LOWER-DELMARVA-ROOTS-L ArchivesArchiver > LOWER-DELMARVA-ROOTS > 2010-02 > 1266682299
From: "Mike Hitch" <>
Subject: Re: [LDR] Catherine HUSTON Williams
Date: Sat, 20 Feb 2010 11:11:39 -0500
I think you missed my point entirely. I get all the logical and scientific 'proof' of the
DNA testing. My years of statistical and mathematical studies understands the hard aspects
of the analyses completely. I am talking about the "soft" aspects of the familial
connections relative to genealogy.
What I am suggesting is that there is a possibility that a Mrs. Houston fooled around with
a Mr. X and it was not known by anyone at that time or now - a son/daughter would be
raised as a HOUSTON but be born of an indiscretion (and I mentioned that such
indiscretions seem to be not all that uncommon based upon the early records of known
activity extrapolated into what I am sure is an even broader base of unknown activity) and
nobody would be the wiser. Now, in our modern world, we have DNA testing come along and
shows no relationship - at least from a biological standpoint - and that is not arguable
from rigorous scientific analyses.
But, does that mean that the child born of the indiscretion is not truly a "Houston"? Or
more correctly, does this ONLY suggest that another line of HUSTON/HOUSTON begins at this
point? That's the question and the dilemma of the DNA tests. While maybe NOT being
biologically a Houston, the children of such forays would be named as such and grow up
always believing that they were indeed HOUSTONs (or HITCHes, or whatever)...so, my point
again is that a disconnect with the HUSTON/HOUSTON lines may not be due to one lineage
arriving in the area at a later time (but it might!) - however it could simply be due to
an indiscretion in the acts of our ancestors that was previously unknown thus causing a
biological disconnect but not a social one. So to say that HUSTON/HOUSTON are not
connected in a family way is dubious and only true from a biological aspect and if that's
all you wish to prove, then your analysis is correct! My point though, is you cannot
assume, given this 'proof', that a separate line of HOUSTONs showed up when there is a
perfectly plausible counter-argument of what I just explained! Make sense, now?
OKAY - JOHN POLK - I know you've done the DNA thing - tell me what I am missing here, if
I sent a link earlier about Moses and Peter Gordy possibly NOT being sons of the original
Adrian Gordy? Did you read that. It addresses this dilemma and asks the question, Does it
"So oftentimes it happens that we live our lives in chains and we never even know we have
the key." - Eagles
> -----Original Message-----
> On Behalf Of
> Sent: Friday, February 19, 2010 4:48 PM
> Subject: Re: [LDR] Catherine HUSTON Williams
> Mike, yes, I am confused! Let me outline my understanding of how these
> DNA groups work (more for the other people who may be reading who may not be
> familiar with the DNA studies). I am no scientist, so this is greatly
> The Y-DNA (male) studies analyze the DNA which is passed from father to
> son. It is important to note that the other thing that is passed from father
> to son is the family surname, which is why these two things work together
> to validate each other.
> The Y-DNA is so important and reliable, because it passes from father to
> son unchanged, except when there is a mutation. These mutations do not
> happen often; according to the DNA experts; statistically about every 7-8
> There are a variety of Y-DNA tests available, but the one that seems to be
> most suitable to genealogy is the Y-DNA 37 tests, which measures 37
> separate loci (I'll just call them data points to be simple). Within a test
> group, the more the number of points you match someone on, the closer in time is
> the 'common ancestor' from whom you descend.
> There are really two stages to this:
> 1. A male with a surname enters the DNA test for that surname group, in
> my case the Houston group (I will call it the Houston group, but the
> spelling is not critical, as members of this extended family may be Houston or
> Huston or Heuston or Houstown or Hewston, etc). If a participant matches
> others in this group on a certain minimum number of critical data points, then
> that confirms that they are, in fact, a Houston (choose a spelling) when
> taken together with the fact that their name is Houston; in other words, the
> surname, passed from father to son, confirms the DNA, also passed from
> father to son.
> For those people who are named Houston, but who do not generally match the
> other Houstons on key DNA points, then we encounter the issue you raised:
> that their paternity does not actually descend from a Houston male, even
> though their name may be Houston. (This is not necessarily true in the cases
> of common names like Smith, where there are multiple lines which are
> entirely distinct).
> Similarly, those people who may have a different surname but match the
> Houston DNA group, their paternity matches, even though their name does not.
> Same situation for both these groups: either adoption or illegitimate birth.
> The beauty of the DNA study is that it can help to identify these
> situations, since the DNA and name, when taken together, act as a double-check.
> 2. Once the first part verifies that you ARE a Houston, the second part
> gives you an idea of the CLOSENESS you are to other participants. Here is
> where the mutations come in. The more data points you share, the closer in
> time is your common ancestor. With Dr. Houston, he and I shared about 30 of
> 37 data points. That means that enough time (from our common ancestor to
> now) had elapsed to create 7 mutations. Since each mutation is
> (statistically) every 7-8 generations, that means that we would expect our common
> ancestor to be about 50 generations ago, so say 1000 years. According to DNA
> (and our surnames) we are both Houstons, and we are roughly 50th cousins.
> As for the fellow I matched on 36 of 37 data points, he and I would expect
> statistically to be 7th or 8th cousins. And guess what, the genealogy
> research we did confirmed that. The degree of closeness predicted by the DNA
> study turned out to be almost exactly right. According to DNA (and our
> surnames) we are both Houstons, and we turn out to be 7th cousins
> So I guess bottom line what I am saying is that this DNA testing is
> extremely valuable, because it can confirm that you are, in fact, a Houston (or
> Hitch), and then tell you how close you are to other members of your study
> group. If you are lucky enough to find a very close match, like I did, then
> when you both do your genealogies, it really helps you 'triangulate' to
> the granddaddy who was your common ancestor.
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|Re: [LDR] Catherine HUSTON Williams by "Mike Hitch" <>|