YDNA Project Report
The Underhill YDNA Project is now 18 years old. There was one new participant this past year bringing us to a total of forty seven. That person was another Capt. John descendant and thus would not represent a breakthrough for the project. We continue to use the 37 marker level as the minimum for new participants and encourage upgrades to 37 markers for past participants. The 12 marker test used when we began in 2003 has proven to not be adequate for purposes of determining if the various Underhill immigrant lines share common ancestry. Targeted upgrades have helped resolve questions that use of the 12 marker tests had created. At present we do not have any YDNA-based indication that any of the North American immigrant lines are genetically connected.
We know the YDNA signatures of eight North American immigrants. The new participant did not trigger our having the YDNA signature of additional immigrant lines:
Capt. John of Boston, MA
William of Kent County, MD
John Wesley of TN
Sampson of NH
John of Guilford County, NC
Giles of Surry County, VA
William of Morristown, NJ
John of Cecil County, MD
There is one participant each from the following six North American immigrant lines but nothing can be concluded here until we have additional participants from these lines:
Samuel Baker of Cincinnati
James of Washington County, TN
James of NY and MI
Thomas of Somerville, MA
Joseph of Eaton County, MI
Egbert of Indiana
We have five non-North American lines represented in the project:
John of Kent b.ca. 1622, son of Edward
Henry James of Kent b.ca. 1832, son of Walter James
Joseph of Warwickshire b. 1830, line goes back to g.grandfather Joseph b.ca. 1724
John of Wales b.ca.1830
Raymond of Australia (grandfather of participant from Australia, it is not yet known who the immigrant to Australia was)
We have a participant from the John of Montreal and Philadelphia line but in this instance there is a known in-family adoption that occurred. The participant’s ancestor was adopted by his Uncle Underhill (his mother’s brother) and took the Underhill name. These results could be of value in the future to descendants of the Underhill adoptee.
We have a participant from the Capt. John line with a known paternity event. The participant’s great grandfather was born to the widow Underhill approximately 3 years after her Underhill husband died. He was raised as an Underhill along with his half-brother Underhill from his mother’s marriage to a Capt. John descendant. Again, the results could be of value to descendants of that child born out of wedlock by possibly providing a clue for traditional genealogy research as to who the father was.
We have a non-Underhill surnamed participant who was an Underhill by birth but was subsequently adopted by his stepfather.
We have a non-Underhill surnamed participant who is an adoptee that thought his father might have been an Underhill. The test results did not match current participants.
To continue moving the project forward we need:
- More participants to upgrade to the 37 marker test so that in the future when there are 12 marker matches we can determine if that is just clutter or if there is actually a link between lines. At issue is the passage of time makes it more difficult, if not impossible, to make contact with past participants to request upgrades when those situations arise. The more upgrades done preemptively the better off we will be. An alternative is to file FamilyTreeDNA account passwords with the YDNA Project Manager so as to allow him to purchase upgrades as needed in the future.
- Additional participation from any of the noted lines with only a single participant
- Participation from North American immigrant lines not currently in the project.
- More participants from the UK, Australia, and elsewhere in the world. Matches with North American lines will help guide research.
Lastly, though I will continue to administer the project indefinitely if needed, after 18 years I am ready to pass the torch so to speak to someone who can bring new enthusiasm and ideas. The overall time involvement to oversee the project is minimal. Please contact me if you are interested.
Thank you for your support.
YDNA Project Manager