It has been a few moths since my last post. I have many thoughts on my mind but I haven’t found a way to move those thoughts to my fingertips. With a lack of movement of thoughts to my fingertips it has left the keyboard silent. So here is one of my thoughts.
Over a year ago, me and my siblings gave Dad an Ancestry DNA kit for Christmas. Dad wanted to take the test to learn more about his DNA heritage. He knew most of his family heritage was German and he was courious to see if he was more German from Western Europe or Eastern Europe. Based on his ancestors he was about 3/4 German blood and the rest from Great Britain. He has two cousins and they did their DNA a few years ago and he wanted to see how his DNA compaired. Dad’s cousins are different than most cousins. Dad’s father and his cousin’s father are brothers and also Dad’s mother and his cousin’s mother are sisters. Double cousins. With the closeness of the cousins the DNA should be similar.
He didn’t do the test right away but in the fall he called me to come over to his house so he could take his sample. I came over to his home and looked over the instructions. The first thing we needed to do was activate his kit. I activated the kit under my user name and have become the administer of his DNA. The test uses your saliva to do the DNA test. The test doesn’t need a lot of saliva until you need to fill the test tube. He filled the tube with a sample of his saliva and we capped the tube to release a stabilizer into the saliva. I slipped the tube into a plastic bag then into a prepaid carton to mail it to Ancestry. Then the wait was on. The lab received the sample within a week but it would take almost a month before the sample would be run.
One day I received an e-mail stating the results were in and boy was I surprised! As I said earlier Dad was about 3/4 German and the question was which side of Germany would dominate, the west or east. Answer, neither! The dominate DNA region was Great Britain. Dad was 45% Great Britain, 25% East Europe, 20% West Europe. Mathematically he should have been 25% Great Britain but his DNA was 45% Great Britain. It starting me wondering the power of certain DNA strains influencing our DNA. How about his cousin’s DNA? They were prodomintly Europe and not as much Great Britain DNA.
After I received the results of his DNA I also started seeing other people who shared DNA with my Dad. Yep, there were his two cousins. There were a few 2nd and 3rd cousins. As of today there are 125 four cousins and closer and about 5000 people with shared DNA with my Dad. How are they all related? Some I can figure them out by looking at their family tree, others didn’t post a tree or have their tree set to private.
At Thanksgiving I bought my own DNA kit from Ancestry. I filled my tube with a sample and sent it to Ancestry to be analyzed. Based on Dad’s DNA and my mom’s heritage, I figured I would be 20% Great Britain, 50% Europe and 25% Scandinavian. My grandfather on my mother’s side imagrated from Norway. As I waited for my results I continued looking over Dad’s results and analyzing how he was related to some of his DNA matches. Then about 6 weeks later my results were in.
Again I was surprised! Genealogy DNA doesn’t follow the mathematical logic. My results stated I was 45% Scandinavian, 25% Europe East, and 19% Great Britian. I had the Great Britain correct but not the European or Scandinavian DNA. It shows the power of certain lines of ones DNA. My Grandfater’s DNA had a dominant influence on my DNA. His dominance may not have as strong of an influence on my siblings DNA. It would be interesting to have my sibling do their DNA test so we could see the variables in our family’s DNA.
Recently my wife and her mother have done their DNA test. As I sit patiently waiting for their results. My early guess on their DNA results are for my mother-in-law is she will be dominated by Eastern Europe and have small traces from the surrounding regions. Those areas include Northwest Russia/ Finland and the Caucasus region. My wife will be an even split covering Great Btitain and all of Eastern and Western Europe. I am not sure what the trace regions will be but that is the fun of seeing which region your DNA came from. With the limited traceablity of my mother-in-laws family tree it will be interesting to see how many people she shares DNA with and see how my people are 4th cousins and closer.
Since I received the results for me and my dad I have contacted some of the DNA relatives. One of the cousins and and I have my 2nd Great-Grandfather in common. Another person it is my 3rd Great- Grandfather. And still another it is my 6th Great- Grandfather dating back to his birth in 1750. I will be meeting one of the cousins this weekend and I’m in the process of setting up a meeting with another cousin.
This as been an interesting adventure. I know I will not find out which thatched roof home my ancestor lived in but I do hope I can narrow down the region where they came from thus opening up more research opportunities and meeting distant relatives across the country.