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DNA match - Paternal Grandfather

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  • DNA match - Paternal Grandfather

    For years we've been trying to figure out who our paternal grandfather was; our father was the result of an NPE, born in 1911 in Joggins, NS. His baptismal certificate surprisingly named the father as Angus Arsenault which wasn't terribly helpful since we could find no such person in the area. A few months ago I gathered some circumstantial evidence pointing to a Joseph Augustin aka Joseph Angus Arsenault from Abrham's village PEI. He appears not to have married until 1941 when he was nearly 50 and died only 9 years later; his obituary said nothing about surviving children so I spent hours finding out as much as I could about his siblings and their descendants. A few weeks ago, a match came up for two of my sisters on Ancestry sharing only 144 cM with one sister but 305 cM with the other. This person is the grandson of one of Angus' brothers which would make him our 2nd cousin; it's also the most shared DNA any of us have had (4 sisters tested) outside immediate family. Although we would also share a common ancestor with this person through our grandmother, it would be much further back at something like 5th cousin so we have taken this as proof that our theory is correct and we're extremely excited. I'd be interested in hearing whether others share my opinion that this offers the proof we were looking for. I should say that our father's family is entirely Acadian while our mother's family is strictly English/Scottish/Irish and we have had very few DNA matches on the maternal side of our family.

  • #2
    The shared cM is consistent with 2nd cousin (you can find the very useful chart that tells you this by doing a Google search on "DNA Detectives Autosomal Statistics Chart" -- the one chart I keep next to my computer at all times!), but you should look for additional corroboration. For one thing, the 2nd cousin relationship could equally well be through some other brother of Joseph Augustin. If you can find other relatives from the Arsenault family, may be able to verify that the shared cM for all combinations of these kits are consistent with your proposed family tree. The more relatives who match at the expected level, the stronger the case for your proposed solution becomes.


    • #3
      Thanks so much, John; I do have that lovely chart and, like you, I keep it next to my computer. I'd love to find another match but, unfortunately, that's the first we've managed to come across. I do know that there was one sister who had a daughter in 1942 in PEI and I even know her name and that she graduated from Nursing School in 1964 tu all attempts to find out whether she is still alive have been to no avail. Always hopeful, however.