Latest Blog Posts

The beauty with the DNA approach to researching one’s ancestral origin is that the DNA does not lie! The area identified in an Irish, Scottish, English or Welsh Origenes personalised DNA report can... More
Surnames evolve over both time and distance, and change usually at the whim of an administrator who simply records an unfamiliar surname as he hears it. In this manner similar sounding surnames... More
For cultural and historical reasons it can be more difficult to pinpoint one's English ancestral origin. But as more and more people test the success rate increases. I now have a 60% success rate... More
It is more challenging to pinpoint one's English Paternal Ancestral Genetic Homeland. This is mainly due to historical and cultural factors. However, one big advantage with English surnames is that... More
May 2015: Pinpointing you Kelly origins at the Kelly Clan Gathering (to be confirmed) January 17th 2015: Fermanagh Family History Society (contact October 2014: Genetic... More
For cultural and historical reasons pinpointing a paternal ancestral genetic homeland for people with English roots can be far more challenging compare to those with Irish and Scottish ancestry. For... More
Sometimes a quite remarkable Y-DNA Case Study comes along that I will try my best to get published in a Genealogical magazine. The latest one published in Family Tree Magazine details the Paterson... More
I was invited by the world’s largest commercial ancestral DNA testing Company 'Family Tree DNA' to give a talk entitled 'Pinpointing a Geographical Origin' at their 8th Annual Genetic Genealogy... More
The English Origenes is the latest website in the 'Origenes' chain (that includes Irish Origenes and Scottish Origenes) that sets out to show how one can use the results of a commercial ancestral 37... More
Today Britain (the island that includes England, Scotland and Wales) has about 1.6 million surnames, which is far in excess of the 420,000 surnames recorded in the 1881 census. In 1881 the population... More
Humans first arrived in England around 10,000 years ago after the last ice age. It is believed that their journey began in Northeast Spain in an area now known today as the Basque Country and took... More

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Targeted Recruiting for DNA testing

The beauty with the DNA approach to researching one’s ancestral origin is that the DNA does not lie! The area identified in an Irish, Scottish, English or Welsh Origenes personalised DNA report can be conclusively confirmed by DNA testing people with a particular surname from the identified area. In 2010 I identified my own paternal ancestral origin within County Laois in Ireland and independent DNA testing of males called Bowes (and Bowe) confirmed the link to that area. It’s been a few years since then and a number of customers have successfully used this approach to confirm a link to an area. Some have even featured as articles in local papers (see sample accompanying images). There are many ways to recruit from an area including the use of social media like facebook or twitter. However, feedback from my customers indicates that by far the best approach is with an old fashioned letter to a local newspaper (download samples here). A personal appeal works best, but there are some simple rules to follow:

1.    Detail your family history (briefly) and the reason why you are recruiting (i.e. your DNA indicates an ancestral origin in X location and DNA testing a person with the surname X from that location will conclusively confirm the link). 
2.    If an editor thinks that you will be visiting the area in the future they will be far more willing to assist and publish your letter. It may even feature as an article. So if you are planning on visiting then mention it. It will also do no harm to mention your love of the Country or area you intend to visit!
3.    Its best to sponsor at least one DNA test kit.
4.    Remember to stress that the DNA test is painless (a simple swab from inside the mouth).
5.    Never request family history information up front as that will put people off from replying. Ancestral history can be tentatively requested once contact is made. If you have a number of people replying then you can use their family history to determine which candidate is best to test.

If you manage to recruit and test and that person comes back as a DNA match then you can then begin to try and connect your ancestral patertrails. It can be done! If you have had a DNA Case Study done at Irish Origenes contact me if you require further advice and tips with regards targeting and recruiting. Or if you have had a DNA test done contact me (by clicking here) for a FREE CONSULTATION.

Irish Origenes

Scottish Origenes