yDNA Mystery

Do you ever feel like DNA results are adding to a problem versus helping solve a problem? Well, that’s how I feel after the BigY results came back for my fourth cousin. I was hoping that his results might help connect our James Crawford line to descendants of James (and Martha Knight) Crawford or James (and Rebecca Anderson) Crawford.

Instead, my 4th cousin ended up in his own haplogroup. The Time Tree shows the three of us in the R-FT369906 haplogroup (orange icon).

The BigY tree shows our segment of the tree in a different way.

While I don’t know how the Edward Crawford lines might connect, paper research strongly suggests a relationship between my James Crawford lines and the other James Crawford lines. Below is a diagram of the various lines.

Everything I’ve read about yDNA and mutations, the results would suggests that to find a common ancestor between my brothers and my 4th cousin, one would have to go further back in our line. So what could explain a recent germline mutation?

My theory is that the yDNA mutation occurred between my 2nd great grandfather, Washington Marin Crawford and his son, Judson Foster Crawford. This theory is based on the fact that Washington Marion Crawford was captured and spent time in prisoner of war camps, including Andersonville, during the civil war. While I haven’t been able to locate any research supporting this theory, I did come across an article supporting the possibility: Civil War Data Reveals that Trauma Can Be Passed on to Sons.

While I have a theory that might explain the mutation between my brothers and my 4th cousin, I don’t have a theory to explain why our James Crawford branch is separate from the other James Crawford branches. Since I have to go back to at least the 9th generation to identify a common ancestor, this does fit with the Time Tree which estimates a common ancestor between 1500 and 1770.

Thus, the mystery of my James Crawford ancestors still exists.

4 thoughts on “yDNA Mystery

  1. Thanks for the Civil War link about inherited trauma. My 3rd great grandpa survived Andersonville. I am descended from a female line and don’t know of any testing done for Y-DNA. I checked and all of his children were born after the war as he married after the war. He had many daughters but only one son. His son lived 71 years, not sure what from. It was 3 years after his wife’s death. I have a letter from him the year he died, he seems a bit sad. In this situation, the Mom probably had good nutrition.

    1. mcphilbrick

      I am fortunate in that I have quite a few close cousins who have had their DNA tested. All of those results support my paper research. Since my paper research goes back to 4th great grandparents for almost all lines. Thus, autosomal DNA won’t be of much help to identify missing 5th great grandparents, which is where I was hoping that yDNA might prove helpful with my Crawford line.

  2. I’m in our cluster’s “F Troop” subcluster (R-FGC73574+). Unfortunately my closest SNP deep clade test matches and I have hit brick walls with our genealogy…at least we have company. Apparently they have your R-Y88686+ testers grouped in with the A Group Crawfords who have a closer proximity to the Crawfurds of Baidland and Ardmillan.

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