Saturday, January 29, 2011

Comstock DNA Project

In December, I accepted the job as administrator of a new Comstock DNA Project at FamilyTreeDNA.  You can read more about it here:

Comstock DNA Project

In order for a DNA test to be part of this Project, it would have to be ordered through the above webpage.  There is a link for "Join Project".   To be meaningful, the person being tested must be a male still carrying the surname Comstock, who can trace his Comstock heritage back several generations, ideally back to one of the Comstocks listed below.

The immigrant William Comstock [recorded as being in Connecticut in 1641, died about 1683 in New London] has been assumed to have been the father of five younger Comstocks found in Connecticut - John, Samuel, Daniel, Christopher, and a daughter Elizabeth who married Edward Shipman.  William's wife was Elizabeth - thought by some to have been Elizabeth Daniel although I've found no documentation that proves her name.  Nor can it be proved she was mother of all his children. 

Documented proof exists only for John and Daniel, whose sons sold 20 acres in 1694 which had been given to their grandfather William Comstock by the town of New London in 1647.  Samuel and Christopher have been associated with the others probably as much because the Comstock surname is rare in that place and time and there isn't anyone else available to serve as their parents.  Daniel and Samuel did go to Rhode Island where they appear in records about the same time, although Daniel did not stay, returning instead to New London - Daniel named a son Samuel, and Samuel named a son Daniel.  Christopher was of similar age and among his children can be found a Daniel and a Samuel and even a daughter, Elizabeth.

Another viewpoint of Christopher Comstock's origin as being German was discussed in an earlier Blog post and can be found here:

Comstock Family Origins - Part Two

Although DNA will not reveal that William Comstock was definitely the father of the four younger Comstocks - John, Daniel, Samuel & Christopher - testing would reveal whether or not descendants of each of these younger Comstocks share similar DNA.  If Christopher's and Samuel's descendants share similar DNA with those descendants of proved sons John and Daniel, that would certainly indicate that if they were not all brothers, they shared a close kinship. 

And, should the DNA of any of the four differ considerably, it will be obvious they do not have have similar origins.  Descendants would want to explore other possibilities.

There are also Comstocks here and there that have never found a connection to any of the above.  DNA testing could tell them if indeed they share a common heritage, or should be looking elsewhere for family roots.

Email me direct for more information about the project.

At this time only two DNA tests are in progress.  Both are descendants of Samuel Comstock of Rhode Island.  Results will not be meaningful until enough Comstock males have been tested to indicate conclusions.

Contributions of any amount can also be accepted if there are those female descendants or male descendants who do not carry the Comstock name but would like to help fund testing for those who do qualify but cannot afford the cost.  Again, email me at the above address for more information, if you would be interested.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Saturday Night Genalogy Fun

Randy Seaver of the Genea-Musings Blog always has interesting challenges and games for Saturday night  ...but I'm often either not home or have no time to participate.   But I'm right here tonight!

Here is your assignment if you choose to play along (cue the Mission Impossible music, please!):

1) How old is one of your grandfathers now, or how old would he be if he had lived? Divide this number by 4 and round the number off to a whole number. This is your "roulette number."

My maternal grandfather, Kenney Marcus Comstock, would be 123 years if he were living.  Divided by 4 and rounded off that would be 31 for my roulette number

2) Use your pedigree charts or your family tree genealogy software program to find the person with that number in your ancestral name list (some people call it an "ahnentafel"). Who is that person?

Since I use RootsMagic4 for my genealogy, that was a quick and easy task.  And the ancestor corresponding to number 31 is Mary Rowena Hoskins, a great great grandmother.

3) Tell us three facts about that person in your ancestral name list with the "roulette number."

1.  Mary was born 15 September 1918 in New York State.
2.  She married Peter B. Allen 28 Dec 1836 in Vigo County, Indiana.
3.  Peter and Mary moved to Arkansas before 1840, where they are found in the Territorial Census in Sevier County, a part which soon became Polk County.

I cannot stop with only three facts.  Peter and Mary Hoskins Allen lived the rest of their lives in Polk County, Arkansas.  They raised nine children - two of their sons fought for the Confederacy; one son for the Union Army.  Mary died 15 Mar 1885 and is buried Pleasant Grove Cemetery near Cove, Polk County.  I have never been able to find parents for Mary Rowena though it's likely a Silas Hoskins who married Peter Allen's sister Amanda in 1825 in Vigo County, Indiana, was Mary Rowena's brother.  The Allens had come to Vigo County from New York, Ontario County, circa 1818, so it is possible the families were previously acquainted.  There are no older Hoskins found in Vigo County - possibly they were orphaned.

4) Write about it in a blog post on your own blog, in a Facebook note or comment, or as a comment on this blog post.
5) If you do not have a person's name for your "roulette number" then spin the wheel again - pick a grandmother, or yourself, a parent, a favorite aunt or cousin, or even your children!

My comment is here.  Thanks for reading - it was fun!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Happy New Year!

The Christmas Decorations are put away and it's 2011.  Hopefully I'll be back to researching soon.  Meanwhile you can check the Labels or the Blog Archives.