GRAVES FAMILY BULLETIN

 

Vol. 19, No. 1, January 31, 2017

 

A Free, Occasional, Online Summary of Items of Interest to Descendants of all Families of Graves, Greaves, Grieves, Grave, and other spelling variations Worldwide

 

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Copyright © 2016 by the Graves Family Association and Kenneth V. Graves.  All rights reserved.

 

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CONTENTS

 

** General Comments

** Recent Death of a Graves Researcher, and Impact of Deaths of Other Graves Researchers and Relatives

** Y-DNA SNP Testing and Big Y

** Finding the Identity and Descendants of Capt. Thomas Graves of VA

** Updates to the GFA Website

** How Many Unique Ancestors Do You Have?

** Comment About Jamestowne Society Article in December Bulletin

** To Submit Material to this Bulletin & Other Things

 

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GENERAL COMMENTS

 

This issue of the Bulletin emphasizes the importance of using what is generally called next generation DNA testing to prove the connections between and within Graves/Greaves families, and to learn more about our ancestries.  There is also more discussion about Capt. Thomas Graves of Virginia, the first Graves settler in America.

 

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RECENT DEATH OF A GRAVES RESEARCHER, AND IMPACT OF DEATHS OF OTHER GRAVES RESEARCHERS AND RELATIVES

 

DEATH OF SANDI GRAVES CARNES

Steve Graves of St. Petersburg, FL, (descended from gen. 215) collaborated with Sandi Graves Carnes of St. Pauls, NC (descended from gen. 511) on genealogy for at least a couple of years.  Sandi died on Saturday, Jan. 28 in St. Pauls.

 

Excerpting and editing some of SteveÕs comments by email and Facebook about Sandi: ÒShe was the lead researcher for Graves genealogy 511, carrying back, as my Gen. 215, to Rockingham Co. VA in the first half of the 1800s. Our g-g-grandfathers were related in some way we figured -- Y-DNA backed up the geographic connection.

 

I cherish the phone calls and letters with Sandi over the past two years on the subject of our Graves family history connection. She shared and advanced where it was not easy to do so.Ó  An example was when Steve couldnÕt find Daniel Graves of gen. 511 in the 1820 and 1830 census records, and Sandi not only found the records but also bought and sent the records to him.  (It turned out that there was a transcription error for the census records on Ancestry.)

 

ÒThat makes the fourth researcher that has died in the past year or two. Sandi and another lady in Minn. who was from Staunton, VA, then went to school in Richmond Ind. where my g-g-grandmother and two of her children settled after VA. That lady spent some time digging for me and came up with the existence of a court case involving my Graves g-g-grandparents; I ordered a copy from Virginia state library and it had helpful information (family facts), all of which I may have never found on my own. She died unexpectedly in her sleep a year ago this time.  Both she and Sandi were in their early 60s.Ó

 

On the subject of the relationship between genealogies 215 and 511, if you look at the master table of Y-DNA test results you can see that gen. 511 is in the middle of a group consisting of genealogies 56, 94, 152, and 215 (all in group R1-228).  All those in this section of the group have a value of 18 in position 33, and some other distinctive values, indicating their close connection.

 

COMMENTS ABOUT THE PASSING OF FAMILY MEMBERS

Over the years (since the 1970Õs), I have corresponded and talked with many Graves and Greaves family members.  I have been gathering family information since that time, and have been gathering and interpreting DNA test results as the Graves DNA project administrator since 2001.  Sadly, most of those I communicated with in the 1970Õs are no longer with us, and even some of those who have DNA tested are no longer alive.  We mourn the loss of these people at the same time as we remember and commemorate the wonderful things they contributed to this world, including helping us enlarge our understanding and appreciation of our ancestries.

 

The most important thing about the death of a family member, whether closely or distantly related, is obviously the personal loss.  However, from a family research perspective there are also other losses.  Was there a missed opportunity to get family information from the departed person?  Was there a missed opportunity to get a DNA sample for immediate or future testing?  DonÕt delay talking to relatives about family information, pictures and other things, and try to get samples for DNA testing from relatives now.  You may not have that opportunity in the future.

 

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Y-DNA SNP TESTING AND BIG Y

 

During the end-of-year holiday sale at Family Tree DNA, I communicated with most of those who had previously taken a Y-DNA test to tell them of my interest in trying to help them learn more about their part of the Graves/Greaves family, how they are connected to other branches of their family, and to their earlier ancestry. DNA has been a wonderful tool. Through traditional Y-DNA testing, everyone in each group of the master table of Y-DNA test results has been found to share a common Graves/Greaves ancestor somewhere in the past. We just donÕt yet know who that common Graves ancestor was, and how the various families in each group are connected. You can see the Y-DNA test results for everyone in this group on the master result table here.

 

Testing for changes in the genetic code for SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms) is a fairly new technique that should allow us to find the connections between the various families in this group that share a common Graves ancestor. It also has the potential to help us find when the surname began to be used, and where the earliest members of the family lived.

 

As a big step in using this new testing tool, it would be very helpful for at least one male from each of the various genealogies to take a Big Y test from Family Tree DNA.  This test, like all Y-DNA tests is only for males since only males have a Y-chromosome.  A traditional Y-DNA test (such as Y-DNA37) must be taken first or at the same time, and then that same sample can be used for the Big Y test.

 

The Big Y test from Family Tree DNA is a relatively new kind of test that will allow us to discover the kinds of things in the following list.

¥           Finding where your Graves/Greaves ancestor lived at a particular time in the past, possibly allowing tracking of their migration and dispersion paths.  This comes partly via some descendants knowing where their ancestors lived.

¥           Discovering about when the surname first began to be used for your particular line.

¥           Finding how your Graves/Greaves family is related to other Graves/Greaves families.

¥           Finding how your family connects with other families that share a common Graves/Greaves ancestor.

¥           Finding SNPs belonging to specific branches or even to people within branches of large families, allowing confirmation of lineages and proper placement of previously unplaced segments of families.

 

Previous to this past December, a total of 14 Big Y tests had been ordered.  As a result of the price discounts during the holiday sale at Family Tree DNA, 23 additional tests were ordered, for a total of 37.  The distribution of tests is shown in the following table.  The Y-DNA group is the name of a group of one or more genealogies that share a common Graves/Greaves ancestor.  These groups and the Y-DNA test results within them can be seen on the master table accessible from the first link on the Y-DNA page of the Graves Family Association website.  (That table is the same one hosted on the Family Tree DNA website and accessible by looking for the Graves DNA project and clicking on the chart link, or clicking on this link.)  The kit numbers in red in the following table are the ones for which we have Big Y results reported as of Jan. 31, 2017; the positioning on the Y-haplogroup tree can be seen by going to the Y-DNA page of the GFA website or clicking on this link.

 

Y-DNA Group

Kit #

Genealogy

I1-085

39433

35

 

 

 

R1-018

19872

84

 

504196

145

 

 

 

R1-037

135193

37

 

 

 

R1-047

3694

47

 

76150

47

 

112147

47

 

476899

47

 

1370

270

 

100861

270

 

1444

270

 

1620

270

 

31930

270

 

N82532

270

 

334798

549

 

 

 

R1-168

37545

10

 

311424

65

 

47197

168

 

253992

169 (via son John)

 

 

 

R1-169a

23410

169

 

31933

169

 

92572

169

 

 

 

R1-169b

135995

147

 

416674

147

 

232994

169

 

 

 

R1-228

521513

28

 

2905

62

 

1251

94

 

155941

150

 

198457

152

 

1338

166

 

1457

214

 

92202

220

 

45963

228

 

1456

247

 

1377

262

 

1441

334

 

 

 

R1-377

106111

116

 

Processing time has been running about 6 weeks from the time an order was placed to when the results are posted on the FTDNA website, so we expect to have all results by sometime in February.  The haplogroup charts are being updated as the results arrive.  Although the price of the test has gone back to what it was before the sale, if you are anxious to see where your Graves/Greaves ancestry fits in the haplogroup tree, what the related families are, and perhaps even where they lived, please consider having a male family member with the Graves/Greaves surname take a Big Y test.

 

HOW TO INTERPRET YOUR BIG Y TEST RESULTS

When your Big Y test results are reported, you will see two links, one to Results and the other to Matches.  Clicking on Results will take you to a page with a list of the known SNPs (the ones that are already known and named, that more than one person has).  Clicking on Matches takes you to a list of people you match.  Both links actually offer the same three options: known SNPS, novel variants (the new SNPs that only you are known to have), and matching.

 

On the matching page, you will find the name of each matching person (click on a name to see contact and other information), the number of shared novel variants (click on the number to see what those variants are), any known SNP differences (the number and name of known, named SNPs that one of the matches has but the other doesnÕt), plus some additional information.  The important information will usually have been extracted from these pages and summarized on the appropriate Y-haplogroup chart accessible from the Y-DNA page on the Graves Family Association website.

 

Do not be misled by the matching list.  The number of shared novel variants and the number of matching SNPs is not a good indication of how closely people on the match list are related.  The important thing is which SNPs are shared.  We still have much to learn about which SNPs are significant for each ancestral line.

 

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FINDING THE IDENTITY AND DESCENDANTS OF CAPT. THOMAS GRAVES OF VA

 

A major problem in using Y-DNA test results to determine the identity and descendants of Capt. Thomas Graves of VA (genealogy 169) has been that DNA tests from each of the various lines of descent have given different results.  Since only one test result can be correct, it is necessary to either prove which one is correct or prove which ones are false.   One way to prove a line false is to prove that it is descended from another ancestor (of Graves or other surname).  In order to be as objective as possible, the groups of descendants that are presently being considered as possibly representing the true genetic descendants of Capt. Thomas Graves are the following:

¥           Group R1-168, descendants through son John, but with DNA proof only back to Ralph Graves, b. 1653

¥           Group R1-228, Francis Graves, b.c. 1630

¥           Group R1-169a, descendants through son Thomas, but with DNA proof only back to John Graves, b. 1706

¥           Group R1-169b, descendants through son Thomas (or possibly son John), but with DNA proof only back to Josiah Graves, b. 1778

Some of these are much less likely to be true genetic descendants than others, but we are trying to keep an open mind on the subject.

 

DNAchart169.pdf on the GFA website shows kits 232994 and 156606 (both in group R1-169b with SNP A11378) on the same chart with kit 23410, et al (in group R1-169a with BY12203), and also on the same chart as kit 253992 (group R1-168 presently with R-M269 but matching another kit with R-FGC5494 and expected to be a more recent SNP as soon as Big Y results are posted). Group R1-169b has only been verified on DNAchart169.pdf back to Josiah Graves, b. 1778; R1-169a only back to John Graves, b. 1706; and R1-169 only back to Ralph Graves, b. 1653.

 

We cannot presently prove by triangulation via DNA testing that either R1-169a or R1-169b is descended from Thomas2 Graves (b.c. 1616), son of Capt. Thomas Graves, nor can we presently prove that the R1-168 group is descended from John2 Graves (b.c. 1611). If we found a group of descendants from John2 and Thomas2 that were the same haplogroup, that would be pretty strong support for the haplogroup of Capt. Thomas Graves, but we donÕt have that, and may never.

 

The most likely ways I see to find the haplogroup of Capt. Thomas Graves are:

(1) Find the genetic ancestries of the various groups we presently suspect of possibly being the correct ones (R1-169a, R1-169b, R1-168, and R1-228 — not previously discussed but which is BY12505). This obviously involves dating the various pertinent ancestral SNPs. This may rule out SNPs or lines as not being in the right place at the right time with the right name.

(2) Use a combination of traditional documentary research and DNA testing to further explore the possible descendants through Thomas2 Graves, as shown in genealogy 169 and on the chart of the descendants of Capt. Thomas Graves through son Thomas. The documentation and reliability of the other lines shown on this chart are considered somewhat questionable, but some of it may be correct.

(3) Use autosomal DNA results to find the ancestry of the daughters of Capt. Thomas Graves and compare those results to the autosomal results of the sons.

(4) Continue to search the records via traditional genealogical research to find the identity of Capt. Thomas Graves, and then find other descendants to test and compare.

 

USING DNA TO PROVE THE DAUGHTERS OF CAPT. THOMAS GRAVES OF VA

 

The family of Capt. Thomas Graves is of great interest to many people, and has been much researched over the years. In spite of that, it has been the most confusing and difficult of any of the major Graves families. Much accepted research has been proven wrong as a result of DNA testing. Therefore, I am reluctant to accept documentary proof not substantiated by DNA testing. I would very much like to get DNA proof to substantiate all the daughters of Capt. Thomas Graves.

 

Autosomal DNA testing is the way to get this DNA proof, but it is a difficult and time-consuming process, especially because the connection is so far back. (Autosomal DNA is the DNA that is inherited from all our lines, and it is what is tested by Ancestry, 23andMe, and Family Tree DNAÕs Family Finder.) With each passing generation, half of an ancestorÕs DNA material is lost (on average). Each descendant inherits a different portion of their motherÕs and fatherÕs DNA, so enough of Capt. ThomasÕs DNA to measure will have been inherited by a small percentage of his descendants. I would love to help do the necessary work to get the proof that Frances and the other daughters are those of Capt. Thomas Graves, but I donÕt have the time. Mainly what I can do right now is try to point you in the right direction and hope you and others can do the needed work.

 

What is needed is a large number of descendants of Capt. Thomas Graves with whom you share some DNA. You can start on Ancestry.com by specifying in your match criteria that you only want to see those who have Graves in their tree (or Truitt if you want to try searching only for the Frances Graves line). If you find too many matches with Graves as an ancestor, you can also specify born in Virginia. Then you need to look at their tree to determine whether they are from Capt. Thomas Graves. Making a tree of all those from Capt. Thomas Graves who match you would be helpful.

 

If you find a number of Capt. Thomas Graves matches on Ancestry.com, you still wonÕt know for sure that they match on your Graves ancestry because Ancestry.com doesnÕt have what is called a chromosome browser. To get that tool (which will tell you which segment of which chromosome the match is on), you need to transfer your DNA test results to Family Tree DNA and perhaps also to GEDmatch. There is a small charge for transferring your results to Family Tree DNA but you not only get the use of more tools but also additional matches.

 

This is only scratching the surface. You can get much more help for finding your ancestors with autosomal DNA on the websites of Family Tree DNA and the International Society of Genetic Genealogy (ISOGG), and in the many blog articles of Roberta Estes, and elsewhere.

 

RESEARCH NEEDED FOR CAPT. THOMAS GRAVES OF VIGINIA

 

There are many research activities that are needed.  Jean Wall (a descendant of Capt. Thomas Graves and a long-time researcher) recently wrote in regard to the trip to England I mentioned in a previous Bulletin: ÒWhen at Family History Library in Salt Lake, I talked to a man with FamilySearch who said it is possible to go to archives in London, probably sitting on floor (i.e., in the main reading room), looking at the old records to find something on GRAVES & CROSHAW before Virginia and on trips back.  Wish you, or someone, had time to do a little research on your trip.  He said those records have not been filmed.Ó  She also mentioned that if anyone decides to do research in London, they should contact the archives before leaving the U.S.

 

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UPDATES TO THE GFA WEBSITE

 

Updated pages:

¥           Numerical Listing of Genealogies and Charts, charts.php

 

Updated charts:

¥           Y-DNA R-Haplogroup SNP Chart, R-Y-SNP-chart.pdf

¥           Y-DNA Group R1-169a SNP Tree, Y-SNP-Tree-R1-169a.pdf

¥           Y-DNA Group R1-228 SNP Tree, Y-SNP-Tree-R1-228.pdf

¥           Chart for Graves Family of Nelson Co. & Albemarle Co., VA, Probably Descended from Snead Graves (Y-DNA Group R1-018), DNAchart-Snead.pdf

¥           Chart for Graves Family of Caroline Co. & Halifax Co., VA (Y-DNA Group R1-018), DNAchart145-217.pdf

¥           Chart for descendants of Capt. Thomas Graves (Gen. 169), DNAchart169.pdf

 

New Genealogies:

¥           Gen. 642, Philip Graff and Anna Maria ------ of Nova Scotia, Canada

 

Revised/Updated genealogies:

¥           Gen. 47, Descendants of Thomas Greaves and Joan ------ of Northamptonshire & Buckinghamshire, England

¥           Gen. 77, John Graves and Margery Harvey of Randolph Co., NC

¥           Gen. 168, Thomas Graves of Hartford, CT & Hatfield, MA

¥           Gen. 220, Francis Graves of Gloucester Co. & Essex Co., VA

¥           Gen. 228, Greaves Family of Beeley, Derbyshire, England

 

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HOW MANY UNIQUE ANCESTORS DO YOU HAVE?

 

This subject has been mentioned before, but Margie Niehaus called a YouTube video on this subject to my attention.  You can see it here.  After viewing that, you may see other videos on the sidebar of interest to you.

 

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COMMENT ABOUT JAMESTOWNE SOCIETY ARTICLE IN DECEMBER BULLETIN

 

D. Alan Smith, descended from John Graves of Concord, MA (genealogy 166) submitted the following interesting comment.

 

While the VA lines for Jamestowne Society is the most readily identifiable route for Graves descendants, there is another route also.  For the descendants of Cyrus (Gen. 166) and Roxana Rose Graves, there is another ancestor.  Through the Mayflower ancestry of Roxana, there is the descent from John Vassall, stockholder of two shares in the VA Company. Roxana gives access to Mayflower Society, at least one Huguenot society, and of course, the Jamestowne Society.  I am a member of Mayflower and have just submitted my application for Jamestowne.  I would encourage all descendants of Roxana to seek Mayflower membership as we approach the 400th arrival of the Mayflower in 2020.  I missed Jamestowne.

 

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ABOUT THIS BULLETIN:

This bulletin is written and edited by Kenneth V. Graves, ken.graves@gravesfa.org.

 

TO SUBMIT MATERIAL TO THIS BULLETIN:

Send any material you would like to have included in this bulletin to ken.graves@gravesfa.org.  The editor reserves the right to accept, edit or reject any material submitted.

 

TO JOIN THE GRAVES FAMILY ASSOCIATION:

If you do not already belong to the GFA, you can join by sending $20 per year to Graves Family Association, 20 Binney Circle, Wrentham, MA 02093 (more details on GFA website).  Payment may also be sent electronically to gfa@gravesfa.org via PayPal.

 

COPYRIGHTS:

Although the contents of this bulletin are copyrighted by the Graves Family Association and Kenneth V. Graves, you are hereby granted permission, unless otherwise specified, to re-distribute part or all to other parties for non-commercial purposes only.