Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Blake Family yDNA Study and Theophilus Blake (Bleak)

When we initially wrote up our Revealing the Blake family - a YDNA project, the opinion was that there had been a non paternal event in the Norfolk Blake family with one son having a yDNA different from the other sons in the early 1700s. The finding of an Indenture dated 1745 for Theophilus Blake has brought this thought into question and researchers in this family who had hitherto connected their Theophilus Blake to the Jasper Blake New Hampshire family have disconnected from this line and have instead shown that Theophilus Blake was himself the immigrant from England with his wife Margaret.

We hope to publish an addendum to our article in Anglo Celtic Roots in the near future.

Comment: With the discovery of the record of the Indenture of the Theophilus Bleak and his wife, Margaret to Hugh Haney of Chester County, Pennsylvania that is dated 15 May 1745, a descendant of this family now believe with the most certainty that one can have on genealogical matters that their ancestor is NOT the Theophilus Blake that descends from the line of Jasper Blake III of Hampton, NH. This is supported by several other descendants. There will be more on this to follow.

DNA testing has broken down many presumed relationships of the past where families with the same name; from the same village ended up not being related because they had different haplogroups. Surnames only extend back 1000 years for the most part with many areas not having surnames until the 1400s. Similar/same surnames spontaneously arose in different areas and the Blake surname appears to fall into this category with the name being found all over the British Isles in various places and thus far are found in the I and R haplogroups with several divisions inside of these major haplogroups.

Testing as many Blake members as possible is the aim of the yDNA Blake family project at FT DNA. The patterns that have arisen thus far are most interesting and the addition of more members can only add to the ability of this study to separate out lines. Although the Irish group at the moment seems very widespread, finding intermediary lines may well diminish these differences leading us back to the common ancestor(s) in this area. There are a number of lines in the Wiltshire/Somerset/Hampshire area as well and the study would greatly benefit from more people testing with known ancestry back to the "resting spot" for these groups.

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