6 ways a DNA test can help you do your family history
As family historians we have long talked about ‘our own flesh and blood’ and ‘skeletons in the cupboard’.
This is nothing new – but in recent years DNA tests have transformed the way we can learn about our roots – and now we really can discover clues to our family stories from the secrets hidden in our cells.
Luckily family history DNA tests don’t involve blood (just a bit of saliva or a cheek swab), so can be taken by family history enthusiasts and their family members, young and old, squeamish and brave. We say – get the whole family involved – with DNA testing it really is a case of ‘the more, the merrier’. You can compare your findings with each other, and gain a fuller understanding of the genes you’ve inherited from those who’ve walked this earth before you.
Here are 6 ways that a DNA test can help you do your family history
- Learn about your ethnicity! Autosomal tests today will give you an overview of your genetic inheritance, mapping the places on the globe where it is commonly found. Ethnicity reports are fun and interesting and a great way of piquing the interests of the non-family historians in the family too.
- Give new clues to solve family tree puzzles! Millions of people around the world have taken DNA tests, and, by comparing your results to theirs, you may find missing pieces to the puzzle that the papertrail of traditional family history records just can’t help you with. There are a number of DNA testing companies, but some of them allow you to compare results.
- Dig deeper! Don’t think of DNA as an alternative to traditional research; instead DNA tests provide us with another – really exciting – tool with which to study our roots.
Are you interested in your family surname? Like surnames, Y-DNA is handed down, father to son. Enhance your surname know-how with DNA studies.
Do you wish to find out more about your mothers line? Through much of history our female ancestors are far less-well recorded than our male ones. Study your mtDNA and take a whole new view on your ancestral history.
Research, test, research, repeat! Depending on where you are on your family history journey, a DNA test may be the first step you take to finding out about your past, or it may be something you decide to do after many years of research. But whatever stage you’re at, a DNA test is just one step on your genealogy journey. Take a test, find out more, and see where it might lead your family history discoveries next…
Family Tree Live DNA Hub!
At Family Tree Live we’re planning a whole DNA Hub packed with lectures, workshops and experts on hand to advise you – plus those all-important tests for you to buy to find out more!
We’d love to see you there!