Friday, November 24, 2017

AncestryDNA Canada Black Friday/Cyber Monday Sale

AncestryDNA is having a Black Friday/Cyber Monday Sale, time to stock up on kits!


Sunday, July 2, 2017

$30 off AncestryDNA in Canada until Jul 4th!

Until July 4th, Get $30 off AncestryDNA in Canada!  I love AncestryDNA, they already have over 4 million in their DNA database, this is a must have for every serious genetic genealogist! Order now, and I hope we match :)

Monday, June 5, 2017

Transferring your 23andMe or AncestryDNA data to FTDNA

First, you need to download your DNA file from AncestryDNA or 23andMe.  

Then, simply click here and follow the directions to upload your file to FTDNA.  You will now see all your FTDNA matches.  If you wish to access the chromosome browser, and the ethnicity reports etc, you will need to unlock these tools for $19. 

I have my father and my paternal grandmother and my maternal grandmother all upload to FTDNA, which means if you are a match to me at AncestryDNA, I will be able to see right away which grandparent we are related through which cuts out 75% of the tree to search for our connection.  This is invaluable! Often, I can narrow down the connection even further when I see which segments we match on.  

I am currently unable to do comparisons at 23andMe (yeah, I broke them with my awesomeness, LOL) so if you are a match to me at 23andMe it will help me be able to do the comparisons with my grandparents and narrow down our possible connections as well.

I recommend linking your FTDNA to your Geni profile, which you can do by going to your Geni profile, and clicking on the DNA tab (the tab to the far right). Follow the instruction to link your FTDNA to Geni.  

Currently, the FTDNA linked DNA is the only one being immediately processed at Geni for matches, which is why I recommend uploading to FTDNA, then linking to Geni, rather than uploading the DNA file directly to Geni.

If you are an AncestryDNA match who I have asked to upload to FTDNA, please send me an email or message letting me know when you have done this and what your name at FTDNA is, so I can check my matches for you and we can start searching out our common ancestors!

How to help me to help you, or how you can help me....

Several times a day I have people ask me the same questions.  Often, they are people who ask me for help or who I have offered to help with solving a mystery with DNA.  Sometimes they are people I have approached asking them to help me with solving a mystery with DNA.

Everyone always wants to know how to get started, and what I need from them to help them, or what I would like them to do to help me.

Here, in detail, is the steps to take to help me (or help me help you!)


This is FREE.  Go to Gedmatch and upload your DNA data.


This is also FREE, with the potential to pay $19 and upgrade the tools you have access to.  Go to FTDNA and upload your DNA data.


There are two files at FTDNA that are very useful.  At the bottom of the page of your Family Finder matches is a link to download your matches.  Download, and possibly send to me.  

Then, if you have unlocked the chromosome browser, go to the chromosome browser and at the top right is a link to download all matches.  Download, and possibly send to me with the first file.


Go to your AncestryDNA settings page, partway down is the option to share your matches.  Please invite username yourlinktothepast.


If you are on the "New Experience" at the bottom of your DNA Relatives is a link to download your aggregated file.  Download and possibly send to me.

I recommend inviting all your 23andMe matches to Share.


Go to Geni and make a profile.  Go to the DNA tab (far right) on your profile and using the top option link your FTDNA to Geni.  If possible, add your parents and grandparents, and maybe send me a message to help you get merged into the "big tree".


I clone you, of course! (just kidding)

I input the files into a program called Genome Mate Pro.  Here I can compare all the segments people share with others and this helps with figuring out the mysteries.  Often, this means that as I help one person solve a mystery, it makes it easier to help the next person, as I gradually map out segments of DNA.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Gedmatch now links to WikiTree

Not exactly new, as this has been in place for months, but I am just getting to this now.  I do have some entries at WikiTree although I use more.  I can see I need to add some Gedmatch numbers for some kits I manage.  I just did this, and if you haven't already added your Gedmatch #s to WikiTree, I recommend doing this ASAP. It only takes a few minutes.

I do try to figure out a connection prior to emailing them, and if I can see a family tree showing ancestors on WikiTree this makes me able to send a first email with more details than the standard "we are a match, wanna figure out how?" 

Also, please link your DNA to  They are much larger than WikiTree and we have a better chance of already having an established path there.  I do try to keep my WikiTree up-to-date but there are only so many hours in the day!

AncestryDNA is giving great new matches with amazing frequency!

I now have one 2nd cousin, three 3rd cousins , and two new matches at the top of my 4th cousins.  My list of 4th cousins or closer is now 191, and it goes up almost every day! (In fact, while I was writing this my list of 4th cousins or closer went up to 192!)


I now have 7 New Ancestor Discoveries.  I am not able to figure out my relationship to any of them! I will write separate posts on each of them and see if we can get those solved!

I have 2 Genetic Communities still.  Scots in Central Scotland and Ulster, Ireland now has 51, 851 members! Their confidence in placing me in this Community is 60%.   I have 55 DNA matches in this Community.

My second Genetic Community is Early Settlers of New York.  This community has 279,685 members.  Their confidence in placing me in this Community is only 20%. I have 80 DNA matches in this Community.  

I belong to 4 DNA Circles, for Willard Woodman Slocum, Sarah Eliza McNutt, John Thomas Lloyd and Grace Elizabeth Slocum.

I have 377 PAGES of DNA matches.  There are 50 matches on a page.  You might wonder what I do with all these matches.  I try to contact each match and encourage them to upload to FTDNA and Gedmatch so we can see the matching segments.  I also try to see how I am related to each match, If I can add generations to their tree I try to let them know so we can see our Ancestor Hint. I have only 41 Ancestor Hints so far.  Since I have about 18,850 matches that isn't very good. I figure that maybe about half of all matches should be able to have a MRCA found.  That leaves about half the matches as "currently unsolvable" because they have a MRCA beyond a current Brick Wall of either myself or the match.  Some of the reason that many Ancestor Hints aren't appearing are: the match isn't linked to a tree, the match's tree only has 1 or 2 generations, there are errors in the matches (or my) tree.  Even if you only consider the 4th cousins or closer predicted matches, I have 272 of those, and only 41 Shared Ancestor Hints.  A surprisingly high number of matches have no trees.  

If they are at FTDNA or Gedmatch or 23andMe I mark the segments shared with our MRCA. Each time I can do this makes it easier for the next matches to be determined.

I actually believe that my AncestryDNA matches will allow me to break through my FRIAR brick wall, maybe even very soon! I'll write a separate post on that soon!

Thursday, May 11, 2017

New AncestryDNA match and I passed 5000 profiles at Geni !!!

I was excited to see I have a new AncestryDNA match at the very top of my 4th Cousins list.  It has been awhile since I've posted, so I thought I'd write a bit about that match today.

They have a short tree (out to their grandparents) and it took me a bit of work but I figured it out.  They are a descendant of William McKenna and Catherine Jennie Mulligan. The match is my 3rd cousin once removed. Our MRCA is James Mulligan/Jane Gabie

You would think this far along into things, I would have all the 4th cousins or closer entered into my tree.

I actually had to merge the two different Geni profiles for William McKenna and Catherine Jennie Mulligan.  This moved my number of "family tree" profiles from 4950 to 4989.   Adding in my new AncestryDNA matches branch of the tree bumped me up to 4994. Adding other relatives in that branch put me over the 5000!

I'm pretty excited about finally passing 5000 in the Family Tree profiles, so it prompted me to do a few Tree Density runs,which I will write more on later.

Back to the AncestryDNA match, I messaged them, hoping to get them onto FTDNA or Gedmatch so I can see the matching segments (Really, really, Ancestry, a !@$%%ing chromosome browser already please!)

I then went to the list of DNA matches in common with the new one, and was super pleased that the highest one had already uploaded to gedmatch, so I could now see the matching segments.  This first ICW match is actually my highest DNA match, predicted as a 2nd cousin, but actually my first cousin once removed, and first cousin to my paternal grandmother Jean Mulligan. There were 2 other kits managed by the same person and they are the daughter and granddaughter.  

Since I am still recreating my GMP database, since the computer crash months ago, I now entered the Gedmatch data for my father and my paternal grandmother, so I could indicate the matching segments.

I contacted the other 3 ICW the new match as I was unable to connect them to my tree.