Project Home Page
Surname DNA testing is the newest tool available to genealogists!
- Surname tests allow genealogists to verify their father's father's father's (etc.) paternal ancestry.
- Surname DNA information can be very powerful when combined with traditional paper trails.
The following Surnames are currently included in this project:
Gaudet, Gaudette, Godet
The Gaudet DNA Project is open to all Gaudet families, of all spelling variations, and from all locations.
Accompanying this project is the Gaudet Genealogy web site (http://arslanmb.org/gaudet/gaudet.html), which focuses on the family of Jehan (Jean) Gaudet, who was born in France about 1575 and immigrated to the French colony of Acadia (now Nova Scotia and New Brunswick) in the early 1600s. He is the direct ancestor of most of today’s Gaudet and Gaudette families in Canada and the USA. He is believed (by some researchers) to have been born in Martaize, Poitou, France, but this has not been confirmed by documentary sources. One key goal of this project is to establish strong genetic evidence linking Jehan Gaudet to a known Gaudet family in France whose “paper trail” to the 1500s is well established. Another goal is to determine what unique Y-DNA markers (STR, or short tandem repeat, mutations) are associated with each of the Acadian/Canadian/USA branches of Jehan Gaudet’s descendants. Achieving this latter goal will require a good number of samples across the various branches, but will create a baseline to which a present-day Gaudet descendant can compare his own Y-DNA to determine where he fits in Jehan Gaudet’s family (to complement research with historical records).
At this point, four Gaudet descendants have joined the project. A good paper trail links three of them back to Jehan Gaudet of Acadia. The fourth project participant (FTDNA IDs N12125 & 129804) can trace his lineage back to an Acadian exile who settled in Louisiana in the 1760s. We believe strongly that this branch is also descended from Jehan Gaudet of Acadia, but we don’t yet know exactly how they connect. Once we get wider participation in the project (more samples) from other Jehan Gaudet descendants, we will likely be able to place this Louisiana branch (that of IDs N12125/129804) in the Jehan Gaudet descendants tree based on the unique set of STR markers exhibited by this sample.
DNA test results show that Jehan Gaudet falls within the haplogroup G (more specifically, G2a3b1a2a, also known as G-L42). Haplogroups show how all humanity is related from an ancient perspective, while haplotypes are useful from a more recent (historical) genealogical standpoint to establish family relationships. There is a G Haplogroup DNA Project (http://www.members.cox.net/morebanks/G2Ideas.html) that Gaudet DNA Project participants are encouraged to join in order to help establish where Jehan Gaudet’s ancient paternal lineage originated (before France even existed). FTDNA estimates a haplogroup based on known haplotype patterns within a haplogroup (shown in red on the results table), but additional testing (known as “deep clade” testing) looks at the slowly changing Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (or SNPs) within the Y-DNA that define exactly where on the Haplogroup Tree a particular individual fits (shown in green on the table). See http://www.familytreedna.com/deepclade-haplogroup-tests.aspx for a description of this additional testing (known as Deep Clade) and how to order. Here are the current branches (“clades”) within the G haplogroup:
For those who know nothing about ancestry through DNA, the following simple and easy-to-understand animated tutorials are very useful (copyright © 2009 SMGF):
- Introduction to Molecular Genealogy
- Y-Chromosome DNA (Y-DNA)
- Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA)
Mutations, haplotypes and haplogroups
To learn more about DNA, visit the web site of the Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation and read all of the sections under "Y-Chromosome DNA," and "Mitochondrial DNA." To learn about mtDNA in even more detail, visit the Genebase web site for a presentation of "The mtDNA and it's role in ancestry." Last but not least, you can find answers to many of your questions on the following Family Tree DNA pages: "Types of Tests" / "Test Results - Y-DNA" / "Test Results - mtDNA" / "FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions"
This Gaudet DNA Project was started to:
- Help researchers from common or related families work together to find their shared heritage.
- Identify how the participant's families are connected, both genetically and through paper trails.
- Identify and confirm genetic lineages of ancestral families.
- Ultimately catalog pedigrees and genetic connections of all of the known project families.
Participating in a Surname DNA Project provides:
- The participant's genetic DNA, which is very close (and sometimes identical) to his earliest known ancestor.
- The participant's "deep" ancestry (Haplogroup), which identifies the paternal ancestor's prehistoric origins.
- A sense of camaraderie, which is particularly strong for those who share a genetic ancestry
- Stimulation to family research and renewed sharing of information
- A wider sense of identity and relationship, as we begin to realize how much we are a World Family.
- A chance to compare your genetic ancestry with those of your Surname and the spelling variations
- Your genetic matches who do not share your common surname
- The knowledge to understand our ancestors better - particularly where the records have been lost
Click here to order a DNA test in the Gaudet project.