Ancestry’s Autosomal DNA Results

I have been waiting with anticipation for several months for the results of my autosomal DNA testing from Ancestry and finally received them.  The key component they report is about your Genetic Ethnicity.  No surprise, the results show I am 75% from the British Isles (Ireland, England, Scotland, Wales), It also indicated that for 5% my ethnicity is uncertain.  They also mention that as their genetic signatures improve over time it may provide details. We have long thought that my 3rd great grandmother was Cherokee and the test didn’t prove or disprove it as the 2-3% DNA I received from her is within that 5% uncertain.

Of particular interest further the test results give interesting links to “cousins.”  I didn’t have any close cousins but there are 8 genetic 4th – 6th cousins. That is fairly distant but does provide a starting point for some additional research.  A quick first look didn’t illuminate any common ancestors but there were several who didn’t have shared trees that I’ll have to contact. 

Besides just the contacts the results on Ancestry it provides a common name list. Wherein it displays last names which are common between our trees.  It also has a location tab which shows locations that are common between our trees.  That may prove even more interesting for research possibilities  For example one of my cousins didn’t appear to have any names in common with me, but we both have ancestors born in Carter County, Kentucky.  The individual may have additional details and research that I may find relevant.  

Of course, I’m looking forward to many more people taking the test which should, hopefully, provide a link to someone a bit closer than 4th cousin.  Anyway, it is a great new tool. For those who are Ancestry members the test is only $99.

Roots Tech 2012 video – “Future of FamilySearch Family Tree”

More on the Roots Tech videos:
The Roots Tech 2012 video presentations are, for the most part, wonderful and the presentation by Ron Tanner was among the best.  It was very informative and Ron is extremely entertaining and engaging.  He says he’s “crazy” but from what I saw his really isn’t “crazy” but rather, his is excited about his work and what FamilySearch is doing in the future.  FamilySearch Family Tree have some amazing things planned, ways in which collaboration in family tree can be much easier and still maintain accountability if/when someone changes something in a tree.  The changes planned really have the potential to revolutionize collaboration. Some changes may not be implemented until the end of the year but the new family tree capabilities appear to be very desirable.  I’m looking forward to the new features.

Family Search is one of my top sites and their improvements might move it to the top.

See: Videos Schedule | RootsTech.org:
Then select: “Saturday, 11:00 AM
Future of FamilySearch Family Tree
By Ron Tanner”

Kentucky – Confederate Pension Applications

I ran into a great site as part of the Kentucky Department of Libraries and Archives at
Department of Confederate Pensions (1912 – 1946).  More than just the application for pension, it also contains supporting documentation.  In the case of an ancestor that I was looking at, not only did the site have his application, it had confirmation regarding his muster dates, that he was wounded twice during the war.  It also included his death certificate and some follow-up documentation (handwritten letters) about where to send his final payment – to a daughter who was going by a first name I hadn’t know beforehand.

Kentucky didn’t pass the Confederate Pension act until 1912, so the veteran had to live 47 years after the war (into the individual’s late 60’s or older) and needed to have remained in Kentucky.

A great feature is that you can search and display applications by county, so I could look at all of the applications from folks in Morgan county at once.

Intentions

My intention for this blog is to document some of my findings and experiences doing genealogical research.  Join with me as I document some of the many things I learn.  I consider myself an advanced amateur who recently received his first paid gig. (So, I guess I am a novice professional.)  I definitely believe in sharing information, tools, techniques, and tips so I hope to do a lot of that here.  I live in Smyrna, Georgia and will also be blogging about my experiences with local resources.

Roots Tech Videos – Great!

I ran into a really great site, Roots Tech.  It has videos from their
latest convention, which is apparently the largest genealogy Tech
convention in the country.  It is held yearly in Salt Lake City.  I wish it was a lot closer so I could attend.  Anyway, the videos seem to run about an hour each. I watched one from a guy from Google and using Google for genealogical research.  It had lots of really great tips.  Probably the best one was using the tilde parameter.  For example, searching for “Arthur Brown ~genealogy” will yield  results that only relate to genealogical research, vital records,
etc.  Really cool.  Also you can use the double dot parameter in dates.
 Such as  “Arthur Brown 1868..1928 will return results for the date
range and will ignore an Arthur Brown born in 1929.   Really helpful.  So often Google searches are like drinking water from a fire hose.  These two parameters can really reduce the flow to a manageable level. 

The video I watched also talked about Google Image Search wherein you can
upload a picture and have Google look for similar pictures.   Subsequently, I have not had a lot of success with it, but I think it could lead to a breakthrough on that rare photo that you know is of someone that is related but you don’t have a name for them and I have a bunch of them. (I have about 20 photos from 1890 plus/minus 20 years which are “Hubers from Switzerland”.)

There was a bit about searching Google News but only searching the archives and leaving out the current events, which we don’t typically care about in genealogical research.  The same thing about using Google Books.  They also mentioned using Google + to link with others doing research.

Just the Google presentation will revolutionize my research methods.  I can’t wait to see the other videos.

As you can tell, I was really impressed and will use their google tips a lot. .