Many people doing a One Name Study use DNA Analysis to connect family groups and prove the connection between different families. DNA testing for a surname and variants is typically organised as a project, called a DNA Project or Surname Project.
Y-chromosome DNA is the test which is widely used for one-name studies. It reports a result for markers on the Y-chromosome, which is passed, typically unchanged, from father to son. Since the surname is also typically passed down from father to son, the Y-chromosome test can be very valuable for a one-name study, as it tells you about the direct male line. Only males can take this test, since females do not have a Y-chromosome.
Taking a DNA test is simple. A test kit is sent by post to the person taking the test. He swabs the inside of his mouth with the cotton-wool sticks provided in the kit, and sends it back. After a few weeks, the results are ready and are sent to the person who supplied the test and to the project administrator.
In 2007 I set up a DNA project with Family Tree DNA. This project now has nine male members. Six of these have Yorkshire ancestors, with the others having Buckinghamshire, Devon and Lincolnshire roots.
We have managed to prove that three of the Yorkshire members are connected to the same family. This is good news for the two members who were struggling with brick walls!
I hope more people will join, so that we can try and identify links between the various branches of the family - both home and abroad.
If you are a male Hors(e)man, please get in touch if you would like further information.