A Segment-ology TIDBIT
Here is a process to help me and my Matches. I have a number of my Triangulated Groups (TGs) for which I believe I know the Ancestor back to the 4C to 8C level (3x to 7xGreat grandparent couple). I blogged about CUMMINGS here, and wrote about HIGGINBOTHAM in Chapter 1 of the “Advanced Genetic Genealogy” book (here) – in both cases over 50 Matches in a TG share that ancestry.
So I invite Matches in a TG or a Cluster to try this little expertiment:
1. Open your full list of DNA Matches.
2. On right side of top row, click on Search:
3. This brings up a new row of three search boxes:
4. Type in the surname I give you (e.g. CUMMINGS) in the Surname box; and the Birth location I give you (e.g. Virginia; or Loudoun County Virginia – accept any standardized option offered by Ancestry)
5. Click on the green Search button (under the red arrow above)
6. Hopefully, you’ll get a list of Matches – everyone of them will: share a DNA segment with you, have a Tree, and have an ancestor with the surname and born in the location you specified. This is a huge time saver when looking for Common Ancestors.
This list could have mostly Matches from the same family – in which case your Match probably shares that same line with you. As a further test of this result, most of the Matches should have many of the other Matches in their Shared Match List (they form a Cluster) – it’s easy to check this. I’d call this a BINGO. This list could also be a small random group which doesn’t appear to be from the same family, nor do the Matches Cluster much – in which case it was probably not helpful. But the whole process is not very labor intensive. And in my experience, particularly when the searches are based on strong evidence, the group usually turns out good (and help you and your Match).
1. Very easy to do – a few clicks, type in surname and/or location => get a list of DNA Matches.
2. Efficient – virtually all of the Matches are very likely to yield positive results.
3. Targeted – you establish a fairly narrow target search, and all the Matches meet your criteria. Try it on all the Matches in one TG or Cluster or Shared Match (ICW) list.
4. Maiden names – once you have established an MRCA couple, try the wife’s maiden surname to see if the DNA segment (TG or Cluster) continues back on her side) – BINGO.
5. Which spouse? (usually wife) – try both surnames – hopefully one is a BINGO, the other is not.
6. Given names – if a child of an MRCA couple has an unusual given name, try it – a BINGO means the DNA probably came from that surname. [A non-BINGO doesn’t rule that surname]
7. Bolster evidence – this process may well add to your evidence of a Common Ancestor for a TG. In that sense it is an expansion of a previous post, so there is some overlap.
8. Brickwall buster – this process looks beyond your end-of-the-line/brickwall. If you have a clue from genealogy records (deed, witness, neighbor, etc.) or even a family story, use this process to check it out. Either a BINGO or not a BINDO is another piece of evidence – explore the surname in more depth, or move on to other research.
Bottom line: Ancestry’s Search is a powerful tool. You are invited to post in the comments about your experience – pro or con – about using this tool.
[22AX] Search on a Surname TIDBIT by Jim Bartlett 20210609