While I was sick with Covid-19, FamilyTreeDNA sent my autosomal and ethnicity results. Now that I’m getting better, I can review it. Let’s start with the ethnicity results —
Between FamilyTreeDNA, Ancestry and 23andme, all have shown a substantial amount in the central European region, i.e., Germany, Netherlands, France, which makes sense because I am very Dutch and German on paper. FamilyTreeDNA is interesting because it shows a much higher percentage from England, Wales and Scotland, and a little higher Scandinavian. The West Slavic/Eastern Europe would be my Polish side. All of them are around the same as to geographical areas where I am from, except Ancestry shows no eastern European. The most interesting thing about this test is Magyar, which I had never heard of (and there’s hardly anything there anyway). Magyar is Hungarian. The only time I’ve seen Hungary come up is through Gedmatch, when it showed what my ancient origins (supposedly) are. My Gedmatch results are from the raw data from 23andme. Gedmatch goes deeper than five generations back.
As for my cousin matches, FamilyTreeDNA is interesting because I notice a lot, lot, lot of Swedish names. For instance, there are a lot of Johannson surnames, Anderson surnames, and when I do a search for Larsdotter, there are about 14 connections to that name. So hopefully it will help me to explore my Swedish side. There were no interesting aha moments with the matches.
The next thing is interesting — my ancient origins. I carry DNA from three ancient European groups: 8% Metal Age Invader; 38% Farmer; and 54% Hunter-Gatherer.
The Metal Age is the Bronze Age (prehistoric); the Farmer is from the Neolithic era (about 12000 years ago)); and the Hunter-Gatherer is from the Mesolithic and Neolitic era (up to 9000 BC). Very interesting!
I have taken two autosomal DNA tests, through Ancestry and 23andme. There are three kinds of tests: (1) autosomal tests look at chromosomes 1-22 and X. The autosomes (chrom 1-22) are inherited from both parents and all recent ancestors. (2) Y-DNA tests look at only the Y-chromosome, which is inherited father to son, and can only be taken by males to explore their direct paternal line. (3) MtDNA tests look at the mitochondria, which is inherited from mother to child and can be used to explore the direct maternal line.
On a whim in early January, I decided to take an mtDNA test through FamilyTreeDNA. This focuses on the line of my mother, and her mother, and her mother’s mother, and so forth, up the maternal line. Sons can inherit that DNA as well, but cannot pass it, only daughters can pass it. The farthest on my mother’s direct line I have gotten on paper is five generations to Anna Isbrandt. I know about her and her husband and where their children were born, baptized and married, but not where Anna and her husband were born, birth dates, their families, nothing at all.
My results came in last week, and I have two “exact” matches with 0 genetic distance. A “0” genetic distance means that I have a 50% chance of sharing a common maternal ancestor within the last 5 generations (about 125 years). I have a 90% chance that the common maternal ancestor is within 22 generations (!!!). So I knew the test may not be super helpful. My two matches with the 0 genetic distance have listed their earliest known ancestor about five generations back and I’ve never heard of them but will contact them anyway and see what we can work on.
So of course I decided to do more testing, the autosomal test from FamilyTreeDNA, because it will detect relatives out to third and maybe fourth cousins. Unfortunately it will not be isolated to just my mother’s line, the matches will be both maternal and paternal so it will be more work. I haven’t really been putting enough time into DNA genealogy lately, but part of it is my lack of complete understanding on the subject. However! I just started my Monday night zoom classes on genetic genealogy using the book Genetic Genealogy in Practice, and have a great instructor who is walking us through step by step, so I’m counting on him to help me. Separate chapters and practice problems are devoted to each type of DNA test, so I’m really looking forward to it.
A couple of other matches are not exact but I recognized a name in their earliest common ancestor – Larsdotter, a very Swedish name meaning the daughter of Lars. I have a ton of cousin matches in my Ancestry DNA that have this name in their trees as well but haven’t found the connection, but maybe my Swedish DNA comes from my mother’s direct line. For matches that are not exact like this and who have a genetic distance of 2, there is a 50% probability the common ancestor will be in the last 18 generations, a 75% probability in the last 26 generations, and a 90% probability in the last 35 generations. You can see how difficult it is. Yikes!
It is not the type of test that is really recommended unless someone is a very serious researcher and wants to try to answer a specific question. The autosomal tests are really the best for most.
The mtDNA results did show a clearer picture of my mother’s haplogroup. Haplogroups are individual branches, or closely related groups of branches, on the genetic family tree of all humans. 23andme detected that mine is H, which stems from HV, and it is a very common and diverse mitochondrial lineage among populations in Europe, the Near East and the Caucasus region. The lineage is likely to have evolved around 25,000 years ago in West Asia, before being transported into Europe.
My mtDNA test results actually show more and that the exact haplogroup is H49b, a subclade of H. H49 is found essentially in Germanic countries, and also in Azerbaijan. It goes many centuries back but it is very interesting to learn the migration pattern!
So I posted photos of my Ooms grandparents, today I’m posting some photos of my maternal (Bass) grandparents, William Peter Bass (Pap) and Madeline Schoudel (Gram). Pap was born on January 9, 1919 in Chicago, and Gram was born on April 4, 1911 in Rib Lake, Wisconsin. Here is their wedding picture from 1941, which I’ve posted before.
Pap was 22 at the time and Gram was 30, a widow with a daughter, Dolores, after her first husband, Chester Bishop, was killed in an accident.
I’ve posted a couple of photos of them before but never photos of when they were older. My sister texted me some:
The above photo was probably taken in the early 1980s. I remember this photo but don’t remember anything about it.
The above photo was taken in their trailer where they lived in Manteno. We used to go there and visit during summers, I loved it. My sister and I used to play cards with Gram, and sit outside and talk with Pap or do something while he was napping/watching baseball. I don’t know what year this photo was taken, I’m sure sometime in the 1980s. He passed away in 1986 and Gram passed away in 1999. They are buried in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Alsip, Illinois.
This past summer our cousin texted photos of their tombstones. I had gone one time two years ago and couldn’t find them, but knew I was close but hadn’t been there in such a long time. The stones were overgrown with grass and he cleaned them up: