Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Why I Am Getting A DNA test from Family Tree DNA

The reason for   using DNA for genealogical purposes has taken its time to sink into my fuzzy brain. Then it hit me, it could be huge, so I have ordered my DNA Kit from Family Tree DNA.

I have concluded I will eventually take all three types of DNA tests from all three major companies in this business. They aren't real cheap to take but I am excited for the possibilities. It finally hit me at Rootstech 2015 why I need to take the test.

The Y DNA test proves male descendancy. Literally the genes of males are passed down from generation to generation to the male children. How cool is that? We Craguns are all blocked with Patrick Cragun genealogy research. We know of his time in America, there are sources documenting parts of his life. But Patrick is a legend. Stories are passed down from great grandchildren of his running away from somewhere in Ireland at the age of 15. Supposedly he jumped ship in Boston Harbor to lead a fabulous life as an early American Patriot.

Some of we Cragun's that descend from Patrick spell our name Cragan, (not our Craguns). Our problem is that neither spelling is found in Ireland records. Oh goodie, there are Craigs, McCreaghan, Cregen, Creghan and 100 other different spellings. We are in deep doo doo trying to research by last name.

We also have no clue which county Patrick ran away from. Knowing what County they lived in would be a big help. Someone said Dublin so I spent weeks looking through microfilm looking or some sort of Caleb Creaghan or similar in Dublin. I struck out. I tried a couple of other counties, strike three. I quit.

I did find a couple of cool castles with some version of our last name. Maybe I have a rich inheritance in hiding. Maybe I should take possession of one of those castles. Maybe we are Scottish or Scotch-Irish. Maye we are really Craig's not Craguns. The Craig's were hearty people named because they lived in the Craggy mountains of Scotland. A hearty bunch and a fierce bunch were they. I'm guessing I don't have their genes. But wait, I was a good scout and loved to hike and camp. Could I be Scottish not Irish after all?

And what about the so called Caleb Cra or Cre something? Is that his real name? Did he have a wife? of course he did, if that's his name, I exist so there was a mother to Patrick with some sort of name. How can I ever find her, or her parents or her in-laws? Heck, they all could be outlaws, we just can't find them as we don't know how to research for them.

Thus the DNA test. Will there be a miracle in the works now or in the future? Perhaps there will be because DNA testing is becoming more common. Family Tree DNA has the largest database, although the others are growing. Is there a Scot or an Irish, even a British male Creaghan (Cragun, even Kraghan) cousin who I will be matched to as a descendant of brave old  Patrick's fathers?  Will just a different spelling open the doors to finding Patrick's parents? Will we find what County in Ireland  he ran away from in the mid 1700's?

What an amazing find it would be to connect to a cousin from across the sea. Here's hoping. It will take several weeks to get the results but for sure I will share the findings.


  1. How fun! Good luck with your DNA research!

  2. Your enthusiasm is infectious! If you haven't already done so, I recommend that you read 20 Do's and Don'ts of DNA for genealogy and X Marks the Spot and DNA Testing for Genealogy: Getting Started. Have fun!