Y-DNA Surname project..........

The Towne Y-DNA surname project began in 2007 and has grown to over 46 participants so far. One of the first objectives was to see whether there was a link between the Towne/Towns Families of the South and the Towne Family of New England. Additionally, by mapping out the DNA markers in the lines of each of William's sons, the project should be able to help all Towne test participants confirm (or refute) their paper trails or break through brick walls they may be experiencing trying to find connections.

With our results so far we are able to reconstruct what William's Y-DNA markers (67 locations on the Y-chromosome) must have been, with 99% accuracy. We also know that his Haplogroup was R1b1a2a1a1b.

To see our Towne Y-DNA test results and how they are grouped, click on Towne DNA Project link

WHAT LINES HAVE BEEN TESTED SO FAR?? These are the descendant charts for each of William and Joanna's sons showing lines that have been CONFIRMED (to a high degree of statistical certainty) through DNA testing. If YOUR line shares any of these ancestors, you, too, can be pretty sure that these individuals and their ancestry back to William are genetically validated.

We also welcome those interested in their maternal lines to order mtDNA tests. Especially if anyone can claim an unbroken female line from Joanna Blessing through one of their daughters!

Remember too, that TFA may subsidize a portion of 67 marker test costs from lines that haven't yet been explored. So send us your lineage (just the string of names tying you back to William) and we'll consider you for a subsidy. We generally ask that you pay for the initial test to confirm you are descended from William and Joanna, and that you are a member of TFA. We then will consider a subsidy for an upgrade to try and confirm which branch you most closely match. More results will help us fill in the descendant branch-points. (Your results are kept anonymous, of course.)

You can email the committee at:


or: admin@townefolk.com

***TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THE DNA TESTING or to order a test at our group rates, go to:

Towne DNA Project link

Background on what DNA genealogy is all about!

Back to top

Jacob Descendants - confirmed by DNA tests a/o 8/8/2014

Joseph Descendants - confirmed by DNA tests a/o 8/8/2014

Edmund Descendants - confirmed by DNA tests a/o 8/8/2014


For those of you who are mathematically-inclined, a recent series of lectures at the University of Texas at Austin by Prof William H. Press used early results from our Towne project to illustrate various statistical models. Here are links to three webcasts that feature our project results:

The full series is at http://www.youtube.com/user/opinionatedlessons

The Towne family appears in lessons 6, 15, and 27, with these links:

opinionatedlessons: 6

opinionatedlessons: 15

opinionatedlessons: 27

Note that the Towne data was far less complete (and may contain a couple minor inaccuracies) but the points being made are still valid. This is a good explanation of how mutation rates might be determined, and how basic probability calculations enable us to predict whether a participant is in fact descended from William or not. The lectures also cover how the number of mutational differences can be used to predict how many generations back the "Most Recent Common Ancestor" might have lived.