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DNA for Family History

 

Below are 7 articles with information and examples on the topic of DNA for family history research.

There is a summary of each article, to help you decide which ones you want to read. Most of the articles are standalone pdf files, that can be downloaded or printed.

For each article, there is also a list of anything that has changed since publication. DNA for family history research is a new discipline, and therefore changes and/or scientific advancements occur.

Where to Start?

Publication: Guild Journal
Published: July 2016
Author: Susan C. Meates

This 2 page article is a short introduction to the 3 types of DNA tests for family history:

  • mtDNA
  • Y-DNA
  • Autosomal DNA

In addition, setting up a project for Autosomal DNA testing is suggested if you are going to test beyond yourself, to pick up missing segments of your ancestors, that weren’t passed on to you. To find these missing segments, you would test siblings, parents, and other relatives.

The following has changed since publication: None

Link: http://one-name.org/DNA/Article_2016Q3_Where_to_Start.pdf

Family Tree DNA and Genetic Genealogy

Publication: Je me Souviens, American-French Genealogical Society
Published: Spring 2008, Volume 31 Issue 1, pp8-25
Author: Susan C. Meates

This 18 page article covers a brief history of genetic genealogy, the benefits of testing, and the basics about Y-DNA and mtDNA testing, including Y-DNA surname projects. Example applications are provided.

This article is a must read if you are new to DNA testing, as well is a valuable review of the fundamentals for those who have tested.

The following has changed since publication:

  • The lab used is the Genomics Center.
  • There are 2 swabs and vials in the test kit, not 3.
  • For mtDNA, for matches in a genealogical time frame, order mtDNA Full Sequence.
  • 111 Y-DNA markers are now available, for Y-DNA, 37 markers are recommended.
  • The certificate of results is now available online to download or print.
  • There is no longer an upgrade option to the Genographic Project.

Target Audience: Beginner, and a good review for those with experience

Link to the article at the publisher’s site: http://afgs.org/JMS-DNA-2008.pdf

DNA tests: Why you need one

Publication: Family Tree Magazine, https://www.family-tree.co.uk/
Published: November 2016, pp56-58
Author: Debbie Kennett

This article explains how DNA testing can help with brickwalls and re-unite long-lost family members. The three main tests are explained.

The following has changed since publication: None

Target Audience: Beginner

Link: http://one-name.org/DNA/Article_DK_Family_Tree_2016_11_p56-58.pdf

Sense about genealogical DNA testing

Publication: Sense About Science blog
Published online only: 15 March 2013
Author: Debbie Kennett

This article provides a guide to the legitimate uses of DNA testing for family history research together with a brief overview of the three main tests used by genetic genealogists.

The following has changed since publication: None

Target Audience: Beginner, Overview

Link to the article at the publisher’s site:
http://archive.senseaboutscience.org/blog.php/41/sense-about-genealogical-dna-testing.html

Is the answer in your genes?

Publication: Berkshire Family History Society
Published: September 2008 (Volume 33), pp14-17
Author: Debbie Kennett

This article explains the basics of Y-chromosome DNA testing and surname projects. This updated article was first published in the DNA section of the Devon Family History Society’s website.

The following has changed since publication:

  • Family Tree DNA now has over 9,200 Surname Projects

Target Audience: Beginner

Link: http://one-name.org/DNA/Article_DK_DNA_Is_the_Answer_in_your_Genes.pdf

DNA and Your Family Tree

Publication: Discovering Family History
Published: July 2008
Author: Susan C. Meates

This article covers the benefits that can be achieved by DNA testing for genealogy. The basics of Y-DNA and mtDNA are then explained.

The following has changed since publication:

  • The Family Tree DNA database figures are out of date. For current figures see:
    https://www.familytreedna.com/why-ftdna.aspx
  • RelativeGenetics.com was acquired by Ancestry.com who later exited the Y-DNA market.
  • DNAHeritage.com was acquired by Family Tree DNA.
  • Family Tree DNA now offers 111 markers.
  • 37 markers are needed for a genealogical time frame.

Link: http://one-name.org/DNA/Article_DFH_2008_07_DNA_and_Your_Family_Tree.pdf

Adding DNA to Your Family Tree

Publication: Family Chronicle
Published: March 2008
Author: Susan C. Meates

This article covers the basics of Y-DNA. The different applications of Y-DNA for genealogy are discussed. How to get started is explained.

The following has changed since publication:

  • Family Tree DNA now offers 111 markers.
  • 37 markers are needed for a genealogical time frame.
  • RelativeGenetics.com was acquired by Ancestry.com who later exited the Y-DNA market.
  • DNAHeritage.com was acquired by Family Tree DNA.
  • The Family Tree DNA newsletter is no longer published and the online archive is gone.

Link: http://one-name.org/DNA/Article_FC_2008_03_Adding_DNA_to_Your_Family_Tree.pdf

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