Cousin Mike Joins the Fray

I was presently surprised when looking over my AncestryDNA matches recently. I saw my second cousin Mike. Now due to the fact that I have many second cousins descending from James Hartley and Annie Snell, I don’t happen to know them all personally. Fortunately, I do know Mike and if I met him somewhere would surely say hi.

Mike at AncestryDNA

At AncestryDNA there is a button to push called Shared Matches. When I look for Shared Matches between me and Mike, I get a lot of people. I first get my 4 tested siblings. Then I get 11 second cousins. These are actually 2nd cousins by DNA. In other words, Ancestry looks at the amount of DNA shared and guesses that these should be in the 2nd cousin range. So Ancestry has the first four of my list of shared second cousins in the 1st to 2nd cousin range. The rest on the list are in the 2nd to 3rd cousin range. However, these are all actual second cousins that Mike and I share. These would be descendants of the 13 children that my great grandparents James Hartley and Annie Snell had. Actually, first on his list of 2nd cousins is Joyce. She is a first cousin once removed. I had her tested at the last family reunion. I wrote a Blog about her results here, and about Mike’s sister Holly here. Down in the Third Cousin Shared Matches there may be 2nd cousins once removed. There is also one non-Hartley Snell relative listed there.

Mike at Gedmatch

I asked Mike to upload his DNA results to Gedmatch. That is where you can find out more about your DNA. For example, here is how Mike matches his sister Holly on Chromosome 15:

I bring up this example, because full siblings match each other in a different way than any other relationship.

  • We all get a chromosome from our mom and one from our dad. They in turn got one from their mom and one from their dad. That means there are four ways that we can get DNA from our parents. Those four ways are from our four grandparents
  • The blue bar on the bottom shows where Mike and Holly match by DNA.
  • The yellow bar above the blue means that Mike and Holly share the DNA from one parent only. And they get their DNA from only one parent of that parent. However, we don’t know which one right now.
  • The green bar above the blue bar means that Mike and Holly share DNA from both their mother and father. Not only that, they share the DNA from one of the mother’s parents and one of the father’s parents. However, we don’t know which one yet.
  • The red area is where Holly and Mike share no DNA from either parent. That is the opposite of the green area. That means Mike may get his DNA from a maternal grandfather and Holly from a paternal grandmother in that area. I’ll give some examples below.

Here are Mike and Holly’s grandparents:

Here is how Mike and Holly match each other on Chromosome 7:

Below the first green bar (which is called a Fully Identical Region or FIR), I have split this out for Mike and Holly. This is split to identify Mike and Holly’s maternal and paternal sides (but we don’t know which yet). Mike and Holly have two of the same colors. That means that they got the DNA from the same two grandparents. One of those grandparents is paternal and one is maternal. We don’t know which is which yet, but we can easily figure out the paternal grandmother. We can do that because all of Mike and Holly’s second cousin DNA matches on the Hartley side that I mentioned above.

The first match is Mike’s 1st cousin once removed Joyce. Then there are my 4 siblings. #6 and 7 are two other Hartley-descended 2nd cousins. That means that all this DNA maps to Mike’s grandmother Grace May Hartley. Put together, these matches go from 15.6M to 95.6M for Mike.

Here I assigned blue as Mike and Holly’s paternal grandmother. In the green area, Holly had to have the same DNA from the same Hartley grandmother. In the red area, Holly had to have the DNA from her Gifford grandfather because neither grandparent matches in a red area. Now let’s look at Holly’s 2nd cousin matches.

Above, Holly matches Joyce from 6-42M.

Because Holly gets her DNA from her Hartley grandmother before about the 16M mark, that must mean Mike gets his paternal DNA in that area on his Gifford side. Otherwise, he would have matched at least one of his Hartley cousins there.  Then I moved some of the orange DNA to the left. This would be maternal DNA which is from either Jenney or Murray. This also meets the requirement of the first yellow area. That area is called an HIR or Half Identical Region. It is where Mike and Holly share the DNA from one grandparent but not the other. In order to know which grandparent that DNA is from, we would need to have a match to a Murray or Jenney. In order to do this right we would also need another color for the 2nd maternal grandparent.

This is also a lot easier when there are three siblings to compare because then we could find out where the crossovers are. An example of a crossover is on Mike’s DNA where the DNA he got on the paternal side goes from Gifford to Hartley.

Me and Mike and Our DNA

When I look at my DNA matches at Gedmatch, my match with Mike is the highest level shared between any of my second cousins – at least the cousins that have uploaded to Gedmatch. Mike’s sister Holly had the record before that. Here is what the specifics look like between Mike and myself:

At the bottom of the list is a number of 2.7 generations. That is how far back it looks like our common ancestors are. They are actually 3.0 generations away. That is just the way it is. Some of my second cousins will share more than average amounts and some will share less than average amounts of DNA. If I look at Mike’s match list, he shares more DNA with two of my sisters and another 2nd cousin than he does with me.

Mapping My DNA By Cousins

I showed one way to map DNA from your grandparents comparing siblings’ DNA. Another way is to directly map your cousins’ matches to a chart. Kitty Munson has developed some software to do this. Right now my map looks like this:

The darker blue maps to James Hartley and Annie Snell. That would be via my 1st cousins once removed and my 2nd cousins with the same ancestors. Mike’s DNA fills in a few blanks in my map:

I guess the changes are subtle. The Hartley side should only ever fill up about one half of my paternal chromosomes. The other half for me would be for Frazer and Frazer ancestors.

Mike’s X Chromosome Matches: No Hartleys There

Mike’s biggest X Chromosome match is with his sister Holly:

Mike, like me, won’t match any Hartley relatives on the X Chromosome. That is because a father never passes an X Chromosome down to a son – only a Y Chromosome. The big match between Mike and Holly is from their mom. She got her X Chromosome from some combination of Jenney and Murray.

Mike’s Lancashire DNA Match

These matches above represent Lee’s DNA matches on Chromosome 13 with 5 siblings in my family, our two 1st cousins once removed and Mike in the green.

I have mentioned in a previous Blog about Joyce, that Hartley descendants have a match with Lee at AncestryDNA and Gedmatch. Lee shows all his ancestors as being from England. The Snells came to this country in the 1600’s and the Hartleys in the 1800’s. That means that Lee’s matches would be on the Hartley side vs. the Snell side. Lee has two interesting people in his ancestry. One is Margaret Hartley b. 1836 and another is Mary Baldwin b. 1836.

  • Although these two women were born in 1836, they are in different generations from Lee
  • Margaret Hartley is on Lee’s paternal side and Mary Baldwin is on Lee’s maternal side. If Lee were to ever test his mom, we would know on which side the Hartleys match.
  • Lee doesn’t show any parents for Margaret Hartley or Mary Baldwin

I have our Trawden born ancestor Greenwood Hartley with a Baldwin grandmother:

This is really on the edge of my knowledge. I chose Betty Baldwin and James Hartley as the most likely parents for Robert Hartley out of many potential candidates.

Lee had a dead end for his Margaret Hartley ancestor. Here are some potential parents I found for Margaret:

This was the same issue I had for finding parents for Robert. Was Margaret the daughter of John and Susan Hartley, John and Hannah Hartley or John and Margaret Hartley? Or perhaps even someone else?

Greenwood is staring at me from the past and saying, “You can’t figure out who my are grandparents are? They are _______ and _______”

a look at Mary Baldwin b. 1836

Due to a problem finding Margaret Hartley’s parents, I’ll take a look at a less common surname in Mary Baldwin. Based on this scrawly writing, she was baptized a Wesleyan in Colne:

This baptism was outside the Church of England.  A Wesleyan, perhaps what we would consider Methodist was considered a non-conformist church. Here is some information on Mary’s dad Eli:

And here is a brother of Elis:

I still need to get back a ways to get to our potential ancestor, Betty Baldwin who was born perhaps around 1780. Any potential shared ancestor would likely be Betty’s parents. We’ll say that Jane Baldwin was actually Jenney Spencer:

Again, we get a multiple choice for the father of this James Baldwin. Here is a batch of them from around 1790:

Here I will choose the James from Barrowford for a few reasons. One is that his dad was Elias and two, he was from Barrowford. Here is the 1851 Census showing that this James Baldwin was born in Barrowford.

This also shows James son David b. in 1812. That gets us back to the old-timers: Elias and Peggy Baldwin. Unfortunately, it looks like Elias didn’t do too well:

He died of decline at age 35. Betty could have been his daughter, but it would have made for some tight time frames. She would have had to have been born perhaps late 1783. Then she would have been only about 17 at the time of her marriage. So the genealogy is the difficult part of the genetic genealogy.


Tracking Down DNA from Colne, Lancashire or Part One of the Hartley Brick Wall Series

So far, I have done pretty well at finding out from which grandparent I get my DNA. However, figuring out where the split is for my great grandparents is a bit more difficult. Due to a brick wall problem with the Hartley genealogy, I would like to know which of my DNA is Hartley and which is Snell. There are different ways to do this. One way is to find matches with UK, NZ or AU at the end of their emails. These matches would also match where I got DNA from my Hartley grandfather who was the son of a Hartley and a Snell. My Hartley ancestors came from England in the late 1800’s. My Snell ancestors were in England also, but going back to the 1600’s which should be too far back for the DNA to track in most cases.

One match I found was Linda. She has a UK address to her email. She is on Ancestry and Gedmatch and has trees at both places. Here is her match with my siblings, Heidi and Jonathan:

Linda also has a smaller match with my father’s cousin Joyce on Chromosome 10.

Linda and the Colne Connection

Linda has a large tree with over 16,000 people. I am interested in some of her ancestors in the Colne area. My ancestors lived in Colne, but the church where they were baptized and wed was in Colne.

This is the Ancestry map enlarged to the max. My dot is blue in Trawden. Linda had more than one ancestor in Colne and lists one in Winewall and one in Wycoller. Wycoller is now a park which explains the green area. It would be a short walk from Trawden to Winewall. All the places may be walked to with not too much difficulty. Linda’s ancestral surnames in the area are:

  • Jowett, b. 1878 Colne: too recent for what I am looking for
  • Three male Waddingtons, born in Colne: 1710; 1737; and 1805. The last male Waddington would be too recent my purposes.
  • Thomas Rycroft b. 1684; Matilda Rycroft b. 1772, both in Colne
  • Female Crook, b. 1711, Colne
  • Hannah Foulds, b. 1720, and a male Foulds, b. 1692 both in Colne. I recognize the Foulds name as a prominent local name from my previous research in the area.
  • Allison Blackburn, b. 1688, Winewall
  • Robert Waddington, b. 1770, Wycoller

Of course, there is a possibility that none of these names are associated with Hartley. However, as there is a DNA match and a place match, there is a possibility that there is a match on one of these lines.

Linda’s Colne area tree

I feel like I’m exploring in someone’s house when I look at their tree. Here is the part of the tree that I am interested in:

Coghill didn’t show up on the Colne area map as her birthplace is listed as Lancashire. There should be a sweet spot in the tree above assuming that we are related. I am looking for a connection to my tree, so connecting person cannot be too recent. If we go back too far, it becomes improbably that there is an autosomal DNA match. Here is my Trawden Tree:

Going down the middle row, I am not certain about James Hartley and Betty Baldwin. I am quite sure about Greenwood Pilling and Nancy Shackleton. That means that my first choice would be to connect Robert Hartley to Linda’s tree somehow. In Linda’s Waddington line, the William Waddington or Foulds Rycroft family could have had a daughter that married a Hartley that had Robert. That daughter would have come about following a Hartley/Waddington or Hartley/Rycroft wedding.

Hartley and Waddington

When I search the online Colne Parish records for Hartley/Waddington, I get these two records:

I was looking for a female Waddington that married a Hartley. We see that in the second listing above. Also of note in attendance was John Crook. Crook is a surname in Linda’s line. There is a Mary Waddington born in 1752, but she is the daughter of John possibly a generation earlier:

Here are some of the children of William and Mary Hartley in the time frame that I am interested in. There were very likely more than one William and Mary Hartley family. At least the family at Noyna-end and Aldershead seem to be different based on the closeness of baptisms. This is also assuming that the baptisms were close to the birth dates. In fact, three baptisms in 1773 could indicate three different families:

Baptism: 21 Mar 1773 St Bartholomew, Colne, Lancashire, England
William Hartley – son of Wm Hartley & Mary
Abode: Noyna-end
Register: Baptisms 1756 – 1774, Page 92, Entry 16
Source: LDS Film 1471023

Baptism: 12 Aug 1773 St Bartholomew, Colne, Lancashire, England
Jonathan Hartley – son of Wm Hartley & Mary
Abode: Aldershead
Register: Baptisms 1756 – 1774, Page 94, Entry 6
Source: LDS Film 1471023

Baptism: 17 Oct 1773 St Bartholomew, Colne, Lancashire, England
Robert Hartley – son of Wm Hartley & Mary
Abode: Greenfield
Register: Baptisms 1756 – 1774, Page 95, Entry 7
Source: LDS Film 1471023

Baptism: 25 Dec 1775 St Bartholomew, Colne, Lancashire, England
Robert Hartley – son of William Hartley & Mary
Abode: Wycoller
Register: Baptisms 1774 – 1789, Page 11, Entry 12
Source: LDS Film 1471023

Baptism: 22 Dec 1777 St Bartholomew, Colne, Lancashire, England
Ellin Hartley – daughter of William Hartley & Mary
Abode: Wycoller
Register: Baptisms 1774 – 1789, Page 25, Entry 24
Source: LDS Film 1471023

Baptism: 7 Oct 1781 St Bartholomew, Colne, Lancashire, England
Peter Hartley – son of William Hartley & Mary
Abode: Green-field
Register: Baptisms 1774 – 1789, Page 61, Entry 2
Source: LDS Film 1471023

Baptism: 2 Feb 1783 St Bartholomew, Colne, Lancashire, England
Richard Hartley – son of William Hartley & Mary
Abode: Two Laws
Register: Baptisms 1774 – 1789, Page 71, Entry 4
Source: LDS Film 1471023

I recognize the name of Aldershead where Jonathan was born. This was not far from Seghole where the Pillings lived. However, Jonathan appeared to have died young:

Burial: 16 Aug 1776 St Bartholomew, Colne, Lancashire, England
Jonathan Hartley –
Age: infant
Abode: Aldershead
Register: Burials 1774 – 1789, Page 7, Entry 12
Source: LDS Film 1471023

Robert would seem to be a good choice for the father of my Robert, but I see no Robert, son of Robert being born around 1803 when I believe my Robert was born based on his burial record:

Baptism: 8 Jan 1792 St Bartholomew, Colne, Lancashire, England
Robert Hartley – Son of Robert Hartley & Mary
Born: 8 Jul 1791
Abode: Edge
Occupation: Weaver
Register: Baptisms 1790 – 1812, Page 23, Entry 22
Source: LDS Film 1471024

Baptism: 22 Jan 1809 St Bartholomew, Colne, Lancashire, England
Robert Hartley – Son of Robert Hartley & Susan
Born: 26 Nov 1808
Abode: Lanshaw Bridge
Occupation: Innkeeper
Register: Baptisms 1790 – 1812, Page 254, Entry 13
Source: LDS Film 1471024

I have the same problem with Robert son of William:

Baptism: 7 Oct 1792 St Bartholomew, Colne, Lancashire, England
Robert Hartley – Son of William Hartley & Margaret
Born: 5 Jul 1790
Abode: Boughgap
Occupation: Weaver
Notes: [Robert & Henry bracketed together]
Register: Baptisms 1790 – 1812, Page 33, Entry 254
Source: LDS Film 1471024

Baptism: 20 May 1810 St Bartholomew, Colne, Lancashire, England
Robert Hartley – Son of Wm Hartley & Mary
Born: 6 Jan 1810
Abode: Spouthouses
Occupation: Weaver
Register: Baptisms 1790 – 1812, Page 279, Entry 158
Source: LDS Film 1471024

There was only one Robert born of a Peter Hartley in 1809. There was also only one Robert born of Richard in 1796. That seems to rule out those possibilities.

Let’s try Rycroft

I haven’t eliminated the Waddington line for the mother of Robert – only for the father of Robert. And I have only eliminated Waddington assuming that the baptisms took place at Colne. I am also not looking for the mother of Robert as that would be a more complicated search. For example, what if a Waddington married and her husband died. She then married a Hartley. Likely the wedding record would show the married and not the birth name.

There were not a lot of Hartley/Rycroft weddings that I could find. Here is a fairly early one.

I did find a Susanna:

Baptism: 16 Oct 1714 St Bartholomew, Colne, Lancashire, England
Susanna Rycroft – filia Johannis Rycroft
Abode: Winewall
Register: Baptisms 1697 – 1734, Page 155, Entry 16
Source: LDS Film 1471023

However, Linda doesn’t have a John Rycroft in her ancestry after 1640, so I’ll rule that out for now due to the fact that a DNA match may not make it that far back.

I found this entry interesting:

Here we have the names Hartley, Rycroft, Foulds and Waddington. This Hartley Rycroft was the daughter of Betty Rycroft:

Baptism: 2 Sep 1798 St Bartholomew, Colne, Lancashire, England
Hartley Rycroft – Son of Betty Rycroft, Spinster
Born: 25 Jun 1798
Abode: Lane Head
Register: Baptisms 1790 – 1812, Page 99, Entry 200
Source: LDS Film 1471024

Here we are getting complicated as the Hartley is only the first name. Was the mother trying to name the father? This Betty was likely the daughter of Foulds:

Baptism: 6 Nov 1774 St Bartholomew, Colne, Lancashire, England
Betty Rycroft – daugr of Foulds Rycroft & Mary
Abode: Trauden
Register: Baptisms 1774 – 1789, Page 4, Entry 3
Source: LDS Film 1471023

Any Hartley/Crook Connections?

In looking through my Blog, I see that I didn’t look at the Crook surname. I use the Lancashire online search when I look for my Colne records. Linda has a Thomasin Crook born in 1711, so that goes back quite a way. I see two Hartley/Crook weddings in the early 1600’s which would likely be too early for a DNA match. Here is a later Crook/Hartley wedding, but I am not sure how John Crook is related. Also Mary Hartley is from Otterburn in Yorkshire. Otterburn looks to be about 20 Km North of Colne.

So this is all very interesting, and I have learned more about Linda’s ancestors, but not so much about mine. However, I do feel that breaking down the brick wall could come from these kind of back door methods in conjunction with DNA matches.

Snell Autosomal DNA

I don’t think I’ve written specifically about Snell Autosomal DNA. This DNA has been difficult to separate out. I have lots of 2nd cousins that lead back to our common great grandparents: James Hartley and Annie Snell. But it is difficult to separate out the DNA from those two. The best way to do this is to find someone who goes back before Annie Snell. Here is one apparent match before Annie:

This is actually a match to my sister Sharon. I asked the administrator for M.M. to upload to Gedmatch. I’m pretty sure this is the match:

About One Eighth of My DNA is Snell DNA

I get exactly one half of my DNA from my dad and one half from my mom. I get on average 25% of my DNA from each of my grandparents. It is that point that the numbers start to vary. I get on average 12.5% of my DNA from each of my great grandparents. At this level the 12.5% number varies even more. Here is how I have mapped me and four of my siblings on Chromosome 5 where the match is to MM:

The above maps my four grandparents to my DNA. Stated another way it shows how much DNA I got from my 4 grandparents and where I got that DNA on each of my chromosome. About half of each grandparent color should be split up into two great grandparent colors. The bottom part was done by Martin MacNeill. I created the top part with visual phasing. I assumed that the bottom part was correct. There are some discrepancies of where the crossovers occur due to scale. My crossover from Hartley to Frazer is at 172.6. That explains why I don’t match M.M. If I take Gedmatch way down, I actually do match M.M. here:

If I was mapping this tiny segment, I could say that it came from either Anthony Snell or Betsey Luther. If I wanted to limit it to one person, I could say that this is my Otis Snell DNA [Anthony and Betsey’s son].

It is difficult to see, but there is now some new light blue at the end of my Chromosome 5 for Otis Snell. For my siblings, they would have longer patches of blue. Actually, this would be true for all my siblings except for Lori. She doesn’t match M.M. This means I made a mistake on my Chromosome Sibling Map. It should look like this:

Matches are a good way to check your work. Lori’s last crossover from Hartley to Frazer (Yellow) is at about position 167.5M.

What About Other Snell DNA?

One way to find other related Snells is through a Gedmatch utility. This utility finds people that are matched to both you and your match. Here are a few that match my brother Jonathan on Chromosome 5 :

Unfortunately, I either couldn’t find these people with overlapping DNA matches easily or they had a tree that didn’t go back far enough.

Snells at Ancestrydna

Here is a match that is perfect at AncestryDNA. Our common ancestors are the parents of Annie Snell [Isiah Hatch Snell and Hannah Thomas Bradford]:

I have gone to his mother on the chart above. However, he hasn’t uploaded to for comparison. And there is the problem for genetic genealogists. AncestryDNA has good information but no chromosome browser and tools. Gedmatch has good tools but not as many people and the trees aren’t as good.

So for now, I will be content with my little bit of DNA that I got from Otis Snell’s parents on my Chromosome 5.

Frazer YDNA Update and Some Early Frazer Research

A few things have been going on the Frazer DNA and genealogy front:

  • Results are still coming in from our Frazer-related Stewart/Stuart BigY test results
  • A new YFull Tree has come out
  • A Frazer researcher has shared some of his information with us on Frasers in Scotland

Stewart/Stuart Big Y Results

In my last Blog on the subject I gave more information, so this is just an update. Once our Stewart tester got his Big Y results, there was still more analysis by the R1a YDNA project administrator, Martin. I was interested to hear what Martin has to say as these administrators are talented and take their volunteer position seriously. I found this part of Martin’s analysis interesting:

Around 1000 AD this subclade YP6488 splits in 3 family lines Grant, Stuart and Frazer. The date 1000 AD is not very certain because we see a wide variation in the number of private SNP’s in these family lines. Normally we calculate with 130 years per SNP (or one SNP mutation in 4-5 generations), but this average figure is only valid for a large number of samples. The total average number of SNP’s downstream M417 is on average about 50 for Subclade R1a-L664. However Grant and you have only resp 42 and 45 (see red number at bottom of chart) and the Frazer’s have more or less the average number of 50 (excluding the extra SNP’s found in the Yfull analysis). So the best guess for the MRCA of the Grant/Stuart/Frazer families is for me still 1000 AD, but with a large margin.

Here is the new R-YP5515 portion of the tree with Stuart added:

I erased the FTDNA kit numbers for privacy. I hadn’t realized that the red numbers were important at the bottom of the tree. Now I realize that they are, so I have included them. [See the explanation above in italics.] The addition of Stuart to the group has the effect of changing the separation date of the Frazers, Grant and Stuart to the year 1,000 A.D. Before Stuart, it showed Frazer and Grant separating at the year 900 A.D. Not a big difference, but it does show the effect of the Stuart test on  Grant and Frazer.

I was also in touch with Martin and he was seemed excited about a new member to the group:

Today we have new member, which I think is interesting for the members of subclade YP5515>YP6479  It is #______ from Sweden and he has the typical STR haplotype for this subclade. Up to now all members of YP5515 had their roots in Scotland/Ireland, but we expect YP5515 came originally from Scandinavia. This new member could be a proof that YP5515 came from Scandinavia if he is willing to do a BigY test.

So we will have to wait to see how this plays out. It appears that if this person were to do the BigY test, this could give us a more exact time of when our ancestors came from Scandinavia to Scotland. Speaking of this, I thought about Martin’s comments to our Stuart tester and came up with this drawing:

I used a little bit of guessing. It seemed like the best route from Sweden to Scotland would be by water. Perhaps our ancestors made some stops in current Norway before settling in the Inverness area. Their route from Inverness to the shore SE of Glasgow is based on some Frazer traditions. I noted that it is a pretty straight shot from there to County Roscommon where they certainly were according to the 1749 Census. They could have traveled by boat again, but there have been Scots known to be in Ulster also.

A New YFull YTree v 5.06

YFull analyzes Big Y results. For those that use their service, they come up with a tree and other analyses. Here is the current version of YFull’s YTree:

Compared to the last YTree, this has added YP6488 and YP6489. The Stuart tester is not yet included in this analysis. So his analysis should come out as YP6488. Note that YFull has a TMRCA of 800 years before present for YP6488 or roughly 1200 A.D. This is an important date as it is where there is a split between the Grant, Stuart and Frazer families. I feel that Martin’s tree may be more accurate. On his tree, the analogous date appears to be 1,000 A.D. That seems to get into those red numbers that I mentioned above. Perhaps YTree saw the fewer SNPs for Grant and Stuart and figured that represented a more recent date. Martin, being a real person, was able to take ambiguities into account and give a more plausible date.

Early Frazer Research

I am grateful to Alan for bringing together and to light research on Frasers in Scotland that might link to our Frazers in County Roscommon, Ireland. Alan’s research appears to indicate the following:

  • James Fraser of Knock married Mary Ramsay in 1628.
  • That James was the son of John Fraser of Knock
  • Mary Ramsay was the daughter of “Mr Andrew Ramsay one the ministers of Edinburgh
  • James was associated with “…Montrose during the sojourn of the royal forces in the west of Scotland. The laird of Knock [James] denied having had any concern in the protection…”
  • “James Fraser of Knock
    March 13, 1649: Presbytery of Irvine: it was reported on this day to the Presbytery that “upon the day of tendering the Covenant, the laird of Knock, because it was told him that he wald not admitted to the Covenant, absented himself from the kirk in the afternoon”. For “his scandalouslie absenting himself fra the kirk the day of swearing the covenant”, the Session of Largs were ordered not only to proceed in the process against the laird, but that this latter offence should be taken into the process. Paterson states ‘that in 1650 the process was still continued against him, though meantime he had fled to Ireland to escape the persecution to which he and others were subjected’.
    [Paterson, James: History of the County of Ayr, Vol. II, p. 309]”
  • Apparently this same James shows up in 1673 in Aberdeenshire as a “minister of word of God at the Church of Ellen

Knock is part of Largs Parish:

Here is a modern view of the updated Knock Castle:

Alan informs us that the modern day spelling of Ellen is Ellon:

This looks like it would be an interesting place to visit.

  • There is mention of an Archibald and William Frazer in reference 11 compiled by Alan. This appears to be in a document signing over the property at Knock. However, the relationship of Archibald and William to James and his younger brother Alexander are not apparent.

So where does this leave us? Alan’s research adds some clarity to the traditions of the Frasers of Knock circulated among some of the Frazer descendants. It shows that there was a controversial figure named James Fraser of Knock who held the Knock Castle and property. He got into some trouble with the authorities in the area of Largs, fled to Ireland for a while and showed up in Aberdeenshire as a minister where he apparently died.

My assumption is that the Frazers that moved to County Roscommon were familiar with James of Knock and probably were living in the same area before moving to Ireland. What is not sure is whether our Irish Frazers were closely related, distantly related or unrelated to James Frazer of Knock. Joanna of our study group has mentioned that there are Frasers and Frazers still around in the area of Largs. It would interesting to find out if there is any DNA connection between these Fraser/Frazers and our Frazers.

Any comments are welcome in case I have misinterpreted Alan’s research.

Ken’s Newfoundland DNA & Genealogy

I while back, I had emails from FTDNA saying that they had found a close relative for my mother in law Joan and her 1/2 great Aunt Esther. That match was to Ken who had ancestors in Harbour Buffet, NL where my wife’s Upshall family came from. This was good news. I even found an Upshall in Ken’s FTDNA tree. It seems Upshalls are quite rare.

Some Newfoundland Genealogy

Here are Ken’s ancestors:

Compare this to Esther’s Newfoundland genealogy:

Esther’s tree has a few more holes. Also note that her Upshall grandfather was born in 1841, so those holes go back some time. Esther matches Ken on the following surnames:

  • Shave
  • Upshall
  • Dicks (2)
  • Burton

That could be a lot of DNA to untangle. My mother in law Joan only matches Esther on the top half, so that is Upshall and one of the Dicks lines. That is because Esther is her 1/2 Aunt. Fred Upshall married Margaret Shave after his first wife died during the Flu Epidemic.

Ken’s wife Sandi

Ken’s wife Sandi has a Dicks in her genealogy who is from the Robert Dicks line. As a result, Ken and Sandi share some DNA:

Gedmatch estimates them to have a common ancestor at 4.5 generations. Here is Sandi’s tree. She is 6 Generations from Robert Dicks while Ken is only 4 generations away. That averages out to 5 generations to their common ancestor.

Triangulating on the Robert Dicks/Cran Line

When I compare Ken to Sandi, Marilyn, Howie and Forrest, I get this on Chromosome 14:

This shows Ken’s matches with #1 Marilyn and #2 Sandi. This looks like a Triangulation Group (TG). All that is needed is for Marilyn and Sandi to match each other. However, surprisingly, Marilyn and Sandi do not match each other there. They do match each other in a lot of places but not on Chromosome 14:

How can Ken match Marilyn in the same area of the Chromosome where he matches Sandi and not have Marilyn and Sandi match each other? I think that the only way this could happen is that he has to match these two on different copies of the Chromosome. We each have maternal and paternal Chromosomes. That means Ken matches Marilyn on the maternal side and Sandi on the paternal side (or the other way around).

Next, I’ll look at Chromosome 18

This shows Ken matching Molly, Sandi and Forrest. This time, we see from above that Marilyn and Sandi do match each other on Chromosome 18 between 11M and 33M. Here is how I picture their TG18:

From this it would appear that the DNA is coming from Robert Dicks or Jane Cran. The theory is that a TG points to one ancestor. However, in this case we don’t know whether that ancestor is Dicks or Cran. I would guess that the DNA is from Cran. I’ll say why I think that below.

Ken’s Tier 1 Triangulation Report has a utility called a Tier 1 Triangulation Report. I ran this for Ken and found three TGs near each other on Chromosome 18:

The first TG has a lot of people in it that I don’t know. It is represented by the first green segment. There were many other overlapping green segments each representing Ken and two others that I didn’t include in the image above. Molly and Sandi were not in that TG.

The second green segment represents the TG I have above which has Ken, Molly and Sandi in it circled.

The third green segment overlaps with the second green segment. It has has Molly, Cheryl and Ken in it. Prepare to squint:

Cheryl is way over on the bottom left. She is on the Elizabeth Dicks/Adams Line. The Roberts Dicks/Cran Line is cut off on the right. Here I have Ken triangulating from his Frances Dicks/Burton Line and Marilyn triangulating from her Rachel Dicks/Joyce Line. This is truly a Dicks TG as it is coming from three lines. I am thinking that the previous TG with Ken, Sandi and Marilyn is a Cran TG. That is because I wasn’t able to get Cathy and Marilyn to match. If both these overlapping TGs were Dicks, I would think that there would be some match between Cathy and Marilyn. Given the complexities of Newfoundland genealogy, there could be other explanations, but that is the way I see it at this point. Another way to look at it is if the TG is quite wide on the Dicks project, the DNA is probably Dicks. If the TG is narrower, it is more likely that the TG is from the associated surname – in this case Cran. The other point is that Cheryl and Sandi were important in this analysis as they only appear to descend from one line of Dicks each. They helps ground the double Dicks descendants Ken and Marilyn.

The Triangulating Ken and esther

I am interested in how Ken and Esther triangulate. When I searched for Esther in Ken’s Triangulation Report, she came up 45 times. I also looked at TGs that had my mother in law Joan in them. There were about 15 TGs with Ken that had Esther and/or Joan in them. I have done a lot of work on the DNA from the Dicks lines. As a results, I came to the following conclusion:

  1. TGs with Ken, Esther, not Joan and not Dicks descendants were more likely on the Shave or Burton lines.
  2. TGs with just Ken, Esther and Joan are more likely on the Upshall line.
  3. TGs with Ken, Joan and others (not known Dicks descendants) are probably also on the Upshall line.
  4. TGs with Ken, Esther, Joan and known Dicks descendants are probably represents Dicks ancestors.

I also noticed a lot of TGs that Ken had with Esther and people that descended from the Elizabeth Dicks/Adams Line. They are represented in a peach color below:

This TG came up four times. I’m not sure of the significance of this.

Triangulating Ken’s X Matches

Here are a few of Ken’s X Chromosome matches:

#1 is Esther, #2 is Joan and #3 is Molly aka Marilyn. I don’t know 4-7, so I suppose they are not related to Esther, Joan and Molly. It looks like Ken, Esther and Joan are in a TG. They are in a TG as Joan and Esther match from 47M to 115M. We can probably find a common ancestor based on this.

Ken only got an X from his mom, so we can eliminate the whole paternal line:

The purple circles indicate possible lines of X Chromosome inheritance for Ken.

Here is the X inheritance pattern for Esther:

However, here, we need to eliminate the bottom part of the tree as Joan is only related to Esther on the top half of the tree.

Next is Joan’s tree:

This is where things narrow down. I didn’t include Joan’s paternal line as she is related to Esther on her maternal side only. Christopher Dicks the father of Christopher Dicks got cut off, but he wouldn’t be in line for the X Chromosome anyway as the X never travels from male to male. That leaves a connection to Margaret the wife of Christopher who I have as living from 1789 to 1867. That means where Ken, Esther, and Joan match, they can map that bit of X Chromosome all the way back to the Margaret with the unknown last name who married Christopher Dicks.

Margaret goes off Ken’s chart but was the mother of Robert and Frances Dicks as far as we can tell:

We don’t know if Ken’s X Chromosome came through Robert Dicks or Frances Dicks. Molly isn’t in this X TG, so we will say Ken’s X inheritance came more likely through Frances Dicks than her brother Robert.

Molly, Esther and Ken’s TG on the right side of the x chromosome

Esther and Ken have the same X inheritance patter for this TG as previously shown. Here is how Molly connects. All I have to do is show that there is a likely X path to Margaret with no male to male in the line:

I started with Molly’s paternal grandmother. From there I went to Sarah Slade’s mother’s mother who is Priscilla Dicks. From there we go to Robert Dicks and Robert’s mother Margaret who is Molly’s 4th great grandmother if I have it right. The X connection makes for a zig-zaggy route.

The only step I forgot to prove the TG was to show that Molly and Esther match each other at the end of the X Chromosome.

That match completes the TG for Molly, Ken and Esther. That means that if people are mapping their X Chromosome:

  • Ken and Esther can map their middle and last segments to Margaret
  • Joan can map her middle segment to Margaret
  • Molly can map the end of her X Chromosome segment to Margaret

Homework Assignment

All we have to figure is what all these matches represent between Ken and Esther:

Actually, I think that we are on our way to figuring this out. Here is another peek at some of Ken’s TGs with Esther and Joan:

As I mentioned above, it is possible to guess the TG’s routes based on who is in the TGs. My guesses are:

  • TG1 for Ken could be on Esther’s maternal Shave side.This also includes a Dicks and a Burton.
  • TG2 could be on the Upshall side as Upshall is a rarer name and there aren’t others in the TG
  • TG4A has Joan and not Esther, which narrows things down. This has at least on UK person in it, so perhaps this goes back to Upshall in the UK or Upshall ancestors there.
  • TG4B and TG5 have people that are not known Dicks descendants, so that could narrow things down a little. We would have to look more into their genealogy to figure out the connections.
  • TG9A has Joan which probably narrows the lines down to one Dicks and one Upshall. There is also one Elizabeth Dicks/Adams descendant in this TG.
  • These assumptions would have to be checked with the genealogy of the people that are in the TGs.

Diminishing Matches

I showed above how Esther matches Ken at 389.1 cM. This is how Ken matches Joan, who is Esther’s half niece:

The match went down by about half, which isn’t bad considering the half relationship Joan and Esther have with each other.

Here is Ken’s match with my wife, Marie, who is Joan’s daughter:

Wow, look at that. All the DNA matches dropped out except for the one at Chromosome 9. On average, a parent would pass down half the DNA. However Marie got less than average. I’m sure a lot of this DNA went to Marie’s other siblings. The moral of the story is to test the older generation for DNA. Esther shares about 18 times the DNA with Ken compared to Marie and Ken.

Summary and Conclusions

  • Ken and Sandi have provided a lot of information and matches to consider – too much for one Blog
  • I need to do a fuller review of Ken and Sandi’s matches for the Dicks DNA Project
  • I am interested in trying to figure out more about any potential Ken/Esther/Joan Upshall DNA matches. Esther is on AncestryDNA and has some interesting matches with people in Dorset, England.
  • The good news is that there are a lot of DNA matches on a lot of different lines. The challenge is figuring out which matches go with which lines and where to make the connections in looking for missing ancestors.
  • This match between Ken and Esther should be a benchmark for those who have Harbour Buffet ancestry.




Stuart Added to the YDNA Group of Frazer, Grant, Hayes and Patton

I just found out about some exciting news. A Stuart that likely originates from the same area in Scotland as the Frazers has gotten his BigY results back. This is one of the best tests for YDNA. It places people in YDNA trees and shows how families originated. I’d like to look at those results to see where this Stuart fits in with Frazers and other related families.

BigY and YDNA Basics

The important thing to remember about YDNA is that it is very simple. You are only dealing with one Chromosome versus the 22 autosomal chromosomes. Then you are only dealing with one line of ancestors. That is your father’s, his father’s father’s and so on. The Big Y tests SNPs. SNPs are mutations that happen every four or so generations on average. The Big Y tests these SNP and how they have changed since our original ancestor – called genetic Adam. When you get your Big Y results you get a lot of SNP names. These are the SNP differences between you and Adam:

You will have the first SNP that differentiated you from “Adam” up to the one that got you into the R group. Our group of Frazer, Hayes, Grant, Patton and Stuart are in a still very general group called R1a. The understanding is that this group traveled a bit to the North of the R1b group. The thought is that our R1a group made their way up through the current country of Germany to Scandinavia. From there they made their way somehow to Scotland.

snps and variants

These SNPs carry down to what is called a terminal SNP. This is the last or most recent SNP that is named and is usually shared with another person. After that, the SNPs are not generally named and called Variants. These are the newest of all. Once others test and these Variants can be placed in a tree, they will extend the branches of the tree further into the present and will also be named.

what is confusing about YDNA?

STRs are a little more confusing, but I won’t be looking at them here. They can be confusing because the values for these can go up or down. SNPs however happen once and then they are set in stone. One of the major confusing things about SNPs are their names. The SNP names are based on the lab or group that discovered the SNP. That means that there is no logical progression in the name that shows the change from an older SNP to a newer SNP.

Here is an example from the R1a Project spreadsheet:

This shows two Frazers and an unnamed tester. The turquoise heading shows the progression of the SNP names. They start at M417 and end at R-YP6489. The unnamed person did not have his SNPs tested, so he has a conservative red designation for his SNP based on the values of his STRs which appear to the right. He is probably actually R-YP6489 based on his STRs, but he hasn’t taken the test, so he has a SNP value that is likely thousands of years older than R-YP6489. I’ll try to address a few more items of confusion as they come up. However, in general they have to do with the naming of SNPs.

So far:

  • YDNA SNPs are simple. According to YFull, there is a new high quality family SNP in your line every 144.41 years. They change about every four generations just on the direct male line. In my 2nd cousin once removed Paul’s case, four generations takes him back to his 2nd great grandfather. Between Paul b. 1944 and his great grandfather James Frazer b. about 1804 there are 140 years. Between those 5 people there is likely a new SNP. Or maybe none or two. But most likely one.
  • Based on these changes back to Genetic Adam we can make a YDNA tree.
  • The SNP names are complicated and don’t represent the progression of the SNP changes in the YDNA Tree.

Three Different YDNA Trees

There are three different YDNA trees for our R1a Group all trying to show the same thing. They are:

  • FTDNA Haplotree
  • FTDNA administrator Tree
  • YFull YTree
ftdna haplotree

FTDNA is the Big Y testing company. They have a tree that shows the end result of the Big Y testing. They call their tree the Haplotree. Here is the current tree for my Frazer cousin that I had tested:

There are several levels above this, but this is the current bottom of the tree. It ends in R-YP6489. This is consistent with the FTDNA R1a Project Spreadsheet above. A lot has been happening since I wrote my last Blog on the subject just two months ago. At that time our Frazer terminal SNP on this tree was YP432. Now we are four levels below that.

ftdna administrator R1a tree

This is a good tree, but it is private, so it is not published anywhere. I had referred to it in previous Blogs by taking out some of the ID’s. The other issue is that I got to see it when our Frazer Big Y test results came in, but I haven’t gotten any updates. Here is what I had before. It looks like FTDNA has since caught up with the FTDNA R1a Administrator tree:

One good thing that the Administrator does is put dates on the SNPs. So for example the date of our common Frazer ancestor is 1600. That is very close to the actual date of 1690 which is when we believe the common ancestor to have been born. Another good check is to see if the date between different surnames is before the advent of surnames. Notice that the year 900 A.D. splits off Grant (and now Stuart) from Frazer. I recently heard that the advent of surnames was around 1,000 A.D. and they came into use for several hundred years after that depending on the region and other factors. Another point is that, if the 1600 A.D. date is correct for this SNP, it would ensure that this is indeed a Frazer Family SNP. Any male Frazer that want to prove his Frazer lineage, would just have to test for this SNP. This SNP should separate the Frazers from non-Frazers – or at least our brand of Frazers.

From a recent Stuart email, I gather that his new result is R-YP6488 which is what Grant is also. That would place Stuart next to the Grant in the middle line above. Time to pull out the Clan map of the Inverness and South. This shows Fraser (Frazer), Grant, and Stewart (Stuart). For me, the geography pulls together what the DNA is showing us. That is, that at least this group of Frazer/Grant/Stewart had a common ancestor probably before the beginning of taking on of surnames in this area South of Inverness.

According to the R1a Administrator: “It looks like between 1400 BC and 400 BC some (or maybe only one) YP432 people migrated from Scandinavia to Scotland.” I am guessing they hung out there for 1,000 years or so. In 900 A.D., one of those former Scandinavians had children. Their descendants stuck around in the Inverness area for several hundred years. When people were taking on clan names, they took on the names of Fraser, Stewart or Grant probably based on where they were living at the time. We have another Chisolm/Chisum who has tested STRs but not the Big Y. He appears to fit into this pattern also.

Yfull Ytree

I wrote my last two Blogs on Frazer YDNA in mid July and the new YFull YTree v5.05 is dated 30 July 2017. It is big news when this tree comes out. Here is the latest version.

On YTree’s web site, they say they try to come out with a new YTree every month, but it seems more like two months before they come out with a new one. So it is now that YTree is lagging behind FTDNA. The Frazers are shown as being at R-YP6479. That is correct, but outdated. They actually are YP6479>YP6488>YP6489. When the new YTree comes out, this should be corrected. Note that next to YP6479, it says, +12 SNPs. When you hover over this box, the additional 12 named SNPs appear. They include the SNPs YP6488 and YP6489 which now form branches. By seeing these new SNPs, it is like we are going back 1200 years or so and seeing these new branches and families form.

What people wait for is the YTree’s dates. YFull has YP5515 as formed 3200 years ago and the TMRCA which is time to the most recent common ancestor as 2200 years ago. It will be especially interesting to see what YFull comes up with for dates on YP6489. At this time, YP6489 seems to be a Frazer family-only SNP as no other families have laid claim to it.

One of the down sides of YFull is that they don’t have all the testers. They only have people in the tree that have signed up for their service. Another issue is that YFull uses ID’s only, so in order to find out who the ID’s belong to you need to message the ID contact. In the tree above, my Frazer cousin is the ID without the ‘new’ designation after it. However, they do have advantages over FTDNA which make them a worthwhile option to use in Big Y analysis.

FTDNA SNP Matching and the Mystery SNP L1012

FTDNA’s Big Y SNP matching is one of those things that doesn’t work well. As I mentioned, my cousin Paul and (by inference) I share our terminal YP6489 with one other Frazer tester. However, when I choose to look for SNP matches at zero difference, it appears to give me 35 entries. Our new tester Stuart is not included in those 35. It appears that the SNPs have not been updated for this search. I think that FTDNA tried to correct this by putting in a subclade search option at the top of the SNP matching area:


This feature usually works. However, the R-Y2894 SNP seems out of place as it is several layers above R-YP5515. Here is the result when I choose R-YP6488:

The right people come up (Grant and Stuart), but it shows that there is not a match on L1012. When I look Up L1012, it appears to be an early “Adamic” SNP:

I suppose that there a few kinks in the FTDNA system, unless I am missing something.

Implications of R-YP6489

YP6489 is a fairly recent SNP. So far, this SNP has been dated at about the year 1600 by the R1a Administrator. This SNP came about because of tandem Big Y Frazer tests. As a result, we were able to get a SNP that represents the Frazer family. This SNP can be used to verify that a Frazer male is part of our Irish Frazers. There is another possible use of this SNP. Say that a Frazer with no known Irish history were to test positive for this SNP. That would forge a link between Ireland and the part of Scotland that the Frazers moved from. There may be no further paper records to be found that would link the Frazers to Scotland. There were no immigration requirements for moving from Scotland to Ireland. Many of the vital records have been lost or destroyed. However, the DNA could be the “record” that would link our Frazers to other Frazers that never moved to Ireland.

The YP6488 SNP does not show a single family origin for Grant and Stuart. YP6488 is also shared by our two Frazer testers. The Grant and Stuart families likely have a SNP at the level of YP6489 that represents each of their families. To get to this level would require an addition Grant or Stuart Big Y test. However, if another Stuart or Grant were to test positive for YP6488 by just doing a single SNP test, they would have proof that they are looking in the right area.

Summary and Conclusions

  • Our new Stuart tester is a welcome and enthusiastic addition to our part of the YDNA tree.
  • The Stuarts, Grants, Frazers and others have shared early ancestry. This has now been determined by YDNA testing
  • The area that the Stuart, Grant and Frazer families originated from was likely just South of Inverness
  • Single testing of YP6489 should indicate Frazer ancestry.
  • Single testing of YP6488 should indicate at least Grant, Frazer or Stuart.
  • The next step is to wait for updated YDNA trees from YFull and the R1a Administrator.

More Irish Frazer Autosomal DNA

After a bit of break, the autosomal portion of the Irish Frazer DNA project is roaring into action. This is thanks to Pat who had her cousin Susan test. Pat also gave a boost to the Frazer YDNA by having Susan’s brother Rick test at the 67 STR level. The YDNA portion of the Frazer DNA project has been chugging along and needs an update, but I last wrote on the Autosomal side in March 2017 when Doug’s Aunt Rita was tested from the Frazer/Stinson Line.

Susan’s Genealogy by Richard Frazer

It is always good to start with the genealogy to see where Susan’s DNA is coming from:

A few notes:

  • This chart only those who descend from Richard Frazer and have tested for DNA
  • David is in white. His line was added based on DNA and the fact that we had an extra James in the genealogy. However, I am not sure David is sure of this placement.
  • Jane was also added by DNA, but her placement here seems more secure.
  • Rick has only taken the YDNA DNA test and not the autosomal.
  • Those in the yellow and blue lines descend from two Frazers: Violet and James. Violet is the daughter of Richard. James is not well documented. I have him as a first cousin to Violet and a son of Philip (brother of Richard). However, this has not been proven.
  • I would like to be able to pull apart the DNA of James and Violet for analysis. It seems like this could be possible by comparing the yellow/blue lines who descend from James to all the other Frazer descendants.
  • Both Jane and Michael are also in the Archibald/Stinson Line

DNA on the Richard Frazer Line

The autosomal matrix for the Richard Frazer descendants looks like this:

The area in the dark box represents those that are descended from James and Violet Frazer. The DNA that they got from Violet and James is at the intersection of the Richard Paterson Frazer (RPF) Line and the George William Frazer (GWF) Line. So for example, Susan from the RPF Line shared from zero to 73 cM with those in the GWF Line (Heidi through Paul). The highest amount shared was between Gladys and Sharon. That means that it appears that Gladys and Sharon each have 86.9 cM of DNA in them from James and Violet Frazer. Here is what their match looks like:

Of these matches, I already had Triangulation Groups (TGs) on Chromosomes 9 and 12, but the TG on Chromosome 18 is new. More about those in the next section.

The Frazer TG Matrix

I have been keeping track of the TGs that I have found. I found some new TGs:

I took out the pink George Frazer/Price TGs that I had in a previous TG Matrix to save room.  Perhaps they should be in a separate chart. However, I see that there are still some TGs that could be George Frazer/Price TGs. These are the ones that only have matches with Bill, Pat, Susan, or Gladys. These are TG09A and 09B. Also TG10A. In addition, it appears that I should be able to combine TG09A and 09B. The yellow TGs are interesting to me. They just have people from the first two groups in them, so they could represent James Frazer or Violet Frazer. TG18C in yellow was new based on Susan’s results.

Actually, when I look at the matches, Heidi should be in the matrix also, so I need to fix my matrix. There are a lot of details in doing this and sometimes I miss things:

Susan’s Genealogy by Archibald Frazer

Susan also descends from Archibald Frazer who married Ann Stinson.

Here we see that Jane and Michael who were in the Richard Frazer Line are also in this line. Based on Susan’s matches, we should be able to tell which line the matches are from:

Let’s Look at the George Frazer/Price group:

  • Where they just match my family, I have them in yellow. That means that this could represent DNA from James and Violet Frazer.
  • Where they match each other, that could indicate DNA from George Frazer or his Price wife. Examples of this would be TG9A, TG9B and TG10A. These should probably be in pink.
  • Where this group matches just Michael or Jane, we can’t tell if the match on the Richard Frazer or the Frazer/Stinson Line. See TG03C and TG04B
  • In TG05A, Pat and Gladys are in a TG with Cathy from the Stinson line. This puts their common ancestor at Archibald Frazer or his wife Ann Stinson.

Comparing All the Frazer DNA

When I look at all the Frazer DNA, I see this:

This is quite small, but it does tell by how many cM each Frazer descendant matches each other Frazer descendant. One thing that stuck out to me on the chart is that Jane and Vivien match each other at about 110 cM. On the Archibald/Stinson genealogy chart, they show as 3rd cousins to each other. A typical 3rd cousin would share about 74 cM, but the range is 0-217. For example, Cathy shares 34.8 cM with Jane and 31 cM with Vivien and she should be a third cousin with those two. On the other hand, Michael is 4th cousins with Rita and Vivien and shares more DNA with those two than the 3rd cousin relationships I just mentioned.

Susan’s largest match outside the Frazer/Price line is with me:

This is quite a bit considering we are 4th cousins on paper. This is a little over twice the typical amount that 4th cousins might share. My brother Jonathan makes up for it by sharing no DNA with Susan.

Mapping my family’s chromosome 7

Here is what my Chromosome 7 looks like compared to my sisters Heidi and Sharon. This raw data phasing was done by MMacneil from Canada.

I got brighter red Frazer DNA from my father’s mother. This is where I match Susan. Notice that Heidi and Sharon got their paternal side DNA from their Hartley paternal grandfather instead of their Frazer maternal grandmother at the beginning of the Chromosome where I matched Susan.

I should be able to phase myself against my brother Jonathan and sister Lori also at Chromosome 7:

It wasn’t as easy as I thought because what looked like a crossover for me at position 70 was actually a crossover for Lori and Jonathan. All this to show why Susan has a smaller match with Lori than with Joel. It has to be smaller because the DNA that Lori got from her dad switched from his mom’s Frazer side to his father’s Hartley side at position 28.

The Bigger Picture

I alluded to it before, but Susan and her Frazer/Price relatives appear to descend from three Frazer brothers. As such, they would have quite a bit of the DNA from Archibald Frazer and Mary Lilly:

For example, one child gets 50% of the DNA that the parents had. Add a child and it is up to 75%. I would think that with three children, that number would be up to 87%.

Summary and Conclusions

  • Susan’s DNA has added to our knowledge of the Frazer family – especially on the Archibald side.
  • Her results have also helped in the mystery of the James Frazer/Violet Frazer marriage.
  • It would appear that the matches to Susan and her Frazer/Price relatives that aren’t shared by other Richard Frazer descendants would more likely be James Frazer (b. about 1804) matches.
  • A new look at the Frazer matching DNA matrix has shown some high matches between specific people. This leads us to wonder who was the wife of Richard Frazer (b. about 1777).
  • Next up, I’d like to get back to the YDNA. More results are coming in from people related distantly to the Frazers. In addition, there should be a new update to FYull’s Ytree and updates to other genetic trees related to the Frazers.

Three New People in the Newfoundland Dicks DNA Project

I was happy to find out that Katherine and her two Aunts, Grace and Dorothy have tested their DNA. They are all descended from the Dicks Family of Newfoundland. Here is the Elisabeth Dicks Adams Line:

Here Dorothy, Grace and Katherine are shown on the lower left. If I compare the DNA of Dorothy, Grace and Katherine, it would show the DNA they have in common. That would be the DNA from Edna Slade and the husband of Edna Slade. If I then compare Katherine’s family to Cheryl, Sandra and Nelson, the matches eliminate the non-Dicks DNA of Edna’s husband. However, at that point, we would expect about half the DNA to be from the Elizabeth Dicks common ancestor and half from the Adams side. In order to eliminate the Adams DNA, I compare the Dicks/Adams DNA to the larger Dicks project. This comparison removes the Adams DNA.

Katherine’s family is still on the lower left. There are five Dicks siblings in the tree which make up the major lines. They are: Elisabeth; Frances; Christopher; Rachel; and Robert. The tree only represents Dicks descendants that have had their DNA tested and uploaded to gedmatch. One exception is Kenneth Albert who is only at FTDNA right now.

Comparing Dicks Descendants’ DNA

My next step is to compare the 18 Dicks above to see how their DNA matches with each other. If three people match each other on the same segment of the same chromosome, that indicates a common ancestor. That common ancestor should be Christopher Dicks or his wife Margaret. Here is how all the Dicks descendants match each other in general (without the specific segment information).

This compares Dicks descendants to Dicks descendants, however, as this is Newfoundland, there are other matches. The descendants of Elisabeth Dicks match each other in the top left box. The descendants of Frances Dicks match each other in the bottom right box. Normally, there would be higher matches within the boxes than outside. But note that for the Frances descendants, there are some higher matches outside the box. This means that are surname matches outside the Dicks family. One example of that is in the next Section.

Charles matches with Kathy, Deborah and grace

As I was looking at the triangulation between Dicks descendants, I noticed that Charles was triangulating with Kathy, Deborah, and Grace. Now Charles is from the Frances Line and K, D and G are from the Elisabeth Line. So finding Charles in a Triangulation Group with Kathy’s family was unexpected. Remember that triangulation means that those in the Triangulation Group (TG) have at least one most recent common ancestor. I was about to ask Kathy about this when I noticed this in one of her emails:

“I was also quite interested in Charles ______ as one of his biological grandmother’s a few generations back was a Ruth Slade.”

Notice above that Kathy has Slades in her ancestry. The good news was that I was able to tell something was going on out of the ordinary just by the DNA.

Here is a summary of Charles’ matches of the Dicks descendants:

The four notes in the TG column are areas where Charles could match Kathy and her family on the Slade line.

Triangulation Groups

I should say that all Triangulation Groups are not created equal. Based on the location of the Triangulation Group (TG) there are hints as to the results. For example, many of the TGs are within the Elisabeth Dicks/Thomas Adams Line. As a result, the TG could be pointing to Dicks or Adams. In addition, there is some consensus that siblings should not be used for TGs. I differ a little on that, however. I would say, why not? If we can use cousins, or Aunts, why can’t we use two Aunts as two parts of the triangle? However, again, the results of the triangle may be limited.

Adams TGs?

Here are the TGs that could point to an Adams ancestor:

I say this because there are only Dicks/Adams descendants in these TGs. I am running out of room in my TG Matrix, or I would add these possible Adams TG. I will add the one on Chromosome 12. This is because it looks like there is already a Dicks TG in this spot:

Note that it looks like there is a Dicks TG already on Chromosome 12 from position 114 to 127. As these are two separate TGs, that would indicate that this TG represents the DNA that came down from the Adams side. That was my same reasoning for having a James Joyce TG on the right side of the chart in this position.

a confusing Chromosome 4

There is a lot going on at Chromosome 4:

This is what is referred to as a rolling TG. Howie appears to be in the beginning of it, but drops out. Then later Pauline joins in. So this could be looked at as a rolling TG, or two TGs. To save room on my chart, I’ll call  it one TG located from (41-72).

Note that there is a non-triangulation between Joan and Nelson. This is important as it happens right in the middle of a triangulation between Pauline, Dorothy and Grace. This tells me that Joan and Nelson likely share a non-Dicks ancestor. The other possibility is that Dorothy, Grace and Pauline could share a non-Dicks ancestor. I don’t know all the genealogy to check. However, the two groups are showing different shared ancestors.

A head scratchin’ Chromosome 9

Here Esther shows up in a TG with Dorothy and Grace. However, she was already in a TG with Sandra, Nelson and Kenneth (whose DNA results no longer show up in Gedmatch). This means that Esther is related to these two groups of people in two different ways. Esther being related to two groups of people is not unusual given the intermarriage in Newfoundland. Also recall that many genetic genealogist wouldn’t consider this a TG as due to Dorothy and Grace being sisters.

Updated Dicks TG Matrix

Here is what I get for the updated Dicks TG Matrix based on the three newly DNA tested Dicks descendants:

Summary and Conclusions

  • Although the study is geared toward Dicks DNA, other DNA does show up. The Slade name was one example in this Blog.
  • Kathy, Dorothy and Grace have added to our knowledge of the Dicks family.
  • The dark green in the matrix above was for matches with a brother of Christopher Dicks who was born about 1784. However, I didn’t update that information for this Blog.
  • Where DNA overlaps and there are two groups of matches, that should point to two groups of ancestors. This gives a good pointer on where to search for additional common family ancestors.
  • The work I do here is similar to the Circles shown at AncestryDNA. My wife’s great Aunt Esther shows up in a Margaret Circle with 11 other people. Margaret was the wife of Christopher Dicks b. about 1789. However, Triangulation Groups are more detailed. What AncestryDNA does is a mechanized version. They just show people that match each other by DNA and match each other by family tree regardless of where they match on which Chromosome.
  • Here is AncestryDNA’s cookie cutter bio on Margaret: “Margaret was born in 1789. She married Christopher Dicks and they had four children together. She then married Christopher Dicks and they had 14 children together. She also had one son and one daughter from another relationship. She died on February 28, 1867, in Harbour Buffett, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada, having lived a long life of 78 years, and was buried there.
  • One person in the AncestryDNA “Margaret” circle is not in this group and matches Esther at an ‘extremely high’ level of DNA. It would be worthwhile to get in touch with this person.


Joyce’s Hartley DNA

At a recent Hartley reunion, I asked Joyce to take an AncestryDNA test and she gladly obliged. Joyce is my father’s cousin. I had already asked Joyce’s brother Jim to take a test at FTDNA and I have been working with his results. My father has a lot of cousins as his grandparents had 13 children that survived past infancy.

Here is a picture of Joyce and her granddaughter that my sister took at this year’s Hartley Reunion:

I remember Joyce’s mom as the one who always had cookies to give out at the family reunion. Joyce knows a lot of Hartleys as she used to be in charge of sending out letters to the relatives.

Joyce’s Genealogy – English, English and English

Here are some of Joyce’s ancestors:

The Hartley part that I am more interested in is on the bottom. Joyce has a lot of English names in her ancestry. Also a lot of Colonial Massachusetts ancestors. The ancestors that were not from Colonial Massachusetts were the Hartleys. They came to the US after the American Civil War. I’m hoping that DNA testing will confirm the last two Hartleys on the chart. They are James Hartley and Betty Baldwin. Those two were my best guess for the parents of Robert Hartley. My problem was that there were a lot of Robert Hartleys born around the same time in the area to different parents.

Ancestry has something called Genetic Communities which shows where your ancestors were in the last 200 years or so. Not surprisingly, for Joyce, her one Genetic Community is Colonial New England:

Joyce’s Matches at Ancestry

Joyce currently shows over 600 4th cousins or closer at Ancestry. That doesn’t mean that all these matches are 4th cousins. It just means that by the level of DNA match, it appears that the match could be at the level of 4th cousins. When I look at the matches, the range that Ancestry gives is actually 4th to 6th cousins. Perhaps because of all the colonial matches, some of the matches appear closer than they actually are. These matches are both on the Hartley and Gurney sides.

Shared Ancestor Hints

Ancestry also has Shared Ancestor Hints (SAHs). An SAH is when there is a DNA match to a person and also a match in the family tree. These hints are very accurate at close range, but may need checking at the more distant connections. Here is Joyce’s very accurate SAH with my sister Lori:

I’ve erased some of the information for privacy, but this shows that Lori and Joyce are 1st cousins, once removed. Joyce will show similar match results for all of my very many 2nd cousins.

Here is one of Joyce’s more distant Colonial Massachusetts cousins:

Here Ancestry has found a DNA match with this person and a family tree match with the common ancestors of Francis Crapo and Patience Spooner. This would be a good family tree match if both family trees were filled out well and there were no other matches. However, the tree on the right also shown below is missing some lines:

The match should be the bottom side of this tree. However, there is some missing information on the bottom. There are no parents for Weston, Pittsley, Reynolds, etc. However, lets assume that the DNA is actually on the Spooner side which then goes up to Crapo and Spooner. I suppose that means that Patience Crapo could have married a Spooner relative.

Joyce’s Spooner Match at Gedmatch

Once Joyce’s results came in, I uploaded them to I like this site because you can tell a lot more about your matches. Fortunately, the Spooner/Crapo match above also uploaded to Gedmatch.

At gedmatch, I can see that the match is on Chromosome 3. Ancestry doesn’t give specific match location for their DNA matches. However, the bottom line is that wherever I or my siblings or my cousins match Joyce at this particular spot, it means that it likely represents colonial Massachusetts DNA that came through the Snell side.

People That Match Joyce and Jocye’s Crapo/Spooner Match

It is possible to run a facility at Gedmatch that shows people that match two other people that match each other by DNA. When I put Joyce and her Crapo/Spooner match, I get these people:

Above the reference person is Joyce. #3 is her Crapo/Spooner match. #1 is my 2nd cousin Patricia. She is also a 1st cousin, once removed to Joyce, so matches her in quite a few places by DNA. The other people are those who I don’t know, but they probably descend from Crapo and/or Spooner.

A Lancashire DNA Match?

As I mentioned above, Joyce has three quarters colonial Massachusetts ancestry and one quarter more recent Lancashire, England ancestry which happens to be Hartley. I found a match recently on Gedmatch which is interesting. The match is with Lee and is a fairly good size. Here is how Lee matches on Chromosome 13 with my three sisters, me, Joyce and her brother Jim:

Note that Lee matches all of us for the same amount. This means that Lee has a segment passed down from one of his grandparents that starts and ends on the yellow that matches all of us. We would have longer portions of that DNA on either side of Lee’s segment.

All of Lee’s ancestors are from England and most  from Lancashire, which would make me believe that the match is on the Hartley side. The other colonial ancestors that Joyce have go back to England so long ago, that she shouldn’t be matching on those ancestors. Here are Lee’s ancestors:

It is also interesting that Lee has a Hartley ancestor (but no information on her parents). Margaret Hartley named her son, Robert Hartley Taylor. The mother of John Clark is a Baldwin. I had mentioned above, that it is possible that there is a Baldwin in the Hartley ancestry. So that would be interesting to follow up also. Both these people were from the Colne area where the Hartleys were baptized, had funerals and married.

Another Lancashire Match in Mary Pilling

Joyce has a DNA match with two Mary Pilling descendants at Ancestry. One of those, a Wilkinson, has uploaded his results to Gedmatch. Mary Pilling is the mother of three families: Pilling, Hartley and Wilkinson. Here is how the match looks like at Ancestry:

Joyce is actually a half 3rd cousin once removed to her match. That is because after Robert Hartley died, Mary Pilling married a Wilkinson. So that makes for an obscure relationship and not much of a chance for a DNA match, but there is one. Here is how the match looks like at gedmatch:

The above represents Wilkinson’s match with Joyce and her brother Jim at the end of Chromosome 21.


Joyce’s results at Ancestry push back the matches one more generation at AncestryDNA compared to my generation. As a result, there are many more Hartley and non-Hartley DNA matches to investigate. If I can get the results of one more of Joyce’s siblings I will be able to tell where Joyce and her sibling got their DNA from each of their 4 grandparents. That would reach back to James Hartley and Annie Louisa Snell. Knowing this would make it easier to tell if their DNA matches represent Lancashire, England or Colonial Massachusetts. This may also help push back the Hartley ancestry which is currently stuck in the early 1800’s.

A New Frazer Tests for YDNA

It is big news when a Frazer tests for YDNA. YDNA is what is passed down from father to son only. So it is the perfect test for a family surname study like we have for Frazer of Roscommon, Ireland. The other reason that it is big news is that there are not that many male Frazers around to do the testing. We previously had 2 tested for YDNA. Now with Rick’s new test, we have three.

Frazer YDNA and Genealogy

I (and others) have pieced together a Frazer genealogy. It is not perfect, perhaps. That is why DNA testing is needed to affirm the work that has been done. Autosomal DNA is good, but the effectiveness tapers off as we go back more generations. Also autosomal DNA is not specific to a surname, so it could apply to any of hundreds of ancestors the further we go back in time. YDNA on the the other hand, is specific to one male line – in this case Frazer. There are two types of YDNA. One is STRs which Rick tested for. These are good, but there are some problems in interpreting them as I will explain later in the Blog. SNPs are the most exact YDNA test. The other two Frazers, Paul and Jonathan have tested for SNPs through the BigY Test.

Rick descends from George Frazer from Martinsburg, NY. George Frazer moved his family to Canada and left many descendants. I have more on that family here. [Edit: Rick’s cousin Pat replies, “It was Richard Patterson Frazer that brought his family to Canada from Martinsburg.   George was born there but came to Canada with his family as a child.”] Many years ago, I convinced Bill, one of those descendants,  that he and I were related based on genealogy. Even though I wasn’t 100% sure myself, I argued my point with Bill and he finally agreed that we were related. Later, I convinced Bill to take an autosomal DNA test which did show that he was related to my family and many other Roscommon, Ireland Frazer Families. Since then, others have tested and confirmed the relationships. Now we have Rick who has tested his YDNA proving a more certain link on the male Frazer line. So this has been a several year journey starting with traditional genealogy, followed up with autosomal DNA and YDNA testing. Here is the tree of the three male Frazers who have tested for YDNA:

This genealogy is the best that we could do with what we have. There are some uncertainties about it. We have other’s research with names but no references. We have the Elphin Census of 1747 and this includes a widow Mary Frazer. She is presumed to be the widow of Archibald Frazer born around 1690. There are two other Frazers in that Census who represent the Archibald and James Lines. Further, I have supposed that James Frazer b. about 1804 is my ancestor. However, this requires the marriage of two first cousins. This was not that unusual apparently back in the day. Those belonging to the Church of Ireland wanted to marry other Church or Ireland people. In fact, there were laws in place requiring that. However, those from the Church of Ireland were in the minority.

According to the chart above:

  • All the testers have the top Archibald as a common ancestor. Rick and Paul also have James Frazer b. about 1804 as their common ancestor.
  • Rick is 9 generations from Archibald b. about 1690. Paul is 8 generations away and Jonathan is 7 generations away from the first Archibald.
  • Paul and Rick are third cousins once removed
  • Jonathan is a 6th cousin once removed from Paul and 6th cousin twice removed from Rick.
  • Assuming that Rick, Paul and Jonathan were born around 1950, there would be about 260 years from the first Archibald to our three YDNA testers.

Rick’s New YDNA STR Results

Based on the above tree, we would expect that Rick would be more closely related to Paul than Jonathan. That is the case. Ricks closest match is to Paul with a Genetic Difference (GD) of 2. His GD to Jonathan is 3. The GD is the difference in STR mutations between two people. Here are all of Rick’s matches by STRs. He has more matches than Paul or Jonathan:

Here is how Rick’s STR matches compare with Paul’s and Jonathan’s. The numbers are GDs. So a larger GD is a more distant YDNA match. A blank means more than 7:

  • I put the matches together that matched all three Frazers.
  • The light blue highlighted names have taken the BigY Test
  • The SNP Tree below based on BigY SNPs shows that Grant is a closer match to Frazer than Hayes. This seems clear from the STR matches above also
  • The chart points out all the Grant matches. Half of the 10 Frazer STR matches are with Grants.
  • Rick is the only Frazer matching Hayes. This backs up the SNP tree below.

These are the same names that I have been tracking by SNPs. So that is good that the SNPs and the STRs agree with each other. Here is the new SNP tree that was developed by the R1a L664 Administrator Martin:

  • Patton is the most distantly related to Frazer and doesn’t show on any Frazer’s STR match list.
  • Grant shows as the closest match, then Hayes.
  • Chisum doesn’t show on the SNP map as Chisum has not taken the BigY Test.
  • Stuart doesn’t show yet, but he is in the the process of taking the BigY Test, so he will eventually show on the SNP Tree.
  • If Rick had taken the BigY test, he would have formed a branch under the Archibald line on the lower right of the tree. Rick and Paul would likely share some of the SNPs now shown as private SNPs for Paul and both Paul and Rick would then have their own new private SNPs.
  • Rick must share all the SNPs in the yellow box above the ca 1600 A.D date. These are the five brand new SNPs YP6489 through YP6493 that are right now Frazer only SNPs.

A Simple New Frazer STR Tree

A STR Tree for the Frazer should follow the genealogical tree and the SNP tree. Here are the STRs and where Jonathan, Paul and Rick differ:

Normally, the mode would be taken as the oldest STR. However, in the case of DYS391 I believe that based on comparison with other STR tests for Grant, Chisum, Whittaker and Stewart, that the 10 value of DYS391 is the older value. Likewise for CDY which changes more quickly than other STRs, I took 35-38 to be the older value. Prior to Rick’s results, I had this tree for Jonathan and Paul:

In this simple tree, Paul had all the STR changes since the 1690 Frazer ancestor and Jonathan had none. However, there is some guesswork in drawing this out. One rule is to make the chart as simple as possible, which is what I did. This means having the least amount of changes. It is sometimes called the rule of parsimony. Ambiguities in STRs is why some people prefer the SNP trees as there is little or no ambiguity in SNPs. Now note the above chart. Paul and Rick share 391 = 11 and CDYa = 35-40. Here is the new Frazer STR Tree with Rick included:

This shows:

  • Paul has his own STR mutation of 576 = 19 which happened sometime after 1804.
  • Likewise, Rick has his own STR mutation of 444 = 13 which defines Rick’s relatively recent branch.
  • The GD of 2 noted above between Paul and Rick are for markers 576 and 444.
  • The GD of 3 between Paul and Jonathan are for markers 576, 391 and CDYa.
  • The GD of 3 between Rick and Jonathan are for markers 444, 391 and CDYa.
  • The STR tree gets more difficult to draw further back from the present time. This is because more variables come into play such as parallel mutations and back mutations.
  • It would be possible to draw a STR Tree for the Grant, Hayes, Stewart, Chisum, Whittaker Tree, but I will leave that for another time.


  • The Big Y test for Paul and Jonathan have defined shared SNPs for the Frazer line and Private SNPs for the Archibald and James Lines
  • Ricks STR test has defined shared STRs for the line of James Frazer who was born about 1804. Any future testers from this line should be able to confirm descent from this line by testing for 391 = 11 which is a slower moving STR. CDYa would be a less reliable STR as it is a STR which changes much more often than most.
  • STR mutations that are unique to Rick and Paul cannot be dated precisely as they could have happened anytime after James Frazer of 1804 was born until Rick and Paul were born. That would be roughly between 1830 and 1950.
  • At the 67 STR testing level, on average, one STR change takes place about every 140 years. Jonathan shows no STR changes the way the chart was drawn. This would be less than average for him. Paul and Jonathan should have had 2 changes each, but each had 3 changes. This means they got the extra two STR changes that Jonathan should have had since 1690. It all averages out.
  • All this DNA testing makes me feel more close to my Canadian Frazer cousins.