Researching Strong(e) & Strang(e) in Britain and Ireland

Researching Strong(e)s and Strang(e)s in Britain and Ireland; 2nd Edition


This page has several parts; please click on the part you wish to review:
B) The Most Common Marker Values of Y-Chromosome Results by Haplogroups
C) Comparison with Strong examples:
D) Interpreting Results:
E) Grouping of Test Results:
F) Development of Findings based on Test Results:
G) End of Page

D) Interpreting Results:

For those who feel a need for a general grounding in the meaning of the terms used in DNA Studies in laymans terms, see generally:
"DNA 101: Y-Chromosome Testing".
There are several good Glossaries available on various DNA Study webpages. See, for example, the Rice DNA Study Glossary.
One can also review the DNA ListArchives. (Just change the date at the end of the URL to go to different months). A lot of very bright people contribute to the List, and there is much to be learned there!

In our discussion below we refer several times to Haplogroup 1 (HG1). This generally is the same as the Atlantic Modal Haplotype (AMH), which is defined on the Duerinck DNA Study website as "a haplotype consisting of the following markers and alleles, as frequently seen in Europe:
DYS388 12
DYS390 24
DYS391 11
DYS392 13
DYS393 13
DYS394 14 (also known as DYS19)
If you have one mutation in either direction, then you are AMH 1.15+. The AMH 1.15 haplotype is also referred to as the Atlantic Modal Cluster or AMC. Generally 1.15+ puts you in haplogroup 1 (H1), but not always."

Those who are participants in the study will have noted that Family Tree DNA has reported whether a participant has an exact match or is within one or two steps of genetic distance to any other participants in the study. In a separate report available to the Group Administrators, the number of steps of genetic distance for each participant appears in terms of the number of allelles at each loci or DYS marker as differenced from each other participant. Further, in presenting the data for all members of the study group, each DYS marker is presented in ascending order. The result seems somewhat confusing. Indeed, if we followed FTDNA exclusively, we would have almost no sub-groups in our study at all. This does not comport with what we know from existing genealogical research.

In order to try to develop groups of haplotypes which appear to have common DYS markers, I have elected to adopt the modal STR Haplogroup Average values given in Wilson's 2001 paper " Genetic Evidence for Different Male and Female Roles During Cultural Transitions in the British Isles" as the arbitrary standard. In doing so, I have followed the discussion in Dennis Garvey's Most common Haplogroups. The Light Yellow highliting in certain cells of our study spreadsheet has been used to identify values which vary from the Haplogroup Average or standard values. That this methodology is correct has been confirmed by our Study Co-Administrator, Prof. Emeritus Lloyd Horrocks; and also by Dennis Garvey in a recent message dated March 3,2003: "You went about analyzing the data in the same manner I would - first of all trying to match up haplotypes that have the same differences from the HG1 most common values." This procedure serves to help identify distinguishing characteristics of the various lineage groupings we have established in the spreadsheet presentation. Some of these distinguishing characteristics may be mutations, and are subject to the discussion re Mutation Rates below.

After we developed the groupings in our study based on the HG1 and HG2 nomenclature used in the Wilson paper, Family Tree DNA subsequently adopted a different nomenclature for Haplogroups. See "Facts & Genes",February 27, 2003 Volume 2, Issue 2; Copyright 2003, Family Tree DNA, (
There have seen at least seven (7) systems in use in the scientific community for defining and naming Haplogroups. These various systems, which assigned different names to Haplogroups, often led to confusion. Depending on which system was utilized in the literature you read, Haplogroups had different names and definitions. To solve this problem, the Y Chromosome Consortium developed a new system to name Haplogroups and subgroups.

The new naming system developed by the Y Chromosome Consortium was designed to easily accommodate expansion, as new Haplogroups are discovered. This new system identifies and names the current known Y Haplogroups that have been discovered.

A Haplogroup is defined as all the male descendants of the single person who first showed a SNP mutation. A SNP mutation identifies a group who had a common ancestor far back in time, since SNP's rarely mutate. Each member of a Haplogroup would have the same SNP mutation as the common ancestor. These mutations are extremely rare, and identify a group of people over a period of tens of thousands of years.

The Y Chromosome Consortium has defined 18 major Haplogroups, called A through R, using capital letters. Each of these major Haplogroups, which are also called clades, can have subgroups, which are called subclades. The 18 major groups at the top level, A through R, represent the major divisions of human diversity based on SNPs on the Y chromosome.

Subgroups have a numeric name, which follows the Haplogroup name. For example, Haplogroup E has 3 subgroups, called E1, E2, and E3. There is also a subgroup E*, which are those that belong to Haplogroup E, but do not belong to one of the 3 defined subgroups, E1, E2, or E3.

If a subgroup has subgroups, they would be labeled with a lower case alphabetic character, such as E3a or E3b.

The new Haplogroup database at utilizes this new naming system developed by the Y Chromosome Consortium. On your search results page for Haplogroup, you will see the Haplogroup of those who match or are a close match to your Y chromosome test result. Depending on your Haplogroup search results, you will see Haplogroups such as I, J2, I1b, R1b. All Family Tree DNA explanations and terminology will utilize the emerging standard defined in the Y Chromosome Consortium paper.

This presents some problems for us. For one thing, the definition of the various "Y Chromosome Consortium" Haplogroups is much more complex than the prior system, and needs more study before we can adapt it to our interpretation. We will watch this subject and hopefully report more fully at some point in the future. For now, we will continue to use the old Wilson nomenclature. In Dennis Garvey's message of March 3, 2003, he comments: "The main selling point of the new haplogroup nomenclature is primarily for those classified in the "old" HG2 category. The different YCC haplogroups inside HG2 (F,G,I, and J) are very distinct groups -and its worth knowing which one your haplotype belongs to. The YCC haplogroup "I" is found in a different part of Europe than F,G, and J. It looks like the subgroups in I (I1a, I1b) also may have different areas in which they are found.....

The new naming system is less useful for HG1 and HG3 since it's just a matter of a name change. So I doubt we'll get people to start saying R1b rather than HG1..."

I have made a start on adding the YCC Haplogroup information to the presentation, which will perhaps add some information of interest to all.

Y-Base and Y-STR databases: For interested researchers there are two publicly searchable databases available on the Internet. The first is Y-STR, which is maintained at the Institute of Legal Medicine, Humboldt-Universität Berlin, Germany. One can visit their website and enter queries about matches for certain combinations of DYS values. (Click on "Start Search"). Some interesting information can be developed; however, because of the limited number of DYS locations involved in the database there are limitations on the extent to which any match is realistic. As a result of the limitations concerning Y-STR, efforts have been made to develop a more extensive database called Y-Base. Y-Base consists of data submitted by individual researchers, like you and me, and includes all 25 markers used by Family Tree DNA as well as an additional 11 markers used by and possibly other testing organizations as well. You can search on all markers, or on any combination down to as few as 10. As time goes on, it may be possible to develop contacts with other persons who have close matches through use of the Y-Base site. If you wish to enter your data in Y-Base, please visit their website and consider entering your data and contact info.

Another interesting website is that of Dr. David L. Roper, who is doing a study of relationships between a large number of families based on the DNA results developed by the various studies which are on-going. Two of the entries in Dr. Roper's website are based on the New England Strong and the present Strange haplotypes, respectively. Please take a look... there is some interesting material there! See: Y-Chromosome Markers Families Comparisons

That said, it will be noted that I have moved the two columns in the spreadsheet, titled "Steps of Genetic Distance From HG values in 25 Markers" and "Steps of Genetic Distance From HG values in 12 Markers", respectively, to subsection C, the "Comparison" section. The information, while somewhat useful, is more appropriately handled in subsection C. The values inserted there are NOT the genetic distance of each individual from each other. Rather, they are the genetic distance of each individual from the Wilson modal STR Haplogroup Average values. There are some significant problems in calculating steps of genetic difference in regard to DYS 389-i and DYS 389-ii on the one hand, and in calculating the sum of genetic difference in respect of DYS 464-a,b,c,d. For a simplified explanation, see the discussion found in the Kinney DNA SURNAME PROJECT: genetic distance calculation You will also note that in our study I have color-coded the values for these markers in pink text re DYS 389-ii and 389-i markers, and in red text re the DYS 464-a,b,c,d markers, respectively, to remind you that the calculations used in the Kinney study need to be applied to those marker differences in calculating steps of genetic difference.

Marker Mutation Rates:

Note that the average values for each of Haplogroups 1 & 2 are given. Variations from the average values are highlighted in the chart, above, in Light Yellow. A cursory study of the results provided by Family Tree DNA seems to indicate that while some of the groupings we have developed for this results page have some characteristics in common, there are apparent differences in various markers. Family Tree DNA informs us that so far we have numerous distinct haplotypes, with only two sets of two persons each who are, according to FTDNA, genetically close enough to be one haplotype. This does not seem to match with what we know in terms of the genealogical research which has been done by various individuals, for example in re the Southern or Virginia Strongs.

Accordingly, in an attempt to organize the results as indicated above, I have elected to adopt the Wilson Haplogroup Average values as the standard in our presentation. The Light Yellow highliting has been used to identify values which vary from the Haplogroup Average or standard values. This procedure serves to help identify distinguishing characteristics of the various groupings we have established. Some of these distinguishing characteristics may be mutations. Perhaps the following discussion will help point up the issues raised by observation of variations from the standard values, however little it may contribute to definitive answers:

On a 500 year average, some mutation may take place in a 25 marker study of DNA. An article written by Kevin Deurinck of the Deurinck DNA Study goes into the detail better than I could hope to try to explain it myself. See: Duerinck DNA Results, and scroll down to “Most Recent Common Ancestor”. I think the point which can be drawn out of that discussion is that out of 25 markers, you can expect that each marker might mutate at any time once in 500 generations, and further, that of those same 25 markers, on average, there will be at least one mutation in about 500 years. Deurinck shows several examples of how this might work out, dividing 500 generations by the number of loci studied, resulting in the number of generations in which to expect a change in one of the markers. Thus, 500 generations / 25 markers = 20 generations. If we then assume that a generation is 25 years in length, then the average time in which to expect one mutation out of all 25 markers is 20 generations X 25 years = 500 YEARS.

This is confirmed in a message dated 6 February 2003 from Bennett Greenspan of Family Tree DNA:
“The mutation rate is .002 or 1 change, per marker per 500 generations. So, about once every 10,000 to 12,500 years per marker year. Therefore, if you take a test that is of, say 25 markers, we would reasonably figure that a mutation would take place on one of those 25 markers every 12,500 / 25 markers, or one marker change per 500 years.”

However, it appears that some of the markers may mutate more rapidly than others. From: "Facts and Genes", 31 January 2003, (Copyright 2003, Family Tree DNA):
See (
"The scientists estimate that Markers mutate, or change, about once every 500 generations, per Marker. A mutation can occur at any time. It appears, though there is no scientific proof, that some families have more mutations than others.

"DNA testing is a powerful tool to be used in conjunction with Family History research. The foundation of Family History research is the essential framework needed to then evaluate the DNA evidence. Mutations can then be evaluated as to whether they are mutations, or represent a problem with the Family History research.

"In evaluating the DNA results, the Marker Mutation rates may provide clues to differentiate between Mutations and Family History research problems.

"The 5 fastest moving Markers are:
464, 449, 439, 385, and 458

"Marker 464 is the fastest moving marker, and Marker 458 is the slowest of this group of the fast moving Markers. The other three Markers are between the fastest, and the slowest of the fast moving Markers."
What does that mean to us, if anything?

From the Duerinck DNA Study Results page:
We do know that if the results of 2 people are different by 1 mutation, that these people are related. If different by 2 mutations, probably related. Is there a difference if there is a 2 repeat value change on one loci OR if there is are 1 repeat value changes on two loci? As we see 3 or more mutations, the people who may be related are very distantly related. The concept of MRCA puts the relation back many generations, more like 1,000 to 2,000 years (I am guessing here) for 3 mutations. Is it correct to say that for 3 or more mutations, that people are not related, or do we stick with the MRCA theory, which in part is based on the fact that y chromosome mutations occur generally once every 500 generations per marker (mutation rate of 0.2%, Heyer et al. 1997)?

Perhaps we have just enough information now to be dangerous! But, if these five markers are the fastest moving, and we see variations in these markers between two or more test subjects who otherwise seem to match, we may have some reason to believe the relationships are closer rather than further apart.

We are not alone in observing what appear to be wide variations in markers which may represent mutations, and which may be subject to interpretation at variance from the standard orthodoxy. See the discussion in Edmund Rice (1638) Association - Rice Family DNA Project Results and note particularily the following quote in the context there: "The mutation in 5129 is an astonishing three steps. There is no way to be sure whether this is one mutation of three steps all at once or three separate events of just one step each that coincidentally happened to fall on the same locus and in the same sense, but the latter possibility is so unlikely (five-in-a-million) as to be scarcely worth considering. In contrast, the chance of a triple mutation in this line is probably on the order of one in a thousand. Pending further investigation, then, we will treat this as a single event."

In his March 3, 2003 email, Dennis Garvey comments, "I agree that it makes sense to be more "forgiving" of differences that appear at the potentially faster markers. I think we'll eventually see that the mutation rates differ enough from marker to marker that this will be standard practice."

On the other hand, most of the literature concerning the use of DNA studies as a tool in genealogical research indicates we need exact matches on the DNA markers to verify relationships within a genealogical time-frame. Study of mutation rates may give some explanations re a small number of variant markers... but other than that, most of the groupings so far may have value only in developing some hypotheses re broad migration patterns ... eg., whether the group originated in England vs Scotland, etc. There are a lot of caveats which should be stated with regard to the results as grouped and posted, which will follow in due time. Be warned... the conclusions I am drawing here are SPECULATIVE!

This page has several parts; please click on the part you wish to review:
B) The Most Common Marker Values of Y-Chromosome Results by Haplogroups
C) Comparison with Strong examples:
D) Interpreting Results:
E) Grouping of Test Results:
F) Development of Findings based on Test Results:
G) End of Page

E) Grouping of Test Results:

As a generalization, it appears that while we broadly are all part of a "one name" type of study, there are probably a good number of differing origins for the name. Again, generally speaking, we have an overall lack of matches and what appear to be a number of different haplotypes. A few words about the groupings I have shown: Fairly straight forwardly, while we have some "near matches", as yet there are mostly no exact matches.

We do have a number of other results yet to be returned, and some of the outstanding test samples may well match.... Time will tell. Also, our study group is still relatively small. We need additional volunteers to flesh out the study so that we can make sufficient comparisons to provide the basis for some analysis.

You will notice that I have made a fairly significant change in the formerly first group, "Norman ? & France". I have moved the group to the bottom of the presentation to facilitate discussion of some interesting information re the Strange kit, #6491.

1) Group "New England": The discussion of results re this group may be viewed in the discussion at DNA Note #10 re the Strongs of New England and Southwest England. See also DNA Note #03 re Kit#5858.

2) Group "Southern": The discussion of results re this group may be viewed in the discussion at DNA Note #09 re the Strongs of Virginia, also known as the "Southern" Strongs. See also DNA Note #08 re Kit#6809.

3) Group "Shetland Islands": The discussion of results re this group may be viewed in the discussion at DNA Note #12 re Strong or Strang of the Shetland Islands, Scotland.

4) Group "L'Estrange"... Kit #7544, "a DNA Detective Mystery". Note the close coincidence of the first 12 markers with that of Group Scotland, except for DYS#390 & 394 (ignoring for now, DYS 439, one of the rapid markers). And then, looking at the second 13 markers, and again ignoring the rapidly moving markers, there is close coincidence except on DYS#447. This might be taken as indicating a common ancestry somewhere on these two kits, given some degree of mutation or genetic drift. However, it should be noted that DYS #390 and 393 are fairly stable markers; these two markers being the points of difference on the two kits may indicate there is no relationship at all. See Note #5 for some further discussion of background facts and the genesis of some hypotheses about the "DNA Detective Mystery" we are presented with.

5) Group "Strange of Balcaskie": The discussion of results re this group may be viewed in the discussion at DNA Note #11 re Strange of Balcaskie and associated groups.

6) Group "Donegal Bay: The discussion of results re this group may be viewed in the discussion at DNA Note #07 re Donegal Bay Strongs.

7) Group "Norman ? & France" (2 kits): One thing fairly clear is that kit #6491 does not match with the members of group Southern ... meaning that the Stranges of New Kent County, Virginia are NOT likely identical with the Strongs of New Kent County, Virginia, thus disproving one hypothesis that has previously been floated. Kit #6611 has a known genealogy tracing to Gien, France. An interesting aspect of these two kits is that they alone out of the test results so far belong to former HG2, indicating possible roots in southern Europe. Does this mean they have roots going back to the Romans?

An interesting thought... which now has been amplified by the addition of information indicating kit #6491 is actually in YCC Haplogroup J. I have presented the average values for both HG2 (now YCC HG-I as regards kit#6611) and YCC HG-J. While I do not have a full set of modal values for YCC HG-J, it is apparent that kit #6491 is closer to those values than to HG2 or YCC HG-I. Some further explanatory notes are included in Note #6 . Please also see DNA Notes 1 & 2 re Kit#6491

It also should be pointed out that other than belonging to former HG2, kits #6491 and #6611 have little else in common; and indeed under the new Y Chromosome Consortium Haplogroup nomenclature these kits are in different haplogroups. The hypothesis that the descendants of Henri d'Estrieng of Gien, France, including kit #6611, may be related to the LeStrange or L'Estrange family found in England and Ireland, seems also to have been disproved. We were awaiting results from the testing of a L'Estrange kit which it was hoped might may add evidence to the disproving of that hypothesis and to the relationship between Kit #6491, and the LeStrange lineage. (See Note #1 re this latter hypothesis). However, the test results in Kit #7544 came as something of a surprise, showing the participant to be in HG1 instead of HG2. See the further discussion above in connection with the "Irish L'Estrange" grouping and see Note #5 .

This page has several parts; please click on the part you wish to review:
B) The Most Common Marker Values of Y-Chromosome Results by Haplogroups
C) Comparison with Strong examples:
D) Interpreting Results:
E) Grouping of Test Results:
F) Development of Findings based on Test Results:
G) End of Page

F) Development of Findings based on Test Results:

As before, I am going ahead with posting of the results in the form shown for now, because I know there is a great deal of interest in the results. I expect there will be considerable revision and refinement as time goes on. I will welcome any constructive comments or discussion based on what we have here to this point.

Note the insertion of a "See Notes" column into the spreadsheet. As time goes on, and in collaboration with those affected, linked pages tied to the notes indicated will be inserted which will elaborate on the use of the DNA results to persue the genealogical research concerning the lineages represented by the individuals in the study. If you wish to add a note, please contact me.

I have been mulling over the next steps in the development of our results presentation. As noted above, we now have an experimental Most Recent Common Ancestor's (MRCA) presentation including some discussion of MRCA probabilities. I have also expanded the presentation to include some further implications of the results, in the form of possible findings re various hypotheses concerning the lineages involved in the study. See: Tenative Findings & Conclusions . Again, comments and suggestions for improvements are welcome.

This page has several parts; please click on the part you wish to review:
B) The Most Common Marker Values of Y-Chromosome Results by Haplogroups
C) Comparison with Strong examples:
D) Interpreting Results:
E) Grouping of Test Results:
F) Development of Findings based on Test Results:
G) End of Page

G) End of Page

Contact Information

Electronic mail address

Dave Strong, Study Coordinator

If you want to be placed in contact with any DNA DONOR shown by "kit #" in the above Results Presentation, send an email to the above address. In the body of the email, simply state:

My email address is _________________________

please have the DNA Donor in kit # ____________contact me.

Then "sign" your name. The Strong-Strang-Stronge-Strange-LeStrange DNA study coordinator will then forward this message to the donor. It is believed most donors will reply to your request and exchange family data.

Return to DNA Study page

The Patrilineal Y-DNA Study website is divided into several sections. Click on the section to which you wish to jump:
DNA Study Background
Goals of the DNA Study
How the DNA Study will work- Frequently Asked Questions
How to become a Member of the Study Group
End of DNA Study Page
DNA Study Sign Up Form
DNA Study Testing Release and Waiver Form
DNA Study Results
Most Recent Common Ancestor (MRCA) Analyses

See Also: The Matrilineal mtDNA Study Homepage

Please let us know if this webpage has been helpful! We would very much appreciate being advised of any possible additions or corrections.
This webpage was: Created
February 4, 2003
Last Updated: Wednesday, April 30, 2003 - 6:22 PM

Contact David B. Strong Through:

==== Rootsweb STRONG Mailing List ====


Address to subscribe or cancel subscription for MAIL-MODE:    


Address to subscribe or cancel subscription for DIGEST-MODE:         



To subscribe, send 1 word message:  subscribe

To cancel subscription, send 1 word:  unsubscribe

Copyright © 2003, David B. Strong

Strong Genealogy Network Sites