Death Finds a Way: A Janie Riley Mystery
by Lorine McGinnis Schulze
Janie Riley is an avid genealogist with a habit of stumbling on to dead bodies. She and her husband head to Salt Lake City Utah to research Janie's elusive 4th great-grandmother. But her search into the past leads her to a dark secret. Can she solve the mysteries of the past and the present before disaster strikes? Available now on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca
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Finding Ancestors Using DNA Research
© Lorine McGinnis Schulze
According to online websites, DNA research allows genealogists to discover their deep ancestral origins. Using DNA you can find out where your ancestors came from, their ethnic background, and how they have scattered throughout the world.
DNA results can help you trace the roots of your surname. You will find out whether you share a common ancestor with others around the world who share your surname.
Because DNA collects mutations over time, which are then inherited, it contains historical information and by comparing DNA sequences, geneticists can infer the evolutionary history of organisms. DNA has also been used to look at modern family relationships, such as establishing family relationships between the descendants of Sally Hemings and Thomas Jefferson.
After following the growing enthusiasm for DNA Genealogy Research for a year now, I decided to take the plunge. Because I wanted to follow my father's McGinnis lineage, I needed a male McGinnis relative for a Y-DNA test.
Males inherit a Y-chromosome from a father, who in turn received his Y chromosome from his father and so on. Males also inherit an X chromosone, but females only inherit the X chromosone and thus can only test their maternal DNA, called mtDNA. This follows their mother, her mother, her mother and so on back through her maternal ancestors. My brother was pursuaded to swab his cheeks for a DNA sample, and I ordered my 33 marker Paternal Lineage DNA test kit.
When the kit arrived, my brother did 3 simple cheek swabs and we sent the results back. A few months later, the DNA results came in. We matched with 4 other researchers who shared our surname (McGinnis) or variations! This was really exciting, as connecting with these reseachers allowed us to share notes to find out where our McGinnis family came from in Ireland (Co. Down) and who our common ancestor was. We also matched on dozens of researchers who did not share a common surname, which means that somewhere in the distant past we share an ancestor, probably before surnames were in common use.
Finding out our Haplo-Group was also exciting. We are I1c also called I1b2a1, and could read up on this Haplo Group online. I was fascinated to learn that everyone in a specific Haplogroup shares one common ancestor! I also signed us up for a Group Study of 1Ic. Our genetic markers showed a genetic mutation stongly suggesting we are descended from a male who was part of a small group of Basques who went to the northern part of the United Kingdom (Scotland) in pre-Roman times - possibly one of the small group sent by the Roman Emperor to defend Hadrian's Wall in A.D. 122-130.
My next step was to join the National Geographic Geno Project which analyzes historical patterns in DNA from participants around the world to better understand our human genetic roots. This
showed me where my paternal ancestors came from, their migration routes throughout history, and an interactive map tracing my genetic lineage around the world and through the ages.
All in all I'm thrilled with my DNA plunge and can't wait to find out more. I've ordered an upgrade for more markers to be tested, and in hindsight wish I had ordered the Advanced DNA Paternal Test Kit to begin with.
This DNA Research article was written by Lorine McGinnis Schulze of The Olive Tree Genealogy at http://www.olivetreegenealogy.com/
and may be copied AS IS. Identifying information and website link must remain intact!
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