Welcome to the World of Genetic Genealogy

For several years now, I’ve been writing Personalized DNA Reports, publishing articles in newsletters about genetic genealogy and blogging about the Native Heritage Project.

I’ve often felt the need to be able to talk to and with people who have questions.  I learned long ago that if one person has a question about something, many others probably have that same question.  Blogging is an interactive, personal way to communicate.

Genetic genealogy is a world full of promise, but it changes rapidly and can be confusing.  People need to understand how to use the numerous tools available to us to unravel our ancestral history.

People also love to share stories.  We become inspired by the successes of others, and ideas are often forthcoming that we would not have otherwise thought of.

So, I invite you to follow along with this blog as I share things I learn, answer people’s questions and generally, have fun with genetic genealogy!!!



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21 thoughts on “Welcome to the World of Genetic Genealogy

    • thank you for offering to explain dna. Do you have any information about Aficanancestry.com. Is that a reliable soucre for testing dna. I have done their admixture test and the determaination of my African ancestry by country and trible. Have their results been valdated in the wider genetic genealogy community?

      • I know a number of people, after testing there, have then tested at Family Tree DNA in order to find matches. Sometime the tribes assigned vary between testing companies, based on their data bases. I have not seen results from African Ancestry that are incorrect. I don’t know deeply they test for the haplogroup information, nor how they assign haplogroups, meaning whether they estimate or they do SNP testing. They aren’t a major player and I don’t see their results a lot.

  1. Thank you for offering to share your time and your vast DNA/genealogy knowledge with us!

      • Here’s my question with a little background. My late father and his brother were born and raised on Hatteras Island which was a very isolated community until relatively recent times. Curious about there genetic ancestry, I had my uncle do the Family Tree DNA Family Finder and the mtDNA tests. His tests showed:

        Family (Population) Finder: Europe (Western European) – Orcadian 91.37% ±2.82% and Middle East – Palestinian, Bedouin, Bedouin South, Druze, Jewish, Mozabite 8.63% ±2.82%

        mtDNA: Haplogroup U4

        The 8.63% Middle East was surprising since most if not all of his ancestors, going back 4 or more generations, were born on the OBX. Most of the native families trace their roots back to the British Isles and western Europe.

        Since my mother’s parents were immigrants from eastern Europe, I thought it would be interesting to know what contributions my maternal grandparents added to my genetic ancestry, so I submitted my DNA samples for the same two tests. I haven’t heard back on the mtDNA but the Population Finder test showed that I was Europe Orcadian 100.00% ±0.00%. I was shocked that some other population did not show in the results.

        Can you help me understand how the representative populations are determined and why Middle East didn’t show in my sample.


  2. Roberta, could you explain the X-Chromosome matches I see on my GEDMATCH results? I’m not sure how I might use these particular results to narrow my matches down to a given parent. Thanks!

  3. Roberta, could you please explain the X-Chromosome matches I see on my GEDMATCH results (comparing myself to all other members)? I’m not sure how I might use these particular results to pinpoint which of my parents a match came from. Thank you!

  4. Hello. I just recently discovered your site (via Roots Web) and was amazed at all the numbers of people that know so much about DNA, especially yourself. I do have questions and don’t know if you’d rather I ask them here or somewhere else. I do thank you and all others who contribute so much time and energy into helping people like me, who know next to nothing, figure out how to muddle through the results we’re given.

    Thank you,
    Judy Riley

  5. Roberta, Thank you, thank you, thank you. I look forward to reading your blog and learning from you. I’m a newbie with alot of questions that I am sure will be answered through your blog to others. This is very exciting.
    I am waiting for my Grand Uncle’s DNA 111 results as I’ve been stuck for almost 10 years trying to find my gg grandfather Wyatt’s (he died in civil war) parents. Hoping these results and Family Finder will help or at least eliminate the lines I have already spent endless hours on.
    Lola H.

  6. Pingback: DNAeXplain Archives – General Information Articles | DNAeXplained – Genetic Genealogy

  7. If a male with a Y test can technically be on two different surname forums as he only has two marker’s difference in each surname, would there be a possibility that his great-grandparents were cousins?

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