Sunday, December 6, 2015

Moving Forward:
Sometimes an Inch, Sometimes a Mile

We interrupt this recap of surnames to do a recap of the numbers.

And to make an important announcement: I've (finally) been inducted into the Daughters of the American Revolution. Yesterday. During a sweet holiday luncheon, I got to join the ranks of the women who make up our local chapter—and I got to do so along with my daughter, who was inducted at the same time, making the event doubly special for me in celebrating our Patriot, Zachariah Taliaferro.

Next on the D.A.R. agenda: adding a supplemental patriot to my daughter's account, coming from her paternal grandmother's line, thus making my sisters-in-law eligible for membership, as well. All in good time, though. I have a DNA project that will absorb most of my available time between now and the January Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy class I will be taking on genetic genealogy.

In the meantime, with most of my focus being on that matrilineal line that refuses to reveal the nexus with my mystery cousin, it is no surprise that most of my research progress over the last half month has been on my mother's family tree. Since mid November, I've added 568 names (plus requisite documentation, of course) to my maternal tree, bringing the total up to 6,705 individuals there.

It was on that maternal side that I received the bulk of the DNA testing activity, as well. Since mid November, my total autosomal DNA matches bumped up to 967, an increase of eighteen matches through December 3 (the last time I received any notification of matches). I also made contact with five of those matches, some of whom have been actively corresponding with me regarding just how we might connect. Even though these matches are mostly estimated at the level of second to fourth cousin, it has been challenging to determine the most recent common ancestor for any of them. Frustrating.

Meanwhile, it almost goes without saying that one can't crank out that much work on one line without the others suffering a large measure of neglect. And so, it comes as no surprise to hear that my paternal line has not budged from its count of 150 persons in the tree, with no DNA matches received since July 13. I told you this was a rare line. Talk about a small family!

Still, I somehow managed to add six names to my husband's paternal tree, and twenty eight to his maternal tree. Perhaps it's because I have my mind on those Ijams and Jackson ancestors who will yield the D.A.R. patriots I'm targeting. But more on that next week, when I continue with a recap of my husband's maternal lines, as well as rounding out the maternal side of his Stevens line.

As for my husband's DNA matches, it seems there has been a surge in results in his equation, as well: seventeen more matches, bringing his total matches to 559. I managed to contact four of those new matches in the past couple weeks.

A new twist for this complicated DNA matching process is that we used the recent sale opportunities to add an mtDNA test from Family Tree DNA for my husband, as well as autosomal tests for both of us at Ancestry DNA. Of course, it will take over two months for all the results to come back to us, so unfortunately, I won't have those details to play with during my genetic genealogy class. But by the time I return from Salt Lake City, I will hopefully be equipped with more insight on how to facilitate manipulation of all that data. Right now, it feels as if I am drowning in matches and a flood of irreconcilable surnames.  



    Looks like you might see if you qualify for membership too!

    1. Yes, that is indeed my patriot's cemetery--his and a number of other family members were buried there.

      The Meriwether Society has been a helpful resource, and I do want to's just that I have that messy orphan daughter situation where all the old genealogy books seem to think she had a different name (or nickname) than the one I know her by. I'm convinced the two are one and the same, but I have to put together a convincing proof argument first. That's the gap between my orphan and Meriwether Society membership. Someday....

  2. Congratulations on your induction into the DAR and to your daughter also!! It had been in the works a long time...cross something off your list and put two more things on! :)

    1. You know there is always something more for that list! Next on the DAR agenda will be a supplemental Patriot for my daughter--doing double duty as the Patriot granting DAR entrance for my two sisters in law.


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