RootsTech Meetup and Super-Cool DNA Finds!

The Expo hall opened promptly at 6 this evening and remained open for 2 hours. It was a lightning fast 2 hours, let me tell you!

First, on my way to find a restroom, instead I found a VERY COOL vendor, GeneaCreations.

Bet you can’t guess what she had in her booth!

And this is just the beginning!

There are earrings to match the double helix necklace too!

But, the best is yet to come.

Jeannette, the artist, is holding up my new t-shirt. What you can’t really tell is that the decoration is actually rhinestones.  Yea, I’m a Rhinestone Genetic Genealogist!

She carries a couple of other DNA items, including denim shirts for men, and I’m going back tomorrow for those.

And yes, in case you’re wondering, she does accept customer orders.


I needed to be back at the Family Tree DNA booth by 6:30 for the meetup with my wonderful blog followers. Thanks so much to all of you who came by to introduce yourselves and say hello.

It’s so nice to talk to other genealogists who are loving genetic genealogy. The gentleman at left has been doing genealogy more than 40 years. The man at right hosts a DNA special interest group.

I’m sorry, I’m really awful with names.

Richard Weiss at left, and Rob Warthen at right, I refer people to DNAadoption every single day, for search angels, for education and for tools. It was wonderful to meet these find folks in person, after all these years.

Janet Seegmiller and I met years ago on the Cumberland Gap group. Our ancestors were from some of the same places, and we’ve been on parallel journeys every since. I feel like I’ve known Janet forever! It was so wonderful to actually get to put a face with a name and many, many e-mails.

A group had a Q&A session. We were folks still remaining at closing time, when they dimmed the lights, telling us we’d had enough fun.

Jim Brewster with Family Tree DNA represents my Brewster line. Yes, that’s Brewster as in William Brewster, the Pilgrim who arrived on the Mayflower. I did notice that the Mayflower Association booth is nearby. I think I’ll have to go by and let them know I’ve applied for membership.

I wasn’t able to take photos of everyone who came by, including a cousins I had wanted to meet for years. I apologize to anyone I didn’t get to say hello to personally.

I’ll close this article by showing a really unique guest. Ever wonder what a family tree really looks like?

This tree even came complete with a few birds. I wonder if those would be looney birds! Every tree has them, you know!

You know, I just couldn’t resist the temptation of seeing what would happen if you pulled on one of those shaky leaves.

Conference Pricing

For people AT the conference, pricing for DNA kits as told by vendors so far include:

MyHeritage – $49 and 50% off subscriptions.

Family Tree DNA – 2 Family Finder kits for $49, one for $59, but great bundles prices where you can add a Family Finder test to any other new Y or mitochondrial purchase for in essence $39.

The rumor mill tells me that Living DNA is selling kits for $49.  They made an announcement yesterday that matching will be released later in the year and that they will be introducing a new feature to create your family tree genetically, without any genealogical input.  I must tell you, I have a great deal of skepticism about this, understanding how the technology works and that you can share the exact amount of DNA with a wide variety of people in your tree.  I’ll be visiting them today to see if I can obtain more information.

29 thoughts on “RootsTech Meetup and Super-Cool DNA Finds!

  1. HOORAY!!!! I’ve always wanted to be related to you, Roberta, so if you have William Brewster, then INDEED we are related. You just made my day!!

    I love everything you write!


    • It was really that crowded. The lines died down a bit after the first day, but some classes included what looked like 2000 people lined up for 800 seats.

  2. Any new news for the haplogroup X2a ? Its origins in North America is so controversial. Thanks

    Sent from my iPad


  3. I watched the streamed version of the presentation by LIvingDNA. They said that the $49 price would be for people coming by their booth when the exhibits opened, but they only had a limited number of kits and expected them to go quickly. The rest of their presentation was quite interesting in terms of their future directions, including extending the regional basis to include Ireland, Germany, and Scotland, and also the news about their Family Networks, as reported by Chris Paton in the GENES Blog.
    Your earlier report about the tremendous lines was very off-putting. Does not sound as though it is worth registering next year.

  4. Roberta you looked so cute all decked out in your DNA apparel..Looks like you had a blast and I know we will hear more as we go along about everything you learned . Can I ask you a question what test would you say to take for Native American connections to my maternal Grandmothers Father’s family ??? Any help or suggestions would be appreciated.

    • Can you find someone descended from the line that carries either the maternal grandfsther’s YDNA or the mtDNA his mother’s mtDNA? If so, that would tell you for sure about 2 direct lines.

  5. You’re a Brewster descendant, well that means you’re a distant cousin of my spouse. He is a triple (and maybe more) Mayflower descendant from William Brewster, John Howland and George Soule (his 4th great grandmother was Martha B. Soule, daughter of Ebenezer Soule and Mercy Foote Soule, who married Enos Howard, and he is a direct male descendant of Enos Howard). I really wish I could get him or one of his two surviving brothers to take a Y-DNA test. Randy Seaver of Genea-Musings blog is also a distant cousin of his – and yours – and he and his wife Linda are there at RootsTech.

  6. Can’t find my earlier comment about Rootstech, but had to add a PS. Those of us who have a pedigree on FamilySearch were able to access a list of 300 or so persons at Rootstech who are on our pedigree and it gave a relationship, ie. 7th cousin two times removed, etc.

    I was meeting a cousin I knew would be there (she was a 5th cousin two times removed), but I was able to meet or send messages to several other cousins. It was amazing! I met two brothers at their booth (Legasync) who descend from Isaac Peter Livingston, who we think is a brother to “my” Andrew Livingston (b. 1781 d 1879). It was great to meet them and to get emails so we can communicate about Isaac Peter.

    I’d go every year for at least a day just to access this info and try to meet up with living cousins (based on pedigrees) and try to convince them to test DNA. My husband also saw a 2nd cousin and sat with him in a session that we hadn’t seen in years! Totally worth the connections. Janet

  7. Please tell us more about the Living DNA thing when you’ve had a chance to recover from the conference. I’m excited about any new tools…but like you, I’m skeptical.

  8. Lol! Jim is my Brewster cousin too! I told him that at NERGC last April.I knew there was a reason why I loved your blog!

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