If you have a Mayflower Descendant badge displayed in the Badges section of your dashboard, the badge means that you are a probable direct-maternal or direct-paternal descendant.
In 1620, a group of 102 English Separatists arrived in New England aboard the Mayflower. After a harsh winter, only 52 of the original Pilgrims survived and founded Plymouth Colony. Their progeny today makes up some of the oldest families in the United States, and through a cooperative project with FamilyTreeDNA (FTDNA) and the General Society of Mayflower Descendants (GSMD), an effort is now underway to match genetic descendants back to these Mayflower families.
The GSMD maintains a Group Project through FTDNA that incorporates Y-DNA, mtDNA, and autosomal DNA. While membership in the project is restricted to confirmed members of the General Society of Mayflower Descendants, you can contact the administrators of the GSMD Mayflower Group Project to discuss additional Y-DNA testing and genealogical record reviews that can be performed to confirm your potential Mayflower lineage.
Y-DNA - Direct Paternal-Line Descendants
The Y-DNA test results from proven paternal-line descendants will be matched with Y-DNA tests from other proposed male descendants and may include descendants from the UK. Presently, we believe that our 67-marker Y-DNA test provides sufficient coverage of the Y-chromosomal genetic markers needed to indicate a strong potential connection to a Mayflower paternal line.
|Brewster (Brusstar, Bruster)||I-M253|
|Doty (Dotey, Doten, Doton, Doughton, Doughty, Douty)||R-M269|
|Soule (Sole, Sowle, Soal, Soale, Sowl)||I-YSC0000261|
|Warren (Warrens, Warrin, Warrins)||E-M35|
mtDNA - Direct Maternal-Line Descendants
The mtDNA test results focus on maternal lineages down to a daughter or son of one of the proven female Mayflower descendants. This project hopes to identify the mtDNA genetic signatures based on proven descendants. These signatures are currently being identified, and GSMD policies on the mtDNA requirements are being proposed. Once in place, potential descendants will be contacted for additional DNA testing or family genealogy information.
|Mary, First wife of Stephen Hopkins||V|
Autosomal DNA (Family Finder Test)
Family Finder (autosomal DNA tests) test results are also being collected within the Mayflower Group Project. Within the Group Project, if enough family members of Group Project members take autosomal DNA tests, it will help to better identify sections of autosomal DNA that a given family has in common, which will assist with the eventual genetic triangulation efforts. For the data in this project to be relevant, it will require a significant amount of testing from current Mayflower Society members to be able to connect and verify lines to the Mayflower Pilgrims. An effort is underway to test the autosomal DNA of as many known Mayflower Society descendants as possible.