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Genealogy Blog

23 November 2011

International Teachers Go Genographic

The story of humanity’s journey can be found within each of us—encoded in our DNA. In 2005, National Geographic and IBM, with support from the Waitt Family Foundation, launched the Genographic Project, which aims to provide the first true ‘snapshot’ picture of how each of us moved out of Africa and around the globe 60,000 years ago.

With over a quarter of a million people already taking part, the project is gathering and analyzing the world’s largest collection of anthropological DNA samples in the hope it will capture this information before modern-day influences erase it forever.

Source & Full Story

4 November 2011

Quebec’s Earliest Settlers Left Strongest Genetic Imprint on Province

The first settlers to colonize the wilderness of northeastern Quebec had more offspring and were more successful in passing on their genes than those who followed, according to a genealogical research published Thursday in the journal Science.

The study, conducted by Canadian and Swiss researchers, looked at the genealogy of more than 1.2 million Canadians in the recently colonized Quebec regions of Charlevoix and Saguenay-Lac St. Jean.

Source & Full Story

20 October 2011

DNA Solves Mystery of Unknown Scots Soldier

He lay in a single shallow grave on the fringes of a battlefield in northern France for 90 years, his two regimental collar badges among the little remains of the unknown Scots soldier.

No-one had talked much about former Coatbridge man Alexander Johnston over time, the name only rarely coming up in conversation when old photo books were opened up and shared by his family.

Source & Full Story

18 October 2011

Scientists to Unlock the Secrets of Long Life by Unravelling DNA of World's Oldest Woman

Scientists are studying the DNA of a woman who was the world's oldest person until her death at the age of 115, in the belief it could contain the secrets to long life. Dutch woman Hendrikje van Andel-Schipper was born in 1890 and became the word's oldest person in May 2004 before her death in August the following year.

What made her even more remarkable was the fact she remained mentally sharp right up until her death. She showed no signs of Alzheimer's disease which most experts assume would be inevitable for someone of her years.

Source & Full Story

14 October 2011

Black Death DNA Unravelled

Scientists used the degraded strands to reconstruct the entire genetic code of the deadly bacterium. It is the first time experts have succeeded in drafting the genome of an ancient pathogen, or disease-causing agent.

The researchers found that a specific strain of the plague bug Yersinia pestis caused the pandemic that killed 100 million Europeans - between 30 per cent and 50 per cent of the total population - in just five years between 1347 and 1351.

Source & Full Story

29 September 2011

New Genetic Evidence Links Spanish Americans of Southwest to Jews

A group of researchers in the United States and Ecuador analyzed DNA from two communities who trace back to Spanish colonial times: one in the San Luis Valley of southern Colorado and northern New Mexico, which includes Conjehos County, and one in the Loja Province of southern Ecuador.

The study found “observable Sephardic ancestry” in both communities and calculated Jewish ancestry among the Lojanos at about 5 to 10 percent and among the Spanish Americans, also called Hispanos, at about 1 to 5 percent.

Source & Full Story

12 September 2011

Ned Kelly's Remains Identified After 130 Years

It was one of the longest-enduring and most baffling mysteries to face Australian historians and scientists: what ever happened to the body of famed bush ranger and folk hero Ned Kelly?

But 130 years after Kelly was hanged for the murder of three policemen in Old Melbourne Gaol, the nation has finally got an answer. Researchers from the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine have announced that, after an exhaustive 20-month search that included testing of more than 30 skeletons and a trip to Argentina, Kelly's remains have been positively identified.

Source & Full Story

1 September 2011

Remains of Australian Outlaw Ned Kelly Identified

The headless remains of Australian outlaw Ned Kelly have been identified, 130 years after he was hanged for murder, officials have said. His body was dumped into a mass grave, later transferred to another mass grave and again exhumed in 2009.

Although his skull is still missing the body was identified by comparing a DNA sample with that of a relative. Ned Kelly was seen by many as a cold-blooded killer and others as a folk hero of Irish-Australian resistance.

Source & Full Story

25 August 2011

DNA Study Deals Blow to Theory of European Origins

A new study deals a blow to the idea that most European men are descended from farmers who migrated from the Near East 5,000-10,000 years ago. The findings challenge previous research showing that the genetic signature of the farmers displaced that of Europe's indigenous hunters.

The latest research leans towards the idea that most of Europe's males trace a line of descent to stone-age hunters. But the authors say more work is needed to answer this question. The study, by an international team, is published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

Source & Full Story

3 August 2011

Viking Ancestry Explored on the Isle of Man by Researchers

Researching your family tree can only go back so far in time before records become patchy. Now genealogists from the University of Leicester are using DNA tests to trace Manx ancestry back to the Viking era.

Local men with popular Manx surnames are being asked to give a DNA sample to help researchers explore the links between Y chromosomes, surnames and common ancestry. The investigation starts on Saturday, 19 February 2011 at the Manx Museum.

Source & Full Story

2 August 2011

iGENEA's King Tut claims

Interesting article by Dienekes Pontikos: "iGENEA is a Swiss ancestry analysis company which I had deservedly mocked a couple of years ago because of its ridiculous claims. Now, they have done it again, pretending to be able to link men with a particular R1b1a2 haplotype with King Tut. Note that the Y-chromosome of King Tut has never been published, and speculation about it is based on some screencaps from a Discovery Channel documentary that may or may not belong to the Pharaoh."

Source & Full Story

30 July 2011

Remains of 12 WWII Servicemen Identified

The Pentagon has identified the remains of 12 World War II servicemen. The military said Thursday they died in a plane crash in Papua New Guinea on Oct 27, 1943. Their remains will be buried Monday at Arlington National Cemetery.

They are Army Air Forces 1st Lt. Jack Volz of Indianapolis; 2nd Lt. Regis Dietz of Pittsburgh; 2nd Lt. Edward Lake of Brooklyn, N.Y; 2nd Lt. Martin Murray of Lowell, Mass.; 2nd Lt. William Shryock of Gary, Ind.; Tech. Sgt. Robert Wren of Seattle; Tech. Sgt. Hollis Smith of Cove, Ark.; Staff Sgt. Berthold Chastain of Dalton, Ga.; Staff Sgt. Clyde Green of Erie, Pa.; Staff Sgt. Frederick Harris of Medford, Mass.; Staff Sgt. Claude Ray of Coffeyville, Kan.; and Staff Sgt. Claude Tyler of Landover, Md.

Source & Full Story

23 June 2011

Pentagon Identifies Remains of 5 Servicemen Missing from WWII

The remains of five U.S. Army Air Force servicemen whose plane crashed in the Philippines during WWII have been identified, the U.S. Department of Defense announced today. The Pentagon said the men went missing on April 3, 1945, after taking off in a B-25J Mitchell bomber from Palawan Field, Philippines.

Although some witnesses later claimed to have seen the plane crash in a swampy area and remains were found, the evidence was not substantial enough to discern their identities. The remains were exhumed from unmarked graves three times since the crash in an effort to identify the men.

Source & Full Story

Archaeological Evidence Reveals That Half of Britons Have German DNA

Geneticists have revealed that according to archaeological evidence, 50 per cent of Britons are German. It may shock those who take pride in quoting a world cup triumph and the outcome of two wars as signs of British superiority.

It is already known that tribes from northern Europe invaded Britain after the Romans left in around 410AD. But scientists now say that around half of Britons have German blood gushing through their veins.

Source & Full Story

14 June 2011

US Identifies Remains of Soldier Missing Since 1951

Sixty years after vanishing on the battlefields of the Korean War and 20 years after being shipped back in a coffin, the remains of a US soldier have been identified using DNA testing.

The Pentagon said Monday it had identified Corporal A.V. Scott, who went missing in 1951 at age 27 and was sent back in one of 208 coffins bearing the remains of 200 to 400 soldiers returned between 1991 and 1994.

Source & Full Story

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