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Author Topic: DNA testing takes genealogy to next level  (Read 7883 times)
Marilyn Teaff Barton
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« on: June 02, 2005, 04:02:39 PM »

DNA testing takes genealogy to next level

For the Journal-Constitution
Published on: 06/02/05

Terry Barton plants trees, but you won't find him playing in the dirt. He's digging into DNA evidence to grow family trees through his company, World Families Network.

What started as a hobby became a serious effort to unravel the roots of his own family tree five years ago when Barton, who lives in Cobb County, retired from Coca-Cola.?

His family had been traced to Stafford County, Va., in 1675, where ancestors likely were tobacco planters. He did traditional research, but was unable to go back any further. "At that point, I hit a brick wall," Barton said. "I was stuck on this side of the Atlantic."

So, he turned to DNA testing, or genetic genealogy, and the rest is history. His history.

Using DNA, Barton made a likely connection with ancestors who lived in Lancashire, England, in the early 1100s. He is working to confirm his relation to the Scottish Bartons who lived in Yorkshire in 1154. Tracing his genealogy, Barton has met distant cousins and family members he never knew he had.

"It's a thrill. You just never know who or what you are going to find," he said.

He started World Families Network, a for-profit company, just over one year ago to help other families find their ancestors. The Web-based business ? ? has 150 surname projects working.

Thanks to the popularity of television crime shows, most people know that DNA, or deoxyribonucleic acid, is the genetic blueprint of humans. It helps investigators solve real crimes. Now, it has a new role. One swab of the cheek, and genetic genealogists are off on the ultimate treasure hunt.

Two types of DNA can be used to search for ancestors. The Y chromosome, passed from father to son, is the most commonly used test. Mitochondrial DNA traces the maternal link and is passed by the mother to her offspring.

"It's easier to use the Y DNA because, as goes the DNA, so goes the surname," Barton said. "When you trace the female side of a family, many more names are involved and you can get lost."

Lee Tucker, president of the Cobb Genealogy Society, said DNA testing answers a lot of questions. "You may think you are related to someone, but the DNA can tell you for sure," he said.

According to Barton, DNA testing can be a valuable tool in growing your family tree when it is combined with conventional research. The findings can be exciting, he said, but sometimes the truth hurts.

From the time he was a child, Barton had been told that he was a descendent of Clara Barton, heroine of the Civil War and founder of the American Red Cross. When the DNA proved otherwise, it was a shock.

"I always thought we were related, I had this delusion from childhood that we were," Barton said. "Of course, I thought the DNA would match. It didn't."

To trace your family tree, Barton suggests talking with family members to gather as much information as you can. Joining or starting a project on his Web site is free, but you'll pay for genetic testing.

Barton's company works with, which provides testing kits. Three levels of tests are available, the 12 marker, the 25 marker and the 37 marker. pays Barton a commission for test kits sold through his company. The kits cost $99 for the 12-marker test, $169 for the 25-marker and $219 for the 37-marker test.

The tests are cheek swabs, similar to what you see on the television crime shows. You mail it back to the lab, and your results are usually available in two months.

DNA testing has taken genealogy to a new level, Barton said, but paperwork and old-fashioned research is still necessary if you want to trace your bloodline.

"Doing the paper trail is critical, because the DNA test results don't come with a list of relatives," Barton said, "You have to make that connection."

For the complete story and pictures, click? here.   Sorry - this link no longer works.


« Last Edit: June 23, 2006, 06:36:45 PM by terry » Logged
Terry Barton
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« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2005, 12:12:25 PM »

My wife said several months ago that World Families Network needed some PR and contacted both of our local papers.? Both papers chose to run articles about my genealogy work - both as an individual and through World Families Network.? It was fun and a little intimidating.?

I would encourage readers to contact their local papers and offer to share their own stories about genealogy and DNA testing.? Feel free to share the two articles on me with your local paper to give them some ideas and background.? We are starting to see what the NGGP (National Geographic Project) is doing for us.? Imagine if every newspaper in the country did an article about DNA testing to further genealogy!? It would help all Surname Projects.? ?(Feel free to give the link to World Families Network:? as a place to find their Surname Project.)

If you get an article published about you - or find a good article of general interest - let us know and we'll add it to this Forum.

The two women in the photographs I am holding were the grandmothers of my gg grandfather.? From paper trail info, I estimate that that the younger woman was originally painted about 1808-1812 and the older woman between 1810 and 1814.? The photographer who restored them for me guesses that both were originally done in charcoal.? He speculates that the two were then reproduced on a portrait "assembly line" in the 1880s or 1890s - he knows of one that operated in Chicago - which would project old family photos onto paper, where they would be blown up and reproduced.? He has seen many and says that the same person painted all of the eyes.? ?My "originals" are the ones from "100 years ago" and are about 16x20.? In the restoration process, they were shot with a digital camera. touched up digitally and then printed at 8x10 and mounted on heavy board stock.? I'll now scan them and share the digiital image with family.

For anyone who might share this ancestry,

-the gg grandfather is John Birdsong Waddell (1840-1915) who probably arranged the reproductions I have

-the youger woman is Charlotte Deberry Kirby Hough (1791-1844) I am guessing that she was 17 to 21 at the time

-the older woman is Eleanor Montgomery Waddell (1768-1814) I guessed she was older than 45; she died at age 46.

I can provide the photo restorer's contact info to anyone who wants it.? He isn't , but he's good.? He lives in Lubbock TX (and went to school with my Dad in a nearby small town)

New Member
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Posts: 1

« Reply #2 on: February 16, 2006, 12:53:45 PM »

Hi !!!

My name is Tony Costa. I live in Brazil.
I don't speank english very well.

Somebody speak portugues?
I need someboby explain to me about seaching Costa Family DNA.


Tony da Costa

Bras?lia - Brasil
Cheri Mello
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2006, 07:20:32 PM »

Hi Tony,

Max works at Family Tree DNA.  He was born in Brasil.  You can email him here:

Cheri Mello
Co-Admin for the Azores DNA Project
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