Y DNA Results Part 2: A DNA migration question solved

In my post DNA Results Part 1: My Y DNA has been on quite a journey https://genealogyadventures.wordpress.com/2013/02/05/dna-results-part-1-my-y-DNA-has-been-on-quite-a-journey/ there were two possible routes my 3 x great-grandfather Jacob Sheffey’s ancient ancestors took from Egypt to West Africa some 50,000+ years ago.  One route was across the Sahara. The second route was across North Africa.

Further DNA analysis has solved the question of which migration route these ancestors took.

A little thing called Subclade E1b1a1f clinched it.

My Y-Chromosome's 'family tree'

Each Haplogroup (eg BT , E1b1a & E1b1a1f) and subclade (E1b1a1f1) is a distinct sub-branch of mankind’s family tree. Each branch results from DNA mutations within the human population.

Looking at the image above, haplogroups and subclades are like different branches in a common ancestral family tree. These genetic family tree branches show how different human populations are related to one another…and how far back each branch began to share common ancestral populations.

The more branches you uncover through DNA testing finely tunes which populations you share DNA with and how close, in terms of time, you’re related to the other branches in the overall human tree…and the routes taken as these branches and sub-branches were created. It all has to do with DNA mutations and the populations which carry these mutations.  It’s what makes an E1 person an E1 and not an E2. While E1 and E2 are different, they share a common ‘ancestor’ subclade, which would be E.

So what’s so special about Subclade E1b1a1f?  It’s primarily found in modern North African populations. It arrived into North-western and Central Northern Africa tens of thousands of years ago.

So based on the latest DNA results, Jacob Sheffey’s ancient paternal African ancestors didn’t traverse the Sahara to arrive in present day Mali and Burkina Faso. His ancestors left present day Egypt along the North African coast, part of a population of ancient peoples who would form the present day Berber speaking peoples. The map below shows the distribution of these peoples, which is a perfect correlation to the refined DNA results:

Distribution of modern day Berber speaking peoples

Map showing the distribution of modern day Berber speaking peoples.

Science can be an incredible thing.

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4 thoughts on “Y DNA Results Part 2: A DNA migration question solved

  1. Your profile mirrors mine. My own grandfather recounted his annual trips from Morocco to Zimbabwe. He had family in India and Altai. My mother was Altai and turkik. The spice trail Tureg and their world encompassing trade routes are your key. I came up Taiwanese on my Nigerian father’s side.

    • Thank you for your comment, Maji. I’m just scratching the surface of just how extensively African peoples travelled in terms of trade routes. And just how ancient those trade routes were.

  2. Hi my name is Shawn my Haplogroup is E1b1 a7a. Do you go according to the map or Indigenous. Region s were Egypt/Sudan Turkey/Armenia Angola/Congo Ukraine/Russia. I like to hear someone response thank you.

    • Hi Shawn,

      I’m going to do my best to answer this. I’m kind of working out what you’d like to have answered.

      The GA genetic genealogists and I were able to map the progression of my more ancient ancestral migrations through the YDNA and mtDNA tests I did with Genebase. Genebase provides detailed information about specific tribes and peoples a testee matches. The genetic genealogists, in turn, were able to roughly (don’t forget, this is a developing science!) when I matched these specific groups. This is simply something I have no training in. I heavily rely on the team to be able to work with my DNA at that level.

      From that work, they were/are able to give an estimate about when cousin branches branched off from the direct DNA lines.

      For instance, if I’m matching YDNA testees in Tunisia (this is just an example), at a generation level of 0 or 1, and someone from Chad at a generational distance of 2, then my closer match is the Tunisian match. The Chad match happened later. This means that my YDNA went from Tunisia to Chad. Now, this could be a direct transfer, meaning an unknown man in Tunisia left there for Chad, or a male of his line did. Or one of his descendants eventually left Tunisia for Chad. This is a very simplified example, but I hope it makes sense.

      It goes on from there. With the test I took, I have generational distance levels that range from 0 (the closest genetic match) to 8 generations in terms of shared DNA difference (DNA mutation, in other words).

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