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4th cousins Y DNA results

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  • 4th cousins Y DNA results

    I found a 4th cousin of my husband and they both did a Y 37 test. They match with a genetic distance of 2 and I have been told the two they did not match on were ones that mutate more frequently (not sure if I stated that correctly). Anyway, my husband had many more matches than his cousin at the Y 37 level. My husband had more than a dozen pages and his cousin only had one that was not full. They did have a couple matches that they shared. Why wouldn't they have more shared matches? My husband has gone on to further testing but the cousin has not and I can't make a good arguement for him to do more with the results he got from the Y 37. My husband and the cousin are of the oldest generation with the surname. The cousin has a brother and I have questioned whether he would consider doing the Y 37 test, also. Since my husband has done the Y111, would it be helpful for me to help the cousin upgrade to the Y111 or have the other brother test? I have already spent more than I liked to do my husband's and do not want to misuse any more. I have also just ordered an SNP test since it appears he may be of a certain SNP group that would help us get back perhaps to the 1600's. That wouldn't help with the gap from our oldest known ancestor born in 1737 or the generation before that, which is what I really want to find out.

    BTW, the Y DNA test has not given us any other people with the same surname as my husband or his cousin. How frustrating!

  • #2
    More evidence is always better, but as you suggest, you have to consider the cost and the possible benefit. To some extent the answer depends on your research goals. If you already have a solid paper trail (sufficient to be sure that they are indeed 4th cousins), I'm not sure how further Y DNA testing would get you farther back, especially since there don't seem to be any promising Y DNA matches. One thing that further Y DNA testing MIGHT do, is to rule out some possibilities. For me, the Big Y test placed my McCoy family on a little twig on the R1b haplotree, far removed from the other McCoy families that have been tested, and that discovery allows me to ignore all of those other families because they are clearly not related to me!

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    • #3
      Thanks for responding. Yes, we do have an accurate paper trail that supports my husband and his 4th cousin being cousins. Their GGG GF, James Boston left some family papers to family members with names, dates of birth of his children and by whom they were baptized as well as the names of some of his grandchildren. I found them on the North Carolina Digital Archives. The papers had been donated by another 4th cousin whose grandmother had them. I was able to track down the person who donated them to the Archives. His Grandmother's maiden name was Boston but of course her married name wasn't. He thought the Boston family line had ended. We also have in the family a bible that is from the son of the GGG GF and proves our line down several more generations.

      My goal is to really find the parents of our oldest known ancestor, my husband's GGGG GF, Major John Boston. He was born in 1737 but we do not know where. He died in 1810 in Effingham County, GA. In the 1760's till 1785, he was in Onslow County, NC. Family lore says the family is Scottish or Scot Irish and that the family was in Nassawadox, VA in the 1660's but I haven't been able to prove that, although there was a Boston family there at the time. Neither my husband or 4th cousin matched a proven descendant from that line. I tracked one down and he agreed to do a Y37 test, hehe.


      My husband matches a group of men with the surname McIvaille or McInvale with a GD of 7, 8 and 9 and whose ancestor came over in the early 1700's from Ayr, Scotland into Virginia and then into NC. I have ordered a SNP that has been isolated to these men. Will see how that turns out. If I can't work backwards, maybe I can work forwards from them to get to the parents of our Major John Boston.

      There haven't been many men tested with the surname of Boston, only a handful. The other lines do not match my husband, although on ancestry, he does have a match or two with a Virginia line of Bostons and with one with a Boston line from Austrailia, but those are 5th-8th cousins.

      So, that is what I am dealing with. I just hate to ask people to cough up a couple hundred of dollars on the chance that they might help me prove or not prove they are related to my husband and I can't afford to pay for them to test at the higher levels.




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      • #4
        Originally posted by Nanaof3 View Post
        BTW, the Y DNA test has not given us any other people with the same surname as my husband or his cousin. How frustrating!
        Between Y-DNA and Family Finder I came up with a 1st cousin who descends from my grandfather and not the grandfather they had in their tree. Seems my grandfather forgot his marriage vowels. The marriage date was a month later than the other family thought is was and the birth certificate named the wrong father. DNA doesn't lie.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Nanaof3 View Post
          I found a 4th cousin of my husband and they both did a Y 37 test. They match with a genetic distance of 2 and I have been told the two they did not match on were ones that mutate more frequently (not sure if I stated that correctly). Anyway, my husband had many more matches than his cousin at the Y 37 level. My husband had more than a dozen pages and his cousin only had one that was not full. They did have a couple matches that they shared. Why wouldn't they have more shared matches?

          .......
          Number of matches for each depends on which line has the mutations, both or just one.
          YDNA37 only shows matches up to a GD of 4, therefore let say it is the cousins line that has the two mutations, any your husbands matches that are 3 or 4 GD will potentially be excluded from cousins match list due to fact these matches will have a GD of 5 and 6 to match (potentially)

          on the other hand, cousins match list maybe more accurate if mutations happen in your husbands line, his results may be showing STR Convergence
          https://isogg.org/wiki/Convergence

          Sometimes it is more beneficial, if possible to test 3 separate lines of the same paternal surname to determine which results are likely to have the recent mutations.

          ie)My father and his paternal 1st cousin are a GD of 4 at the 37 marker level (3 markers different, one being a two step difference)
          Cousins has more surname matches with lower GD's
          Cousin has 2.5 pages of matches that contain 36 surname matches with GD's of 0 to 4 at the 37 marker level
          My Father only has 12 yDNA37 matches of which only 8 are of our surname with GD's of 3 and 4 (one being above cousin at a GD of 4)

          Each level only show matches up to a set GD
          yDNA 12 - Exact, unless members of same project then that match will show if they have a GD of 1
          YDNA 37 - up to GD of 4
          yDNA 67 - up to GD of 7
          yDNA 111 - up to GD of 10

          I would consider bigY500 (includes the yDNA 111 marker level) for cousin over yDNA111 if within budget (usually can find $100 off coupons for it in December)
          It depends on your goals in testing yDNA as it reaches further back in time.
          Last edited by prairielad; 7th November 2018, 04:53 PM.

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          • #6
            Jim,

            I am not eliminating the possibility of a NPE. Just within the ancestors we know about, my husband's GG GF, son of James Boston, was given to a neighbor family to raise when his wife died 10 days after giving birth. I am sure the father felt he had to find someone to care for the baby and at the time, this family did not have children of their own. Then my husband's father was more or less raised by his single Aunt because his mother died when he was just a few months old. It is certainly possible that a woman with the last name Boston gave birth to a child fathered by a McInvale and the child kept the name Boston. Who knows!
            Last edited by Nanaof3; 7th November 2018, 07:21 PM.

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            • #7
              Emerging science is emerging science. The statistical models it is based upon is only as good as the population sample it is based upon is in its representation of the particular demographic the person(s) tested belong to.

              Multiple mutation events on Y-DNA lines going from parent to child(yes, more than 1, and yes in a single generation) have already been observed in some (commercial) labs, and from what I have heard when talking to someone in the field, certain sub-clades seem to be more prone to it than others on certain markers.

              Now as to HOW those outcomes are coming about, that seems to almost be holy-war level fodder for some in the field at this point. Which is rather sad, all things considered, science doesn't happen when people declare they have sacred cows that are non-negotiable from the start.

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              • #8
                One thing we have to keep in mind, since mutation is itself under genetic control (DNA repair enzymes, for example, as well as the particular sequences that these enzymes prefer to act upon), we should expect that mutations rates will vary among individuals, and not necessarily in a simple way. We will probably not have large enough sample sizes to prove statistically that Mr. A is more likely to produce a Y DNA mutation than Mr. B, but it does not seem permissible to use the "average" mutation rate as a way to prove that Mr. A and Mr. B can't be related at a particular degree because there are too many (or too few) mutations separating them. In other words, individual variability increases the uncertainty of any estimate of the number of generations separating two Y DNA profiles, in a way that probably cannot be quantified precisely. We have to allow for this additional uncertainty when considering genealogical hypotheses.

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