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For Christmas this year, Ben thoughtfully bought me an Ancestry DNA kit. He knows how much I love Family History, and how much time I devote to learning, researching, and now writing about Genealogy. I have been looking forward to receiving my Ancestry DNA results, and they are now in!
AncestryDNA was my preferred DNA test because I have been using Ancestry to record my family tree for the past 17 years. I thought by starting with this test it would be easy to understand my matches.
How it Works
The DNA kit came in a box with a test tube, and full instructions of how to collect your “sample” (Saliva). You can’t have anything to eat or drink half an hour before collecting the sample – I thought this would be impossible on Christmas Day, but I was so eager I collected the sample before cleaning my teeth that very evening. You need to fill it up to the line, and then you mix it up with the solution, and pop the whole thing in the pre paid packaging to post off. Don’t forget to register the sample first, otherwise they won’t know whose it is!
They said that processing time would be around 8 weeks, but I sent it off between Christmas and New Year and here I am on 18th January writing about my results. The results were sent to me by email last night, I saw them just as I was about to go to bed. Of course I excitedly stayed up late analysing as much as I could late last night, and I have poured over it again this morning.
I made a few predictions before the results came in. Through research I have found that a large percentage of my tree is from the South East England, perhaps 80%-90% of my tree so far. For DNA tests we are talking about direct line ancestors though, and I know that my maiden name Greaves originates from the French name Graves so I assumed to have some French ancestry. Also my blue eyes would predict that I am mostly Northern European, the red in my hair means I might be Celtic too.
England, Wales & Northwestern Europe 62% – listing specifically South East England
Ireland and Scotland 32% – listing specifically Scotland
The results were only surprising because I didn’t expect such a large percentage to be from the British Isles – 94% when you combine the top two! My sister did a genetic test with 23andMe, and she was 1% African, so I was kind of expecting some anomaly but there wasn’t. I am 100% European.
Ancestry was able to match me with two 3rd Cousins (who share a Great Grandparent) and 230 x 4th Cousins (who share a Great, Great, Grandparent). Some I was able to look at the tree and see the names in common. Others didn’t have trees attached or were not so obvious.
What Am I Going to do with the Results?
I haven’t made my ancestry tree public because I don’t like the idea that I might be sharing wrong information with the community. I will start making a new public Ancestry tree showing only my direct line ancestors. From there I am going to try and link in the cousin matches that it has found. I can probably only do that from the people who have done the DNA tests with Ancestry AND shared their tree.
After I have completed all my Ancestry matches, I will do a DNA test with another company and try and match with new cousins. I think this is the only way to forward my research at this point, using DNA to verify the information I already have is correct, and collaborating with fellow researchers.
So, if you need me during the next few months this is where I will be!! I am so excited about the new research opportunities this one DNA test has introduced to my life.
I am interested to know if you have done a DNA test, and what you have used your results for. Feel free to leave a comment below.