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The goal of the WOODLEY/WOODLY DNA Project is to construct a family tree of all persons who share this surname. This is done through Y chromosome DNA testing and through the sharing of information by all who wish to work together to find their common heritage. While daunting, the likelihood of success is enhanced by the fact that this surname is relatively uncommon and that its variants are rare.
Surnames in this Project:
The main surnames in this project are WOODLEY and its chief variant, WOODLY. Many other variants exist with changes in the suffix vowel as well as the root vowel. These variants are too numerous to list and quite rare but are obvious when encountered.
The surname WOODLING is also welcome since at least one of its published genealogical trees has listed WOODLEY as a variant and because there is some evidence of a crossover in which one of these surnames has been changed to the other by its descendants.
A Surname Project traces members of a family that share a common surname. Since surnames are passed down from father to son like the Y-chromosome, this test is for males taking a Y-DNA test. Females do not carry their father's Y-DNA so the tested individual must be a male who wishes to discover his direct paternal line (father's father's father's...) This is done with a Y-DNA12, Y-DNA37, or Y-DNA67 marker test. Although more expensive, more markers tested will provide more confidence of where one belongs in a family tree. Females who would like to check their direct paternal line should have a male relative with this surname order a Y-DNA test.
Who should be tested:
As stated above, a Y chromosome DNA project is for males only. Furthermore, the more individuals in a project, the greater the detail that can be found in constructing a family tree. In addition to numbers, the best results are from participants who are distantly related. Closely related individuals will show the same marker results so such redundancy will contribute little to the family tree. Thus once one individual has been tested there is little need for second, third or even fourth cousins to be tested. Rather, it would be wiser for such closely related individuals to share the cost of one of their group to have more markers tested.
The WOODLEY/WOODLY family tree:
The origins of this surname are little known, at least to this writer. There are commercial firms who offer to sell a family history, including a coat of arms, but their reports are undocumented and of little value to serious genealogists.
The focal point of the WOODLEY surname origin, at least when surnames were generally adopted, appears to be in Devon, England where the incidence of this surname is high. But there are other locales in England where this surname is common so there may have been multiple points of origin. It is hoped that this project can more precisely determine this location.
With colonization, this surname has spread throughout the world. In addition to England this surname may be found in Australia, New Zeeland, North America and other regions. It is hoped that participants from all corners of the world will join this project and help construct this family tre
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For basic information, visit World Families Network and check out the "Getting Started" block