DNA Testing

I promised you I would let you know whether the DNA test I took before Christmas produced any results, well, it did, in spades! I had never been able to trace my family tree beyond my paternal grandfather. I knew my great grandfather’s name but with no census returns with his family, no marriage certificate or birth certificates for the children I could never confirm that my chief suspect was the right man. When you receive the results of the test it can be a bit overwhelming as you are confronted by a long list of ‘cousins’ from various generations and lots more work and cooperation with the people you contacted are required to produce a positive result. I matched surnames with the results and found a Mary Bannister from Burton upon Trent which was where my suspect said he was born. Further investigations revealed a William Bannister in the family tree who was the right age who left Burton at the right time to appear in London. Given the DNA match I am confident to confirm that William is my great grandfather. I can’t imagine any other way I could have achieved this result so money well spent.

Just recently I was given another example. Some of you may have seen my presentation on the history of my house and the people who lived there. There was one child who appeared from nowhere and oddly remained in the house for close on 80 years. Along the way there were lots of contradictions on her birth place and relationship to the family who adopted her, the Cornocks. We assumed there must have been a link and that she was probably illegitimate but who were her parents? Another researcher provided circumstantial evidence that she was the illegitimate daughter of a cook from North Nibley but was there a link to the Cornocks?I have been corresponding with one of the relations to the Hobbs family in Australia as she married Emmanuel Hobbs and recently I was told that they have taken DNA tests which reveal Cornocks in the results. So now we know there is a positive link to the Cornocks. What we don’t know is whether it is the father who lived here or his son, both of whom are potentially the father. More circumstantial evidence may lead us closer to the answer although it seems unlikely we will ever know for sure. However, DNA testing works!

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