Several dedicated genetic genealogists combined talents to lead multiple family line DNA studies. Among the study leaders are researchers, analysts, historians and software developers. Our services are free of charge, and include DNA testing guidance, gedmatch and wikitree support, lineage validation, mentoring, progenitor alignment based on yDNA results, and analysis and interpretation of DNA comparison results.
We use DNA matching to expand lineages where records are unavailable. We employ sourced lineages and atDNA and yDNA results to discover linkages among the progenitors; solve genealogical roadblocks; DNA-verify lines; and extend ancestral lines.
In every case the DNA results of the oldest generation in a family line will have the strongest DNA results. Thus it is best if the study uses your parent's DNA results rather than yours. However in the case of DNA results from your aunt or uncle, your sibling and you, all of those results would provide unique value and should also be included in the study.
The purpose of the Wheat Study is to learn more about the ancestors and descendants of John Wheat, Nancy Wheat, and Elizabeth Wheat who were born about 1780 likely in Virginia and Sion Wheat of South Carolina, and John Wheat of Maryland. All related Wheat families will be of interest. This study began in Aug 2021.
The purpose of the Tarleton-Tarlton-Talton Study is to learn more about the ancestors and descendants of Joel Talton (c1794-c1846) and Joel Tarleton (1814-before 1875). This study has about 55 descendants and has been underway since June 2019.
The Weathers-Withers Study focused on the ancestors and descendants of John Weathers/Withers who was born about 1725 in Virginia and died in 1812 in NC. This study ran from 2018 to 2021 and is closed. The resulting atDNA segment triagulations are posted on wikitree.com.
The Duke-Dukes Study ran from 2016 to 2022 and is closed. The study evolved to focus on seven lines in the southeast United States. The resulting atDNA segment triagulations are posted on wikitree.com and the study conclusions are posted on Duke Study of Southeastern US.
Based on your lineage and your DNA results comparison, we will know if you are on one of these six lines of descent. This study includes about 250 descendants and has been underway since November 2016.
First some background on our efforts and then step-by-step guidance on how to join our studies. Genetic genealogy is the application of DNA evidence to historical genealogy research. Our studies apply DNA results as evidence of descent based on identifying DNA shared by two or more individuals descended from the ancestors being studied. Our volunteer team leaders have the skills necessary to understand how to analyze DNA comparisons and to present DNA evidence as one of the sources supporting a genealogical tree.
Our work is based on the concepts identified by the International Society of Genetic Genealogy We use wikitree.com's 7 centimorgan (cM) threshold as a benchmark for confirming relationships. We DNA-verify your ancestors on wikitree.com with segement triangulations as we identify them and we encourage you to post your own matches for your siblings and near cousins using the Wikitree DNA Confirmation Guidance so your line can be fully DNA-verified.
The studies include anyone strongly matched to the study participants. So having multiple people from your extended family, especially the oldest members, join our effort is important for drawing relationship conclusions. Descendants of the study participant can be auxiliary members and receive study results as well.
A DNA study participant must have at least one ancestor with the surname of the study on their tree. Trees with significant gaps in recent generations could mislead us to assume that shared DNA matches are from a specific line when instead the match could be from another unidentified line.
Steps to Join Family DNA Study:
Phase One: complete atDNA testing with ancestryDNA, MyHeritage, FamilyTreeDNA or 23andMe. Testing techniques vary by company between a cheek swab or collecting a small amount of saliva. For the best prices look for special day and holiday sales.
Phase Two: After your atDNA testing results are complete, upload your results on Gedmatch, a free DNA results repository site where people put their atDNA results to do statistical comparisons and draw genealogical conclusions, regardless of the testing company used. Click on Gedmatch Directions and follow the steps. Provide your gedmatch number to the email at the bottom of this page so we can compare your DNA results to that of other descendants.
For males with the surname of the study, if you have already completed yDNA testing we need your FTDNA kit number. It would be very helpful if males with the surname who have not yet tested would take a yDNA test with FTDNA up to the Y-111 marker test. It is expensive so its best to wait for a sale.
Provide the following data for our study participant list:
- gedmatch number
- email address
- link/URL for your online tree
To share your ancestry.com tree with us follow these directions:
- From any page on Ancestry, click the Trees tab and select your tree.
- In the top-right corner of your tree, click Share.
- Click Email and enter the email address of the person processing you into the study
- In the Role menu, choose Guest; guests can view and add comments to a family tree but cannot view living people.
- Click Send Invites
Sharing a tree from another company should be a similar process.
We will next verify our understanding of your lineage with you.
Phase Four: add your direct lineage for the line studied to wikitree.com using these Wikitree Directions. This page shows an example of a wikitree profile with attached sources and ancestors for Julia Dukes. The DNA section on the center left shows atDNA matching data from our study which we added; this is the only data we post online. The bottom left shows sources. The far right shows, by gedmatch number, descendants of this progenitor who are in our study.
The study leaders will provide you and explain the importance of your atDNA comparison data, post significant DNA matches to your and your ancestors' wikitree profiles, and identify potential ancestral connections based on our study data. For the study duration, the leadership will provide guidance and expansive reports to all participants multiple times a year via email. The study leaders volunteer their time to direct these studies, and we will solicit your support for study activities from time to time.
Experience shows we have study participants related to each other multiple ways. Based on comparing your DNA results we will also identify your matches which are not on the line being studied, which we exclude from our analyses.
All record types including conventional historical records and DNA results may reveal unexpected information such as misattributed parentage, adoption, unknown family members, and errors in trees believed to have been well researched, among other unexpected outcomes. Study leadership will inform participants if unforeseen results are detected. The study supports adoptees and others with unattributed parentage within their lineage.
PRIVACY. You need to read the privacy policies of your testing company, gedmatch.com, and wikitree.com. All of our study analysis, research and guidance is provided to you via email and/or phone conversations and not posted online, with the exception of posting your sigficant matches on wikitree to DNA-verify your lineage.
To improve our study success we ask that you actively encourage your family members and new-found cousins from gedmatch and your testing site to join our studies. Refer them to the section titled Ancestor Projects on gedmatch where our studies are hosted and they can apply. As a member of the study you can keep abreast of your matches in the study by doing your own report on our gedmatch study site at any time.
We encourage you to read some of the many blogs, websites and books that provide information about DNA comparisons; share your knowledge with us; and to ask us questions.
Ready to join? We need your gedmatch number, given and surname, email, existing tree URL/link, wikitree profile number. The dropdown menu under the DNA tab guides you on how to get a gedmatch number and a wikitree profile.