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Trying to understand where to go

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  • Trying to understand where to go

    I did the YDNA 37 test. My great grandfather seems to be a ghost and I am beginning to believe he never existed. I submitted my results to the Wyatt projects, but it seems to my like my dna sticks out like a sore thumb. I think I may be related to White instead, for reasons I won't go into at the moment. When I look at the White dna, what do I look for to tell me if I may be related? I'm pretty sure I will never find an exact match on all 37 markers. Are there some markers more important than others? Is there a rule of thumb, like if 24 markers match I'm not related but if 25 match I am? Family tree has come up with a few matches, one with a genetic distance of 3 the rest of 4. How do I find out what a genetic distance of 3 even means? I should be able to click on the title "genetic distance" on my matches and it explain to me what it means, but familytree doesn't seem to be that user friendly. If my match says genetic marker 37 does that mean all 37 of my markers match that person? So far there have been no matches for Wyatt or White but a lot of McGinnis and Darby and Duffy. Thanks for any help of this still confused person.

  • #2
    If the Big Y test is an option for you (it's expensive), you may be able to gain some perspective. After the Big Y data are analyzed by a service such as the Big Tree (free, if you happen to fall into the huge R-P312 Y-DNA haplogroup) or YFull (moderate fee), you should be able to see whether your family is really on the same branch of the Y chromosome evolutionary tree as any of the candidate families you mentioned, or if, instead, you are out on a little twig somewhere by yourself. If the former, then you have a good reason to investigate those families further. If the latter, you can safely dismiss those possibilities on the grounds that they aren't closely related to you!

    I, too, started with the Y-37 test, eventually upgraded to Y-111, and found no close matches with my McCoy surname. There were several families that were possible near misses. Big Y clarified the situation: I really am out on a little twig by myself, separated by several SNP's and at least several centuries from all of the other families sampled so far, and I am way, way far removed from all other McCoy families. Therefore, I can safely ignore the other McCoys as well as the other families. They aren't related to me within the genealogical timeframe, and very likely not within the period when permanent surnames have been used. I just have to wait for more data. There is plenty of other genealogy I can work on while I wait.

    Good luck with your search!


    • #3
      Have you tried Family Finder?


      • #4
        Inkmei, I seem to be in the same boat. I tested my Y-DNA to try and pin down my grandfather but it didn't help (I have solved it, through collaborative focus on the family tree) and I don't seem to have any decent results which suggest obvious recent matches on the paternal line. It suggests we come from poorly sampled populations (mine are probably largely still in rural Ireland) and/or that a lot of lines never made it down to the present day.

        I'm certainly coming around to the idea that the next step, after cousin testing (I need some triangulation to work out where all my Family Finder results are coming from), will be Big Y as John McCoy mentions. Unless other people test and match with me, that is the only way I'll be able to get good overview of the deep history of my paternal line which might help rule possibilities in or out.