Sunday, December 30, 2012

Taking a Breather and Sullivans - Repost from July 2010

It surely has been awhile since I posted.I have been managing 5 genetic genealogy DNA accounts which is very very time consuming.This will be a brief return and I will try to do better.

Two of the biggest mysteries I wanted to solve with autosomal DNA was first to ascertain my Grandfather's identity and that has been done. This week 23andme introduced an "Ancestry Finder" program that is both exciting and informative. It shows the 23 chromosomes and our matches, even those who decline to contact. l It is a bit like a crystal ball and shows my ethnic background in a nutshell as # 1 Ireland and #2 Norway. (well it varies a bit but I said a nutshell)
Very wonderful experience for me.

The number two mystery I wanted to unravel was the family of my mitoDNA ancestor Margaret Lynch of Cork who is born in 1841 and marries Charles Rementer most likely in 1860 in Rhode Island. I have known of her existence for almost 30 years and have gotten no further than that.

Enter DNA and I have a very close match with a full sequence Mitochondrial test which shows 2 of us as being almost 2 peas in a pod with J2b1a1 mutations. Our ancestors both hailed from Cork around 1840. We have hung in THAT spot for almost 2 years..

My buddy and I have tested first our own autosomal DNA and then a host of cousins and siblings ( I have but one).My sister Carol, bless her, spit for the family cause and with that we miraculously got two matches on her DNA.My DNA apparently did not take this excursion.

Having been recently told by a cousin that our Lynch family was said to be cousins with the noted John L.Sullivan, I pounced on both a Lynch and a Sullivan cousin match when they "came in". Apparently my Margaret was born to a Jeremiah Lynch and a Mary or Margaret Sullivan from the Beara peninsula near Bantry Bay.

I definitely have a general location and also know that THIS generation at least came to Newport Rhode Island and stayed in New England for keeps. Later generations of Sullivans may not have done so.

I am content.

It's Been How Long? Repost from February 2012

It has been a whole year since I have communicated via this blog.I DO Communicate on Facebook where I have some groups for family and genetic genealogy and at the various DNA testing sites where I participate.Find me there!

Last year was one of change..some health issues, now remedied resulted in losing 47 pounds and walking two miles a day.My better half fell and broke 5 ribs so we were pretty much chained to the farm, as well as needing daily help with the horses.Upwards and onwards is my motto this year.

March will find us in Florida for 10 days in our travel trailer.April we will be at our Beach house on the Outer Banks with family for Easter. In June we hope for a week in New Jersey and then back to the Beach in July with maybe the whole family. While in Florida I will spend a day with my 2nd cousin who "found" me via my Tree.Our grandmother's were sisters.

Currently I am waiting with bated breath for my 23andme test results to be uploaded to Family Tree DNA.I am hoping to match with lots of new cousins via that route.The Norway DNA site has maybe 50 people who have tested there.I have joined that group.

As administrator of 5 surname groups there I anticipate matches with Irish cousins and Colonial Delaware folks also.FTDNA where I originally tested almost 6 years ago is pairing with a genealogy company and they will reciprocally share records.

April 2 the 1940 census will be available and am SO Looking forward to finding new information.Additionally has an autosomal large group of tests coming out in some fashion. I have several DNA groups there as well.Wondering if they will allow uploads from either FTDNA or 23andme?

Finally 23andme has begun some exciting new efforts for Genealogy minded customers. They also at this point are the "biggest game in town" with 200,000+ autosomal kits. I remain committed to them for cousin matches but new winds are blowing everywhere as regards to genetic genealogy.

Life is exciting for those of us who participate in this field of interest

Was This a Defining Moment for the Faunt Family?

Repost from 2/11/2011

Our Faunt family has connected on several levels in the past two years. Cousins from the siblings of my Patrick Faunt who share William and Ellen as progenitors are sharing pieces of what we know. Two weeks ago the 1885 New Jersey census index was online and I found our family in somewhat different configurations than I saw in the 1880 census.
My Patrick , married to Mary Dugan and listed as "Patsy" is listed in two separate places, although both are him. William and Ellen and younger children are joined by Louisa Faunt.Louisa I had previously found in the 1900 census with a baby named Helen ( another variation of Ellen).I did not know who she was but her place in the 1885 census as a child less than 5 must signify she is a child of the family.

I have never been able to find Ellen Faunt's death but after William dies in February 1889 she marries Charles Schneider a Prussian born baker. Her daughters Jennie and Nelly are married in that decade. Is Ellen deceased by 1900? I think she may be and surely in 1911 when her son Michael passes away as his obituary so states.

Now I go on to look at the events posted here and wonder if the commitment of William Faunt to the state hospital signified in 1887 the end of the family living together? Did the deaths of the two children above cause a crisis in the family? They lost at least 4 children, one a first William in Belfast before they immigrated.Does the peace bond against Ellen Faunt predict or tell us anything?

Patrick Faunt married Mary Dugan in 1883.They lost at least one child also and Mary Dugan passes away in 1902. Edward Faunt my grandfather was less than 4 and Jesse was 2. Patrick as a single parent leaves something to be desired or maybe the times were just very tough. Grandpop told me nothing of those years except that evictions were constant and that the children often needed to run home from school to save their possessions which were at the curb.

He never said he was motherless but that surely played into his inability to cope with his own 4 children when Grandmother Retta dies at 25.

Was this a family in trouble between 1885 and William's death in 1889. What did "dementia " mean in this case? Did he have a stroke or was he a very heavy drinker? He was only 47 years old. Did his children take sides? Children of his younger brother William, who was affluent, know nothing about our family. William Faunt's children visited with Jennie and Nelly's families over the years.

Was my "Patsy " a drinker or a gambler? He marries again possibly twice and has two children Helen born in 1915 and George Patrick 1918. George Patrick Faunt is killed in WWII.

I don't know, maybe he just remained tied to Old Country ways because the Dugans, his in laws visited in Beverly and were know to us.. Surely poor Patsy was not successful. His wife Mary and his mother worked as Green Grocers both in Beverly and Philadelphia until their deaths, that part we do know.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Musing on newer DNA tests

Notes on The GenoChip 2 atDNA testing seen at Rootsweb Genealogy-DNA.. "I have tried the Admixture proportions tool and find the data surprisingly close to my 23andMe data " John Walden 

 " FTDNA won't have as many SNPs in common with the GenoChip as 23andMe does " Ann Turner

 "This admixture tool is different than the other ones reviewed here because it is looking at deep ancestry from thousands of years ago. Personally, as a genealogist, I don't find it as informative or as satisfying as the admixture results that reflect more recent ancestry." Cece Moore on  her Genetic Geneologist.

I am not rushing to test this one either..

AncestryDNA 's new effort as discussed by my cousin BobbyQ and I..Me " The close relative matches are fine but they need more depth in the other areas. Bob "Ancestry.comDNA is like The Powder River, a mile wide and an inch deep, too thick to drink and too thin to plough."

So there I am..

Thursday, December 13, 2012

For My Family and Friends - My thoughts on Autosomal Testing for Genealogy

23andme tests the entire genome which is 22 chromosomes and the X and the Y and mitoDNA.A male has one X and one Y.Everyone has mitoChondrial DNA which they inherit from their mother, only females pass on their mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA).Females have 2 Xs,one from each parent.Men get one only from their mother..
The test is Autosomal which means across the whole genome and arrayed are 2 of each chromosome ( maternal and paternal)They are in tiny tiny pieces called SNPS  which is  different from older tests on  mitoDNA and Y DNA tests which are in STRS. STRS are bigger chunks of DNA.

These autosomal snps are in clusters inherited through your ancestors and are specific to YOU and your family.Anyone who you share a segment with is related to YOU, the larger the segment the more closely related.Smaller segments of less than 6.5cM are thought to indicate an ancestral place or a very distant ancestor and shared by many more people.

I now have 1082 cousin matches,some are my first cousins who I knew about. Others are startlingly with people I never knew about who descend with me from John Carrow’s line  1660-1750; Charles Swanson in 1809;my many Irish ancestors and a few cousin from the same small village north of the Arctic Circle where my grandfather Sigurd Boe was born.

23andme also tests health traits for the same $99 and they are also available to you without charge. Every time new tests get completed new cousin matches and health traits are sent to you.

I have tested Family Tree DNA's Family Finder, 23andme and DeCodeME ( by upload). I have not tested at AncestryDNA but it is available to me via a cousin and it is not as good as the other two.

I feel 23andme is the BEST autosomal test It has the largest database at about 200,000 and are now in a growth phase to reach 1 Million.. Family Tree DNA has about 35,000 and AncestryDNA has slightly more than 50,000 ( they have given many free tests out)

I am an Administrator of 5 surname groups at Family Tree DNA, 3 Ancestor Projects at and 5 at and others are called “third party” comparison sites. They are available to folks for free.

You must have access to your Raw Genome to transfer your data to the third party currently does not allow you access to your own genome so transfers cannot happen.

Family Tree DNA allows upload of 23andme genome for a transfer fee of $89. You must have a V3( newer test) to do that upload.23andme does not upload FTDNA data at this time. AncestryDNA used to allow you to manually put your test results from other companies into their groups but that is no longer being done.

DEcodeME is an Icelandic company that allowed genome transfer but they have been purchased by another company.