December 3, 2015 – Annual Joint Christmas Potluck with the Family History Center


Monterey County Genealogy Society

Come join The Monterey County Genealogy Society and The Family History Center volunteers, as we celebrate this Christmas Season. We will be giving thanks for a wonderful year learning about the world of Genealogy, as well as thanking you for your participation. Please join us for this annual potluck event. This is a time for stories, games, and good cheer – so bring a dish to share. Join in the fun and merriment while we get to know others who are also interested in learning about their family histories.

We would like to share our favorite recipes with folks.  Bring a printed copy of your cooking and we’ll make extra copies to hand out.

Doors open at 5:30 pm, the party starts at 6:00pm in the Fireside Room.  Enter through the FHC doors.

We’ll see you at the Family History Center, 1024 Noche Buena, Seaside, CA., left rear of building. For Information: (831) 915-9465.


One idea, then another

Recently, I read a note in one of the genetic genealogy groups that I follow from a person who uses special picture icons to identify persons in their tree that they are triangulated with or have received an Ancestry DNA Leaf.  The special pictures show in their tree view and then they consider it a confirmation if the tree branches continue to show that picture.  If a given branch only shows one special picture and no more, then they begin to question the branch.

That idea triggered an idea in me:  I decided to plug a special picture icon for the full path to the Most Recent Common Ancestor (MRCA) for my various Ancestry DNA Leaf matches in my own tree.  By doing this for most of my matches, I can begin to see the parts of the tree that I can really trust, and conversely, I can see those parts of the tree where I have little DNA proof of validity.  I may have paper proof, but if the DNA isn’t following, perhaps there is a non-paternity event (NPE) going on.  It can just as easily mean that a family line has died out, or that a given line just prefer golfing to DNA testing.  (I hate to think that perhaps my sources are wrong.)

Likewise, if a branch fills out with many DNA pictures and my paper sources are minimal, I can feel it isn’t a waste of time doing deeper source searching.

I leave the real photos for recent ancestors, letting them remain primary.  I figure I don’t need DNA “proof” for them, I probably knew them!  Here is a snap shot of how a branch of my tree looks with my special “DNA Icon Picture”.how use dna icon

Note the Jacob Fetters in the upper right.  He is the MRCA between another person and myself within Ancestry DNA.  I can see the flow through to my great grandfather Daniel Robeson.

dna-icon-orangeI spent a bit of time looking for an icon that I could use as the primary picture.  I finally picked one that looked a bit like the DNA helix and was bright for easy viewing.

Geno 2: Next Generation DNA Test

Justifying the spending of $200 for a DNA test that is of little value other than telling you something you may already know is tough. It is probably as hard as it is to convince your spouse that a new golf club will improve your game! The thing is, I don’t play golf, but I do “play DNA”. So, in early October, when National Genographic announced they, in collaboration with Family Tree DNA, had developed another DNA chip that would provide “unprecedented background blah blah” I was already hooked.

The new test is called Geno 2.0: Next Generation. I think it is a bad name since the previous chip was called Geno 2. They should have called this Geno 3!  Ah well, I never did work in the Advertising department.

As before, the data from the chip will be downloadable so you can upload it to other sites for further analysis. Those sites will have to develop software to handle the new data, so don’t expect to do these transfers immediately. You will be able to directly transfer data to FTDNA, just like before. We should be able to run Family Finder tests at FTDNA using this data. (FTDNA is doing the actual DNA processing for National Genographic at their labs in Houston.)

What makes this new test/chip so interesting is its size in SNP count! To be fair, we haven’t seen actual data yet but it is rated to have 700,000+ autosomal, 20,000+ Y-DNA, and 4,000+ mitochondrial SNPs. This is larger than the Chromo2 chip from Britain. The Big Y test from FTDNA has twice as many Y-DNA SNPs, but no autosomal SNPs!

I dabble in deep ancestry Y-DNA analysis, but have never bought the Big Y test nor the Y-Elite tests because of money. But based on cost per Y-DNA SNP, this new National Genographic chip is comparable: all 3 costs about one cent per SNP. But the Geno 2:NG test ALSO gives you a full round of autosomal and mitochondrial SNPs! It is a bargain! I have created a spreadsheet comparing the SNP counts and costs for the tests I am interested in which you can download by clicking here. (updated 10-25-2015)

Please note, I am not recommending this test for everyone. If what you care about is autosomal testing for genealogical purposes, Family Tree DNA and still provide a $99 bargain. Now that 23andMe has raised their prices, the field has narrowed. But, if you want it all, and are looking for Y-DNA comparisons, then you should think seriously about this new National Genographic test.

We can talk more about this at our next DNA SIG on Saturday November 7.

Monthly Meeting – Nov. 5, 2015 – “American Indian Research”, by Junel Davidsen, Certified Genealogist

Junel’s presentation will cover different types of records created for American Indians and where to find them online. Junel will offer suggestions on what to search and how to search for them.

Junel is a member of the Shoalwater Bay Indian Tribe in western Washington State.

If you would like to work one-on-one with Junel, she is a volunteer at the Family History Center in Seaside on Wednesday mornings from 9 am to 1 pm.

This session by Junel Davidsen should be very helpful if you are researching Native Americans.

Doors open at 6:15 pm, the meeting starts at 7:00 pm. We’ll see you at the Family History Center, 1024 Noche Buena, Seaside, CA., left rear of building.

“They are not dead who live in the hearts they leave behind.” – Tuscarora