Elizabeth Shepherd (1766-1830s), Frontierswoman, 52 Ancestors #79

Elizabeth Shepherd was born July 23, 1766 in St. George Parish, Spotsylvania County, Virginia to Robert Shepherd and Sarah Rash. We are extremely fortunate to have the Robert Shepherd Bible pages, still in existence in 1991.  A sixth great-grandson of … Continue reading

Robert Shepherd (1739-1817), Died of the Stone and Gravel – 52 Ancestors #271

I’m incredibly indebted to a cousin, David Stielow, with whom I corresponded in 1991 about the Shepherd family. David proudly signed his correspondence with “6 great-grandson of Robert and Sarah (Rash) Shepherd.” Unfortunately, I lost touch with David decades ago. … Continue reading

Elizabeth Day (c 1667 – 1699), Murdered, 52 Ancestors #40

Elizabeth Day, her married name, was my 7th great-grandmother. Roberta Estes William Sterling Estes William George Estes and Ollie Bolton Lazarus Estes and Elizabeth Vannoy Joel Vannoy and Phoebe Crumley Elijah Vannoy and Lois McNiel William McNiel and Elizabeth Shepherd … Continue reading

ThruLines Suggests Potential Ancestors – How Accurate Are They?

I wanted to evaluate the accuracy of Ancestry’s ThruLines suggested Potential Ancestors when compared with a tree I know is accurate. I conducted an experiment where I created a small tree on Ancestry for a DNA tester that included only … Continue reading

Sarah Rash’s and Perhaps Mary Warren’s Mitochondrial DNA – 52 Ancestors #359

Using the FamilySearch “Relatives at RootsTech” app that was available in the month or so surrounding RootsTech (but not now), I connected with a cousin who is a direct matrilineal descendant of Sarah Rash, our common ancestor. My cousin, who … Continue reading

Sarah Rash (1748-1829), Church Founder and Grandmother of Nearly 100 – 52 Ancestors #276

While we have very few records about Sarah, directly, during her lifetime, we do know a substantial amount due to the Shepherd Bible that begins with her birth. Sarah’s Birth The Bible says that Sarah Shepherd, formerly Sarah Rash, daughter … Continue reading

Genetic Affairs Reconstructs Trees from Genetic Clusters – Even Without Your Tree or Common Ancestors

Since Genetic Affairs launched in 2018, they’ve added a LOT of new functionality. I initially wrote about their clustering functionality here. Genetic Affairs AutoClustering, SuperClusters and brand-new AutoTree tree reconstruction are to-die-for features for traditional genealogists. For adoptees or people seeking … Continue reading

Daniel Vannoy (1752 – after 1794) Embattled, then Disappeared – 52 Ancestors #261

Daniel Vannoy is the father of Elijah Vannoy who was born about 1784. This seems like such a simple statement, but believe me, identifying Elijah’s father was anything BUT simple. In fact, without DNA testing, we would never have been … Continue reading

What is a DNA Scholarship and How Do I Get One?

I mention DNA scholarships from time to time in my 52 Ancestor articles and sometimes in conjunction with other projects as well. What, exactly, is a DNA scholarship? Who gets one?  How and why? First, let’s talk a bit about … Continue reading