Thursday, 23 March 2017

Don't despair

I am not ignoring your emails, just cannot access them where I currently am.

Normal service should resume shortly but the exact timeframe is as yet unknown.

Saturday, 4 March 2017

Need to upload to GEDMatch; One thing leads to another

Helen popped up in my Ancestry DNA matches, with sufficient of her tree attached for me to believe that the DNA match could be accounted for by our believed to be shared Peter SINTON and Jeanie WIGHT who married at Southdean, Roxburghshire in 1806.  See #1.

Thanks to that bit of activity on an update on the family of Peter and Jeanie's daughter Margaret (I hadn't followed Margaret's grandson John down beyond the 1881 census until now, so Helen was a very pleasant surprise) I took another look around some of the rest of Peter and Jeanie's family - who don't appear often in baptism records.
Which led me to review the family of Elspeth/Euphemia SINTON who married Robert SLATER/SLATTER/SCLAITER/SCLATTER, fisherman of Lessudden.
An 1855 birth cert. of a son Thomas had helpfully indicated that their eldest son James, born about 1845 was still alive in 1855 but I'd never found hide nor hair of him beyond the 1861 census.
Mind you it was quite some years ago since I'd looked. So many more online records these days!
Still couldn't find him obvious in any Scottish census records, nor those further afield easily available on Ancestry.
So I turned my attention to the children of his brother Robert.
Popping Elspeth Sinton SLATER into a census search to find her beyond the 1891 I already had wasn't any more successful this time - but did result in an entry in the National Probate Index in 1926 in London with the surprising information that she died, single, in Dublin.
What's more, the administration was granted to one James SLATER, retired engineer.
Surely that was going to be her uncle? Missing in action beyond 1861?
Who has now subsequently been found in the 1911 census in Dublin North at the same address as Elspeth's normal residence at the time of her death.
James was shown as a widower, marine engineer born Scotland, religion Free Church of Scotland.
In the household was an unmarried sister-in-law Mary MILLS, also born Scotland, Free Church.
Which was enough to find James' marriage to Jessie MILLS in Hawick in 1869 - usual residence for James was already Dublin, occupation engine fitter.
Next mission, find out if James and Jessie had any children.

#1: the dangers of Ancestry DNA and their refusal to supply a chromosome browser.
Thankfully Helen did upload to GEDMatch where the actual DNA match details could be compared.
The relationship between Margaret (married Robert AINSLIE) to Peter and Jeanie (WIGHT) SINTON has yet to be proven by DNA as at 4C1R we didn't get the luck of the draw for a provable segment of shared SINTON/WIGHT DNA.
The larger of our two segments turns out to be a longer ago bit of DNA and somewhere back up a different line of my ancestry - this one:
and an unknown line of Helen's. 
The smaller bit, at only 7cM, is too small, untriangulated with anything else as yet, so inconclusive as to ancestry.

Thursday, 22 December 2016

Paternal side DNA mapping progress (lack thereof) snapshot

Decided to stop work on the DNA matches temporarily and produce a snapshot of DNA segments (10cMs and above) identifiable as being Paternal (see embedded WikiTree Widget below for Dad's pedigree) and able to be allocated to a grandparent, or not as the case may be (see the Chromosome Map Key).

Way too many grey spaces as yet!

Update: I forgot to add the "why".
By identifying as finely as possible where each bit of my dna comes from, it gets much easier to slot new matches into place.
Those of them matching at a spot that therefore looks to be a hint to a brickwall ancestor is then a prime target for further investigation as to how our trees may connect, and/or for any commonality between the trees of the matches at that spot for further leads on the connections.

The prime paternal brickwall ancestors:
Archibald HENDERSON blacksmith at the Bridge of Allan married 1804 to Margaret McEWAN from the Drip Moss, Kincardine by Doune
Amelia MILLAR, born Kippen, Stirlingshire about 1815, mother supposedly Miss CHRYSTAL
John DAVIDSON born Chirnside, Berwickshire about 1817 mother Ann COLLINS .

Some day I'd also like to find out more about:
Jane WIGHT's WIGHT side, Jane being the wife of Peter SINTON
Ann ROBINSON, mother of Walter FAIRBAIRN

Click on the image to enlarge, and check below for an interactive pedigree overview linked to WikiTree
 Looks like I need to recruit more cousins back up from my paternal grandmother Agnes Manson DAVIDSON - ie my Caithness BAIN and MANSON etc lines, or more FAIRBAIRN/DAVIDSONs, where the latter are in rather short supply.
Good sale on at FamilyTreeDNA until the end of the month - give yourself, and me, a Christmas present-  FamilyFinder down to $59US - any takers?

Paternal Grandfather Archibald HENDERSON:

embeddable family tree updated live from WikiTree

Paternal Grandmother Agnes Manson DAVIDSON:
embeddable family tree updated live from WikiTree

Saturday, 17 December 2016

RootsWeb WorldConnect

Some of you may know that RootsWeb has been having issues of late, some months even.
The mailing lists do seem to be gradually becoming operational again.
I gave up on my Guestbook ever becoming operational again and created a replacement, along with a snapshot of the entries that had been made up to Jun 2016.
The latest casualty, which had been working quite recently, was my LornaHenderson, WorldConnect database.
At the moment, and for the last few days, an update has been stalled after the load but before being made visible to the public again.
RootsWeb acknowledge problems exist but have no estimated time for a fix.

With that uncertainty and the usefulness of being able to point people to the BDM summary for all of the rellies and their connections I've quickly created* a, hopefully temporary, replacement
My main page Online Databases list on LornaHen has been tweaked to point to the temporary link in the meantime.

* by the newly available GedSite by John Cardinal. Using an existing GEDCom, the one the WorldConnect database is stuck on, it took less than an hour to set up and most of that was tweaking the wording of the main page and changing my mind about what other links to include in the menu.

Thursday, 8 December 2016

Bit of more recent history than usual

If you grew up in Roxburgh, as I did, with a football mad Dad, like I did, the items below may provide a blast from the past.
How many of those in the photo can you identify?
What about signature identification?
The occasion is almost obliterated by all the signatures but can be deciphered as the:

Tuapeka Old Boys Football Reunion 
and Official Opening to the Centenary of Roxburgh
and was in 1965.
Found recently in a fossick through some of the inherited memorabilia sitting in cupboards.

Friday, 4 November 2016

Website changes

Status update on my websites.
A bit of rationalization is occurring behind the scenes - slowly, of course, genealogy and dna are far more interesting!
A casualty for a while was my - which holds, amongst other things, my Lorna's Links, and contact form - both of which most sites point to.
Should be back now.

In the review of what's where I did decide it's time to give up on RootsWeb as a Guestbook provider given that it has been more or less unoperational for quite some time.
Although a replacement is not yet in place* a snapshot of all posts (as at June when it was briefly available) from the RootsWeb Guestbook do now appear on as an historical record.

Although things are still in a state of flux, and likely to remain so for quite some time, please do let me know if something doesn't work as expected.

22 Nov 2016 update:
Guestbook now in place - links from other websites may take a little longer to be changed

Wednesday, 12 October 2016

Chromosome Map review

Time to see if I'm progressing.

"Progress" here is defined as having formed all my segment matches into groups, and hopefully assigned to a "side".
This assignment is either directly because of a match to a known relative at the same position on a chromosome, or by deduction via a lack of a match to the known relative, at the same position with the smaller segment matches checked at where possible.

Last review was back on the 8th  of January (see "How far have I got?"), which chromosome map took all segments of whatever size (usually down to 10cMs).
This time I restricted myself to those 12cMs and above - on left - with the Jan 2016 version on the right
Lorna's Paternal/Maternal chromosome map, Oct 2016
Lorna's Maternal/Paternal segments, Jan 2016

So why am I doing this (I need to remind myself of this every so often!)?
To find those segments that I (or my other tested cousins) potentially inherited from the brickwall ancestors* that got me/us into DNA testing in the first place.
That pretty picture has yet to be produced, but those are the segments I should be focussing on to work with the matches at those spots to find any commonality for hints as to further research into  potential connections.

* the main brickwall ancestors are listed on the 8th January post linked above

There's a very satisfying decrease in the yellow ungrouped, Group A and Group B segments, primarily because of an increase in tested relatives who are starting to pop out of the woodwork faster than I can keep up these days.
The yellow bits are generally singletons - no other matches at the spots concerned to be compared against, but large enough not to be Identical by State (IBS) aka simple coincidental arrangements of DNA that "matches".
The latter two (A and B) are those matches that have been able to be grouped into segments definitely sharing a common ancestor, somewhere/somewhen, but with no ability to compare against known relatives at that spot.
This could be either because none of the known relatives match at that spot, or because different testing companies were involved with no ability to compare at

If you have tested autosomal DNA at any of FamilyTreeDNA (their FamilyFinder test), or Ancestry or 23andme, PLEASE consider maximising your investment in DNA testing by uploading your resulting file to
It has a wonderful range of tools and gives us all the ability to run comparisons to find matches tested at the other companies. All of which helps all of us find our shared ancestry.