Showing posts from August, 2013

Y-DNA Part 1 -- My head is spinning!

A while ago, brother Chris had his DNA analyzed, to find the Y-DNA history in our family, that goes back through Grandpa Bill Ortman's line. (When I had mine done, it was mt-DNA, the line going back through Grandma Walli.)  All this stuff is very complex and (at my age :) difficult to understand, but I've been puzzling through it.  First, the basic stuff we learned.

So much as it was with my chart, which started with "Mitochondrial Eve" in East Africa, this one starts with "Adam" (also in East Africa -- they had to be in the same neighborhood, right?), and much as mine broke up into smaller groups with letters representing groups that went off in different directions, so does this one.  Our path (through Grandpa Bill) went from Adam following the A, B, F paths, then K, then P, and finally to R, third from the bottom, in the brown part of the chart.  We are R-M269, as a matter of fact, which is easier to remember than U4b1a1a1 on Gra…

Salt Lake City, here I come!

I've decided to make a pilgrimage to the LDS Library in Salt Lake City, toward the end of September, the mother lode in terms of doing genealogical research.  It's an 11 hour drive from where we are, which is less than I'd thought.  It's kind of frustrating to be searching for information and find out that what you want is only available on microfilm at the LDS library -- and I can only imagine how much I could accomplish in a couple of concentrated days on-site.

They say they have lots of people to assist you in your research, but just to be sure, I'm going to try to make an appointment with a professional genealogist to give me some direction, so I don't waste time heading off down the wrong road.  This is very exciting to me!  Maybe I can break through some of the "brick walls" that have been frustrating me.

Another cool thing is that you can visit the Mormon Tabernacle and listen to the organist rehearse, every day at noon -- not a Mormon, not relig…

Brief update on Joseph Ortmann

So far, my attempts at finding more information on Joseph Ortmann (EDC's great-grandfather) have come up short.I exchanged emails with a very nice man at the Jersey City Public Library, but he was unable to find any further information on Joseph's death.  He did say that obituaries were fairly uncommon until the mid-20th century.  He gave me information on how to order the death certificate, since I know the date and place; I'm going to do that and hope that it gives his place of birth.

I also joined the Hudson County Genealogical Society, and conversed with some very nice people there.  I discovered that the webmaster of the HCGS site has a Joseph Ortmann in his family history, but we quickly figured out that they were not the same person :(

So, I went back to and decided to take a kind of backwards approach -- since I'm pretty sure Joseph's father's name was Augustus, what could I find searching on Augustus Ortmann?  I found two possibilities, …