What are your DNA Interests?

A place for posing poll questions related to genetic and traditional genealogy

Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Jul 22, 2012 8:57 pm
PostPosted: Thu Apr 04, 2013 11:39 am
Informal Poll to Determine Member Interests: What would your favorite 3 topics be if you were to join in a small group discussion about genetic genealogy for one hour? In addition, what would be your level, beginning, intermediate or advanced? If you were to lead an informal group discussion, what would be your area of expertise? You can let me know off-list if preferred.

Topics to think about:
DNA Testing for Beginners, Deep Y-DNA SNPs, Citizen Science Success Stories, Adoptees, Specific Populations (which ones? e.g. Jewish, African American etc.), Autosomal DNA, mtDNA, Y-DNA Surname Projects, Internet Web Site Help, 3rd Party Tools, X Chromosome, Specific Test Company___, Legal/ethical, Biogeographical Analysis, Dendrogram/Phylogeny software e.g. Fluxus, Geographical Projects, Genealogy Based Help + Emphasis on DNA, Tracking Down & Approaching Living Relatives, Personal Help With My Test Results. Others?

I am trying to get an idea for short small group discussions during the Family History and DNA Day June 6 in Burbank California. It will most likely depend on the interests of the attendees and who we can get to lead a small group. I would like to hear from you even if you are not coming to the DNA Conference. It would be nice to attract more of an international crowd. See:

http://www.scgsgenealogy.com/Jamboree/S ... rifold.pdf


Thanks for your input!
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Posts: 163
Joined: Wed Mar 14, 2012 6:14 pm
Location: Sault Ste Marie, Northern Ontario, Canada
PostPosted: Thu Apr 04, 2013 6:57 pm
I will not be able to attend, but since you asked for feedback-based on a combo of my interests and those I have found with family and friends, most who are curious newbies

1-how to get past paper and pen roadblocks in geniology via dna geniology ie, beating the Irish curse
-y dna, mt dna and autosomal-how to work them, what to use on them, up to an intermediate level since google can give the basics
-what search programs are out there besides the various dna testing company options

2-advice for newbies
-2 major types of testing STR vs SNP
-what each is good for, how deep do you want to go/pay for and what you get for it
-what companies for what tasks-who is reputable

3-surname projects
-how they can help you
-what u can do to help them

good luck

Furthest Y line=Patrick Whealen 1816-1874, Tipperary Co. Ire. to Kincardine On

Y-DNA-RL21, R-513* (still looking for the 'lost Irish 'C' boys')

FTDNA=P312+ P25+ M343+ M269+ M207+ M173+ L513+ U198- U152- U106- SRY2627- P66- P107- M73- M65- M37- M222- M18- M160- M153- M126- L705- L577- L193- L159.2- L1333-
E.A.= S21-, S26-, S28-, S29-, S68-

Co Administrator of the Whalen/Phelan DNA Surname Project
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Posts: 202
Joined: Sun Apr 01, 2012 5:38 am

R-L21+, L226+
PostPosted: Thu Apr 04, 2013 7:57 pm
I have presented around a dozen times to various genealogical societies. Here are some advice and feedback that I have received (I can not attend as well):

1) You will probably get 80 to 90 % newbies who have not tested yet but are very interested. So most of your sessions need to be aimed at those who do not have very much experience with genetic testing (the basics).

2) Going over the details of how things work can get very taxing and hard to absorb. I highly recommend liberal usage of "war stories" of exactly how genetic information shed a lot of light genealogical research. This really keeps the audience engaged and interested.

3) You need a couple of topics for intermediate and advanced genetic researchers. This will attract the local experts who can add their own experiences. It really helps to have other experts in the room to show that others are having success and have gained enough experience. Encourage these people to interact and when someone asks a probing question - they can really help. Have some kind of expert round table session for intermediate/advanced attendees and another one for newbies.

Here are couple of examples (I sure you have your own):

The Pace family research for years had two different men named John Pace claim the same father who traced their line back to early Jamestown. At least ten books of each line claimed the same man. DNA quickly solved this debate of decades of genealogical research. A man from Canada tested and had his Canadian research back to England (mid 1700s with supporting Shropshire church records) - matched one line. A man from London whose ancestor lived less than one mile from the Jamestown line matched the second line. Case closed on fifty years of not enough genealogical information to rule out one line's claim over the other.

My surname Casey has almost 50 % of all living US Caseys descending from South Carolina in the 1750s (who were protestant) - there are at least forty pre-1800 adult Casey men that we could not tie together (with a few exceptions). Discoveries include:

1) Of the 15 lines tested - 14 are very closely related genetically - one line was not. The avid researcher of this line is having a hard time giving her years of South Carolina research trying to tie all the lines together (with not enough genealogical source documentation).

2) The marker 460 had half of the lines with one value and the other half of the lines with another value. This creates a early branch and shot down some possible closely related lines that ended being in different branches.

3) Our cluster's fingerprint is very unique under R-L226. There is a huge genetic distance between this cluster and any other L226 submissions. There are also several marker values under 1 % of R1b. The only match found that was remotely close was Kersey submission who resided in England since 1620. There are many Kerseys living South Carolina which now need testing. Kersey is not considered a surname variant of Casey as it is English name.

4) Two unique marker values are associated with two unique lines - two more branches.

5) A Hanvey researcher who had published a 600 page book did not match pre-1820 Hanvey lines. Around 80 % of his book is not genetically related. This also explained unusual involvement of Caseys in his Hanvey's probate records. He is genetically a Casey and appears to be an adopted Hanvey.

6) The cluster tests positive for L226 which 90 % of Irish submissions with proven Irish connections reside in County Cork or surrounding counties. This provides an alternative to the family lore that our Casey line originates from County Tyrone in Northern Ireland.

At least 25 % or more of your presentations could be supporting stories - it really helps put a real genealogical twist that shows how it really works. Also, do not spend to much time on mtDNA testing as it really has very limited genealogical application. Also avoid prolonged topics of global origin prediction and ethnic prediction as this technology does not deliver to date and has very limited usage. You need to split one third for atDNA testing, one third for Y-STR and one third for Y-SNP (which will become extremely important in the next two to four years). Newbies have a very hard time understanding when atDNA is the best and when YDNA is the best - spend a lot of time in both YDNA and atDNA sessions helping them understand the differences.

Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Jul 22, 2012 8:57 pm
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 1:31 am
Thank you for the input!
If I told you we might have as many as 20 tables, how would you then break up people into groups?
User avatar
Posts: 202
Joined: Sun Apr 01, 2012 5:38 am

R-L21+, L226+
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 3:28 pm
Kathy Johnston wrote:Thank you for the input!
If I told you we might have as many as 20 tables, how would you then break up people into groups?

The first definite break-up would be the degree of knowledge for each group. Label each group as beginner, intermediate or advanced (at least half should be beginner and only two or three advanced). Are these tables like round tables for discussions or booths at a conference ? 20 tables means 20 leaders - one for each table - that can be challenging. Also, getting good leaders at beginner tables might be rough as most people (myself included) tend to assume that the audience has some level of knowledge. Also, breakups should be according to kinds of tests (Y-STR, Y-SNP, atDNA, mtDNA, ethnic/origins tests, general introduction to all tests) as well as testing companies (FTDNA, 23andme and Ancestry.com). Around half should be Y-DNA and half atDNA with a couple of sessions on mtDNA and ethnic/origins. Also, a couple of workshops for analysis for those who have data and want it analyzed (pretty rough to do with a crowd though). Main tent sessions with motivational speakers (future of DNA testing, new enhancements, etc.) are always good as well.

Unfortunately, the FTDNA admin conference has almost all main tent presentations and are really too generic. They need more breakout sessions as many of the attendees are extremely skilled. The genealogy software conference RootTech in 2012 had 3,000 in attendance but only three or four presentations on genetic genealogy. However, the main tent sessions as Ancestry.com explaining their genetic test plans which was very good. It is too bad that GENTECH died off as a separate group as it would have probably evolved into a genetic conference (bad timing).

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