It is interesting to me to find out the y haplogroups of male ancestors in my pedigree outside my own y-dna line, that is, the fathers of the females from who I am descended. My own y-dna line is R-L21, but I have recently confirmed that one of my third great grandfathers, the father of one of my second great grandmothers on my father's side, belonged to y haplogroup I1 (I-M253). I have also been able to confirm that one of my great great grandfathers, the father of one of my great grandmothers on my father's side, was E1b1b and apparently E1b1b1a2.
My great grandmother in this case was Jonnie T. Holmes
, the daughter of Captain John Holmes
A relative of mine through the Holmes line directed me to the Holmes DNA Project
, where I discovered that Group J listed my most distant Holmes ancestor as its most distant y dna ancestor.
I managed to contact the owner of Ysearch FR32V, Dennis Holmes, and he confirmed the connection for me.
E1b1b is not a haplogroup with which I am super familiar. Dennis believes that in the case of our Holmes line it probably signifies descent from a Roman soldier from the Balkans who was stationed in Britain (following the arguments I have seen advanced by Steve Bird on Rootsweb). That sounds reasonable to me, plus I have to admit it sounds cool.
As an aside, it is interesting to note that "Holmes" was already used as a middle name in my family before it acquired this Holmes surname line. For example, Jonnie T. Holmes Stevens, my great grandmother, was the wife of James Holmes
Stevens, Jr., my great grandfather. I don't know the source of that middle name. It might represent a Holmes line already present in my family before the more recent Holmeses came along. On the other hand, "James Holmes" could have been the name of a family friend. I know of a couple of instances of children in my family who were named for friends in just that way. There was a "James Holmes" who was a prominent boat builder in Wheeling, West Virginia, (Wheeling is on the Ohio River) during the period when my third great grandfather and his younger brother, James Holmes Stevens (the first in my family to bear that name), were born there.