Thursday, January 15, 2009

My Y-DNA Results

The McCown surname is Mac Eoghain in Gaelic and on the Ulster Heritage DNA Results page ( you will find a heading for Mac Eoghain---but not all McCowns are shown under that heading. The majority of the 25 tested have their results shown under that heading. Most of those are descended from Francis McCown, John McCown or George McCown who are all believed to descend from Alexamder McCown, a Presbyterian minister.

You will find two or three others listed under the haplogroup heading R1b1b2 or R1b1b2a1b. The remaining two are shown under the heading Mag Uidhir II (Maguire II). That is one of two places that you can read my 67 marker test results. The other is at under User ID G2K6P

These two outcasts are a cousin descended from a younger brother (Eli) of my great grandfather (William). My best match to date is a McManus at 62/67 markers. We project to a 99.95% probability of having a common ancestor 33 generations ago. Using a 50 to 70% probability, we shoud have a Most Recent Common Ancestor within the 13 most recent generations.

Ancestral Origins Revisited

FTDNA has recently provided the information that countries of origin shown on the subject report are meaningful if at least 2% of those tested in that country are a match and very meaningful at 4%. Since there are vast differences in the populations and the percentage tested between countries, I believe that such differences must be taken into account. No country rose to the level of two percent at 12/12 matches, however, at 11/12 matches these levels are of interest: England 3.8%, Wales 6.6%, France (Alsace) 4.9%, Iceland 4.4%, Ireland (including N.I.) 4.5% and Scotland 5.2%. At one step mutation, these are all very strong. Scotland, Wales,Iceland and France (Alsace) are proportionally much stronger in relation to Ireland than I would have supposed.

An anomaly is just how haplogroups and haplotypes affect the outcome of the report in terms of matches. FTDNA has also said that the matches shown on my personal results page include all haplogroups that begin with R1b1. Since mine is R1b1b2 and many others are R1b1b2a1b or greater, that leaves open the question as to which matches are truly matches.