DNA is a relatively new part of the family history journey for many.  I am still trying to get my head around it all – science was my weakest subject at school and I vaguely remember something about fruit fly when we discussed DNA!?

We have now had a few family members tested both through FamilyTreeDNA and AncestryDNA.  My sister and I have only taken the ‘familyfinder’ test to see our ethnicity; but my mother, paternal grandmother and father have also tested their respective mt-DNA and Y-DNA.

In addition, my maternal Uncle and Great Uncle have been tested.  However, if you’ve followed my blog you’ll know that this threw up some real curly problems.  To summarise – when Mum did the test, she discovered that her brother was actually her half brother.  We then tested their Uncle on their father’s side, and this confirmed that she was actually no blood relation to her father – the Moore’s.

And so while I am interested in connecting with all my DNA cousins, if you are connected through my mother we’d been very keen to try and find if there is a link to her father.  I appreciate this may be sensitive for some….discovering that a distant relative had a ‘little romance’ at some point, but we’d be very keen to fill a sudden and rather large hole in the family tree.

I have two separate pages for my maternal and paternal side, but by way of summary these are the names with a confirmed (paper trail) in our family line:

Paternal line

  • Buckingham (possibly from Warwickshire),
  • Damyon (Essex),
  • Duncan (Glasgow area),
  • Edgecombe (South Milton, Devon),
  • Fergusson (Middlesex/London),
  • Ley (unknown, possibly Devon?),
  • Scott (Glasgow area),
  • Wiggetts (Scotland)

Maternal line

  • De Rome (NSW Australia, and Lankashire UK),
  • Franklin (Middlesex/London),
  • Morgan (unknown, possibly Essex? or East London),
  • Siddall (Sheffield),
  • Tampion (Essex),

Other names yet to have a reliable ‘paper trail’ include AndersonBeerEdwardsElliot, HardyNorman, RandleStumbles, and Scaggall.

I don’t have a gedcom file to share as I use Evernote to keep records instead of the various genealogy software and  I make my own ‘fit for purpose’ family trees to share using Powerpoint.  But if you think we might have a connection then please don’t hesitate to get in touch – thescottsisters.co.uk[at]gmail.com.



DNA – what’s it all about?

As I say, I don’t understand too much at all about DNA testing but it seems that it is quite good at connecting with relatives – mostly cousins who you may not normally get in touch with when doing your family history.  What it doesn’t do is ‘automagically’ fill in your family tree…or even tell you how a match is connected – just that they are a 4th or 5th cousin. It is still up to us to do some digging around….find a common surname with the match, or a common location.  From there you can narrow it down.

The trouble is, that most of us are more interested in our direct ancestors and going back as far as we can on that line.  We don’t tend to ‘branch out’ and look at distant cousins and aunts and uncles of our great-grandparents.  And so those parts of the tree where you may actually match, are still empty branches.  But I think (hope) that in time it will get easier and of course, in the meantime you can try and find a connection to those who you match with.

One of the things I have learnt with DNA is that children won’t all inherit the same proportion of genetic material.  When you think about it, it seems stupidly logical.  Of course siblings don’t inherit the same material otherwise we’d be clones.  And that goes back to part of the reason I originally started searching – just how much do I really take after my Granny?!