Wednesday, January 27, 2016

PLEASE! Link Your DNA Results To A Tree~

Yes. For The Love of God, Link Those DNA Results to a Tree

If you've dipped your toes into the well of DNA genealogy, especially via Ancestry, you know the hair pulling frustration of having pages of results with "No Tree". WHAAATTTT?

My maternal Grandma has many brick walls in her lineage that I've been slowly chipping away at for over 20 years now. I had her DNA tested last year... it yielded some surprising results--- which I've covered a couple of times in previous posts--- feel free to check them out if you haven't--
So I am NOT exactly who I thought I was...?
I'm STILL Not Who I Thought I Was... Thanks DNA

Since Grandma has over 300 4th or closer cousins [yes, 300!], there were a lot of "cousins" to get in touch with.

Of course, most of her 3rd cousins [the closest], 
had... "No Tree".  UGH. How exasperating. Truly. 
So, I promptly sent off messages to all those "No Tree" kin of mine. [Cue chirping crickets].

Now, I feel that I should insert a disclaimer here. While a member of Ancestry for a number of years now, I had no interest in using Ancestry to maintain a family tree of my own.

Since I began my genealogical quest in the 1990s... before the Internet or even widely used computers... I had tons of paper [which is another post!], and lots of tangible research.

I used a computer and genealogy software in my research. But, I never cared for the idea of an Ancestry tree. Just my personal preference. For various reasons.

BUT. Here is the big BUT. When I purchased my DNA test kit in late 2014, I decided that I wanted a "bare bones" tree on Ancestry, to assist in my DNA connections.

So I grabbed my "Pedigree Binder".... which is a binder that I have my whole Pedigree printed out into, and began enter it into Ancestry. And just like that, I had my DNA Family Tree.

Over the last year, I have linked some of the "hints" to my tree. I've found it a nice way, for now, to organize some of those digital resources I'd like to revisit... or be able to find with ease.

I completely understand the argument that some folks make about not liking their data to be "harvested" & added incorrectly to other trees, etc. That is far to easy [and prevalent] it seems. I have thousands & thousands of photographs, documents & other genealogical records. I will not be scanning them & adding them to my ancestry tree.

That isn't required in having a tree. What's this you say?
Yes. You can have a very minimal Ancestry tree that contains nothing more than Names, Years, Locations. Basically, information that is already found floating around in the Ancestry Universe.... just not linked to you or your DNA!

Don't worry. I haven't forgotten the people who have taken a test that don't know who their ancestors are! There are adopted folks, or people who are unsure about paternity, etc. that have taken tests. You testers are not forgotten... you are sympathized with greatly. This article is not for you.

This is for the "I don't want Ancestry to have my tree" folks!
Calm down. Don't attack!
Last year, I was one of you as well.... 
and still am to some degree.

So... if you're thinking about going a DNA test with Ancestry... please consider creating at least a bare bones tree. You'll get far greater results connecting with people, when they have something to see!

If you've already done a test.... and are a "No Tree" individual... consider making a 4 or 5 generation skeletal pedigree to connect with your test. It won't take much time... and may yield great results!?

And for the rest of us... those who are at times violently angry with those "No Tree"  and no response people.... Relax. Take a break. It is what it is.

Remember that some people may not have a tree [think adoption]
Or some people took a test out of curiosity... and nothing more [Odd, I know]
And even "genealogists" have varying degrees of interest & activity. 

So have a little understanding for the "No Tree" folks in your matches...
And if you can help it... don't be a "No Tree" yourself!


  1. Amen, amen. I have a number of trees on Ancestry, but I created a pedigree (= barebones) tree specifically to be linked to my DNA results as well as a pedigree tree for my husband's results. Even for someone who prefers to have private trees (= the majority of my close matches, unfortunately), you can always do just a pedigree tree.

  2. Thank you so much. Your works are fantastic and very useful for all of us. We are waiting for your next post. Thank you.
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