Wednesday, 12 September 2018

Archibald Henderson brickwall hints?

It may have been Amelia's turn, but somehow Archibald seems to be getting more attention as a result.

Keep an eye on my Archibald Henderson brick wall  page on WikiTree for updated info on potential connections, including links to the trees of interest where they are also on WikiTree.

Families of particular interest that are popping up in assorted DNA matches to descendants of James Henderson and Amelia Millar:
  • Robert Buchanan and Janet Monteith (married 1738 Logie, Perthshire lived Kincardine by Doune, Perthshire))
  • Peter Junkine/Jenkins and Mary Buchanan (married 1781 Port of Menteith, Perthshire)
  • Donald Eadie and Jean Faichney (married 1788 Crieff, Perthshire, lived Muthill)
  • William Faichney and Jean Innes (married 1795 Dunblane, Perthshire)


embeddable family tree updated live from WikiTree

Wednesday, 5 September 2018

What do Sarah, Emma and William have in common?

Not a lot other than all three have been long pegged in my database as potentially being one and the same person as their namesakes in their respective potential "home" families.

Also that in the last few days investigating DNA matches, AND the matches of the new match, has led me to re-evalutate sources, search for more information, and in all three cases, merge the namesakes as I've finally been convinced that they are indeed whom I have long thought they might be.

DNA alone cannot prove a relationship, that takes research, perseverance - and notes to self about why you think they might belong to a particular family.

William is William McAdie, Customs Officer in London, born about 1830 Caithness. Marriage certificate shows father as George.
Long pegged as potentially William born Killminster, Wick to George McAdie and Elizabeth Rosie.
But there were other options, and only one had been truly ruled out of contention.
The one in Oz has still not been ruled out, but with DNA matches now popping up between descendants of William, and of the extended McAdie family, I've finally joined all those trees that had long ago connected William to George and Elizabeth. Thank you in particular to Susan and Noel, without your match on MyHeritage triggering a re-investigation of the DNA matches now available I would still have two separate William's in my database.

Emma is Emma Bidgood, born in Canada to Nicholas Richard Bidgood and his first wife Elizabeth Osborne. Was she the Emma who marries Daniel Treloar and ends up in Connecticut?
There are quite a few Emma Bidgoods and no definitive record I've yet found that connects Daniel's wife Emma to the daughter of Nicholas. Plenty of circumstantial evidence, just no records along the lines of handy marriage entry stating her father, any family members together with the Treloars in any census etc.
But in the last few days several DNA matches have popped up to join the sole tested descendant of Emma that I had already noted. Thank you Jeffory and Greg in particular, both for testing and for uploading to GEDMatch and MyHeritage (which is where I first spotted this set of matches) and for sharing an Ancestry Match list, which latter is where I found .....
a shared match whose tree included Sarah.

Sarah Bidgood married Richard Nicholas (son of Sarah Dawe). She was of an age to be the daughter of Abraham Bidgood or Turner and wife Joan Smith Dawe (Sarah's sister) but I'd not found her baptism and she never appeared with them in any census.
She does however appear in the 1841 an 1851 census records with Abraham's mother Mary, the 1851 census explicitly stating she is Mary's granddaughter, so definitely connected to Abraham somehow.
This time round, her marriage certificate was now readily available in the filmed FindMyPast Devon Parish Registers, and states that her father was Abraham Bidgood, labourer and that she was resident Newton Mill. Tick.
Bearing in mind the ambiguity of Abraham's last name, and with the filmed registers now available on FindMyPast, I also found the Jan 1835 baptism of one Sarah daughter of Abraham, labourer, and Joan Turner, of Newton.
Bingo.
So Sarah and Richard are first cousins.

Isn't it odd how lucky you can get when you work at your DNA matches?
But above all, keep looking, keep notes, review old research and never give up.

Sunday, 5 August 2018

Amelia's turn

Haven't posted for a while so you'll have to believe me that I've been busy behind the scenes, just not publishing.

For nigh on the last two years we've been working on a Mystery Grandfather case that took a few twists and turns, throwing up a few curve balls along the way, particularly in the tree of one of the closer matches which resulted in the case being extended to two Mystery Grandfathers.
With that now behind us, case solved as best it can be, it's time to return to my own brickwalls, particularly given the demolishing of the Jane GIBSON brickwall last October.

So now I'm trying to concentrate on Amelia MILLAR born Kippen, Stirlingshire, see suggested, rather empty, pedigree below, and follow progress of research on DNA suggested connections at my WikiTree page for this brickwall.
It could take some time, particularly as it is often not yet clear if the DNA matches being investigated come from Amelia's DNA or James' - which latter can be consigned to a subsequent investigation.
My main problem - staying focused!!


embeddable family tree updated live from WikiTree

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

The Lazy Vicar?

I only started seriously researching my mother's side of the family in 1990 (Dad's side had all the attention prior to that) and quickly realised that noone had a clue as to my 2* great grandmother Jane GIBSON's ancestry.
This was also one of the brickwalls I hoped that DNA would one day help chip away at when I began testing back in 2007 (finding a direct female line descendant for her mitochondrial DNA - which is still to find a match, but we live in hope).
2010 began adding in assorted cousins testing autosomal DNA to see where that would lead.
So 7 years later.....

A couple of days ago I convinced myself, and a fellow researcher, that after 27 years we've finally cracked the brickwall of who on earth Jane GIBSON was, and who her parents were.

Apologies to your mother, Jane. All these years I've been assuming you were illegitimate.After all no father is shown on your 1840 marriage certificate in Martock, Somerset, nor your 1906 death certificate in Taranaki, New Zealand.
All we had from one English census and your death certificate were an approximate age, and birthplace of Somerset, along with a supposed birth date (6 Apr 1812) scribbled on a flier in the Waitara Genealogy Rooms.
No candidates were obvious for your baptism in Martock, the presumed parish of interest.

Over the years I've seen people assign Jane to several versions of her parents, all well copied to other trees via Ancestry/MyHeritage etc by people who simply don't check the likelihood of the data:
1) a William Gibson of Chatham, Kent who seemed to have absolutely no connection to Somerset
2) a William who supposedly died in 1867, Somerset  - which wasn't borne out by the England/Wales death register.  (Closer inspection of this one led to the FamilySearch tree where his siblings were in Somerset alright - but in Massachusetts.)
3) a William and Jane (SIMPSON) GIBSON of Scotland, which Jane would have been 15 when daughter Jane born, down in the other end of the country.

Although I've no idea why William seemed so popular as her father's name, it has turned out to be rather prescient.

Back in May this year a flurry of activity with a couple of other researchers (thank you Sue and Rick) identified a potential candidate over in Queen Camel, the other side of Yeovil from Martock, but still only 12 miles or so away.
A Jane conveniently baptized on the April the 12th 1812 to a William GIPSON and wife Mary who married at Suton Montis in 1804 (Mary being nee HANHAM or HANNAM).
The birth date is spot on for a baptism 6 days after the unsourced birth date we have.

Pity that the mother was a Mary not a Jane, and how come this looked to be perfectly legitimate daughter Jane?
There things lay, as conjecture, until a couple of days ago.

Throw an Ancestry DNA match into the mix to myself, not particularly close but creeping up into the "potentially significant" category at 18cMs, predicted Distant cousin (range 5th to 8th cousin).
In itself, not looking likely to yield an easy result given a small attached tree with nothing immediately springing out as the connection - recent-ish Canada, ie after the 1921 census, so few clues as to where they came from, surnames not obviously connected.

What drew me to investigate further however were the shared matches  - a couple of known Andrews/Gibson "cousins" and a mother/son pair who regularly show up as matches to a lot of the former.
* Ancestry only shows these if they are 4th cousins or closer to the test taker

So I went looking for more clues.
Perhaps another match had that surname in their tree? (ignoring the fact that at the level of my missing 3* great grandparents there are potentially 32 different surnames, and therefore only a 1 in 32 chance I'd be on the right track here).
Yes. But their tree stopped back in the 1870s in Australia.
At least that was reasonably easily remedied and tracked further back - to guess where (no prizes)?
Queen Camel, Somerset.
 
But what was the connection?
A spot of tree validation for the names of the wives using the invaluable new GRO birth index for England and Wales which provides the maiden surname of the mother soon provided the potential link:
John Jones WINDSOR had married an Ann GIPSON in 1829, at Queen Camel.
Census data showed her as born around 1810 - and sure enough, Ann appeared in the baptisms found back in May as a sister of our potential Jane.
Was this the connection?

Working on the assumption that William GIPSON and Mary HANHAM, who married in 1804 at Sutton Montis were highly likely to be Jane's missing in action parents, further digging around in the far reaches of my, and assorted cousins', DNA matches also turned up another descendant of Ann (married John Jones WINDSOR), along with a descendant of Jane and Ann GIPSON/GIBSON's brother William.

Ian Fleming’s Goldfinger said, “Once is happenstance.  Twice is coincidence.  Three times is enemy action.”

So:
One family tree with a DNA match that can link back to a likely sister of Jane
One DNA match of the same surname, that has subsequently been proven to also link to the same Ann GIPSON
I'll count that as Once is happenstance.

I'll count the descendant of Ann & Jane's brother William as Twice is coincidence.
Add in DNA segment data from GEDMatch (thank you Doug for uploading to there from Ancestry, it really does add the source data to the suggested DNA connections).
Was the segment concerned at a spot I had mapped to being from my ANDREWS/GIBSON ancestry?
YES.
Did Doug and I share it with any other known ANDREWS/GIBSON cousins?
YES (thank you Ross)
And did that other cousin and I also match at that spot (triangulation).
YES.

I'll count that as Three times is enemy action.


But why "The Lazy Vicar"?
I can easily concede that a son-in-law as informant for the death of his 94 year old mother-in-law, or the registrar recording the information, might have simply written Jane's name in as both the deceased and her mother.
I was rather more wary of the lack of a father on her 1840 marriage certificate.
After all he was still alive and well and living in Queen Camel at the time, with two unmarried daughters still at home in 1841.
Passing this doubt on to Sue brought back a prompt response that she still remembered that when she was researching the Martock registers all those years ago when we were both starting out on this side of our respective families, she thought it odd that so many of the certificates lacked fathers for either or both parties. Were they all really illegitimate?
With the Martock register images now readily available on Ancestry I had a quick check around the time Simon and Jane married - and yes, Sue's memory was correct.
An unusually high number of certificates do not have a father shown.
 
Addenda
For the DNA purists out there, yes I know that I have not eliminated all potential other sources of that segment of DNA from the tree of my match - but after all, he does also show several other DNA segment matches to descendants of Simon ANDREWS and Jane GIBSON.
In addition, I and another cousin show matches on Ancestry to at least three descendants from two of Jane's siblings.

Would you be convinced?
I am - at least for now.













Thursday, 10 August 2017

LivingDNA results are in

The first set of DNA ethnicity results I could get interested in!
It could of course be a case of confirmation bias, but I like this a lot.
It will be even better when (if?) it gives me links to the matches in the areas concerned :)

Click on this link to explore what Living DNA tells me about my ethnicity

"Your family ancestry map shows the areas of the world where you share genetic ancestry in recent times (10 generations). The map is interactive allowing you to explore each area of your ancestry. "

Highlights (not interactive) from the "Cautious", and "Standard" views below

 where several regions overlap in categories - which could explain why on Ancestry my distinctly paternal Scottish ancestral cousins also show up in my South Western England Genetic Community.
Northumberland Related Ancestry
Northumberland Related Ancestry

Orkneys Related Ancestry
Orkneys Related Ancestry

South-England related ancestry
South-England related ancestry




Some reading on ethnicity/admixture results:

Monday, 7 August 2017

Chasing rabbits

I finished a "DNA finds" session at our local Genie group the other week with this image:

and, as always, ignored my own advice.
I should be methodically finishing off analysing, and publishing, what we've learnt from newly in  known-family tests on each of my Andrews, Rowe, and Dawe * lines.
* including finally, after 10 years, confirming the yDNA signature for the line of Isaac DAWE of Lamerton, Devon.

Instead I was having a look at the posts in the FaceBook group Genetic Genealogy Tips & Techniques and couldn't resist trying out one on how to visualise your Ancestry match lists (this link to my DNASurnames blog where I post general DNA type posts as opposed to those more related to my own genealogy work).
I ended up with a filtered set of groups that actually do interact - or have a match of particular interest in them:

My Henderson/Millar brickwall will some year find an answer amongst the dark blue group on the left.
My Jane Gibson brickwall amongst those in the light blue cluster top right.
That on the bottom right reminded me I'd not finished chasing the rabbit that led to a small cluster of more extended Fairbairn family matches ....


Saturday, 22 July 2017

First you find her, then you lose her

A distant cousin popped up on WikiTree the other day, so I connected his ancestor, Janet SINTON up to her parents, James SINTON & Margaret WILKIE.
Then looked to see if there was any research outstanding on the family that might be advanced.

Janet had a sister Mary SINTON, aged 37, still living, when father James died in 1855.
But where was she between 1818 and 1855? What happened to her?
Past investigations had found no obvious death, marriage, or census entry in Scotland, and rather too many Mary anyones, preferably born Melrose or Bowden, in the 1851 census in Scotland, let alone of an age, born Scotland, in England.

So this time I tried immigration records - and turned up a Mary SINTON emigrating to New York on the "Yazoo", arriving in July 1838.
Bit of a long shot I thought - until I noticed the family above her on the passenger list.

John & Margaret FAIRBAIRN with family - known to have ended up in Ontario by Dec 1838, dying in Blandford.

Margaret was Mary's older sister.

So the chase has shifted from after 1855, likely Scotland, to finding any evidence of Mary after 1838, likely Canada but possibly USA, and her death after 1855 somewhere.