Be sure to see the Project Background and Project Results sections for more on this topic.
The big picture is that several of us who are researching the early Crago's in America have wondered if there were four brothers -- Robert, Thomas, James and John -- who were all sons of a Thomas Crago, Sr. who was killed by Indians in 1770 in present-day Greene Co., PA. Some of us have been trying to research these lines for as long as 40 - 50 years. However, these four men were all apparently born between 1757 and 1765, before the first US Census and the Revolutionary War -- and finding good documentation of their relationship to each other has been difficult.
We know that John Crago was in NC as a young man, but later moved to Missouri. We have at least one record which says he was born in PA, as (apparently) were Robert, Thomas and James. We believe all four were originally located (and possibly born) in the Conococheague Valley of PA and MD, in or near present-day Peters Twp., Franklin Co., PA.
The newest tool we have been bringing to this research effort is to do DNA testing of Male Crago/Craigo descendants of these four men. We have already tested twenty-six volunteers. What we're finding is that there is a common Crago DNA profile which seems to define the majority of these descendants.
You see, a man can only receive his Y chromosome from his biological father. Therefore, my Y chromosome is essentially the same as my father's, his father's, etc., etc., etc. We would expect, therefore that almost every living Crago/Craigo male descended from these four men would have identical, or nearly identical Y chromosomes. Exceptions occur if a child is adopted, or the biological father was not actually a Craigo. (Note: Crago and Craigo are both used, often in the same family lines. They have been shown, for genealogical purposes, to be essentially interchangeable forms of the same surname.)
So far, however, we have not found a well-documented male Craigo descendant of this North Carolina John Crago to test. We believe we have found descendants of Thomas, Robert and James (which all have near-identical DNA!) but we do not have well-documented descendants of John. Our hope is that we can find descendants of John who match the DNA of Thomas, Robert and James, and we can thereby add DNA hard evidence to the hypothesis that they were four brothers. With the evidence in hand, we now think they may have been a mixture of siblings and cousins.
Specifically we are looking for 18 Craigo men whom we believe are still alive, as follows --
Four Craigo men with roots in Callaway Co., MO, -- specifically, Colin A, Ernest L, John F, Robert A. or any other Callaway County-linked male Craigo
Six Craigo men with roots in Gilmer Co, GA, Bradley Co, TN, or most recently Lamb Co., TX -- specifically, Aaron, James, James F, James R, William, William H. or a similarly linked male Craigo
Two Craigo men with recent roots in Gilmer Co., GA -- specifically, William R and Thomas W (or William T), or a similarly linked male Craigo
Six Craigo men with roots in Hunt Co., TX through Thomas Craigo and his wife Viola -- specifically, Corey, Edward D, Justin D, Timmy W, Tony S and Tony S Jr
There are, of course, a variety of other relationships which can be addressed by DNA testing. Read the Project Results Section for several other questions we are currently researching.