May 2016 Quarterly Report

The Iowa DNA Project was formed in November 2014 and has now reached 614 members.  The project is categorized as ‘geographical’, and is designed for those who have direct ancestry in Iowa, as well as those researching collateral lines that lived in Iowa. Our focus is on autosomal, aka Family Finder results, but we also have many members testing and actively researching their mtDNA and YDNA origins.

Those new to DNA testing are especially welcome and their research aims are supported and encouraged  within the project.  If you have tested with another company, you may wish to transfer your results to FTDNA and join us.  Instructions on how to transfer your raw results are available here.

Key Figures

  • Total Iowa DNA Project Members: 614
  • Family Finder Tests Completed: 502
  • Total Donations: $224  Current Balance $26
  • Average number of database wide matches per member: 853
  • Highest number of Inter-Project matches per member: 18
  • Weekly Inter-Project Match Updates
  • All Iowa Counties Represented

Nuts and Bolts

The Iowa DNA Project Surname Index can be found here.  Surnames associated with specific counties can be found in our FAQ here.  Current members, if you’ve not already uploaded a gedcom and entered your Surname and Most Distant Ancestor details, you are strongly encouraged to do so. You can get detailed instructions on how to complete your profile here.

  • Total Iowa Surnames: 895
  • Members with Family Trees: 461
  • Members with listed Surnames:  553
  • Members with listed Most Distant Ancestors: 487

Iowan Family Groups

The long term goal of the Iowa DNA Project is the inclusion of multiple generations and extended family members who have taken the Family Finder test.  These family groups assist in helping inter-project matches determine how they may be connected and which branch of their family trees to examine further to prove their connections.  In October 2015, we teamed up with Göran Runfeld of  to trial his ICW Tool and to map out the interconnectedness of the entire Iowa DNA project.   Below is a depiction of the current extended connections between our members. 473 nodes.png

Using the ICW Tool gives Iowa DNA Project members easy access to a variety of additional information and charts including a tabulation of our members’ Suggested Relationships.  As you can see, Iowa DNA Project members are actively recruiting close family to test.

Suggested Relationships

  • Parent/Child: 69
  • Full Siblings: 71
  • Grandparent/Grandchild/Half Siblings: 27
  • Aunt/Uncle/Niece/Nephew: 29
  • 1st Cousin: 48
  • 2nd Cousin: 95
  • 3rd Cousin: 130
  • 4th Cousin: 356


More can be learned about the ICW Tool’s process and results here.   Detailed information and full access to charts and figures is available to project members.


Project YDNAAs expected, the most common Y haplogroup is R and its subclades, with I and its subclades being the second most common.  To date,  34 project members have completed the Big Y test.  If you are interested in getting closer to your terminal SNP but aren’t thrilled about the price tag of the Big Y, there are reasonably priced SNP packs available to help get you further down the phylotree*.

  • R-M269: 86
  • R (excluding R-M269): 55
  • I: 46
  • E: 7
  • G: 6
  • J: 4
  • N: 3
  • B: 1
  • T: 1

More information on the project’s patriarchs and YDNA results can be found here.

*If you are unsure, check with your Haplogroup’s administrator for advice on which, if any SNP pack is suitable for you.

Project mtDNA:  The most common mtDNA continues to be H and its subclades with a variety of other haplogroups also represented.   172 project members have completed Full Mitochondrial Sequencing.

mtdna confirmed

Member Haplogroups:

  • H: 89
  • U: 28
  • I: 25
  • T: 23
  • K: 22
  • J: 14
  • V: 6
  • W: 4
  • B: 2
  • HV: 2
  • L: 2
  • HVO:2
  • C: 1
  • X: 1
  • A: 1
  • RO: 1
  • N: 1

Complete information on our project’s mtDNA matriarchs, statistics and mutations can be found here.

Declared Countries of YDNA and mtDNA Origin

Y Origins

mtdna origins

MyOrigins Leaderboard

Based on percentage points per member, the Iowa DNA Project populations are listed below in order of frequency.  Descriptions of each population cluster can be found here. For the calculator junkies, additional admixture tools can be found at Gedmatch.

On the whole, as our numbers have risen since last November, the populations seen in the project have remained at generally consistent levels with two exceptions.  Members with calculated Native American and Northeast Asian ancestry have increased.

  • British Isles 20,941
  • Scandinavia 12,048
  • Western and Central Europe 11,131
  • Southern Europe 3134
  • Eastern Europe 2228
  • Finland and Northern Siberia 664
  • Asia Minor 567
  • West Africa 291
  • Ashkenazi Diaspora 246
  • Eastern Middle East 194
  • Native American 175
  • Central Asia 169
  • Northeast Asia 120
  • (Blended Population Cluster) Eastern, Western and Central European 100
  • North Africa 68
  • East Central Africa 13
  • South-Central Africa 8

100% Club:

  • 100% British Isles 6 members
  • 100% Western and Central Europe 3 members
  • 100% Scandinavian 1 member
  • 100% Eastern, Western and Central European 1 member

Coming Results:

Currently, we are waiting for a few kits to be returned to the lab for testing: 1 Factoid, 1 mtDNA Plus, 3 mtDNA Full Sequence,  1 YDNA 12 Marker, 4 YDNA 37 Marker, 1 YDNA 111, and 1 Family Finder.

From the FTDNA lab, we are waiting for the results of several tests:   4 YDNA 37 Marker, 2 YDNA 67 Marker, 3 YDNA 111 Marker,  2 Y-Hap-Backbone,  3 SNP Packs, 1 single SNP, 2 Big Y, 11 mtDNA Full Sequence, 3 mtDNA Plus, and 3 Family Finders.  We have members who are predominantly interested in haplogroups and have not yet ordered a Family Finder.  We also have 42 kits that have taken advantage of the 3rd Party transfer offer  but are not yet unlocked.   Current members, please keep in mind you cannot be checked for inter-project matches without a completed and unlocked Family Finder test.

Do You have Iowan Roots?

Over the last 18 months, the Iowa DNA Project has experienced tremendous growth.  We have members with, “boots on the ground” in Iowa, some of who have specialized knowledge, databases and access to hard to find resources for their locale.  Our membership is not only spread across the United States, but also includes international members hoping to reconnect with missing branches of family known to have immigrated to Iowa.  Additionally, we have descendents of more recent immigrants, some who know the names of their ancestral European villages and their immigrant family’s Scandinavian farm names.

If you have Iowan roots, you are welcome to join us and encouraged to collaborate and share your family’s history and its place in the settlement of Iowa.

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