Monday, August 19, 2013

Consideration of yDNA haplogroups in the Blake yDNA study

The Blake yDNA study in the past six months has expanded and now includes several new haplogroups. What does this tell me? I think it reinforces the idea that I have been proposing that there are a number of different founder Blake lines in the British Isles. Although it is theoretically possible that Blake descended from one single ancestor in the 1200s and that this single ancestor's descendants may, over time, have daughtered out with the sons of those daughters electing to take on their mother's surnames I think there are simply too many different haplogroups for Blake and that these founder events stem from the name Blake being a "characteristic" name rather than a name associated with property.

Finding Mr. Richard Blak a merchant coming from Rouen Normandy in 1274 having been given the patent to do business in England was an eye opener for me as I was somewhat inclined to think the theoretical idea on the Blake family had a good deal of merit. Edward I as the monarch at the time of the granting of the patent to Richard Blak was known for his business aucumen drawing from across Europe many skilled and knowledgeable people to enhance the marketing of English goods. That he was descendant of the Norman invaders would make him most amenable to merchants wanting to come from Normandy as well.

One of the latest member's results quite fascinated me because it is a haplogroup most often associated with the Roman Legions being in England - haplogroup G with the allele DYS 388 having a value of 13 which is most associated with this particular phenomenon. One of my tasks for this winter is to write to each of the members of the study and ask them for a genealogical chart (if they have constructed one) so that I can really study these results with respect to the genealogy of each family line. Two of the groups are well defined - namely the Norfolk Blake family who descend from the Blake line known to be there from the Patent Rolls from the early 1300s. The second well defined group in terms of haplogroup are the descendants of Theophilus Blake an emigrant to America in approximately 1745. Family lore seems to place this individual with the so-called "Scot-Irish" in American definition and I generally refer to them as the "Planters" sent from Scotland to Ireland over half a millenia ago. If oral history is to believed then this was simply a transfer back as the original settlers of Ireland and Scotland moved back and forth between the two islands and likely when they were still attached the settlements were continuous between these two now separate islands.

Yesterday I was doing a little searching on the National Archives of the UK site and found a rather interesting document:

Mutiny Act  HL/PO/JO/10/6/286/4103  13 Feb 1718

a) 18 Feb -- The following papers were delivered by Theophilus Blake from the Office of the Secretary at War, pursuant to Address of 13 Feb.


The actual content doesn't matter but it would appear that a Theophilus Blake worked for the Office of the Secretary of War in 1717/1718. That would place him in London area likely. Although it isn't a rare name; I suspect it isn't that common either.  People were certainly not paid well so that if this man was the father of your Theophilus Blake he would not have spare money to help his children.

However, government jobs were all by appointment so his point of origin would be difficult to locate but he would likely be English which would be helpful.

 A search on Find My past was more interesting and I found two burials for Theophilus Blake at Boston, Lincolnshire - one in 1699 (Apr 16) with year of birth unknown (St Botolph Parish Church in Boston) and one in 1703 (19 Sep) with year of birth unknown (St Botolph Church in Boston).  I had searched before but new records are coming online all the time.

As always this is my historical memory for me to glance back as when I come across something new and I want to remember my thoughts at any particular point in time.

Blogging is a great tool for genealogy.

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