August 2016 Quarterly Report

The Iowa DNA Project was formed in November 2014 and has now reached 713 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: 713
  • Family Finder Tests Completed: 577
  • Average number of database wide matches per member: 26
  • Highest number of Inter-Project matches per member: 853
  • 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: 989
  • 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.


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: 125
  • Full Siblings: 89
  • Grandparent/Grandchild/Half Siblings: 34
  • Aunt/Uncle/Niece/Nephew: 40
  • 1st Cousin: 67
  • 2nd Cousin: 108
  • 3rd Cousin: 154
  • 4th Cousin: 391

Match Count

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,   38 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: 108
  • R (excluding R-M269): 66
  • I: 55
  • E: 8
  • G: 7
  • J: 4
  • N: 3
  • B: 1
  • C: 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.   196 project members have completed Full Mitochondrial Sequencing.

Member Haplogroups:

  • H: 106
  • U: 34
  • K: 30
  • T: 28
  • J: 21
  • W: 8
  • V: 7
  • I: 7
  • L: 3
  • B: 2
  • HV: 2
  • HVO:2
  • X: 2
  • C: 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

YDNA Countries of Origin

mtDNA Countries of Origin

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, the populations seen in the project have remained at generally consistent levels. In the last 3 months, project members with calculated Western and Central European ancestry have risen slightly to surpass those with calculated Scandinavian origins.

  • British Isles 40,519
  • Western and Central Europe 24,018
  • Scandinavia 23,790
  • Southern Europe 6811
  • Eastern Europe 4758
  • Finland and Northern Siberia 744
  • Asia Minor 656
  • West Africa 393
  • Ashkenazi Diaspora 285
  • Eastern Middle East 265
  • Native American 233
  • Central Asia 169
  • Northeast Asia 143
  • (Blended Population Cluster) Eastern, Western and Central European 100
  • Scandinavian Western Central and Eastern European 100
  • North Africa 76
  • East Central Africa 16
  • South-Central Africa 9

100% Club:

  • 100% British Isles 8 members
  • 100% Western and Central Europe 3 members
  • 100% Scandinavian 2 member
  • 100% Eastern, Western and Central European 1 member
  • 100% Scandinavian, Western and Central European 1 member

Coming Results:

Currently, we are waiting for a few samples to be returned to the lab for testing: 1 R1b – DF27 SNP Pack, 1 Factoid, and 2 mtDNA Full Sequence.

From the FTDNA lab, we are waiting for the results of several tests:   1 YDNA 37 Marker,  1 YDNA 67 Marker, 1 YDNA 111 Marker (delayed),  3  Y-Hap-Backbone (3 delayed),  1 SNP Pack (delayed),  2 single SNPs (1 delayed),  5 mtDNA Full Sequence (2 delayed), 11 Factoids (11 delayed), 2 mtDNA Plus (2 delayed), and 3 Family Finders (1 delayed).  We have members who are predominantly interested in haplogroups and have not yet ordered a Family Finder.  We also have 58 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?

As the Iowa DNA Project has grown, our membership has become increasingly varied.  As early uptakers of the FTDNA ‘Activity Feed’ it has been fantastic to see members sharing photos of their Iowa ancestors, asking questions, collaborating and sharing their successes.   Some of our members 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 descendants 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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