BCGS DNA Group Update

DNA GROUP NEWS – January 2018

Recently there are many changes to DNA websites and a number of DNA tools are new or enhanced.


No matter how new or how experienced you are with genetic genealogy, taking time to review your goals, methods and results is always useful. Thomas MacEntee started a DNA Do-Over Facebook group this month. Now it’s 1,190 members strong. Here’s the Facebook DNA Do-Over link:
And here’s the group’s list of featured topics each month in 2018:
I do recommend following Thomas at GeneaBargains: He will keep you updated on any free offers and sales for DNA testing, books, webinars, etc.


MyHeritage has made a number of improvements to their DNA services. These apply to both those who’ve tested at MyHeritage and those who’ve uploaded their DNA data to MyHeritage for free.
“…more accurate DNA Matches; more plentiful matches (about 10x more); fewer false positives; more specific and more accurate relationship estimates; and indications on lower confidence DNA Matches to help focus research efforts. We also added the long-requested Chromosome Browser feature…”
See the announcement here:
You can still upload results to MyHeritage for free:

Debbie Kennett at Cruwys News has a positive review of the MyHeritage changes here:


Ir you have tested at Ancestry, the MedBetterDNA, a Chrome Browser add-on, offers additional functionality. Kitty Cooper’s Blog has an overview here:

Join Blaine Bettinger’s Facebook group, “Genetic Genealogy Tips & Techniques!”, if you want to keep up with all the new tools. But, be warned, this is a high traffic and high energy group:


DNA is a hot topic right now. Most webinars are free or free for a limited time. The GeneaWebinars calendar has these coming up:

Tues. 30th January – Understanding DNA matching technology at MyHeritage. (A Legacy webinar; free live and for the first week.)
Sun. 18th February – Second Life Virtual Genealogy Society’s DNA Study Group will meet in Second Life.
And there will be four DNA Legacy webinars at least in March. Keep an eye out for these and more.


The next BCGS DNA Group Meeting will be Tues. 27th February at the BCGS Library, 1-3 pm. Topic TBA.
If you are interested in attending a small workshop, contact me : diane_rogers @

The BCGS DNA Seminar featuring Mary Kathryn Kozy will be April 5th, 2018.Tickets now for sale. See the BCGS 2018 Seminar page for more information:

Further afield

Abbotsford Stake Family History Day, Saturday, April 28th.

Friday, September 28th – Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, Blaine Bettinger will be speaking at the Kelowna & District Genealogical Society’s “Harvest Your Family Tree” Conference.


If you’re on Twitter, catch the next #genchatDNA one-hour get together, this time with Daniel Horowitz from MyHeritage – topic: DNA, Q & A and “The Chromosome Browser”.
February 10, 2018 – 12 noon Pacific time.

DNA Group notes – May 2016 meeting

Watch for news about sessions in July during or near BCGS Library Week, July 17-23. Contact the DNA group facilitator for more info –

Here are links to some commercial and non-profit websites mentioned at the BCGS DNA Group meeting, May 11, 2016 and a few new links of interest. And below is the list of articles that were available at the meeting. See our April DNA Group update for links to the free DNA videos from the genetic genealogy talks at WDYTYA Live 2016, sponsored by FamilyTreeDNA and the International Society of Genetic Genealogy.

AncestryDNA – autosomal DNA testing – Debbie Kennett has just published an article about the changes at Ancestry at her blog, Cruwys News as has Roberta Estes at her blog, DNAeXplained.

GedMatch – a volunteer project – free – compare your DNA results to others. Accepts data from AncestryDNA, 23andMe, FamilyTreeDNA and WeGene.

DNALand – free. See your data as compared with reference populations; relative matching. Learn more about your DNA and share with scientists. Currently accepts data from 23andMe, FamilyTreeDNA, or AncestryDNA. Non-profit research project; run by academics affiliated with Columbia University and the NY Genome Center.

OpenSNP – free – volunteer project. Publish, share and learn about your DNA data for scientific and genealogical use. Currently accepting DNA data from 23andMe, deCODEme or FamilyTreeDNA. Contact them if you have another company’s test and want to participate.

Promethease – Nominal charge; offers a literature based “personal DNA report based on connecting a file of DNA genotypes to the scientific findings cited in SNPedia.” See the sample reports. Judy Russell has an article about Promethease at her blog, The Legal Genealogist. Do make time to read the comments, and the other articles she cites.

The newer books mentioned were:

Genetic Genealogy in Practice by Debbie Parker Wayne and Blaine T. Bettinger (National Genealogical Society, to be published summer 2016).

NextGen Genealogy: The DNA Connection by David R. Dowell (Libraries Unlimited, 2014).

Endogamy: One Family, One People by Israel Pickholtz (Colonial Roots, 2015).

Available at the BCGS Walter Draycott Library
(articles without a call # are in cataloguing – available soon)

Three Irish Lambert Immigrants to North America, genetics and genealogy, David Lambert, pp. 54-55. American Ancestors, Summer 2015.
BCGS – 974 NEA V6#31 2015

Cousins, and Overcoming the DNA Language Barrier, DNA & Genealogy, Diahan Southard, p. 31, Your Genealogy Today, March/April 2016.
BCGS – 929 FC/YGT V2#1 2016

Several articles on genetic genealogy, Lifeliner, Genealogical Society of Riverside, California, November 2015.
BCGS – 979.4 LIF V51 #1 Nov’15

Oxfordshire Surnames…DNA Project, pp. 48-53, Oxfordshire Family Historian, April 2014.
BCGS – 942.57 OFHS V28#1 Apr’14

Several articles in Archaeology section, History Scotland, January/February 2016.

Understanding Relationship Predictions Based on Shared DNA by Blaine T. Bettinger, pp. 42-45, APG Quarterly, March 2016.

What is a Haplogroup by Diahan Southard, p 26, Your Genealogy Today, Jan/Feb 2016. BCGS – 929 FC V1#6 2016

Too Few Sources to Solve a Family Mystery? Thomas W. Jones, pp. 85-103, NGS Quarterly, June 2015. *See also Editor’s Corner
BCGS – 929 NGSQ V103 #2 Jun’15

Top 10 Discoveries of 2015, Archaeology, January/February 2016.

Genetic Surprises at Age 77 by Christopher C. Child, pp. 54-59, American Ancestors, Spring 2015.
BCGS – 974 NEA V16#2 2015

An Extraordinary Victory for DNA by Israel Pickholtz, pp. 14-16, Journal of One-Name Studies, April-June 2016.

BCGS DNA group update – April 2016

FamilyTreeDNA sponsored and the International Society of Genetic Genealogy (ISOGG) organized DNA related talks throughout Who Do You Think You Are Live! 2016 held in Birmingham, England.

Most of these will be on YouTube soon. The first one is here:

Here is the link to the DNA Lectures – Who Do You Think You Are YouTube Channel:

We will be having a DNA Group session at the May General Meeting and after that, a couple of small sessions at the BCGS Library.