Comparing DNA Results

Her National Geographic DNA results are finally in!

She is 1.5% Neanderthal.  This was one of the aspects we were most curious about.  He is also 1.5% so we are a happy “slightly more Neanderthal than average” household.


Below is a chart showing how the DNA results look when compared to each other.  We submitted our saliva samples to and National Geographic.  We also submitted our data to (they use the data to determine your information based on their logarithm)

The only constant is that I am of 100% European descent.  This is supported by family history data collected and visual appearance.  No surprise here!  The graphic below shows the Ambiguous category as greenish.

If you consider where they are making the distinction between categories, I have similar results across the board.  I am mostly Northern European with a smattering of Southern European thrown in.

My maternal grandfather was supposedly of Polish descent so I should be about 25% Eastern European.  The DNA results all have at least 25% for the category which would include this area of Europe.  My paternal grandmother’s parents were from Sweden and Norway.  I should have about 25% Scandinavia.  Again, depending on how you divide the categories, I have about this percent for these.

The only surprise is the Jewish and Ambiguous categories.  Ambiguous I get – they can’t narrow it down based on the data they use.  Makes sense.  Jewish ranges from 0% with to 1.3% using to 5% using National Geographic.  Overall, not much input.  Since we know so little about my maternal grandfather, we assumed this category would be higher – we figured he was hiding something.  He claimed to be of Polish descent so we thought it might be that he was Jewish.  Nope, just a philanderer.



Genealogy Fun – Three Degrees of Separation

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun — Three Degrees of Separation idea by Randy Seaver at

This is actually my Sunday Afternoon Genealogy Fun!  This was an easy activity to determine how far back in time can you go with three degrees of separation.  That means “you knew an ancestor, who knew another ancestor, who knew another ancestor.”

So for Her:

– She met her maternal great-grandfather Harry Cecil Fetherkile (1884-1980) in the early 70’s.  Her family would travel most summers and visit Grandpa Fetherkile until his death.
– Grandpa F. lived in the same small Iowa town his entire life and knew his paternal grandfather Adam Henry Fetherkile (1812-1896) who moved to this same town in the early 1850’s.  Both grandfathers are buried in the Urbana Cemetery along with her maternal grandmother. 

Her maternal line goes back to 1812.

– She remembers meeting her paternal great-grandmother Mary Harriet (Hallie) Squires Marshall Gott Burton (1891-1974) in the late 60’s.  Grandma Burton also lived in Iowa about 3 hours drive from her Fetherkile relatives.  Mom and Dad met in California.
– Grandma B. had to have known her maternal grandmother Elizabeth Ruth Cross McCann (1823-1912) since we have a photo of Grandma McCann with Grandma B’s younger sisters.  Dad remembers Aunt Ruth who is buried just a few miles from us.

Her paternal line goes back to 1823.


So for Him:

– He met his maternal great-grandmother Lurena Dell (Lulu) Hill Farley (1881-1965) at birth!
– Grandma F. was born and raised in the same Nebraska town as her maternal grandparents Townsend Berkley Huff (1830-1904) and Nancy Talbert Huff (1834-1912).  

His maternal line goes back to 1830.

– His paternal line is not able to go to the third “separation”.  He met his paternal grandfather at birth and knows that he was an immigrant in 1907.  He never returned to his native country and we do not have names for any ancestors except his father at this time.  Hopefully soon!

US Presidents – How Many in a Lifetime??

Idea for this post courtesy of GeneaMusings Saturday Night Genealogy Fun.

“This week’s Genealogy Fun challenge is very timely since a new president was inaugurated yesterday. Here are the answers to the question – how many presidents have served during my lifetime, my parents and grandparents and how many generations back do I have to go to cover all 45 U.S. presidents?”

I put my data into a spreadsheet to answer the questions.  See spreadsheet below.

Her Lifetime: 11 (since Kennedy)                        His Lifetime: 12 (since Eisenhower)

Mom and Dad: 14 (since FD Roosevelt)                      Mom: 15 (since Hoover)
Dad: 14 (Hoover – Obama)

Grandparents: 13 (Taft – Carter)                                  Grandparents: 17 (Harrison-Carter)
14 (Wilson – GHW Bush)                                                15 (Cleveland-Ford)
11  (Taft – Nixon)                                                             11 (T Roosevelt-L Johnson)
17  (T Roosevelt – Clinton)                                             16 (Taft – Clinton)


Great-Grandparents: Range from 9 – 19 Presidents          and         12-18 Presidents

2x Great-Grandparents: Range from 14 – 21 Presidents    and        17-22 Presidents

3x Great-Grandparents: Range from 13 – 25 Presidents     and       8-24 Presidents

4x Great-Grandparents: Range from 8 – 21 Presidents      and        8-18 Presidents

This is the first generation to reach Washington for both of us.  She has 15 ancestors who were alive during Washington’s Presidency and He has 4!)

GP = Grandfather   GM = Grandmother    Number indicates how many greats.  Letters after indicate first letter of last name, in order of my Ahnentafel Report generated by Family Tree Maker.  I only included ancestors who lived part/all of their life in the US and I had dates of birth and death.  If it was a transition year, I used birth, death, inaugurations dates to determine if they lived during a particular President’s term.







Taylor and Fillmore not Related

Using my tree (which has about 20,000 people), it appears that Presidents Zachary Taylor and Millard Fillmore are not related.  Their lines don’t intersect until my great-great-grandparent Katherine Burrell.  They are 5th cousin 3x removed of husband of 2nd cousin 2x removed.  

That doesn’t mean they aren’t related through some other branches that I’ve not researched, but I’m satisfied with this result for today!  It sure would have made an interesting find if they were related!!

Happy Saturday everyone!

She’s Related to a President #5 (Taylor)

I downloaded the “We’re Related” app from Ancestry recently.  It showed a new president I might be related to!!

After too many hours of research to confirm the information found on the app, it is indeed true – I’m related to President Zachary Taylor – 5th cousin 7 times removed.   This information is the same that “We’re Related” predicted.

Now here is the weird thing – President Taylor had as his Vice President Millard Fillmore.  Yep, that’s the same Millard Fillmore I’m related too!  What are the odds that someone is related to the President and Vice President???

Here’s the spreadsheet showing the relationship.  Now I want to determine if Zachary Taylor and Millard Fillmore are related.

She’s Related to Laura Ingalls Wilder!

You know how when you see a surname and it sparks a genealogical curiosity??  I was looking at my tree last night and saw the name Joseph Ingalls.  For some weird reason it made me think of Laura Ingalls Wilder.  I LOVED her books.  My daughters LOVED her books.  So I began to research her ancestry.  Lo and behold, we are related!


She is Related to a President #4 (Gorham)

Nathaniel Gorham isn’t usually a name one thinks of when you mention US Presidents.

The following biography was adapted from “The Biographical Directory of the United States Congress” and is found here. 

GORHAM, Nathaniel

  •  born in Charlestown, Mass., May 27, 1738
  • member of the provincial legislature 1771-1775
  • delegate to the Provincial Congress in 1774 and 1775
  • member of the board of war 1778-1781
  • delegate to the State constitutional convention in 1779
  • served in the State senate in 1780 and 1781
  • Member of the Continental Congress in 1782, 1783, 1786, 1787, and 1789 and was its president from June 6, 1786, to February 2, 1787 [this makes him a “US President” – George Washington wasn’t elected until 1789]
  • delegate to the Federal Convention at Philadelphia in 1787 and signed the Constitution
  • delegate to the State constitutional convention which ratified the Federal Constitution in 1788
  • judge of the court of common pleas from July 1, 1785, until his resignation on May 31, 1796
  • died in Charlestown, Mass., June 11, 1796

Nathaniel Gorham is Her 3rd cousin 7 times removed.