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DNA match with Immigrant ancestor from England!

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  • DNA match with Immigrant ancestor from England!

    My family traced our genealogy back to James Smalley, who died in Putnam County, NY in 1823. His wife's name is unknown, as well as his exact date of birth.

    By looking at records, we assumed that he was the son of James Smalley and Hannah Bickford, but lacked the records to prove it.

    I participated in a DNA project at dnafamilytree.com to find the descendants of John Smalley and Edward Smalley, and to prove or disprove if John and Edward were related.

    James Smalley (Sr.) would have been the great grandson of Edward Smalley.

    Here is a description of the DNA project:

    John Smalley, ca. 1611-1692, of Plymouth Colony m. Ann Walden 29 Nov 1638, settled at Eastham on Cape Cod & later in Middlesex Co., NJ. Edward Smalley, d.ca.1664/65 of Maine, had descendants using Smalley & Small surnames. Y chromosome signatures have been established for John & Edward proving that they were not related. This site is dedicated to the descendants of John Smalley & Edward Smalley & other Smalley immigrants who can now prove, or disprove, relationship to John & Edward.

    I took the DNA test, and tested positive for Edward! Now at last my family has definitive proof of our family tree back to the man who immigrated from Bideford, Devon County, England, and arrived in the Plymouth colony, MA in 1635.

  • #2
    Congratulations! I love hearing stories like this--that's what it's all about.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by GhostX
      Congratulations! I love hearing stories like this--that's what it's all about.
      Yeah, it's just too cool, isn't?

      For the record....it has been widely assumed that James Smalley of Putnam County, NY (born between 1720-1735) was from Truro, MA and was also one of the many Smalleys on Cade Cod who were descendants of Edward Smalley, through his son Francis Smalley and Elizabeth Leighton. All of the Smalleys descend from Edward through Francis and Elizabeth because Francis is the only son that accompanied Edward from England.

      The DNA test just proved it 100%.

      There is still some controversy as to which James Smalley he really is. The problem is that there are too many "James Smalleys" that overlap among many of the Smalley siblings. This family is one of the worst for genealogists to research because they have so many duplicating and overlapping names.

      James Smalley migrated to Putnam County, NY around 1745-46 with his sister Hannah Smalley, and her husband Elisha Cole II.

      Some genealogists don't believe that my James Smalley of Putnam County, NY was the son of James Smalley (Sr.) and Hannah Bickford.

      Others do believe it.

      Until a genealogist can prove that he is not the son of James and Hannah, I'm going to believe it. There just aren't any other James Smalleys who have a sister named Hannah in his generation. I will acknowledge, though, that there is a problem with Hannah Bickford Smalley's birthday. If this Hannah Smalley is the one who married Elisha Cole II, then she would've been 12 years old when she married him.

      There is a problem with finding the records to prove it one way or the other.

      As an aside, my Smalley family is quite well researched by genealogists because they were such early settlers of the Plymouth colony, and were the first white settlers of the part of Maine in the area around Kittery, ME and Cape Cod, MA.

      Many of the Smalleys married Mayflower descendants (Hannah Bickford was a mayflower descandant), which is another reason why genealogists have looked into this line.
      Last edited by suginami; 24 May 2008, 02:34 PM.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by suginami
        Yeah, it's just too cool, isn't?

        For the record....it has been widely assumed that James Smalley of Putnam County, NY (born between 1720-1735) was from Truro, MA and was also one of the many Smalleys on Cade Cod who were descendants of Edward Smalley, through his son Francis Smalley and Elizabeth Leighton. All of the Smalleys descend from Edward through Francis and Elizabeth because Francis is the only son that accompanied Edward from England.

        The DNA test just proved it 100%.
        Suginami,

        I don't want to bust your bubble but if your only tests have been Y-DNA, that can not prove the relationship 100%. Y-DNA can only INDICATE that two men shared a common paternal ancestor. It NEVER PROVES a relationship and it NEVER PROVES what the relationship is. Y-DNA can prove the lack of a relationship.

        How many markers were tested? How many Matched?

        Please don't misunderstand me. Y-DNA can be very helpful and if you have a close match on enough markers you do have a good indication of a shared common ancestor.

        Jim Barrett - Timpson, TX

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        • #5
          We tested 37 markers, and all 37 markers matched.

          Plus, of the four (4) known decendants of Edward Smalley who participated, all four of us matched each other at 37 of 37 markers.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by suginami
            James Smalley migrated to Putnam County, NY around 1745-46 with his sister Hannah Smalley, and her husband Elisha Cole II.
            I'd also like to also clarify that it is assumed that Hannah and James Smalley were siblings, but they could've been cousins. It is just a hunch.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Jim Barrett
              Suginami,

              I don't want to bust your bubble but if your only tests have been Y-DNA, that can not prove the relationship 100%. Y-DNA can only INDICATE that two men shared a common paternal ancestor. It NEVER PROVES a relationship and it NEVER PROVES what the relationship is. Y-DNA can prove the lack of a relationship.

              How many markers were tested? How many Matched?

              Please don't misunderstand me. Y-DNA can be very helpful and if you have a close match on enough markers you do have a good indication of a shared common ancestor.

              Jim Barrett - Timpson, TX

              I hate to burst your bubble, but the information provided on family tree dna says otherwise.

              They describe a 37 marker match proves a common ancestor:

              4 generations: 83.49%
              8 generations is 97.28%
              12 generations is 99.55%
              16 generations is 99.93%
              20 generations is 99.99%
              24 generations is 100%

              Edward Smalley is 12 generations back from me, so there is a 99.55% chance that he is my ancestor.

              I'm not much of a gambler, but I'll take those odds.

              Comment


              • #8
                Proof or Probability? - They aren't the same!

                Originally posted by suginami
                I hate to burst your bubble, but the information provided on family tree dna says otherwise.
                If you really believe they have told you that you have 100% proof of this relationship I strongly suggest you contact them. Please note, I did not say 100% probability. I said 100% proof, which is what you said originally. You may not see a difference, I do.

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                • #9
                  Either way, there isn't much controversy in the DNA match.

                  99.5% probability is good enough for me.

                  All known descendants of Edward Smalley matched each other at 37 of 37 markers.

                  And those who were not expected to match with Edward Smalley didn't.

                  I think I'm going to send you the book How to Win Friends and Influence People.
                  Last edited by suginami; 26 May 2008, 10:02 PM.

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                  • #10
                    You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink.

                    Originally posted by suginami
                    I think I'm going to send you the book How to Win Friends and Influence People.
                    Please don't send the book. Use the money to help yourself.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      If you were told that there was a 99.55% chance that it was going to rain, would you bring an umbrella?

                      You are being pedantic and taking issue with my statement of 100% proof.

                      We have the paper trail lineages.

                      The DNA test is just further evidence of what we already know.

                      The dna evidence, coupled with the paper trail evidence for the other men, is overwhelming.

                      I am told by a group moderator on many DNA projects on this website, that it is unusual to have a perfect 37 match when a common ancestor died before 1700. It is a rule of thumb that he has found reliable.

                      The paper trail combined with the Y results is irrefutable in my opinion.

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                      • #12
                        For the record, should anyone read this thread in the future have any questions regarding understanding genetic matches, Family Tree DNA now provides the following explanation under the link "Understanding Matches" when you select the link "Y DNA matches" link in your personal page:

                        "If two 12 marker results match for two participants with the same surname, and the genealogy research shows a common ancestor in 1835, the DNA test has validated the research and proven that the two descendents are related. In this example, you have two items of evidence to support that the individuals tested are related.

                        Without the genealogy research, and where 2 participants with the same surname match on the 12 marker test, then the scientific answer to the degree of relatedness is that 50% of the time the common ancestor would have occurred within 7 generations, or within approximately 150 years. The range of generations for the common ancestor extends to 76.9 generations, or almost 2000 years for those cases where there is not a surname in common. Therefore the importance of a surname link is paramount to provide a comfortable conclusion of relatedness. Most of the time random matches with people with different surnames do not stand the test for extended DNA testing. "

                        In my case, we have four (4) people with 37 marker matches, which suggests a much more recent match than a 12 marker match. We have the same last name and the genealogical paper trail to support the match.
                        Last edited by suginami; 18 June 2008, 06:59 PM.

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                        • #13
                          suginami

                          I agree it is a wonderful match for you. But I would suggest at least 1 USA cousin and the British cousin upgrade to the 67 marker for no other reason then to see just how close of a match this really is at the highest level.

                          I would not expect to see many mutations between the 38th and 67th markers, but anything is possible. I have seen great 37/37 matches turn in to bad matches at the 67 marker level. But I have also seen it more often continue to be a good match at the 67 marker level.

                          Considering the genetic distance, some mutations should be expected to be found at the 67 marker level.

                          I am the 10th USA generation, and the only man in England of my surname to match me is a 65/67 match to me. Our common male ancestor had to be prior to 1699, because my direct line was in the USA by 1728.
                          I am happy for your match, but I think you will really have your answers once you get both sides of the tree upgraded to the 67 marker level.

                          The paper trail along with the test results is more then enough proof for me.
                          That is the key to this kind of testing to start with, we must have that paper trial first, we then get DNA confirmation to confirm that paper trail back to the common male ancestor.

                          Good luck!
                          Don

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Donald Locke
                            The paper trail along with the test results is more then enough proof for me.
                            That is the key to this kind of testing to start with, we must have that paper trial first, we then get DNA confirmation to confirm that paper trail back to the common male ancestor.

                            Good luck!
                            Don
                            Finding a cousin in England would be difficult.

                            My immigrant ancestor arrived in the Plymouth colony in 1635 with his oldest son.

                            He left his wife and other young children in England.

                            Genealogists have researched this family because this immigrant played a role in the first General Court of Maine as a magistrate. The son he arrived with married in Maine, and eventually settled in Cape Cod and had children.

                            The town where they settled as a coincidence of geography happend to be where some Mayflower decendants settled, and several members of the family married Mayflower descendants, which is why genealogists have tracked this family.

                            Back to England.....the church where this immigrant's family were baptized, christened, etc. has been found, and it was discovered that all of the male children he left in England died in childhood.

                            Any siblings or relatives of my immigrant ancestor haven't been found in the town where he lived.
                            Last edited by suginami; 20 June 2008, 04:29 PM.

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