DNA Surname Projects

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Inspired by “Climbing Your DNA Genetic Genealogy” seminar May 22-23, 2009
by Roberta Estes at the Allen County Public Library

DNA consists of two strands in a double helix. One comes from the biological mother and one from the biological father. Several companies test for DNA using different markers so results may not easily compare from company to company. Roberta Estes is with FamilyTreeDNA the first company in April 2000 to test for genealogical research testing for 12, 37, or 67 yDNA markers. Genealogy DNA testing does not reveal genetic diseases, nor can it be used by law enforcement to identify people since they are testing different markers which potentially number in the millions.

Mid March 2010 FamilyTreeDNA introduced FamilyFinder using autosomal DNA to test for all ancestors both male and female to match our great-great-grandparents 5 generations back in time.

Y-DNA Tests Males

A male is a male because he always gets his Y-DNA from his biological father. A son will always have the same DNA as his father, which always came father to son right back to the immigrant male and back to where he came from. Assuming of course there are no undocumented adoptions in the line to confuse the researchers. Undocumented adoptions reveal the undocumented truth, since a son always has the fathers DNA irregardless of last names. DNA testing is sure to reveal many family surprises from way back when. It's a great tool, but many family secrets will be revealed, so testers need to be prepared for unexpected surprises. And in today's world when couples frequently have children without marriage, or children take a surname other than the biological father's, DNA may be the only way to know a male's genetic heritage which may have nothing to do with the surname.

mtDNA Tests Females

Mitochondrial DNA, mtDNA, which every human has, is more complicated testing for females and males. A female gets one strand of mtDNA from her biological mother and one from her bilogical father. A son always gets one mtDNA strand from his mother. Now it gets complicated. Which mother gave which strand of mtDNA. There is no easy way to know. It could be your mother's mother or your father's mother whose mtDNA matches the test results. You test and try to match with known groups based on individuals who have tested. The more individuals tested, the more accurate mtDNA will become over time. Your results today may not match others tested until sometime in the future. It is quite likely your mtDNA will match with a female line as far as 6-8 generations back in time. Because females historically change surnames it complicates the results even more.

Interesting Links

DNA Testing With Allen County Connections

If you have tested your DNA please send your web page information to add it here

Follis - Follas - Fallis line arrived in Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana before 1900 from Wabash and Miami County, Indiana. Came to Indiana in 1840's Union County, Indiana from Greene County, Ohio. Came to Ohio in 1813 from Kentucky after leaving Frederick County, Virginia since the 1750's. Was in 1730's New Jersey before moving to Virginia. Scots-Irish tradition. yDNA matches with Mark Follis the co-administrator of the Follis Surname Project. Mark is in Dublin, Ireland whose family traces to 1770's and also has Scots-Irish tradition.

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