Background on the Significance of Matches and Close Matches:
See the Y-DNA discussion
and Comparing Results
for a general overview of what the results are
expected to show.
25-Marker Matches, Understanding
and Understanding 67-Marker
more detail as
to the likely significance of matches and close matches for the chosen level of
Those desiring more
information should consult the other tutorial information available at Family
Tree DNA and World Families Network.
of the Bowers DNA Project's results:
Thoughts as Results are posted:
We have our first match! B-1 and B-3 are a perfect match for the first 12
markers. We are awaiting pedigree information from B-3 to see if the paper trail connects these lines. If not,
upgrade to the 25-marker or 37-marker test is probably advisable to
increase the surety level that Giles Bowers is a common ancestor. See the
discussion in the next paragraph.
The results for B-2 and B-3 provide an excellent example of the strengths
and weaknesses of the 12-marker test. It was expected by the participants
that there would be a match between B-2 and B-3. Instead, the results show there
was no possibility
they shared a common ancestor within the last 600 years. This
shows the 12-marker test is very useful in disproving a
relationship. It is not, however, as helpful in proving a
relationship. Although B-3 was a perfect match to B-1 over the first 12 markers and thus the
probability is 91.41% that
they shared a common ancestor within the last 600 years, the probability is
only 70.69% that the most recent common ancestor occurred within the last 300
years, the time frame for Giles Bowers. The 37-marker test, and to a
lesser extent the 25-marker test, would increase the accuracy of the
probability Giles is a common ancestor. In other words, although
there is a point of diminishing returns, the more markers the more useful the
test in helping to prove a relationship.
With the posting of
results for B-4 and B-8, we have our first
results for a northeastern U.S. Bowers line and a German Bauer line.
Thus, we are beginning to get some geographical diversity in our
database. Hopefully, this trend will continue. With the posting of 25 marker results for B-5, we
have our first results from a line that begins in Pennsylvania,
which seems to be the starting point in America for so many Bauer/Bower/Bowers
families. Obviously, the project will benefit greatly if we can get a
sizeable number of participants with Pennsylvania roots.
The posting of 37 marker
results for B-5 provides the opportunity to discuss non-surname
matches and also the significance of the Western Atlantic Modal Haplotype
("WAMH"). B-5 was a 25/25 match with a participant in another
surname project, which on its face suggested a high probability of a common
male ancestor in the not too far distant past. But, B-5 is very close to the WAMH, which consists of the most frequent
result for each marker and thus is a haplotype shared by many. It is to
be expected, then, that B-5 will show many matches with those of other
surnames who are also close to the WAMH. While such matches
suggest they have a common male ancestor in their respective paternal
lines, this common male ancestor will usually predate the introduction of
surnames and thus be of little genealogical interest. As it turned
out, with the full 37 marker results, B-5's match with the other
surname participant broke down and the end result was that it is unlikely they
share a male ancestor in their respective paternal lines, no matter how far
back you go. To summarize, only surname matches will normally be
genealogically significant, particularly for those close to the WAMH, and when
in doubt upgrade to the 37 marker test.
With the posting of
results for B-6, we have our first results from a line that "begins"
in North Carolina. That is another very important state for our
project. More participants from North Carolina lines are needed.
B-9 and B-10 thought they might match
up since their respective families lived in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania at the
same time. However, their DNA did not establish a relationship, nor did
they match up with any other line currently represented in our Project.
It should be noted, however, that B-10's results can be viewed as
a 23/25 match with Lineage III, although on first glance the match appears to
be only 21/25. This is because the misses at 389-1 and 389-2 count as
only one miss. Likewise, the misses at 464c and 464d count as only one
miss. However, since the modal haplotype for Lineage III is a
near match for the Western Atlantic Modal Haplotype, i.e., the most common
Y-DNA signature of the most common European haplogroup, coincidental
matches are a distinct possibility. Additional testing of B-10 would be necessary before we could say he shares a common ancestor
with Lineage III.
B-5 has a new earliest known ancestor. He
was found the old fashioned way, i.e., by traditional research. It
is important to remember that at this time DNA only supplements traditional
research; it does not replace it. It is hoped that DNA will lead to the
discovery of B-5's immigrant ancestor and/or his national
origin. Thus far, the DNA results suggest his line was German, not
English as always thought. We'll see what future testing shows.
With the posting of
results for B-11, we have our first results from a line the
"begins" in Maryland. A branch of this line moved to
Carter County, Tennessee.
BX-1 is someone who was tested by a company other
than FTDNA. As you can see, FTDNA and the other company do not test for
the same markers and thus comparisons are not as easy as with our other
participants. Nonetheless, we feel it is important to include his results
so that the 32 common markers can be compared. Note that BX-1 has a genetic distance of 3 from B-4 with
respect to the 32
common markers. That would seem to indicate a match of some sort.
Unfortunately, since the results are not from FTDNA we can't generate a
probability table that would show the likelihood the earliest common
ancestor was within a certain number of generations. The fact both
lines "start" in New York may indicate the common ancestor was not
that far removed. Conventional research will hopefully provide further
B-13 represents another Bowers line that came to
Tennessee from Virginia. Thus far, none of the Tennessee lines have
matched. It's beginning to look like there may be many more distinct
lines than originally anticipated. While this gives new
participants more targets to match up with, it also probably means we will
need many more participants before we are able to group participants
into lineages. We will probably begin by sorting participants by
B-12 is a perfect 25/25 match with B-1! While that result may have been suspected, since Green
Bowers named a son Giles, I'm sure the participants are gratified to see those
suspicions confirmed. We will post a revised pedigree for the line of
Giles Bowers of the Isle of Wight, VA, which will include the line of Green
Bowers, as soon as the participants work one out.
When B-1 and B-12 upgraded to 37 markers, they dropped to a 35/37
match, with both mismatches occurring at markers that are known to have a more
frequent mutation rate. While the mismatches slightly reduce the
probability Giles was the common ancestor and at least raises the possibility
the common ancestor may have been earlier, perhaps the father of Giles, it is
still a solid match. It may even be a better match than first
appears. For example, if Giles could be tested and if his haplotype reflected
the value of B-1 at one of the mismatched markers and the value
of B-12 at the other, then although B-1 and B-12 would be a 35/37 match with each other,
would be a 36/37 match with Giles. To develop a modal haplotype
for Giles would require several more participants from this line to be tested.
The posting of results
for B-14 resolves, at least for the time being, a
difference of opinion over the ancestry of John Leonard Bowers
of Washington Co., MD and Carter Co., TN, as represented by B-11. Although B-14 had
evidence suggesting John Leonard Bowers was of the line of his Henry
Boward of Washington Co., MD, the DNA results show he and B-11 never shared a common ancestor. The only possibility
that B-14's theory could be correct is if there was a non-paternal event
in one of their lines, in which case the DNA results would be
worthless. Unless and until additional descendants from each line
are tested to confirm his line's haploptype and haplogroup, there remains a
slight chance the current results are not the final word on this matter.
B-15 is a Boyer. It will be interesting to
see whether future results show a connection with the other variant
B-1 and B-12 are our first
participants to upgrade to the new 67 marker test. The resulting 65/67
match had the effect of increasing the odds their most recent common ancestor
was within 8 generations from 67.47% to 82.63% and within 12 generations from
88.35% to 96.03%. In other words, depending on the degree of match, the
67 marker test may provide more assurance that the most recent common ancestor
was not in the distant past.
The posting of results
for B-17 establishes the modal haplotype for the
patriarch Henry Bowers Sr. of Berkeley Co., VA/WV, since he is a 36/37 match
with B-5. It also thereby confirms the research of B-5's ancestry.
B-18 was previously BX-1. His FTDNA results
now provide a better comparison with B-4.
Not knowing of any
probable common ancestor, B-4 and B-18 (previously BX-1) decided to upgrade to the 67 marker
test to better
determine if their match on earlier tests meant their most recent common
ancestor was in the relatively recent past or the distant past. They
matched 65/67, but since they missed by 2 alleles at one marker, they have a
genetic distance of 3. Since no more mismatches resulted by going from 37
markers to 67 markers, the results point to a more recent common ancestor than
was previously predicted. Per FTDNATiP analysis, the probability they
shared a common ancestor within the last 8 generations is 85.64% and
within 12 generations is 97.13%. These probabilities suggest
their most recent common ancestor was probably in America. [The
results for B-4 and B-18 show how valuable
testing for more markers can be. Based on just 12 markers, they were only
a 10/12 match with a genetic distance of 3 and thus were not considered to be
related. As more markers were tested and there were no more mismatches
they were determined not only to be related, but to be closely related.]
B-19's results do not match with anyone else's.
His haplogroup is being further tested, but he appears to be in haplogroup I.
B-20's results do not match with anyone else's.
Hopefully that will change as we increase our Bauer database.
B-26 represents another Boyer line, who does not match
our one other Boyer participant. Hopefully more Boyers will choose to
make our Project their home.
B-21 is a 12 marker participant, who matches B-40. However, in the absence of a paper trail to a probable
common ancestor, 12 marker matches are not sufficiently reliable to
establish a lineage. It is hoped that either B-21 will upgrade to 37 markers or that B-40 will
about his earliest known ancestor.
B-22 is a 24/25 match with B-6 and thus they become the foundation of Lineage IV. This
match was not expected and as yet they have not
determined how they are connected.
B-27 is a 12 marker transfer from the National
Geographic project, who as yet does not match anyone.
B-28 is a participant in the Farmer DNA Project and
has also joined our project because it is believed Christian, the immigrant
ancestor from Germany, was originally named Bauer. As yet he has not
found a match in either project, but it would appear his chances are best with
B-23 is a 36/37 match with B-22 and a 24/25 match with B-6. The match with
B-22 was thought to be likely and apparently confirms their
research. The connection with B-6 is still not obvious.
B-25 is an 11/12 match with the others belonging to
Lineage I. However, an 11/12 match only means B-25 possibly belongs to Lineage I. Only by upgrading to more
markers can one confidently predict whether B-25 in fact belongs to Lineage
I. The 12 marker test is most useful in determining to whom you are not
related, but even then, as Lineage II shows, a 12 marker test that shows
you are not related may also be misleading. 12 marker participants are
urged to upgrade to at least 25 and preferably 37 markers.
B-24 does not match anyone currently in our
project. He belongs to Haplogroup E3a, the most common haplogroup of
African-Americans. (R1b is the most common haplogroup in our project,
with I being the next most common. Thus far, haplogroups have not been
particularly helpful in determining the national origin of our participants.
This should not be too surprising, since R1b and I, to a somewhat lesser
extent, are common throughout Europe. A good mapping of haplogroups can
be viewed at this link.) B-24's earliest
Henry Bowers of Southampton Co., VA, had been a slave, possibly owned by
Carr Bowers of Southampton Co., VA. Thus, Henry is the "Adam"
of his Bowers line and all Bowers who match B-24 share Henry as their
most distant Bowers ancestor. Since Henry apparently adopted the surname
of his owner, non-surname matches may provide clues as to his earlier
B-25's upgraded 37 marker test resulted in going from
an 11/12 match with those of Lineage I to a 35/37 match, thus validating the
B-29 matches the haplotype of Lineage IV. It is
hoped that his paper trail will assist participants in Lineage IV to identify
their most recent common ancestor.
B-31 has joined our project as a possible variant spelling.
B-30 and B-32 have joined our project
via National Geographic. While they are an 11/12 match, it is premature
to conclude they share a particular Bowers lineage. This is because B-32 also matches the Western Atlantic Modal
Haplotype, which is the
haplotype with the most common allele readings for the most common European
haplogroup, and thus can be expected over 12 markers to have many random
matches. Indeed, even within our project B-32 is also an 11/12 match
with B-5, B-9, B-15 and B-17. Additional testing of B-32 is necessary to eliminate random matches and to determine which,
if any, of the current participants shares his lineage.
With 25 marker results
now available for B-32, we have a 23/25 match with B-15 and thus a possible lineage. I say "possible"
because there is still the problem that B-32 matches the Western
Atlantic Modal Haplotype and thus has hundreds of matches at 25 markers.
The match would be more convincing if the surnames were the same, but B-32 is a Bauer and B-15 is a
Boyer and so this may just be another match
that predates the advent of surnames. (While one of the goals of this
project is to determine whether certain spelling variants share a genetic
history, 25 marker results are insufficient to so conclude in this case.)
Additional testing of B-32 is necessary before we can definitely declare
this to be a lineage.
B-32 did update his test kit to 67 markers to
see whether the tentative match with B-15 held up. It
actually took only 37 markers to establish this was not a match. This
demonstrates the desirability of starting with at least 37 markers from the
B-33 represents our first all English line. He
shows no matches with any American line. Note his haplogroup is I.
Although there are exceptions, it seems that the I haplogroup is more likely to
be English and the R1b haplogroup is more likely to be German. It will be
interesting to see if this tendency persists as the database grows.
B-34 is another
TN line, which means most of the TN
lines that have been researched are now represented in our project. The
fact there are no matches among these TN lines indicates the
Bowers surname and its variants probably have more distinct lines that
initially thought. We simply need a larger database, with increased
participation from especially NC and VA lines, in order to get more matches.
B-35 is a genetic distance of -1 from Lineage
III, although the match would appear to be only 10/12. This is because of
the way markers DYS 389-1 and DYS 389-2 are reported. DYS 389-2 is really
the sum of the reading for DYS 389-1 and 2. Thus, B-35's true readings for DYS 389-1 and 2 are 14 and 16, respectively,
they are reported as 14 and 30 (sum of 14 and 16). The modal result for
Lineage III is 13 and 29, which looks like a genetic distance of -2 on this set
of markers, but the true results for Lineage III are 13 and 16
(difference between 29 and 13). Thus, B-35 and Lineage III actually
only differ at DYS 389-1, resulting in a genetic distance of -1.
Nonetheless, I have not assigned B-35 to Lineage III because
that is a lineage that belongs to the Western European Modal Haplogroup, which
consists of the most common readings for each marker, and thus random
unrelated matches are not uncommon. An upgrade to a test with more markers
is needed to be sure B-35 belongs to Lineage III. [N.B. B-35 did upgrade to 67 markers, but the possible relationship to
Lineage III failed to materialize.]
The 37 marker results for
B-36 are most unusual in that not only isn't there a
match with anyone in our Bowers DNA Project, there also isn't a match with
anyone in the FTDNA database, even at 12 markers, which is most unusual since
the R1b1 haplogroup is the most common haplogroup. It seems that the
reading at DYS-019 is the major reason B-36 matches no one.
The reading of 17 occurs only .1% of the time, while a reading of 14 occurs 93%
of the time. Thus, B-36 starts out at a genetic distance of 3 from 93%
of those R1b's tested, just on the basis of this one marker. It is hoped
that another branch of this lineage can be tested to verify B-36's unusual results.
B-37 is of particular interest because his family has
Romany roots. While there is no match with him at this time, it will be
interesting to see if eventually we can identify any other Romany lines.
B-41 is yet another Bowers line that currently has no
matches. It seems that we have a multitude of unrelated Bowers
lines. Stated a different way, the Bowers surname seems to
be as common as dirt, which I guess should not be that surprising given
the derivation of the name. While B-41 did
match the modal haplotype of Lineage III over 12 markers and to a
lesser extent over 25 markers, the match fell apart over 37 markers. Once
again, this shows how important it is to be tested for at least 37 markers.
B-40 is a 12/12 match with B-21. However, 12 marker matches alone are not sufficient
declare a lineage. It is hoped that B-21 will either upgrade to 37
markers, or that B-40 will provide a provable pedigree that points to a
B-42 is a 37/37 match with B-11. This match establishes the modal haplotype for
Leonard Bowers of Carter Co., TN, because each participant
descends through a different son of John Leonard Bowers. Note
that John Leonard Bowers is listed as the son of George Bowers on the
Patriarchs Page. See Lineage V discussion for more on his parentage.
B-43 failed to match anyone at this time. As a Bauer from Germany, it was hoped there
might be a connection with other German lines, but no such luck. His haplogroup of I1, along with our other I
haplopgroup results, suggests one cannot infer national origin from this
B-44 failed to match anyone at this time. Also, earliest known ancestor information has
not yet been provided.
B-45 failed to match anyone at this time. Also, earliest known ancestor information has
not yet been provided.
B-46a (both B46a and B-46b were assigned the code
number B-46 by mistake, which made the a and b designation necessary) is a
recent transfer into our project. He is a 12/12 match with B-30, but that does not necessarily indicate a shared lineage. If
B-30 upgraded his results to 37 markers, then we could determine
whether a shared lineage exists.
B-46b (both B46a and B-46b were assigned the code
number B-46 by mistake, which made the a and b designation necessary) is the
first participant we've had that belongs to the G2a haplogroup. Until and
unless there are other G2a results, there is no possibility for a match.
Matches do not occur across haplogroups.
BX-1 is the first participant we've had that has been
tested by another company than Family Tree DNA, in this case by Ancestry.com.
This explains why there are some gaps in the results, for the two companies do
not test all the same markers.
B-47 is a perfect 37/37 match with Lineage V.
Congratulations! Whether this match was
expected, merely hoped for, or a complete surprise is not known to your
B-48 is a strong match with Lineage III. Inasmuch as B-48 is a Bauer by birth rather
than a Bowers, this match suggests the
most recent common ancestor predates Henry Bowers, Sr., who was the first of
this lineage to use the Bowers spelling.
Individual results will
no long be commented upon unless there is a match
B-51 was an 11/12 match with
Lineage V, but that match did not persist at 37 markers.
B-57 was not a match with anyone in our project, but
did match a participant in the Ancestry.com DNA project. Ancestry.com uses Sorenson as its testing
lab. The resulting match has yielded us
another lineage – Lineage VI.
B-63 is a -2 genetic distance from B-35 (see B-35 discussion above on why it
is not a -3 genetic
distance). This match has resulted in
another declared lineage – Lineage VII.
B-68 and B-74 are a match, resulting in another declared lineage – Lineage VIII. See below.
B-70 and B-77 are a
resulting in another declared lineage – Lineage IX. See below.
There is an unusual result at marker #YCAII, which is a marker with
multiple results. B-77 shows 3 results instead of the normal 2 results, which may be
first. Since this is expected to be a
rare occurrence, a third column for #YCAII has not been added to the
spreadsheet. If it had been, B-77’s results would have
been 11-11-21 for that marker. The extra result plus the difference at #570
results in a genetic distance of -2, instead of -1 as would first appear from