Saturday, December 5, 2009

Success in Finding Your Ancestors

Your participation in the Family Tree DNA project is to find your ancestors. Most likely your fantasy was that you would swab your cheek, send in the sample, and a few days later get a letter depicting your family tree! And most likely that did not happen.

In order to determine your family tree several things need to happen. Some of those things have to do with having closely related people in the FTDNA database. Several hundred thousand samples are in the database. It is the largest one in the world, at least about which there is public knowledge and public access. However, there are close to 7 billion people on the planet. So the samples only represent about one for every 15,000 people. The samples also are not a random sample of human DNA, but instead a sample of people who (for the most part) live in North America, have college educations, have the means to participate in the project, and have an interest in genealogy.

Usually participants enter the project because they have heard about it from a family member or a friend. Thus, we have clusters of people with known common ancestors. And they already know about their shared connection and are seeking more connections to help them look back in time to earlier ancestors.

To accomplish this goal, more participation in the Taylor project as well as other projects will bring in more samples. (Since there are so many Taylors, telling people about the project will inevitably bring more Taylors into the project.) In addition to the samples, we need two more things from you: a willingness to share data and cooperate with other project members—your more distant cousins—and as accurate a family tree as you can provide. For the family tree, follow the guidelines you received from Leigh Taylor to supply a tree that is easily read, is useful, and keeps information about living people private.

Then be patient. If your relative who has the missing clue isn’t already in the project, he may be soon!

Wishing all of us good luck and good family connections!


Taylors in the News, December 2009

The name Taylor, at least the first name Taylor, has been in the news recently. Teenagers Taylor Daniel Lautner and Taylor Swift have both made the headlines. They have even been paired as a romantic couple.

Lautner plays the part of the werewolf, Jacob Black, in the Twilight movies. He was born Taylor Daniel Lautner on February 11, 1992 in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

On December 2, 2009 [Taylor] Swift received Grammy Award nominations for: Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance for "You Belong with Me", Best Female Country Vocal Performance, Best Country Song for "White Horse", Best Pop Collaboration With Vocals for "Breathe", and Album of the Year and Best Country Album for "Fearless". Taylor Alison Swift was born December 13, 1989 in Wyomissing, Pennsylvania. She records in two genres: country & pop. She is a singer-songwriter, guitarist, and actress. Swift plays guitar, piano, ukulele and 12-string guitar, as well as doing vocals. Swift won five 2009 American Music Awards: Artist of The Year, Favorite Pop/Rock Female Artist, Favorite Country Female Artist, Favorite Country Album for "Fearless", and Favorite Adult Contemporary Artist.

In 2009, Cherry Jones won the Primetime Emmy Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Drama, playing the part of the first female president, President Allison Taylor, in the highly regarded television drama 24.