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What did you get out of a Y-DNA test?

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  • What did you get out of a Y-DNA test?

    I took a Y-67 test and am awaiting the results. In the meantime, I'm mulling over how valuable it will really be. I think it will be a fun little project for the DNA projects on this site. I think it's also good to have the information and know it. I think it will also serve as a wonderful guidepost for any future test takers that come along whom might be distantly related. I'm hoping too that it may be helpful in solving a mystery of two men born at the same time in relatively the same location with the same name. One was my paternal ancestor and the other ended up settling in Canada. But people who have built trees on Ancestry have been linking the two men as the same guy and so perhaps this will give me further insight.

    In other ways, I question the value. Do you have any great stories to go with taking a Y-DNA test? I'm looking for anecdotes about value you got from taking these tests that make them worth spending the money after you already took an autosomal test?

  • #2
    I tested in 2002. Turned out the first "cousin" I asked to test wasn't a cousin. An 1880 adoption verified that he wasn't a cousin. It was used to show that a family rumor was false, an adoptive father was thought to also be the birth father but the adoptive father was from a different branch of the Haplotree from the adopted son.

    We are currently waiting for a Y-DNA12 test to see if autosomal relationship is also a paternal relationship. Normally I would want much more than 12 markers but that will be enough in this case.

    If nothing else, it can serve as another piece evidence to support a paper trail.

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    • #3
      I took a 67 STR test a couple of years ago. It confirmed I was related to another Ashley who claimed descent from the the same ancestor born about 1675 and also confirmed that I was not related to any of the Ashleys claiming descent from different ancestors. (It also produced a ton of false matches with people with different surnames.)

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      • #4
        My cousin's test revealed that there was a non-paternal event somewhere in our line. Using autosomal testing, I eventually found out that my great-grandfather was the son of a neighbor, not the son of my 2nd great-grandmother's husband. The worse thing about it was that I had spent 10 years researching the wrong line!

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        • #5
          Originally posted by MoberlyDrake View Post
          My cousin's test revealed that there was a non-paternal event somewhere in our line. Using autosomal testing, I eventually found out that my great-grandfather was the son of a neighbor, not the son of my 2nd great-grandmother's husband. The worse thing about it was that I had spent 10 years researching the wrong line!
          Was all of your research for those 20 years on that one line?

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          • #6
            No. During those 10 years I researched other lines as well,but I spent most of my time trying to find out who the parents of Robert C. Moberly were and who his wife was. I succeeded finally with the wife, never with Robert.

            The discovery of the NPE simply led to a change in brick walls!!! Now, I've spent 6 years trying to find out who the parents of Enoch Hampton and his wife Lucretia Duncan were. Now I have DNA as a tool in addition to searching for documents. I can't come up with any more documents to check, and DNA isn't getting me anywhere. I'm about ready to give up on this one!

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            • #7
              Originally posted by cjm View Post
              In other ways, I question the value. Do you have any great stories to go with taking a Y-DNA test? I'm looking for anecdotes about value you got from taking these tests that make them worth spending the money after you already took an autosomal test?
              I took the Y-DNA test first because my mission was to get past the brickwall with my patrilineal third great grandfather and his wife. Like many other Wyatt's, the belief was that our ancestor was Rev. Haute Wyatt, an early inhabitant of the Jamestown, Virginia settlement. That line would go back to the two Sir Thomas Wyatt's and a Sir Henry, I believe, who was saved during his imprisonment in a tower by a kitty cat. The family genealogists of previous generations would lament, "we know we are related to Rev. Haute Wyatt, if we could just find the missing link." So I took test and it was not even close. Even the major haplogroup was wrong.

              It now appears that my patrilineal line was Holcomb prior to the mid-1600s and it probably goes back to a Sir John de Holcombe who was knighted by King Richard the Lion Hearted during the Third Crusade.


              Jack Wyatt

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              • #8
                My first yDNA test revealed five close matches with the same surname - but not my surname. It took 6 years, countless hours of research, and 22 DNA tests to solve that mystery. An out-of-the-blue atDNA match on Ancestry was the breakthrough.

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                • #9
                  I tested several years ago, initially with a Y37 test, which recently became Y111 and finally BigY500. My original results confirmed my relationship to my known cousins of varying degrees all descending from a common male ancestor from Scotland. Big Y placed our haplogroup on the Y-haplogroup tree and recently we've discovered a match with a similar surname (who is missing the patronymic part of the surname) with roots across the channel from Scotland in Northern Ireland (perhaps a family connection back to the Scottish Plantation of Ulster?)

                  It took awhile to get all these results, but genealogy isn't necessarily a rapid process.

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                  • #10
                    My only real reason for taking a Y-DNA test was to help determine if any of the different Newcomb families in the US have a common progenitor in England. Like you, I'm waiting patiently for the results.

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                    • #11
                      Slow but valuable progress

                      Hi. I have to agree that even more than most genetic genealogy, Y-DNA research is slow to bear fruit. However as it does, it provides invaluable insight into deeper ancestry.

                      I took a 37 marker test first I believe, then eventually upgraded to 111 marker and the Big Y. My one match at 37 still matched me at 67 but fell away after that. He also shares my surname.

                      He has a closer cousin who also matches me at 36 (but clearly tested through a different company). One of my 12 marker surname matches also matches my 67 match at the 36 marker level as well. So one can infer that my direct line have had the same surname for at least 10-15 generations.

                      I was intrigued to discover that our shared line is a Celtic one as well. I think its really important to take advantage of some of the excellent haplogroup projects - they can offer some amazing insight. There is a strong correlation between our line and several Irish-Scot families and clans. I'm a little more skeptical about the value of surname orientated Y-projects as surnames appear to be very transitory and most deeper ancestry seems to probe outside of genealogical time.

                      Sometimes I think its a matter of waiting for the right people to come along and test. Potentially if I can locate a match with the same surname who descends from the same village in Cornwall (Penryn) I'm certain that they will be a 67+ marker match for me (maybe 37-67 marker for the others).

                      I think its important to be realistic about what's possible and the potential time frame. Y-DNA is a long term investment. I also think its really necessary to be open minded as there are likely to be surprises when researching deeper ancestry and the reality may vary from the myth.

                      At the end of the day if you are working backwards still from yourself I think you are going to do okay. Once you start working down from a pre-determined starting point, you are in trouble. So it has that in common with autosomal research.

                      It's not cheap but its the only way to learn some valuable information about your deeper ancestry.

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