Progressing with DNA

I have been trying to connect all my DNA matches from Ancestry where I tested the DNA of my mum, dad, brother, half uncle, 2nd cousin, possible 2nd cousin and some cousins once removed.

It is easy to work out the close relatives who I have asked to test but once I get to 4th cousins and further back, it is difficult to find out which branch of mum or dad’s tree they come from. What I need to be able to do is find the individual segments of chromosomes that match more than one person and then I might be able to find the precise branch and ancestor the match belongs to.

From this you can see I have a total of 124 4th cousins or closer who have tested with Ancestry.

Of those 124, I have worked out where 24 of them are placed on my tree (using my database on my computer).

Of those 24 matches, 12 of them have me linked on their trees on Ancestry. To be a shared ancestor hint, both people need to be on both matches trees on Ancestry.

But how can I work out where those other 100 cousins are located in my tree? Many of them don’t have trees on Ancestry or they have a very small one but only for living people so it shows as private when I look at their tree.  A few have private trees so you need to ask permission to be able to see their tree.

One of the disadvantages of Ancestry DNA matches is they only show how many cM (centiMorgans) over how many segments you share with your matches. To be able to match certain segment areas, I need more specific information than Ancestry gives me.

This is where the site called Gedmatch comes in. Once you have uploaded your raw data, it allows you to make one-to-many comparisons with others who have also uploaded their data. This could be people who have tested with other companies like Family Tree DNA or 23 and me or My Heritage.

My next post will be about using Gedmatch and how it helps you narrow down your matches to particular common chromosomes segments.

Readers: Have you tested with Ancestry? How is your research going there and how many shared ancestor hints have you worked out so far?

My Aunty Marg

This post is a combination of the eulogy at the funeral of my aunty Marg, my mother’s remembrances (Marg’s sister) and also my talks with aunty Marg.

Margaret Grace Phillips nee England

1928 – 2017

Margaret was born early in April 1928, the second daughter of Hannah and Henry England of Sandy Bay. Her older sister Iris died at the age of 9 when her younger sister Phyllis was only 3 weeks old.

Margaret and her older sister, Iris

Margaret and Iris (above), Margaret and Phyllis (below)

Margaret looks after her younger sister, Phyllis

Margaret was educated at Albuera Street Primary School and Ogilvie High School. This was not an enjoyable experience for her.

Her first job was for pocket money where she washed out pots for flowers at Chandler’s Nursery. Margaret’s grandmother was a Chandler and the nursery was over the back fence of their house in Sandy Bay.

Margaret joined the Brownies and Guides. She loved being outdoors especially going fishing with her Dad, Harry, down near Sandy Bay beach. Marg, though, did not like the water and this carried on throughout her whole life.

Margaret and Phyllis fishing with their dad, Henry

She was always very pleased when her cousin Eileen Davey came and lived with them as she now had someone her age to go to socials and dances with. Margaret was a member of both the junior and senior church choirs at Princess Street Methodist Church.

After leaving school, Marg’s first big job was at Tattersalls and then at the University of Tasmania where she worked in the Refectory from 1966 until 1989. Marg still kept in contact with her friends from Uni, attending monthly lunches at various pubs around Hobart.

Marg married Norm (Ken) Phillips from Sorell in 1949 and in 1950 they built a home in Lenah Valley. Whilst living here, their two children Bronwyn and Leigh were born. But unfortunately the floods of 1954 washed away their outer sheds.

They did rebuild, but Norm’s health had suffered a shock, so they moved to a home in Duke Street, Sandy Bay.

In 1965 Margaret and her family travelled with Phyllis and her husband Bob, and children Suzanne and Philip. They drove through the eastern states of Australia as far north as Cairns, then across through outback Queensland and up to Darwin, down the centre to Alice Springs, Adelaide and back home to Tasmania. This was a trip of 4 months in a caravan towed by the trusty old FC Holden while Phyllis’s family were in a Kombi van and tent.

Margaret did volunteer work with several groups. She was a keen knitter, making rugs, scarves and jumpers for various organizations.

Margaret and Max

She stayed in Sandy Bay until the death of Norm in 1968 when she sold up and bought a unit in Davey Street, where she was very happy . After many years, she moved to Max Jones’s house in South Hobart when they became partners. They later bought a house together in West Moonah where they spent many happy years until Max’s death in 2009.

Marg’s daughter Bronwyn passed away suddenly in 2013.

Marg continued to live in West Moonah, however, due to an increase in health problems, it was decided she would move to a nursing home. After a period of respite, she moved into Queen Victoria Home at Lindisfarne for a period of 7 months prior to her passing. Although she would not admit it fully, she was very happy there and enjoyed not only the friends and company that she had, but also all the activities that were arranged.

Margaret’s much loved family included:

Bronwyn, Margaret and Leigh

2 children – Bronwyn and Leigh

A younger version of Kelli, Kaide and Shannon

5 grandchildren – Kelli, Shannon, Kaide, Chantel and Shawn

Four of the great grandchildren

9 great grandchildren – Jaxsen, Taylia, Kyah, Blake, Manon, Joseph, Hugo, Nate and Luke.

 

As part of my Oral History unit, I recorded aunty Marg talking about her father, Harry.

She also spoke about her mother Hannah, war and holidays.

Relatives:
If any of you have photos of Aunty Marg with the kids or just being herself that I could add to a slideshow and put on the blog, could you please send me a copy?

Readers:

What is a great memory you have with my Aunty Marg? If you didn’t know my Aunty Marg, what is a great memory you have with an aunty?

Bryant family

Been doing more research on the BRYANT family.

Caroline Bryant was my great great grandmother who married William Chandler my great great grandfather. What do I know about this family so far? Check out this post I have already written back in January this year.

But what new information have I found out?

I now know about J. Winter, the witness on the 1859 marriage certificate of Caroline and William.

J Winter is Caroline’s sister Julia.

London Metropolitan Archives, Saint Pancras Parish Church, Register of marriages, P90/PAN1, Item 104

When did Robert and Julia arrive in Tasmania?

They were sponsored out by Charlotte Bryant and arrived on the ship Woodcote in 1856 along with Robert’s parents.

 

Tasmania, Australia, Immigrant Lists, 1841-1884

Marriages of Summers or Somers

Still trying to find Thomas Somers, my fathers great grandfather. So decided to create family group sheets for every Summers or Somers marriage in Tasmania pre 1900. Luckily all these records are digitised and online at the LINC website via the Tasmanian Names Index.

As I am looking for a surname of Somers or Summers, I only created them for males and single females who gave birth to sons named Thomas or given name not recorded.

So far, there are 56 marriages. There are 7 Thomas as the father and 11 sons with Thomas as first or middle name. There are also 7 unnamed males.

The marriages are from east coast of Tasmania, Hobart, Launceston, Emu Bay (Burnie) and Cressy/Longford area.

I have also added children, marriages and deaths gathered from the Index.

Next step is to create a family tree linking together the many from Emu Bay, Cressy/Longford etc.

I also checked if there is a one name study for these surnames, but no such luck. With this work I am doing, I will be putting copies of the family group charts in folders to give to the archives if they want them.

Letter Z challenge

Throughout this diploma course, I have had to zigzag across oceans, around countries and within states to find information for my assignments.

We had the chance to zigzag through the library databases at UTAS, whether it was using Ancestry Library edition or the British Newspapers or finding scholarly articles for our assignments.

We were lucky with the fantastic lectures and resources given to us by the organizers of each unit within the diploma. We learnt about the value of primary and secondary sources as well as referencing even though this was updated for each unit.

I thought I knew a lot about researching family history when I started this diploma but my eyes have been opened to the value of doing more than just names, dates and places in my software database.

So it is now time for a sleep (maybe a short nap only) before I start updating my resources list on this blog and organizing my research both online and in folders or filing cabinets.

Thank you all for participating in this challenge over the last couple of years.

ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ

Readers: Please leave a comment about my post or something beginning with Z that relates to your family history or your research.

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Letter Y challenge

Excellent letter for nearing the end of the challenge and for those finishing their diploma. I want to ask:

Why?

  1. can’t I find my father’s father’s birth?
  2. can’t I find Rebecca Jackson’s mother?
  3. is it easier to find records in Tasmania than in England?
  4. is it difficult to understand DNA?
  5. can’t I date photos very well?
  6. is there no Polynesian ethnicity in my father when his grandfather is supposedly half Samoan?
  7. can’t I find which of 7 John Davey’s in Devon is mine?

I am hoping understanding DNA more might help me answer some of these questions.

Readers: Please leave a comment about my post or something beginning with Y that relates to your family history or your research.

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Letter X challenge

The letter X usually marks the spot on a treasure map. For genealogists X usually marks the place where all the resources can be found when researching your ancestors.

So now that I have finished my subjects for the Diploma of Family History, I am going to take the time to update my list of resources in the page above the header of this blog.

I will have the basic “Introduction to family history” resources on one page, then a separate page for “Convict resources” and another for “Military resources”. Are there any other specific sections you think I should have as separate pages?

Readers: Please leave a comment about my post or something beginning with X that relates to your family history or your research.

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Final essay for diploma of family history

After 3 years of online study, I have now completed the 8 units required for the Diploma of Family History at the University of Tasmania. Here is my final essay as part of the Families at War unit.

My feedback included that I had not used enough scholarly secondary sources, that a thesis statement was not mentioned and there were some errors with the footnotes. I agree with most of the feedback. I received a score of 30/50 giving me an overall score of 74/100 for the whole unit including the quizzes.

I would like to thank all those students who have been on this journey with me over the last three years and hopefully I will meet you in person at the August or December graduation in Hobart.

Letter W challenge

As many of you know, my father’s side of the tree is holding me back. I am trying to find proof using DNA matches but it is hard to do unless they are a first or second cousin. As I don’t know surnames going back more generations, it is very tricky to prove.

What’s in a name?

My paternal grandfather is either William Alan WYATT or Alan William WYATT. Born between 1900 and 1905 in either England or Sydney or Georges Bay, Tasmania. I have no sources to prove the actual birth. It is believed he married 3 times; twice in Tasmania and again in NSW where we think he died.

My paternal great grandmother on my grandmother’s side is registered at birth as Nellie SOMERS in 1889. I have also found other siblings being born with the surname SOMERS but no father mentioned on the registrations. Using FamilySearch I have found baptisms where the surname is now CLARK(E).

1889 – Nellie Somers – daughter of Thomas Somers and Alice O’Keefe – Georges Bay

1893 – Kate Clarke – daughter of West Clarke and Alice Somers formerly O’Keefe – Gould’s Country

1895 – William Henry – son of Alice Somers – Lottah – no father mentioned on birth reg.

1897 – Jessie May – daughter of Alice Somers – no father mentioned on birth reg. – baptised Clark in St Helens

1898 – Joseph Edward – son of Alice Somers – Lottah – no father mentioned on birth reg. – baptised Clark in St Helens

1899 – Charles Archibald – son of Alice Somers – Campbell Town – no father mentioned on birth reg.

Someone on FamilySearch says Alice O’Keefe married Thomas Somers in 1882 and had 4 children before she then married Wes. Clark and had six more children. I still don’t have proof of marriages as they are not mentioned on the Tasmanian Names Index. Looks like I need to visit the Tasmanian Archives and Heritage Office to check out the baptisms in St Helens which is Georges Bay area.

ReadersPlease leave a comment about my post or something beginning with W that relates to your family history or your research.

letter W