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.




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