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Wheeler/Willour DNA Surname Project

For researchers of Wheeler, Willour, Willauer, Wheller and all similar surnames


News January 20. 2016:  One member of the Willour group shows an EKA (earliest known ancestor) as John Willauer b. 1792 PA. More research needs to be done!

News: DNA testing has proven that the Wheeler lineage represented here as from John Wheelor b. 1820 in Bath, Steuben County, NY no doubt is from a Wilhour/Willour line. No genealogical connection has yet been made to that line, which is yet to be discovered. It can probably be traced to Pennsylvania, but much research remains to be done.

Why DNA Testing?

Surname DNA testing is the newest tool available to genealogists. These tests help genealogists verify their paternal ancestry (father's father's father, etc.) in a quick and easy way. It saves time, prevents mistakes, and provides invaluable data that can be obtained in no other way. The only cost is for the testing itself. We project administrators are volunteers who hope to gain knowledge about our own heritage. Note that only a male with any of the subject surnames may participate but, if you have Wheeler/Willour, etc.,  ancestry, you can be represented by even a distant cousin.


Why Should You be Interested?

Reading the news, watching specials on Public Television, seeing the many articles popping up in all the major news magazines … Doesn’t it make you wonder how modern science, and DNA testing in particular, can help solve some of your genealogical puzzles? After spending years rummaging through courthouses, libraries, family papers, cemeteries and the internet, aren’t you ready to use the latest tool to find your roots, once and for all?

How does it work? Scientists mapping the human genome in 2000 found it consisted of about 3 billion pairs of DNA chemicals or "letters," and that those letters were 99.9 percent similar from one person to the next. It's within that 0.1 percent difference that the science of genetic genealogy was born. Just like notations in an old Bible or census records, family history is recorded in our genes. A father's Y chromosome DNA is passed down virtually unchanged to his sons while mothers pass down their mitochondrial DNA to their sons and daughters. While MtDNA can help us find our earliest roots, long before surnames came into existence, it is the Y-DNA that only males carry that holds the secret for genealogical purposes. And Ladies, don’t feel left out. Just find a male cousin – even a distant one – and he can represent your line.


As a family genealogist who has done my share of “rummaging,” I decided to make science work for me and all the other Wheeler/Willour researchers out there who have “holes” in their paper trail or want to extend their research to:


* Eliminate or confirm relationships.
* Focus research towards related families.
* Direct research into a geographical area.
* Direct research into a specific timeframe.
* Establish country or region of origin.
* Confirm variant surnames are the same family.
* Learn about our family's pre-surname migration.
* Strengthen weak paper trails.
* Avoid pursuing false connections.



Few of us are entirely comfortable with the research we and others before us have done. Virtually all our findings have words like “probably,” “could,” “may,” “perhaps,” and “assuming” liberally scattered throughout. Let’s get to the bottom line. We’ve exhausted all the traditional research tools. It’s time to let a simple, painless DNA test provide the answers. The cost is a few tanksful of gas or probably no more than a research trip to a nearby town. Think about gas, tolls, parking fees, copying costs, meals, possibly an overnight stay – all sometimes yielding little or no new information. Instead, you could simply swab the inside of your cheek a few times in the comfort of your home. Then sit back and wait about six weeks. You will receive a handsome certificate displaying your genetic profile, a series of numbers that are meaningless by themselves. But they hold the key to your paternal ancestry and, when matched against the profiles of others, can yield information that can be obtained in no other way. Those numbers will be compared against the ever-growing database at Family Tree DNA and at other universal databases and you will likely find other testees whose results match yours, if not immediately then in future years. You will be notified as new matches occur.



This Family Project is started to:

1. Help researchers on common or related families work together to find their common heritage  (See the Patriarch Page)

2. Identify the DNA of the ancestor families and compile them and their lost branches into distinct genetic lineages through DNA matches



Useful Links:

Family Tree DNA websites:

Family Tree DNA Home Page

Family Tree Wheeler/Willour Home Page

Project Administrator's website:

Doris Wheeler


Click here to order a DNA test now from

Family Tree DNA


Click here to contact the Project Administrator

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Project Administrators