Category Archives: DNA – Genetics

Looking for DNA Connections

I recently became aware of some DNA cousins with links to Edgefield, S.C. Although I have several ancestors who were born in South Carolina or who had parents born in South Carolina, they were all born during slavery and I had no way of knowing where in South Carolina they were born.  There is no oral history to give a hint.  Below is a picture of our match on Chromosome 16. The blue is European DNA and the maroon is African. He matches me right where that little bit of blue is on his chromosome.

We match on that little bit of European DNA on Chromosome 16.
We match on that little bit of European DNA he has on Chromosome 16.

Last night I was reading the book “Our Ancestors, Our Stories”.  This is a collaborative book by by Bernice Alexander Bennett, Ellen LeVonne Butler, Ethel Dailey, Harris Bailey (Jr.), and Vincent C. Sheppard who all have ties to Edgefield, S.C.. As I was reading the Introduction, which gives an historical overview of this county, I realized that although I did not know where in South Carolina my ancestors came from, I did know of at least one person among the slave holders who came from Edgefield.  Her maiden name was Frances A. Moseley.  She was married to Wiley Turner and it was in his probate records that I found my 2X great grandfather Joseph Turner listed among the enslaved.

Frances A. Moseley was born in 1814 in Edgefield South Carolina and died in 1870 in Lowndesboro, Lowndes county Alabama.  Her father was James Alexander Moseley who was born around 1768 in Orangeburg South Carolina and moved to Edgefield before his marriage to Mary Ann Wooten in 1796. He remained there until his death in 1828.

In his Will, James Alexander Moseley named the enslaved persons that he left to his wife and children.  They were

Sarah and her three children, Mariah, Caroline and Hester to be sold immediately after his death.

Fanny a Negroe that I lent to my daughter Sally that I give her the said Negroes.

Beck a Negro woman and her children that I lent my daughter Mary

Pomply, a negroe man to son John.

Arnal, a Negroe man to son Middleton

Bob to my son Clement.

Son James a Negroe boy Lewis

To daughter Frances a negroe girl Milly

Daughter Harriet a negroe girl Judy

Daughter Patsey a negro girl Kize and Nance

I give to my daughter Lizar a Negroe girl Silva.

To beloved wife Mary, a negroe woman Luceleathey and a Negro man Buck.  He also left her the balance of his slaves.

Moesely and other family members appear in the book “Slave Records of Edgefield County, South Carolina” by Gloria Ramsey Lucas among the salers and buyers.

My Direct Matrilineal Line – Forward and Backward

mtdna direct line
From top to bottom: Eliza Williams Allen, Jennie Allen Turner, Fannie Turner Graham, Doris Graham Cleage, Kristin (me).
children & grands mtdna
My oldest daughter Jilo and her daughters. My daughter Ife and her daughter. My daughter Ayanna. My daughter Tulani and her daughter.


This chart is adapted from the 23andMe website.
This chart is adapted from the 23andMe website.


I received my Mtdna from my mother, who received it from her mother, and on back to the beginning lost in the mists of time.  The Mtdna we all share is L3e3b.  We share this haplo group with the Mende people of Sierra Leone.  You can read more in this post Stolen from Africa – Fearless Females.

Annie Williams is the first woman of this ancestral line that I can name.  She was born about 1820 in Virginia. Unfortunately, I do not have a photograph of her.  Her daughter Eliza Williams Allen (The Eliza I named this blog for.), and all of her children were born in Alabama. Eliza passed her Mtdna to her 13 children, including my great grandmother, Jennie Virginia Allen Turner. Jennie passed it on to my grandmother, Fannie Mae Turner Graham.   Fannie passed it on to my mother, Doris Graham Cleage. My mother Doris passed it on to me and I passed it on to my children. My daughters have passed it to their daughters.  My sons’ daughters received their own mother’s Mtdna.  You can read about all of my past and present, extended family members who received Annie Williams L3e3b Mtdna in this post from 2013 – Seven Generations of L3e3b

Click images to enlarge.

Links to My DNA Posts

CLICK TO ENLARGE THE GRAPHIC BELOW!     My DNA from various places. Starting in the upper left:  23andMe;;  Dr. McDonald;  GEDmatch.


So far I have written six posts describing my DNA findings. Here are links.  I am working on a couple of more.

My Matrilineal Line and More   May 27, 2010

My 23and Me DNA Test Results    September 27, 2011

Seven Generations of L3e3b – My Mtdna     May 13 2013

Seven Generations of L3e2a1b1 – My Grandmother Pearl’s Mtdna    May 16, 2013

Revisiting My 23and Me DNA findings    May 17, 2013

Eight Generations of L3b Mtdna from Celia Rice Cleage     May 18 2013

Eight Generations of L3b MtDNA from Susan Rice Regan

Hattie Ruth’s daughters, granddaughters and great grands
This chart is adapted from the 23andMe website.
This chart is adapted from the 23andMe website.

Susan Rice Regan is the earliest name I can call for this line. She was born into slavery about 1833 in Virginia and later brought to Tennessee. She gave birth to two sons and three daughters. Her sons were Henry Rice and Philip Ragan. Her daughters were Anna Celia Rice, Sarah Sallie and Mollie Ragan.

Her daughter Anna Celia Rice, my paternal paternal grandmother was born into slavery in Virginia or Tennessee about 1855. Celia had 4 sons, including my grandfather Albert, and 1 daughter, Josephine (also called Josie). MtDNA is passed from the mother, to the daughter, to the grandaughter to the great grandaughter in a straight line. Although sons receive their mothers MtDNA, they do not pass it on to their children. Their children will receive their own mother’s MtDNA. So, I am going to be talking about daughters of daughters in this post.

Celia Rice Cleage's MtDNA passed through her daughter to her daughters, to their daughters and on and on and on.
Celia Rice Cleage’s MtDNA passed through her daughter to her daughters, to their daughters and on and on and on.

Josephine married James Cleage, (from a different Cleage family)  and had 5 children, 2 sons and 3 daughters, Henrietta, Lucille and Hattie Ruth. My cousin Felix, a descendent of Hattie Ruth, shared a chart of family members with me about five years ago.  There are probably more family members out there since then. Additions and corrections welcome!

Henrietta had 1 son and 3 daughters, Margaret, Hortense and Ruth. I don’t have any information about their children.  Lucille had 2 sons and 1 daughter, Mary, who had 1 son only. Hattie Ruth had 5 daughters, Vivian, Betty, Beverly, Marion and Erma.

Vivian had 2 daughters, Josephine and Laura. She had 7 grandchildren, 11 great grandchildren and 1 2xgreat grand at the time I received my list.. I don’t know  how many were daughters. Josephine had 2 sons.  Laura had 5 children, 2 boys and 3 girls. She has at least 2 granddaughters.

Betty had 3 daughters, 2 lived to adulthood.  Sandra had 3 daughters, Bernita, Jamiliah and Aisha. Bernita had 5 daughters. Jamiliah had 1 son and 3 daughters. Aisha had no children.    Charlene had 2 daughters and 5 granddaughters.

Beverly had 1 son and 2 daughters, Tanya and Kim.  Tanya has 1 daughter, Danelle.  Kim has 2 daughters, Mahogany and Celeste.

Marion had 2 sons and 2 daughters, Alma and Ruth Anne. There were 5 grandchildren, but I don’t know how many were daughters of daughters.

Erma had 3 sons and 7 daughters, Beatrise, Marcella, Haleema, Fatima, Aleah, Ameena, Leshia. I don’t know the breakdown of her 16 grandchildren, but I know there were some granddaughters.

Susan Rice Ragan’s two younger daughter’s each had one daughter each.
Sarah/Sallie married first Henry Hale and they had two sons and a daughter, Blanche Augusta Hale.  Blanche had three sons had no daughters.
Mollie married Grant Hodge and had a son and a daughter, Dora Hodge.  Dora had no daughters.

Special thanks to my cousin Denora for permission to use the photograph above of Hattie Ruth’s daughters, granddaughters and great grands.  And to Felix for the information in the chart. And to Tanya for getting her DNA tested.  Family makes it happen.

Revisiting My 23andMe DNA Findings

I had my DNA tested at 23andMe in 2011.  I wrote about it here.  There were no big surprises in the results. No Native American showed up, despite everyone being sure there was some Indian in there somewhere. I haven’t found any new cousins, although they provide plenty of possible cousins, we haven’t been able to prove any of the connections.

I have found it interesting to compare results with people I already know are related to me.  This chart shows the number of segments of DNA I share with each person and the % of DNA we share.  The pink is MtDNA and the blue is the YDNA. It’s also interesting to see what DNA cousins from the same line share with me and with each other.

Relatives_segments shared

When I first got my results, they did not give me as much detail as there is available in the diagram below.

kris_23&me_ancestry_copAfter I received my 23andMe results, I sent the extracted, zipped DNA file to Douglas McDonald ( who analyses the results and sends a more specific interpretation via email. He does this at no cost.  You can see mine below.  I wondered what a Centromere was and looked it up and found thatcentromere is a region on a chromosome that joins two sister chromatids

Each line represents a different chromosome. You recieve half of each chromosome from each of your parents, that is why there are sometimes different colors on top and bottom. On each one I have bits that originated with ancestors from Africa, Europe and North Africa.  The geographic areas are color coded with red for Europe and blue for Africa and violet for North Africa, etc. The dark brown parts are unidentified.  The light brown parts are links between segments of the chromosome.

Kristin_Williams_Full_20120802095052BGA1Doug McDonald wrote the following, along with the above:

Most likely fit is

  • 54.8% (+-  1.3%) Europe (all Western Europe)
  •   8.3% (+-  1.9%) Mideast (all North Africa)
  • 36.9% (+-  0.7%) Africa (all West African)

The following are possible population sets and their fractions, most likely at the top

  • Irish= 0.531 Moroccan= 0.103 Mandenka= 0.366 or
  • English= 0.561 Mozabite= 0.062 Mandenka= 0.377 or
  • Irish= 0.557 Mozabite= 0.067 Mandenka= 0.376 or
  • Irish= 0.528 Moroccan= 0.115   Yoruba= 0.357 or
  • English= 0.559 Mozabite= 0.072   Yoruba= 0.369 or
  • Irish= 0.555 Mozabite= 0.077   Yoruba= 0.368

The Asian and American on the chromosomes are small and weak and likely not real. The North African may or may not be real; if real, its likely smaller than 10%.

Doug McDonald

Seven Generations of L3e2a1b1 – My Grandmother Pearl’s MtDNA

Information chart from 23andMe MtDNA page.
Information chart from 23andMe MtDNA page.

Although I inherited DNA from my paternal Grandmother Pearl Reed Cleage, I did not inherit her MtDNA, which goes through the maternal line, from mother to daughter to granddaughter etc. I had to convince one of my father’s sisters to be tested. My Aunt Gladys agreed. Oral history told us that my Grandmother’s mother’s mother was a Cherokee Indian, however, her MtDNA L3e21b1, originates in Sub-Saharan Africa.  No Native American DNA showed up at all, in either my MtDNA or my autosomal (total) DNA.

Names and photos of some of those who share Clara's mtdna.
Names and photos of some of those who share Clara’s mtdna.


Clara Hoskins is the first woman in this ancestral line that I can name.  She was born about 1829 in Kentucky. Her daughter, Annie Allen,  and her 5 granddaughters were also born in Kentucky. From there, the family moved to Indianapolis, IN and on to Benton Harbor and Detroit Michigan and spread out from there to California, Illinois, Windsor and Toronto.

Annie passed her mtDNA to all of her 8 children but because it passes from mother to daughter, only the five daughters passed it on to their daughters. The son’s children received their mother’s MtDNA.  Those 5 daughters birthed 15 granddaughters, who birthed 12 known great granddaughters. Josephine’s daughter Bessie, disappeared so I don’t know if she had children.  From those 12 great granddaughters I have 11 known 2x great granddaughters.

 There are several lines that I lost about here. I can only vouch for 1 3x great granddaughter but there are possibly others from those 5 unknown to me lines.  Hopefully, someone will let me know. This makes a total of 42 known descendents with Clara’s MtDNA.

Anna’s oldest daughter, Josephine, had one daughter, Bessie, who ran away from home in her youth and was never heard from again. Unfortunately, I don’t know Josephine’s married name so I can’t try and find Bessie.  She last makes an appearance in the 1900 census living with her grandmother in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Lillian Louise Reed Shoemaker had a son and a daughter, Mildred, who had 1 son only.

Sarah Reed Busby had 5 daughters.  Elleretta had 2 sons only.   Margaret had 2 daughters,  Sarah and Arlene. Sarah had a daughter. Queen had 1 daughter, Elaine, who had 2 daughters, Marina and Lori.  Lori had 1 son and 1 daughter, Alexis. Marina had  2 daughters, Sinclaire and Sidne. These daughters are all still in school.  Sophia had 1 daughter, Bernadine, who had 1 son only. I have no children for Marie.

Minnie Reed Mullins had 5 daughters.  Helen had 2 sons and 2 daughters, Patricia and Joyce. Patricia has 1 daughter, Anastasia. Joyce has 2 daughters, Elizabeth and Kristinia.  I don’t know if either of them had children.  Georgie Anna had 1 daughter, Barbara Anne. I don’t know if this daughter had any children.  Hughie Marie had 1 daughter, Patrice, who has 1 daughter, Katherine, who has no children. Minnie had 1 daughter, Deborah Anne.  who has no children. Barbara Louise had 4 sons only.

My grandmother Pearl Reed Cleage had 3 daughters, Barbara, Gladys and Anna. Barbara has 1 son only. Gladys has 3 sons and 1 daughter, Jan. Jan has 1 son and 3 daughters, Shashu, Jann and Sadya. Shashu has 1 son and 1 daughter, Lyric. Lyric is too young to have children.  Anna has 2 daughters, Anna and Maria. Anna has 2 sons and 2 daughters, Liliana and Sophia. Liliana has 1 toddler daughter. Maria has 2 children by adoption who will not share her mtdna.

Seven Generations of L3e3b – My Mtdna

This chart is adapted from the 23andMe website.
This chart is adapted from the 23andMe website.

The mtdna that I received from my mother, who received it from her mother and on back to the beginning lost in the mists, is L3e3b.  I have been told that I share this haplo group of L3e3b with the Mende people of Sierra Leone.  You can read more in this post Stolen from Africa – Fearless Females.

Annie Williams is the first woman in this ancestral line that I can name.  She was born about 1820 in Virginia. Her daughter, Eliza Williams Allen (who is the Eliza this blog is named after) and all of her children were born in Alabama. Eliza passed her mtdna to her 13 children.  5 died before adulthood. 2 were sons. Of her 6 daughters, I wondered, how many had daughters who had daughters, who had daughters?

Photographs and word cloud with names of all the known female descendents of Annie Williams.

Mary Allen McCall had 6 children, 2 sons and 3 daughters survived to adulthood.  Two, Jeanette McCall McEwen and Alma Otilla McCall Howard, had sons only. Annabell McCall Martin had 7 children. 3 were sons and 3, daughters, Anna Marie Martin, Geneva Martin and Thelma Martin. So far I have been unable to trace them beyond the 1940 census in Detroit when they were unmarried, childless, teenagers, so I don’t know if they had daughters.

Anna Allen (oval picture) had no children.

Below Anna is Beulah Allen Pope who had 2 sons and 1 daughter. Her daughter, Annie Lee Pope Gilmer, had 1 son.

Willie Lee Allen Tulane had 3 daughters. Only 1, Naomi, survived to adulthood. Naomi Tulane Vincent had three daughters – Sylvia, Jacqui and Barbara. Sylvia and Barbara did not have any children. Jacqui had 2 sons.

Abbie Allen Brown had 2 sons.

My great grandmother, Jennie Virginia had three daughters. Daisy and Alice had no children. My grandmother, Fannie, had 4 children. Her 2 sons died in childhood. Her 2 daughters, my aunt Mary V.  had 3 daughters. Barbara and Marilyn both had sons only. Dee Dee’s one daughter, Maricea, has no children.

My mother, Doris, had 2 daughters. I (Kristin) have 2 sons and 4 daughters. Jilo has 1 son and 2 daughters.  Ife has 1 son and 1 daughter.  Ayanna has no children.  Tulani has 1 daughter. All of their daughters are still children. My sister Pearl had 1 daughter. Deignan has 1 son and 3 daughters, all still children.

I have the mtdna haplo group from my father’s mother and for my grandfather Cleage’s mother.  I will be writing them up soon. I will also be writing about my total dna findings. Unfortunately, there are no men in my direct line alive to test for the Ydna.





My 23andme DNA Test Results

Several months ago 23andme was running a special for African Americans, in order to broaden their genetic base. The price was right (free) so I signed up and received my spit test kit in a timely fashion. I sent it back, curious about what my percentages of DNA from the various continents would be.  After a wait of 5 or 6 weeks I was informed that my results were posted.  There they are above. None of this was surprising to me. Looking at myself and my relatives I knew there was some European DNA in there. My father’s sister and I had done an Mtdna test awhile ago and both my maternal and paternal grandmother’s lines back to West Africa. The small amount of DNA from Asia, I learned from the 23andme website, could be Native American DNA or it could be from the Asian DNA found in some African’s DNA.  They (23andme) cannot predict Native American DNA in African Americans yet because usually it is (they said) mixed with a small amount of European DNA and then there is that African/Asian DNA thing.

Now, as I said, none of this surprised me. And it also didn’t change the way I feel about myself or my ancestry. I know the European DNA is there but the men that “donated” it didn’t leave a story, a whisper or a name on a death certificate as a clue to who they were and where they came from. There is one exception, post slavery, that we have used reasonable clues to pinpoint – including family stories, naming patterns and geography.  So, aside from the physical evidence/residue/DNA, they are invisible and likely to remain so, in spite of the “cousins” I find listed in my account.

I had not even thought about finding long lost cousins from the past. The first message I received turned out to be from an old family friend in Detroit. That was amazing and kind of funny.  She and her husband were friends of my father’s family for decades and to get a message from her daughter saying we are possible 5th cousins was nice. We don’t know which side of the family we are related through, and  I don’t see how we can ever trace it, but it’s nice anyway. I would like to hear from that possible 2nd cousin who hasn’t contacted me yet.  That seems close enough to figure out how we’re connected. Maybe I already know them. If only it would be one of Uncle Hugh Reed’s long lost grandchildren. Or maybe my grandfather Mershell Graham’s brother’s or sister’s descendants.

My feeling is that the only way I’m going to find out where the last ancestor’s I’ve found came from, who their parents are, is to find the plantations they were on and look for the records. I don’t think I’ll find out anything shockingly new about those lines from 23andme.  My husband received his kit yesterday. Can’t wait to see his percentages.