top of page
  • Writer's pictureFamily History Fanatics

Creating Surname Tables for DNA Research

Researching your family tree using DNA can be complicated when you haven’t created a surname table as a cheat sheet for referencing your data. Andy talks about these regularly in beginner DNA classes, but I hadn’t created one until today!

Devon Noel Lee excited about surname tables

Watch this video on YouTube.

And you’re about to see my jealousy rear its beastly head. Before we begin, take a look at Andy’s Surname Table:

Surname Table for Lee Family

Lee/Kevern DNA Surname Table

Look at the five spots that are holes in the 4th GGP section. That’s not bad. The holes beside the Garnett in 3rd GGP only indicate that the Lees aren’t really Lees, and from that point on, the surname line changes.

Are you ready to see my surname table?

Surname Table Geiszler

Geiszler Brown Surname Table

I’m really sad.

Before you think I’m a terrible genealogist, each missing surname comes with a challenge. The Anderson/Sparks is pretty ‘righteous’ (bad holey/holy pun) because Anderson and Sparks disappear from records after they have a child. There’s only one record for William Anderson, of Sweden, in Missouri, and nothing else.

Oh, yea! After that, the women, and then men, on that line, is very sparse. This line is new to me and is concentrated in a time period where record-keeping hadn’t begun with consistency. That’s a hard section to work on. Could DNA help?

The third column is also a challenge. The Browns and Townsends were farmers, and as such, they weren’t often highlighted in records. I barely pieced together the Townsend to Lynch connection. But the Gordons, Browns, Fickles, and Nashes are difficult to separate from the other Gordons, Browns, Fickles, and Nashes around the US at the time.

I LOVE my Zumstein line. My great-aunt Dorothy and the other Zumsteins, Comforts, Hedricks, Synders, Lanes, and Mootes from Ontario, Canada, were a record-keeping set. There is very little that I can do to tackle this line that hasn’t been done. So, my DNA serves as a reference point to anyone who is on these lines.

I’m pretty proud of the Geiszler line. This was created by rebuilding the broken bridges of family relationships. A few record keepers made this research possible. I have a question mark next to the King last name because I haven’t proven that as well.

I just discovered it on FamilySearch today. But the other names are well researched. The gaps belong to my German pond hopping ancestors who left little ties to their homeland so far as I can tell.

↪️ Confused about DNA and genealogy?

Grab your copy of this FREE DNA guide:

DNA strand with the title Free Guide Answers to the Most Common DNA Questions asked by new genealogists

I’m happy to have created this table. I thought I knew all my surnames by heart, but Andy keeps saying you can’t keep track of all of them. And it’s true. Koller, King?, Kouck, Wright, Jenkins, and Simons were names I didn’t recognize. So, it’s fun to go generation by generation finding the surnames that you could be connected to via DNA.

genealogy surname table with title create a surname table
If you enjoyed this post, share to Pinterest

Note: To leave a comment, you will be asked to sign in with your Facebook or Google Account. This action will help reduce spam comments on our site. I hope you'll understand.

bottom of page