Sunday, September 23, 2018

Counting the Days 'til
the Next Holiday DNA Sale

It's not the change of the season that puts me in the mood for Christmas, it's the need for another good holiday DNA sale. I've been looking over the count in DNA matches for the various tests I manage, and if there was a good turnout for the summer sales promotions, I can't tell.

Of course, I say that just as an anomaly strikes: I've finally gotten a contact from someone else. Rather than being the one who reaches out to my matches, last week, someone had contacted me. It was concerning my husband's results, but I'll be happy with any communication someone else initiates on this topic. The funny thing was...the only surnames I recognized in this match's tree were surnames belonging to me. I promise I've run our results through the one-to-one GEDmatch utility, and there is no sign we inadvertently married our own cousin, so these reoccurring surnames in his tree certainly have me puzzled.

Perhaps I'm wasting too much angst on such a tiny problem, something which I suspect comes from too little action on the DNA match front. I've noticed, lately, that in every two week period, each of our tests garners ten matches or less. Of course, there are exceptions. We're back to shrinking results at the ever-disappearing 23andMe, and on the other end of the spectrum, suspecting "funny money" status at MyHeritage, where my match count jumped 193 in just the past two weeks, and my husband's leapt by 163.

It would be nice if matches hadn't slowed to such a tricklewell, everywhere but at MyHeritagewhich makes me long for a good holiday sale again. It's those descendants of elusive ancestors that I would most like to match up with. Doesn't everyone...

In the meantime, I keep at the more practical work of adding to our family trees. Remembering my focus on the southern roots in my mother's line, that's where the majority of my efforts have focused for two months, now, as I prepare for my southern research class at SLIG next January. So it comes as no surprise to realize that I added 145 names to my mom's tree in the past two weeks. The total there now stands at 14,886, and I'm finding lots of McClellan cousins that I had no idea even existedespecially in Texas!

As for my mother-in-law's tree, it has frozen at 15,703 individuals, and will likely stay that way for another half year. My father-in-law's tree managed to increase by a count of one, and I can't even remember why. It was likely on account of accidentally opening that tree, spotting a hint, and dispatching it before I realized I wasn't sticking to my resolution. Oh, well...that's the tree I really wish I could get back to, so I'm sure one more name won't hurt for now. Besides, nothing has happened on my own dad's tree, so I really am trying to stick to my resolve.

Sometimes, the routine work of genealogy can get dreary. It's simply a matter of finding documents to link to each person I add on that southern line, verifying each fact, then moving on to the next person. In the meantime, though, I am keeping a running list of questions that pop up and things I want to delve into, once I get to class next January. I figure I can't manage to ask any good questions if I don't let myself get stumped beforehand, so I am working my hardest to find a few stumbling blocks on this southern road of research. In the meantime, I'm finding some good stories...and busting a few other family legends in the process.


  1. Good for you! All those Texas relatives are bound to have some good stories! :)

    1. Yes, they will have quite a few--although I have yet to top the distant cousin whose claim to fame was that she was "older than the state of Texas."


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