Ancestry account since 2016...And his user name isn't revealing anything to me. As far as haplogroup, I don't think Ancestry shows that connection, but I could be wrong. Is there a recommended way to reach out to people that won't scare them away ? Obviously the adoption occurred for a reason and I suppose many people don't want to connect with a long lost relative of an adoption scenario...Thanks!


      • #4
        If you know your mother's name and when she died, are you able to obtain a death certificate for her? That could show her parents' names. Those names would make it easier to track her on the U.S. census. Perhaps she herself had siblings, or cousins that would have photos of her. Not to mention how they or their descendants might show up in your autosomal matches.

        At FTDNA, if anyone related to your maternal side shows up as at least a 3rd cousin or closer match to you, and you can verify that they are from the right family line, then you could make or upload a family tree to FTDNA, and link that person to your tree on your mother's side. That will help to filter your matches; any not on your maternal side may well be from your paternal side. See "Family Finder - Family Matching System," and "Family Finder - Family Matching Tool," both in the FTDNA Learning Center. The more maternal relatives who match you, and you link on your tree, the better the maternal list will be.

        I, too, have a 2nd cousin on Ancestry as my top match, and know how he is related. He has not logged in since the summer, and hasn't replied to my messages. Actually, so far no one on my AncestryDNA match list who I've messaged has replied to me.

        I have heard that some people use their phones to check Ancestry, and that app does not show that they've received messages. So far Ancestry has not fixed that problem. It could be a reason that matches don't reply - they just don't know they have a message!

        If your match has a tree, there is a way to comment on a person in the tree. That comment will trigger an email to the tree owner, even if the other "contact" or "send message" buttons haven't worked. See "How to get your Ancestry match to respond," at Kitty Cooper's blog.
        Last edited by KATM; 24th January 2018, 12:27 PM.


        • #5
          Try to upload your Ancestry DNA results to and see if you get any close matches there.

          Are there any clues in your Ancestry DNA - DNA Origins Ethnicity Estimate?


          • #6
            the only clue I have from Ancestry Ethnicity estimate is my results had 10% Eastern European. My Mom did the Ancestry DNA test and she had no Eastern European. So I'm assuming that's coming from mystery grandfather. As I'm fairly certain my grandmother was almost all Irish as her grandparents were Irish immigrants and her Mother was also Irish immigrant to Scranton PA. It helps some, but I attached my Y-DNA Origins results on original post and I'm totally confused by them.....If anyone knows how to best interpret that, I'd be grateful. Thanks!
            Attached Files


            • #7
              Excellent. You can rule out Middle Eastern and Iberian ancestry for your father's father.

              Your Y-DNA Origins chart shows where your close Y-DNA matches think their direct paternal line is from. The Irish there would be Anglo-Irish. See

              What about your Ancestry DNA - DNA Origins Ethnicity Estimate? That's supposed to show you how far back your Eastern European is.


              • #8
                I don't see that feature in Ancestry Ethnicity Estimate. It's not showing me a timeframe for the Eastern European...Is that something you have to pay for ? I do see DNA story over time at the bottom but the years are only having reference to the Ireland part of my ethnicity. Are we talking about the same thing ? Actually I do have 1% Iberian showing in Ancestry, but my Mom has that too. Range for me says 0-5%.. Also, my ethnicity estimate from Ancestry is a little different than what Family Finder came back with. For example Family Finder shows 20% western European where Ancestry shows none...not sure which is more accurate..


                • #9
                  Well, maybe you'll see a relative at Or maybe a cooperative relative will show up on Ancestry.