Ancestry’s ThruLines

By Don Taylor

One of the many huge announcements made at Roots Tech was Ancestry unveiling of ThruLinestm. Many bloggers have been writing about it, and I thought I’d see what it can do for me and the DNA Kits that I manage on Ancestry.

Immediately upon entering  AncestryDNA®, you now see ThruLines as the right-hand block which used to house DNA Circles.  There is a link in the block to restore DNA Circles if you wish, but I wanted to Explore ThruLines.

ThruLines then presents a block of my ancestors, parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, etc., all the way to my 5th great-grandparents. (About the limit of what Autosomal DNA results can predict relationship at.)

As I clicked on my parents, ThruLines presented my half siblings for whom I’ve known about for several years now. The same thing was true when I looked at my grandparents’ entries. Looking at my great-grandparents, Hugh and Clora Scott Robert’s ThruLines yielded a 2nd cousin that I’ve corresponded with before.

Clicking on the 2 down block opens up the names of two individuals from Beth’s tree.

When I looked at my Great Grandparents, Joel Clinton and Marada Alice (Lister) Barnes, the power of ThruLines came alive. Two new lines showed. It showed my paternal grandmother had two sisters — one a half great-aunt to me the other a great-aunt. I had known about Essie’s sisters, Flora and Mabel, but hadn’t traced their descendants down. ThruLines provided links to a half 2nd cousin 1x removed (Beth) and to another 2nd cousin 1x removed (JK). In both cases, I know about their grandparents (Flora & Mable) but I didn’t have descendants for either Flora or Mable. The first one, “Beth” had a tree that provided names, dates, and relationships.  That line should be easy to replicate with sources. The second person, cousin “JK,” had two “Private” individuals between her and my great-aunt Mabel.  I should be able to follow Mable’s descendants to that cousin fairly quickly also. However, because ThruLines shows JK’s mother and grandfather are the pathway to her great-grandmother Mable, JK’s line is clear enough to provide information to be able to ask clear and concise questions regarding JK’s ancestors.

Continuing to look at my great-grandfather Arthur Durwood Brown, I found seven DNA cousins with whom I share Art Brown as a common ancestor. Two of the seven were new to me. That is to say, I knew they were DNA cousins before, but I didn’t know exactly how they were related.  Thanks to ThruLines, it is clear.

One problem I do see with ThruLines is that it relies entirely upon individual’s trees.  That is to say, if someone has a mistake, the mistake takes shape and form throughout the system. As an example, I believe my 2nd great grandfather is William Henry Brown, but many others think that Arthur Durwood Brown’s father was Henry “Mack” Brown. ThruLines won’t show anyone who believes that Henry “Mack” Brown might be the common ancestor because he doesn’t show as an ancestor in my tree. So, if your tree is right, ThruLines will confirm your tree. But if your tree is wrong, then ThruLines will confirm your tree with the wrong trees of someone else.  I think it is a dangerous path to follow.

So, it is essential for you to do your own research to validate any “hints” you receive from anyone and  ThruLines is no exception to that rule. Consider what ThruLine provides as a hint and you’ll be okay.  I like ThruLines much better than I liked DNA Circles. It will be more useful in helping me to quickly develop width to my tree, something that is important in understanding DNA match results.

———- Disclaimer ———-

 

Follow the “X”

By Don Taylor

Image by Caroline Davis2010 (CC BY 2.0)

Twenty-Two of our chromosomes are recombinant in nature, which means you receive 50% of your mother’s DNA and 50% of your father’s DNA.  The 23rd chromosome, the X-Y or X-X, is quite different. If you are a male, you received a “Y” chromosome from your father and you received an “X” chromosome from your mother. That X is a recombinant, in that it consists of 50% of your mother’s DNA. However, if you are a female, you received 50% from your mother as recombinant from her, but you also received your other X chromosome as a duplicate from your father. The effect of that is that the amount of DNA received from an ancestor through your X chromosome is higher if the ancestor path switches gender every generation. For example, my mother received 50% from her mother and 50% from her father. Her father received 100% of his X DNA from his mother (recombinant).

Blaine Bettinger (The Genetic Genealogist) has an excellent article, “More X-Chromosome Charts,” which provides charts showing both the Ahnentafel numbers and the percentage of X-DNA you received from which ancestors. The effect of this switching back and forth is that a male receives 12.5% of his mother’s father’s mother’s father’s mother’s father’s mother instead of the 0.78% that he received from that ancestor (a 5th great-grandmother) in the other 22 chromosomes.

I call that line a “zig-zag” line because it shifts gender every generation can provide insight into genetic connections that can really help in understanding matches and where you and that person may have a common ancestor.

The following are my “zig-zag” ancestors:

Ahnentafel #PersonSexExpected %
of X-DNA
3My motherF100
6Richard Earl Brown (1903-1990)M50
13Mary Elizabeth Manning (1878-1983)F50
26John William Manning (1846-1888)M25
53Minerva Ann Tolliver (1821-1902)F25
106Tulion Tolliver (unknown dates)M12.5
213Unknown 5th great-grandmotherF12.5

 In any generation you follow a woman’s mother, the expected % of X-DNA is cut in half. So my mother received 50% of her X-DNA from her mother. I have 50% of my X-DNA from my mother’s mother, so a similar “zig-zag” chart for my mother would be:

Ahnentafel #PersonSexExpected %
of X-DNA
3My motherF100
7Madonna Mae Montran (1893-1976)F50
14John Montran (c.1867-c.1897)M25
29Unknown 2nd great-grandmotherM25

Because my great-grandfather, John Montran’s life is such a mystery and because his parents are a complete mystery to me, discovering ancestors with whom I share X-DNA with may provide key insight into potential candidates for John.

If you share any of the above ancestors with me, I’d love to hear from you and try compare our matches in order to learn of our common ancestor. 

DNA Testing and Results Companies

23 and Me requires you to compare DNA in their browser and then manually determine if there is a match on the X-Chromosome. You can download your raw DNA data and import it into several other services. (Kits available for $69 until 23 Nov 2018)

AncestryDNA doesn’t provide information about X-DNA Matches nor does it provide for a chromosome browser. You can, however, download your raw DNA data and import it into FamilyTree DNA and GEDMatch. (Kits are available for $59 until 21 Nov 2018)

FamilyTree DNA shows you that an individual has an X-Match with you, even if that match is extremely low, even down to 1cM if they match otherwise at higher levels. You can test with FamilyTree DNA, with “Family Finder.” Alternately, you can also upload raw DNA results from Ancestry, 23andMe, MyHeritage and the National Genographic Project 2.0. (Kits are $79.00)

GEDMatch allows you to select whether a match is based on autosomal or X. By selecting X, you can see only those matches with whom you share X-DNA. If you look at the individual’s kit number and it begins with “A” they kit was imported from Ancestry. GEDMatch does no testing but allows you to upload your raw DNA data from various services including Ancestry, FTDNA, WeGene, MyHeritage and others. GEDMatch does no testing,

MyHeritageDNA does not show you your X-Matches (at least not with uploaded kit results).

LivingDNA does not show you any match data.

Looking solely at X-Chromosome match capability,  FamilyTree DNA and GEDMatch are the best, with 23 and Me following closely behind. AncestryDNA, Living DNA, and MyHeritageDNA do not support X-Chromosome match analysis. Look closely at your tree and your X-Chromosome, you may find that a new clue to help find that elusive ancestor.

————–  Disclaimer  ————–

Hemsworth Speculation

Hemsworth Speculation Leads to a Conclusion.

Peterson Paternal Project
By Don Taylor

I think I have enough information to finally speculate on my half-sister’s paternity.

I’ll call each of the individuals in this study by the amount of DNA they share with my sister. There are three individuals who have trees I could use for comparison, #117, #201, and #271. Ancestry indicates that he is likely a 2nd or 3rd cousin. As such they would share a common great-grandparent or great-great-grandparent.

Continue reading “Hemsworth Speculation”

Color Clustering Technique

Dana Leeds recently had a couple posts on her blog site, “The Enthusiastic Genealogist,” about using color clustering to identify common surnames in genealogy. I thought I’d try using her technique to see if the process would shed new light onto two old problems.

Montran-Barber Line

First, my grandmother’s line, Montran and Barber.  My mother tested on 23&Me and so did my mother’s half-sister, Barbara. Having half-siblings in the tree makes DNA tracking a lot easier. In my mother’s case, if a person has a DNA match with my mother and her half-sister, we know that the match comes from my mother’s paternal side.  If the person matches with my mother and not her half-sister, I know that the match comes from my mother’s maternal side.

The process is pretty straight forward, enter the name, and a color for the connection using a different color if the individual is not related to the previous people. Once you have the colors determined, add if the individual has a tree available. If so, enter the surnames for that line into a chart.

I entered the individual’s name, amount of DNA shared, and blue, if there was a match with Aunt Barbara and another color is the match was not with Aunt Barbara. In my mother’s case, the first 50 matches all matched with Aunt Barbara. With no diversity I couldn’t find anyone that might potentially have Montran or Barber ancestors. So, it didn’t work for my mother.

Peterson Paternal Project

Next, I went to work on my half-sister’s paternal project. If she and I are a common match to an individual, we know that the connection is on our common mother’s side. If an individual matches Glennis and not me, I know that the match is on her unknown paternal side.

Ignoring matches with me (the Brown/Montran line), and using the Enthusiastic Genealogist’s technique showed four trees. All of which have some relationship with another.

Trees relating to Peterson Paternity Project

A review of the surnames found in the trees available showed only one surname was repeated in two trees, Hemsworth. More exciting though, I learned that, although tree 271 above, didn’t have a Hemsworth in it, my previous research found a Hemsworth one generation further back than 271’s tree showed. With three DNA matches all having Hemsworth in their trees, it is time to speculate a possible connection.

DNA – Glennis’ Paternal Search – Part 14

Following Descendants of Nathan Smith & Belinda (Odell) Morgan – Samson Green Morgan

By Don Taylor

My half-sister Glennis is a DNA match on Ancestry.Com with several individuals who have common ancestors with Nathan Smith Morgan and his wife, Belinda [sometimes Malinda Odell. In the search to determine Glennis’ biological father, I am continuing to develop a tree of the descendants of Nathan and Belinda.

Descendants of Nathan and Belinda (Odell) Morgan I have examined:

  1. John Wesley and Oelia T. (Maxwell) Morgan.
  2. Francis Marion and Fannie (McGreggor) Morgan.
  3. Sanford/Sansom/Samson Morgan.[i]

3. Descendants of Samson Green and Marybell (Hartley) Morgan

#.#.# Child Notes/Comments Status
1. Elizabeth Leota Morgan Married John William Galloway 1 Known child.
1.1.   Mary Bertha Galloway
1.1.1       Mary Leota McClellan Married Clyde Bennett One child, Boy born 1931. Possible but Unlikely
1.1.2       Bertha E McClellan Married Thomas Gill No children until 1937.
1.1.3       Chester L. McClellan, Jr Single in 1940
2. Liddie Morgan Died at age 4

 

3.Descendants of Samson Green and Harriet A (McHenry) Morgan

#.#.# Child Notes/Comments Status
3. Elvira Jane Morgan Married Sheridan Hardman Four Children
3.1.    Clarence R Hardman Died in 1916.
3.2.    Bessie Levalda Hardman Married Calvin Ezekiel Braden Four Children
3.2.1.       Leota P Braden Married in 1942
3.2.2.       Boy[ii] Braden Born 1921 Not a Candidate
3.2.3       Boy Braden Born 1923 Not a Candidate
3.2.4       Boy Braden Born 1926 Possible but unlikely
3.3.    Earl S Hardman Married Osa Jane Dawson 1 child
3.3.1.       Velda Faye Hardman Born 1915 1 child
3.3.1.1          Girl[ii] Pratt Female Not Considered
3.3.2.       Girl Hardman Born 1919 Not Considered
3.3.3.       Boy Hardman Born 1921 Not a Candidate
3.3.4.       Girl Hardman Born 1925 Not Considered
3.3.6.       Girl Hardman Born 1927 Not Considered
3.3.7.       Osa Earline Hardman Died as infant.
3.4. Jessie D. Hardman Married Robert Lee Barker 1 Child
3.4.1. Gladys Geraldine Barker 1917 Not Considered.
4. John E. Morgan Died 1897, Single
5. Homer Martin Morgan Married Susan Nora Selman 2 children
5.1.    Arthur Edwin Morgan Married Josephine Frances Leroy No Children before 1940.
5.2.    Flossie Mae Morgan Married Byrd Russel Johnson 3 Children
5.2.1. Betty Jean Johnson Born 1926 Not Considered.
5.2.2. Margaret E Johnson Born 1930 Not Considered.
5.2.3. FNW Johnson Born 1936 Not Considered.
6. Flora Alice Morgan Married Perry Albert Deem 5 Children
6.1.    John Emery Deem Died 1920 at age 22
6.2.    Ethel Ann Deem Married Clemence Sylvester Schilling 8 Children
6.2.1.       FNW Schilling Born 1923 Not Considered
6.2.2.       Martha Ann Schilling Born 1925 Not Considered
6.2.3.       Mary A Schilling Born 1927 Not Considered
6.2.4.       Clarence F Schilling Born 1929-1930 Possible, but Unlikely
6.2.5.       Francis J Schilling Born 1931-1932 Possible, but Unlikely
6.2.6.       William G Schilling Born 1934-1935 Possible, but Unlikely
6.2.7.       FNW Schilling Born 1936 Not Considered
6.2.8.       FNW Schilling (Male) Born 1938-1939 Not a Candidate
6.3.    Samson Earl Deem Married Naomi Hemsworth 1922 5 Children
6.3.1.       Margaret Deem Born 1923 Not Considered
6.3.2.       Earl Deem Born 1924 Not a Candidate
6.3.3.       William J Deem Born 1925 Possible but Unlikely
6.3.4.       Betty Lou Deem Born 1927 Not Considered
6.3.5.       Robert Deem Born 1929 Possible but Unlikely
6.3.6       Alice Frances Deem Born 1933 Not Considered
6.3.7        Naretta Deem Born 1938 Not Considered
6.4.    Opal Justine Deem Married Austin Markel Cranston 1935 Not Considered
6.5.    Delbert Buel Deem Born 1914 Not a Candidate
7. Lura A Morgan Married Dexter P Bailey 1892. 4 Children
7.1    Arthur G Bailey Married Hazel Hendrick 1 child
7.1.2       Lura Jane Bailey Born 1918 Not Considered
7.2    Hazel C. Bailey Married David William O’Brien No apparent issue.
7.3    Willis Bailey Married Ethel ___ v. 1925 1 Child
7.3.1       Girl Bailey Born 1927 Not Considered
7.4    Mildred Bailey Married Ernest L. Barnes 3 children
7.4.1       Boy Barnes Born 1928 Possible but Unlikely
7.4.2       Boy Barnes Born 1930 Possible but Unlikely
7.4.3       Girl Barnes Born 1933 Not Considered

 There don’t appear to be any likely candidates from the descendants of Samson green Morgan. There were nine males that were “Possible but Unlikely.” All of the Descendants of Samson Green Morgan appear to have remained in the West Virginia and Ohio area. None seem to have moved until at least after World War II.

Follow-up

Further investigate the 9 “possible but unlikely” individuals if other candidates do not arise.

Note/– My Criteria:

  • “Candidates” are males born between 1925 and 1935.
  • “Not considered” are females who are unlikely to have had a male child between 1925 and 1935.
  • “Not a Candidate” are males born between 1915 and 1925 as being too young to have had a son between 1925 and 1935 and too old to be a candidate.
  • “Possible but unlikely” are males born between 1925 and 1935, but are not named Paul or Phil, which are the likely names of Glennis’ biological father, or otherwise don’t appear to fit the likely candidate who would have been in Minnesota or Michigan in 1953. I will revisit these possibilities later of this project fails to find a potential candidate.

Sources:

This is a quickly developed “notional” tree and does not have the indepth sourcing attached to the findings that I typically follow. I di have supporting documents regarding much of Samson Green Morgan and his descendants. All records used were found at the following sites:

  • Family Search
  • Ancestry
  • Find a Grave
  • Genealogy Bank

For specific sources, please contact me.

ENDNOTES

  • [i] I’m pretty well convinced that Sanford, Sansom, and Samson are the same person. I believe that Sanford and Sansom were errors by the individuals who wrote what they think they heard. In any event, I am using Samson unless I have a compelling reason to use something else.
  • [ii] I used “Boy” and “Girl” for living individuals born since 1918 because they are possibly living.