A First Look At My Daughter’s DNA

I recently got an AncestryDNA kit for my daughter Heather and son JJ. My daughter’s results came in first and she gave me access to her results. The first thing that I did was to link my tree to her results.

That way Ancestry can figure out where the matches are between Heather’s tree and her DNA matches.

What I’m Looking For

  • I now have my mother’s DNA, and mine. With Heather, I’ll have a better look at how DNA is inherited down through three generations.
  • Heather has some Polish ancestry which is different than mine. It will be interesting to see how that shows up in the DNA.
  • I have been working on Heather and JJ’s maternal genealogy. One of the lines came out differently than expected and I wanted to see if the DNA confirms that. Also I want to see if the DNA helps in other areas of their maternal genealogy.

So I’m looking for quite a bit.

Heather’s Ethnicity

At first blush, I don’t see any special indication of Polish:

Perhaps Polish fits into Heather’s 26% Germanic Europe.

I pressed ‘Discover Your DNA Story’, and saw this:

I never see that big blue blob on my ethnicity. That refers to Eastern Europe and Russia. Heather has 17% of that. That must be from her Polish Dziadziu. I had to look that one up:

The Polish name for grandfather is dziadek, used when speaking about one’s grandfather. It is pronounced “jah-deck.” Dziadziu, sometimes spelled dziadzio, is used when speaking to one’s grandfather. It is pronounced “jah-goo.”

Theoretically, Heather is 1/4 Polish, however, the DNA can vary and perhaps Dziadziu had some other non-Polish mixed in with his ancestry.

Also above there is a sub-group called Northern England & the Midlands. My father’s side has ancestors from there. Also Heather has some ancestors on her mother’s side from that part of England.

Migration Routes

On my Ethnicity Report, there is also a section for Migration Routes. This does not show up for Heather as I just linked her to an ancestral tree this morning. Here is what I show:

This basically shows how my ancestors migrated from Europe to North America. It uses ancestral trees for that. For example, my mother’s German ancestors migrated from Germany to Philadelphia. Some of my father’s ancestors came over on the Mayflower and some came to Massachusetts later from Lancashire County in England.

Heather’s Genealogy

This is what I have so far:

Jarek is Heather’s Polish side. The controversial part is where Cavanaugh goes to Warren on the tree. I’d like to see if Heather shows any Warren DNA.

Heather’s DNA Matches

Heather has no Shared Ancestor Hints (SAHs). It will take a while for Ancestry to figure these out. These are based on Heather’s tree also. These hints show when Heather shows a common ancestor with a DNA match.

Heather has 297 4th cousins or closer. These are estimated to be 4th cousins or closer based on the level of Heather’s DNA matches.

Heather’s Match List

Heather’s first category is under Parent/Child. She shows me there. Ancestry can tell we are in this category from the amount of DNA we share. The next category is close family. Here Heather shares more DNA than she would with a 1st cousin. In the Close Family category are my siblings, Heather’s Aunts and Uncles and my mother – Heather’s grandmother. Heather has one person in her 1st cousin category. Justin recently took an AncestryDNA test.

Heather’s Second Cousins

This is where the list gets more interesting.

These are Heather’s top 5 matches in the 2nd Cousin Category. Cindy is my 1st cousin, so she is Heather’s 1st cousin once removed. D.J. and H.G. are people I don’t know, so they must be on Heather’s maternal side. S.W. is my second cousin, so Heather’s 2nd cousin once removed. Joyce is my father’s 1st cousin, so would be Heather’s 1st cousin twice removed.

D.J. and H.G.

D.J. doesn’t have a tree, so I don’t know how he is related to Heather. Perhaps the J is for Jarek? However, when I look at D.J.’s shared matches, one of those shared matches is H.G. That means that D.J. and H.G. are related.

Here is H.G.’s tree:


Ancestry shows that H.G. and Heather share Jarek and Wozniak. Ancestry knows this already, because I just linked Heather to a tree. One confusing thing is that H.G.’s profile shows as a female but H.G. in the above tree shows as male. Francis Jarek and Antonina Wozniak are H.G.’s grandparents. These two are Heather’s great-grandparents. That means that Heather and H.G. are 1st cousins, once removed. My guess would be the same for D.J. Heather or I could get in touch with D.J. to find out.

Comparing Heather and H.G.’s Ethnicity

If I push the Compare button for Heather’s DNA match H.G., I get this:

This shows that H.G. hasn’t updated her ethnicity report. She still has the old estimates.

This shows that H.G. is 98% Eastern Europe and Russian. I take that to mean that H.G. is almost all Polish and Heather is much less so.

Downloading Heather’s DNA

Next, I’d like to download Heather’s DNA. Ancestry doesn’t have a way to look at the individual chromosomes for comparison, so I have to download Heather’s DNA for that.

Once I have downloaded Heather’s DNA, I can upload it to Gedmatch Genesis. This used to be plain Gedmatch. I uploaded Heather’s DNA to Genesis and it gave me a PW number to identify Heather.

Heather and Her Grandmother At Genesis

It takes a while for Heather’s DNA to ‘tokenize’ at Genesis. After this happens, Heather will have a list of matches with other relatives who have uploaded their DNA to Gedmatch or Genesis from different DNA testing companies. Right now I can make single comparisons. I can compare myself to Heather, but that will just show that we match everywhere. That is because Heather has a maternal and paternal copy of her chromosomes. Naturally, she got all her paternal part from me. However, Heather got about one half of her paternal chromosomes from my mom:

This shows that Heather doesn’t match her grandma on Chromosome 17, but does match her all the way across on Chromosomes 19-21. On Chromosomes 18 and 22, Heather matches her paternal grandmother for parts and doesn’t on other parts. Why is that? Heather must match her paternal grandfather in the black areas.

Crossovers Or Recombination Points

The spot where Heather’s DNA goes from her grandmother’s DNA to her grandfather’s DNA is called a crossover or recombination point. When Heather’s DNA was formed, her dad’s maternal and paternal DNA split up and recombined to make Heather’s DNA. The same happened with Heather’s mom. Heather had no paternal recombination on Chromosomes 17 and 19-21. This is normal on the higher-numbered shorter chromosomes. This means that though Heather got her DNA from her mom and dad, it is made up from the recombination of the DNA from her four grandparents.

There were over 400,000 SNPs used to make the comparison. These SNPs are Heather’s individual DNA markers that I downloaded from Ancestry.

Other Cool Things To Do With Heather’s DNA

This is the introduction. There are other cool things to do:

  • Though it is difficult to do with just two siblings, it is possible to use visual phasing to map out how Heather and JJ got their DNA from their four grandparents but comparing their DNA results to each other.
  • It is possible to use a program called DNAPainter to map out Heather’s matches on her chromosomes.
  • AutoCluster looks at Heather’s AncestryDNA matches and clusters them according to how they match each other. This does not required the detailed chromosome information from Genesis.
  • I haven’t looked at DNA to confirm Heather’s genealogy except for two close maternal relatives.
  • I’ll be able to create a maternally phased and paternally phased kit for Heather at Genesis. This will show which of Heather’s matches are on my side and which ones are on her mom’s side.



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