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  • Family Finder Kit

    Hi there, this is my first post

    I hit a brick wall searching for my dad's mother's birth record (she was illegitimate, father unknown), so I ordered the Family Finder DNA kit from Family Tree DNA (via Find My Past) and sent off my samples, in case this might help. I was thinking I might be able to find out who her father was. I am awaiting the results but have a few questions.

    How likely is it that I might find out who my dad's mother's father was this way?! My dad died but I might be able to ask his brother (my uncle) if he could do a DNA test - do you think it is more likely that I might find out via my uncle's DNA via the Y DNA kit? It would be his mum's father that I would be looking for.

    If anyone could educate me further, I would be really grateful!

    Thanks,
    Pascale (from England)

  • #2
    Strongly suggest asking your uncle - your Dad's brother - to do a FamilyFinder Test. Your uncle is a generation further back than you are, and along the same line as your father - so that can be very valuable in your search for info on your father, including info on your father's mother and her father.


    You are looking for the father of the mother of (your dad and his brother) - YDNA from your dad or his brother will be of no help here - it just goes back to their father, their father's father, their father's father's father, etc. - no info on their Mother, including no info on her father.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by loobster View Post
      Strongly suggest asking your uncle - your Dad's brother - to do a FamilyFinder Test. Your uncle is a generation further back than you are, and along the same line as your father - so that can be very valuable in your search for info on your father, including info on your father's mother and her father.

      You are looking for the father of the mother of (your dad and his brother) - YDNA from your dad or his brother will be of no help here - it just goes back to their father, their father's father, their father's father's father, etc. - no info on their Mother, including no info on her father.
      Hi loobster and thanks so much for your help. It's good to know that there's no point in my uncle doing the YDNA test! How likely do you think it is that I would be able to deduce who my uncle's mother's father was through my uncle's DNA? Would it be a miracle or are revelations like this quite common in the world of Genealogy DNA? (Do you think it's unlikely that my DNA result will help me in this search?)

      Thanks

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      • #4
        Loobster's spot on - ask your uncle to test. Offer to pay, if necessary. I'm not a statistician, so I would say your uncle's autosomal DNA is twice as likely to find his grandfather as yours is (a statistician would be able to correct me on this!) because he's that much closer to the mystery ancestor. Plus you would have your own results, which might contain some relevant DNA that your father got from his mother but your uncle didn't.

        Also upload both sets of results to Gedmatch. There you can compare with people who've tested at other companies and who are probably interested enough in genealogy to answer your emails.

        I tested to find my father's father (in Australia). I was 99% sure who he was, but wanted to prove it. I had a 2C1R match a few months ago on GEDmatch, which did prove it; and about a week ago a second 2C1R match here at FTDNA. I've had less success trying to find my father's maternal grandmother but I have much less info to go on there.
        You could also browse the adoptees forum for similar stories, or use the Search function to do the same.

        So: yes, it's possible to do what you're asking BUT it takes some work. DNA alone won't find the mystery ancestor and you'll need to do some genealogical sleuthing as well.

        I also recommend reading as much as you can about atDNA and how it works - including blogs such as dna.explained, the genetic genealogist, and the dna geek. There's also a forum on facebook called Genetic Genealogy Tips & Techniques which you might find useful. It's a closed group, and you have to request to join it.
        Last edited by Fern; 9th February 2018, 02:43 PM. Reason: Clarity

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        • #5
          Test your uncle at as many DNA companies as you can afford, since you never know where close relatives may have tested. After FTDNA do Ancestry and also 23andMe if you can.

          I was able to find fathers for 2 ladies (different fathers, different DNA companies) last summer simply because I contacted them due to the fact that they were close matches to my mother and their shared matches lists clearly indicated which line our common ancestor was in.

          You may want to read The Family Tree Guide to DNA Testing and Genetic Genealogy by Blaine T. Bettinger.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Fern View Post
            Loobster's spot on - ask your uncle to test. Offer to pay, if necessary. I'm not a statistician, so I would say your uncle's autosomal DNA is twice as likely to find his grandfather as yours is (a statistician would be able to correct me on this!) because he's that much closer to the mystery ancestor. Plus you would have your own results, which might contain some relevant DNA that your father got from his mother but your uncle didn't.

            Also upload both sets of results to Gedmatch. There you can compare with people who've tested at other companies and who are probably interested enough in genealogy to answer your emails.

            I tested to find my father's father (in Australia). I was 99% sure who he was, but wanted to prove it. I had a 2C1R match a few months ago on GEDmatch, which did prove it; and about a week ago a second 2C1R match here at FTDNA. I've had less success trying to find my father's maternal grandmother but I have much less info to go on there.
            You could also browse the adoptees forum for similar stories, or use the Search function to do the same.

            So: yes, it's possible to do what you're asking BUT it takes some work. DNA alone won't find the mystery ancestor and you'll need to do some genealogical sleuthing as well.

            I also recommend reading as much as you can about atDNA and how it works - including blogs such as dna.explained, the genetic genealogist, and the dna geek. There's also a forum on facebook called Genetic Genealogy Tips & Techniques which you might find useful. It's a closed group, and you have to request to join it.
            Thanks for all this info, Fern. I'm a hell of a lot wiser after this! Okay so the work begins when I get my results then. And when I can afford it, ask my uncle if he would do his DNA too. Thanks for the FB group tip too.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by MoberlyDrake View Post
              Test your uncle at as many DNA companies as you can afford, since you never know where close relatives may have tested. After FTDNA do Ancestry and also 23andMe if you can.

              I was able to find fathers for 2 ladies (different fathers, different DNA companies) last summer simply because I contacted them due to the fact that they were close matches to my mother and their shared matches lists clearly indicated which line our common ancestor was in.

              You may want to read The Family Tree Guide to DNA Testing and Genetic Genealogy by Blaine T. Bettinger.
              That's brilliant, MD. I'm amazed that you found 2 fathers this way. For me it always sounded so far fetched. I mean, I didn't think many people do get their DNA tested, or maybe they do? They clearly do! Thanks for this info. Going to need to throw more money at this, I think! Thanks for your help

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