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My daughter is adopted.  She never had a desire to find her birth mother.  She was , however, interested in finding out her ethnic background.

She sent her DNA  to 23 and me.  The main ethnic background agreed  with what I had been able to tell her although most of that was guessing from the little I knew.

Two weeks after getting the information she got a note from 23 and Me and told her that they had the DNA of another woman who appears to be her 1/2 sister.  That woman wanted to make contact with her if it was ok with her..The two have spoken on many occaissions and hope to meet soon.

She has also spoken to her birth mother but does not pursue that relationship though it is cordial. 

This would never have happened without the advent of the DNA companies.  This is not an isolated story.  There are many for whom this has happened.

 

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Complications. I thought I had it figured out. Pay for the test kit with a charge card and have it sent to ishop's Texas address and ishop said it would get forwarded here but Ancestry says because I have a Canadian credit card and my ISP(?) shows I am in Mexico they can't do that. So I have to have the test kit sent to Canada (where no one is at present) and then from there someone will have to send it to ishop in Texas. It seems to happen a bit-credit cards get nervous if you have a Canadian address and you purchase something from Mexico. My CC also has my Mexican address but Ancestry won't ship directly to Mexico. It seems to be a lack of trust with anything to do with Mexico.

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What I don't like is that the OWN your DNA once you send them your sample.  What might someone do with it one day?  Just Google something like "designing DNA specific bio-weapons" and you get statements like this one: "The Atlantic reports that experts in genetics and microbiology are convinced we may be only a few years away from the development of advanced, genetic bio-weapons able to target a single human being based on their DNA.

I can only imagine the attacks this comment is going to bring upon me! I know, it's a bit far out, but, hey, it could happen.  They could target an entire ethnic group as well as individuals.

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Cedros, it seems they are more interested in getting verifiable data about you than providing you with the data you want. Even though you’re the one paying for it. 

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I wonder. I have used for Ancestry for years off and on. They should have all my data by now. 

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Home kit DNA testing is an unregulated high-profit industry which uses at best a quasi-scientific approach.  It compares your DNA sample to similar samples they have in their databases from the CURRENT country/area where those samples were taken and then each company applies its own logarithms which apparently consist of a lot of hocus pocus.  

Interesting reads on them:

http://www.iflscience.com/plants-and-animals/journalists-home-dna-kit-test-didnt-recognize-sample-actually-came-from-a-dog/

Quote

 

Journalists from NBC 5 in Chicago recently carried out their own experiment to compare a few of the top home DNA kits on the market, using a sample from reporter Phil Rogers, only to discover the results can vary quite a lot.

They even tested the kits on a dog, Bailey. While most of the companies declared the sample unreadable, Orig3n DNA reportedly failed to note that the DNA belonged to a Labrador Retriever, not a human. Instead, they received a seven-page report explaining that Bailey had superb muscle power and cardiac output, ideal for boxing and endurance bike rides.

 

https://gizmodo.com/how-dna-testing-botched-my-familys-heritage-and-probab-1820932637

Quote

 

Genetics is inherently a comparative science: Data about your genes is determined by comparing them to the genes of other people.

As Adam Rutherford, a British geneticist and author of the excellent book “A Brief History of Everyone Who Ever Lived,” explained to me, we’ve got a fundamental misunderstanding of what an ancestry DNA test even does.

“They’re not telling you where your DNA comes from in the past,” he told me, “They’re telling you where on Earth your DNA is from today.”

 

http://now.tufts.edu/articles/pulling-back-curtain-dna-ancestry-tests

Quote

 

Tufts Now: How accurate are these tests when it comes to determining ethnicity and genealogy?

Sheldon Krimsky: We don’t really know, because the companies selling these services—and there are close to 40 of them—don’t share their data, and their methods are not validated by an independent group of scientists and there are not agreed-upon standards of accuracy. People have sent their DNA to several of these companies and found differences in the results—though not necessarily radical differences. So you have to look at the percentages you receive back with skepticism.

 

 

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All this stuff is pretty funny.. I know several families in Europe who go back 8 or 10 generations and that is about it.. unless you are the king or some prince, your chances of really knowingabout  your true ancestors is very slim. Most records have been lost or destroyed.. Go back to the cemetaries in Europe and find olf graves past 1750.. , you will not unless it is the grave of a famous person. You can in St Denis in Paris go back to early christinas but those are exceptions not the rule. Plus you may have the official version but what happens is different.. very quickly you will find a bastard somewhere or not find one but it will be there.. I know that my Basque grand-mother who died when she was 100 was fathered by the man my great grand mother worked for and not by her husband.. On the other side somewhere  aound the 1850 agreat or great great grandmother was scared by am Asian probably vietnamese sailor while pregnant and she had an Asian baby which explains some of the Eurasian traits my sister snd some cousins have.. It is fun to go back but no one should take it seriously..past a couple of 100 years or even less than that.  The reality is that we are all mixtures of many differnt ethnic groups unless the ancestors lived in a very remote hole..and even there whatshows as the paternal lineage may not be the whole story..

As far as leanage of royalty, most people have royal blood and most royals have peasant blood so no big deal there either.

In the Middle Ages the Lords had droit de cuissage or the right of the Lord which means he could bed any maiden he wanted to on her wedding night or before.. so that should tell you are acurate some of the records that still remains are.

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Very true!  On my French, and Québec side, many names are just descriptive, not necessarily indicating blood lines. Many contain more than one "dit", or "called" name. Those may simply refer to an occupation, looks, geographical origin, etc.  My French Canadian-Mohawk line includes lots of "Jolicoeur" folks, and that is really not a last name. In Northern New York and New England, it became improperly anglicised to "Hart".

On my Scots-Irish side, which goes back to the 3rd Chief of Clan MacIntosh, in the early 1300s, the names are also affiliations, not necessarily blood relationships.  Scots from a certain glen, became Glenn or Glennie, or even Glynn, etc., in Itreland.  As Presbyterians, many made it to the Americas and scattered with time and events.  Only when last names and family lineages were more accurately recorded as literacy improved, were we somewhat more certain of our bloodlines. There are, however, always secrets and surprises. DNA is revealing more and more of those.

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Lots of idle speculation here. I have spent thousands of hours working on my own genealogy for 20 some years. I always went to the source records-births, deaths, marriages, census, land registry, wills, local history books, military files, land grants, etc. Family lore is often wrong. Some, particularly the French Canadians were very meticulous about keeping records. I can trace ancestors back there to the 1600s.  DNA testing is just another tool but it can certainly shed some useful information if you use Ancestry.com to do it as they have by far the largest data base. I have visited most of the places my ancestors came from-6 Canadian provinces, Minnesota, England , Scotland, Ireland, the West Indies. In England I found graves of definite ancestors who died in the early 1700s and ancient wills where family connections are described in detail. Some of the English wills were so old I had to get them translated as the language has changed so much over hundreds of years. Along the way I have come across distant cousins through out Canada, parts of the US,  England, Scotland, New Zealand, Australia. Some of them had invaluable information. I have only been to Salt Lake City (where they literally have mountains of information) once but I have accessed their information many times. 

Dit names can be confusing but with a lot of research they can be sorted out.

On Genealogy boards you come across distant relatives who have a lot of information as some of them have been doing their genealogy for 40, 50 years. But you have to be careful sorting out speculation from the facts.

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I can tell you that in France  mot people went by nicknames  and for exemple the Basques did not have last names they went by the name of th eplace they came from. 

Jolie coeur is a nick name ..pretty heart.. no a last name, It may have become a last name but it really was not to start wit and I bet you there was more than one jolie coeur around.. Pretty heart is also a way to say the guy was a flirt.. 

I admire all this going back to the 1300 but frankly I only half believe it..Many of the records all over EUrope were lost in raids, wars  fire etc..

One of the old French families I happen to know were bragging about going back to the 1300 . well I looked into it and 3 generations ago they did not have a male heir so the male issued from the female that had taken their husband´s name took the name of the ancestor who did not have sons.. Tight there all this going back to the middle ages was bogus. We all came from the same start and therere are very few who can trace  make heir from generatin to generations , heck even the famous people cheat so I can imagine the commoners.

In Alabama I moved to an area that was founded by the French and the island that happened to be accross the river from us on the Mobile Bay. That island was called Montlouis and it is the name of my mother´s native village..I looked into it and a French guy from Montlouis France moved to Britany and then went to Canada. He joined other Arcadians and fought the indians around Mobile so he was awarded  an island which he named MOntlouis after his village . I looked into  this story as my grand-father was the maie of the town new everyone there and owned a lot of land.. could not really find trace of that family and it was going back to the early 1700.. I can imagine going back to the 1300.. forget it... 

My in-laws fro the US who had been in Alabama for 8 generations also have this family tree going back to the duke of Orange and I do not know what else because after checking the whole thing I just laughed it off.. Yes they are from the Mac Donalad clan too .. which wouod explain their love for hamburgers.. 

 

 

In Mexico ther eis a huge amound of indigenous who have the same names what I found out is that they were not allowed to keep their original names and had to take a Spanish name to register so they bought names.. There were two types of names  the comon one which were cheap like Lopez, GOmez, Perez Hernandez etcc and the names of famous people that were expensive like Gitenberg Cortez and others..

The Zapotecs did not have last names in Zapotecs so all the names were bought, amongst the Mayas it varies.. the Lacandones had nick name like Viejo, the tall one the third etc.. every man had several wifes and the kids picked whatever names they liked in the 50´s or 60´s.. SO Cankin Viejo who had 3 wives had Chankin who decided he ws the third so he called himself Tercero, his wife called herself Nuk so the gids who are now in their 20´s are Tercero Nuk  but Chankin had lots of brothers and halbrother and I happen to know some of them. One took the name of King Garcia.. so witing the same family the kids by the same father do not even have the same last name.. The grandmother is called Maria Koh or maria the tall one.. just like they did in the iddle ages...

Meanwhile in some Tzeltal villages people took on Cpanish names like Mendez gomez Lopez but they know and go y their family name in Tzeltal SO Feliciano Mendez Intzin  is nicknamed Feli  Ton or Feliciano stone.. THe spelling of the indigenous names also vary ..as spelling is not considered important  .. from dealing with them I think I get a taste of what we had in urope way back then. so good luck on tracking down families hundreds  of years later.

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Cedros, I am so sorry for the glitch. I got my Ancestry test when they first started offering it and had it sent directly to my Mexican PO Box. It was before Ancestry decided they weren't shipping to Mexico. You might try talking to a supervisor and telling them you are Canadian but are living in Texas for a few months. Don't confuse the issue by mentioning Mexico. OR order through Amazon.

A few things to keep in mind. According to the genetic genealogy blogs I read, the ethnic predictions are accurate to a continent level only. It is a new science and they are improving all the time. The only companies with reasonably accurate data at this time, IMHO, are 23andMe, Ancestry, FamilyTreeDNA and MyHeritage. National Geographic is testing for very early ancestors - thousands of years ago.

The DNA cousin matching is much more valuable, and more useful in supplementing traditional genealogy research. Ancestry has the largest database - that's the good news. Unfortunately to save money, they lack even basic matching evaluation tools so it is easy to make some very wrong conclusions. In order to get any real value, you need to use their RAW data and upload it to MyHeritage or FamilyTreeDNA or GEDmatch.

And yes you can make some fascinating discoveries. I had nearly given up on a pair of 2nd great grandparents. Using DNA, and lots of good old fashioned research to verify, I have traced both their families back to Colonial Virginia. But it was DNA that gave me the initial clues I needed.

Happy hunting

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5 hours ago, MtnMama said:

Cedros, I am so sorry for the glitch. I got my Ancestry test when they first started offering it and had it sent directly to my Mexican PO Box. It was before Ancestry decided they weren't shipping to Mexico. You might try talking to a supervisor and telling them you are Canadian but are living in Texas for a few months. Don't confuse the issue by mentioning Mexico. OR order through Amazon.

A few things to keep in mind. According to the genetic genealogy blogs I read, the ethnic predictions are accurate to a continent level only. It is a new science and they are improving all the time. The only companies with reasonably accurate data at this time, IMHO, are 23andMe, Ancestry, FamilyTreeDNA and MyHeritage. National Geographic is testing for very early ancestors - thousands of years ago.

The DNA cousin matching is much more valuable, and more useful in supplementing traditional genealogy research. Ancestry has the largest database - that's the good news. Unfortunately to save money, they lack even basic matching evaluation tools so it is easy to make some very wrong conclusions. In order to get any real value, you need to use their RAW data and upload it to MyHeritage or FamilyTreeDNA or GEDmatch.

And yes you can make some fascinating discoveries. I had nearly given up on a pair of 2nd great grandparents. Using DNA, and lots of good old fashioned research to verify, I have traced both their families back to Colonial Virginia. But it was DNA that gave me the initial clues I needed.

Happy hunting

After thinking about the nonsense for 5 minutes I did phone Ancestry back but got nowhere. They could tell by my ISP (?) that I was in Mexico.

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cedros, you posted  "After thinking about the nonsense for 5 minutes I did phone Ancestry back but got nowhere. They could tell by my ISP (?) that I was in Mexico" makes me realize that the suggestion I was about to make might be confusing..

 I have an internet phone that has my Seattle area code, and when communicating on the internet over my computer, I would use a VPN which would  produce an  ISP location in the general area of my choice.

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8 minutes ago, johanson said:

cedros, you posted  "After thinking about the nonsense for 5 minutes I did phone Ancestry back but got nowhere. They could tell by my ISP (?) that I was in Mexico" makes me realize that the suggestion I was about to make might be confusing..

 I have an internet phone that has my Seattle area code, and when communicating on the internet over my computer, I would use a VPN which would  produce an  ISP location in the general area of my choice.

Someday I will get a VPN once I figure out how.

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You can order an Ancestry DNA test kit on Amazon. I doubt that they pay attention to where the card and address are from. There are also a couple of 3rd party vendors as a possibility.

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