Archive for September, 2013

awaiting ancestry DNA surname test

September 7, 2013

I currently check my mailbox every day, awaiting the results of my brother taking the male-line DNA surname test. I could not take the test, nor any of my sons. It is a paternal DNA test to see which Agnews we are related to most. This will confirm what area of the USA our Agnew ancestors lived in. But the first question it will answer is, “Are we truly Agnews at all??”  The records I have found for my great-grandfather Agnew all consistently confirm that he was born in Ohio. That being the case, we could be descended from a line of Agnews in the Cincinnati area who were part of the Shaker movement. If that is the case, that gives an explanation for why I’ve had such a darn hard time finding anything on them. The other mystery it will solve is the 1850 census record mystery. The James Agnew who is 8 yrs. old on that page, and who I believe is my great-grandfather, is listed at the bottom of the census page, away from the rest of his family, as an afterthought of some kind. Why is he not listed with the rest of his family further up the page? He is connected to the elderly Samuel from PA, and the head of household (another) James Agnew, & his wife Mary. Mary is only 22, and has a new baby under a year old, Alexander. James is much older than this Mary, by 20 years or so. I believe Mary is not 8-yr-old James’ mother. I have had great difficulty finding any more information on James & Mary, no marriage record, nothing. This test may give us gigantic clues as to whether 8-yr-old James is indeed the son of this older James (from a first wife?). Both the older James, and elderly Samuel, give their birthplace as PA. Mary also came from PA. I believe 8-yr-old James was born in Ohio, but whose child is he? We may find that we are not Agnews at all. I just want to know. In other words, was he adopted? Or was he a child of James & another woman or wife? He could even be a servant or slave boy, for all I know. It was 1850. But this is unlikely since they were in Ohio.

All I know is I anxiously await the results of this DNA test, to tell us whatever it will tell us, to lead us in a stronger direction one way or another, to answer whatever questions it will answer. If the test also lists ethnicities, that may tell us something as well. I just can’t wait to actually see it, and I thank my brother for taking the test.