Archiver > GENEALOGY-DNA > 2006-01 > 1136650932

Subject: Re: [DNA] Genealogy Paper Trails vs. Y-DNA Testing
Date: Sat, 7 Jan 2006 11:22:12 EST

In a message dated 1/7/2006 9:38:58 A.M. Eastern Standard Time,


Generally accepted paper trails not "proven out" by DNA could be due to two
things, as I see it and as you noted:

1) non-paternity event/s: there was a lot of discussion on the List about
the proper terminology and what this really means. I'm using this term in
the broadest sense. From studies I've seen quoted on this List and from my
own calculations, this amounts to 5% or less per generation. If you go to
Robert Tarín's non-paternity calculator, you can see how the percentages
pile up with each passing generation. At a rate of 3% per generation and
eight generations, about 22% of all persons DNA-tested will disagree with
the paper trail.

2) bad papertrail: a "generally accepted" papertrail is not necessarily a
good one. I've had personal experience correcting a genealogy through heavy
source citation only to have some people continue accept the bogus
papertrail without source citations. While item #1 above is not preventable
by those living today, item #2 is our responsibility.


Phil Goff

As a genealogist myself for a number of years and now a DNA learning newbie
I agree that often an online of other genealogy produced public accessed
product can be filled with errors. Most so called online genealogists don't even
bother to source their work at all in files at,,, even. Many of them copy from others
and then "throw in" some of their ideas as to what else should be added or
shown with absolutely NO documentation. These files should ONLY be viewed as a
possible source of someone's line.. just an idea.. absolutely DON NOT accept
them as factual and many are absolutely FULL of errors of a number of types.

As for the DNA not proving out a rock solid documented genealogy trail maybe
there are reasons for that in addition to non-paternity. First make sure no
errors exist in DNA reporting. Second check out mutation points etc..

Ed Martin

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