Updated 20 February 2015
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Updated 18 April 2014
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Surname DNA testing is the the best "add-on" tool available to genealogists! The many advantages include:-
Surname tests (Y-DNA) enable genealogists to verify their father's father's...father's paternal ancestry. (The molecular (aka genetic) ancestry overrides the surname ancestry).
Molecular ancestry information can be very powerful when combined with traditional paper trails and can uncover family secrets!
- While a surname itself may give us incomplete or misleading or, at best, only general information about the origin of a family, DNA-testing can give us concrete evidence for identifying and separating family lines. Y-chromosome DNA testing is especially helpful because the male Y-chromosome is handed down, father to son, unchanged through the generations, except for rare mutations which, in themselves, can be helpful indicators of branching. The accessibility and affordability of family DNA testing is doubtless the greatest technical advance in the history of genealogical research because -- at long, long last -- we have a tool to break down those brick walls!
This project is keen for people from the United Kingdom, all the countries of Western Europe, Northern and Eastern Europe, the United States of America, Canada, the Caribbean, South America, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa (and anywhere else I have missed when I considered the countries in which the surname exists...) to please join it.
Like all surname projects, this one is intent upon proving connections using DNA. But it is NOT just surname ancestry. It is molecular (or as some prefer it, genetic) ancestry.
The best articles I have found to date for understanding just what 'DNA' is and how the results of testing can help you with your genealogy.
Here is a hint for you if you have tested FF.
Once you (or anyone) joins a project, you can go to your FTDNA Home Page and hover your mouse over the FF Drop-down menu visible in the blue tool bar. Then select "Advanced Matches" from that menu. Check FF and select whether you want to see your matches in either the full data base, or just in the specific projects that you have joined.Because it is a pain switching from one window to another, I have three browsers, so that I can get the same person’s Home page up showing different reports for the same tester all at the same time.
If you are reading this, then it is assumed you are hunting for details about your ancestors and extending your knowledge about your particular line.
DNA testing will certainly aid you in a number of ways but you must still have a paper trail if you want to name that ancestor when you find you have a match!
DNA testing will also inform you whether your paper trail is correct. (My favourite 'hobby-horse' is to tell you not to rely on the work of someone else UNLESS they have supplied you with references to enable you to check these for yourself. And please do check them).
Page 306 Vol. II The Scottish Nation by William Anderson, published 1867, records the following:
GLADSTONE, a surname originally Gladstanes, and derived from the estate of that name in Teviotdale. The Gladstanes of that ilk, previously designed of Cocklaw, were a pretty ancient family, as is proved by charters still extant. In one, granted by Robert the Third, of several lands to William Inglis of Manners, the right of Gladstanes of Cocklaw is reserved. George Gladstanes and William Gladstanes are witnesses in a charter of Archibald, earl of Angus, to his apparent heir James Douglas, July 2, 1479. Nisbet mentions some charters of the Gladstanes' family about the same period. [Nisbet's Heraldry, vol. i. p, 267.]
Mr. John Gladstanes, L.L.D., supposed to have belonged to the family of Gladstanes of Gladstanes, was admitted a lord of session, 30th January 1542. From several instances being recorded of gifts and appointments made to him, with the view of increasing his emoluments, it would appear that he was by no means rich. While at the bar, he was, in March 1535, selected by the lords of session, with "Master Thomas Marjoribanks," to be advocate for the poor, on a letter from the king, enjoining them to choose a man of "gude conscience" for that office, under the title of Advocatus Pauperum. On the 3d September 1546, four years after being raised to the bench, he was appointed collector of the contributions due by the prelates, for the supply of the court, when he was designed "licentiate in baith the lawis." It dies not appear that he adopted any judicial title, but in a roll of the Judges made up on 19th January 1555, he is styled "My lord Doctor Mr. Jo. Gladstanes." On 21st May 1557, he obtained a gift from the court, of the arrears of the contribution due by the minister of Failfurd, who was superior of the Trinity or Red Friars.
George Gladstanes, a native of Dundee, was, in 1600, made bishop of Caithness by James the Sixth, and in 1606 was translated thence to the archbishopric of St. Andrews. He had previously been minister of Arbirlot in Forfarshire, and in 1597 was removed to be minister at St. Andrews, of the university of which city he was, in 1599 appointed vice chancellor. In 1604, while bishop of Caithness, he was named a commissioner for promoting the union of the two kingdoms, a favourite project of James the Sixth after his accession to the English throne, but which at that time proved abortive. Archbishop Gladstones, whose name often appears in the ecclesiastical records of the period, died 2 May 1615. His son, Mr. Alexander Gladstanes, was archdean of St. Andrews.
Claiming descent from the ancient family of Gladstanes of Gladstanes, Mr. John Gladstones of Toftcombes, near Biggar, in the upper ward of Lanarkshire, had by his wife Janet Aitken, a son Thomas, a prosperous trader in Leith, who married Helen, daughter of Mr. Walter Neilson of Springfield, and died in the year 1809. Of this marriage, Sir John Gladstone, the first baronet, of Fasque, was the eldest son. Born at Leith on the 11th of December1764, he commenced business there at an early age, but soon removed to Liverpool, where he amassed considerable riches by his enterprise, industry, and skill, and was munificent in their disposal. In 1840, he built and endowed St. Thomas' church at Leith, in communion with the church of Scotland. He also built on the same spot--in the neighbourhood of the Coal Hill, where his father had his place of trade--a school and an asylum with a revenue of 300 pounds a year for the support of ten females labouring under incurable diseases. When carrying on businesses in Liverpool--from which he retired in 1843--he was a liberal donor to the church of England; and on returning to Scotland, he became a not less liberal benefactor to the Scottish Episcopal church. His gifts to Trinity college, Glenalmond were princely; he contributed largely to the fund for endowing the bishopric of Brechin; and at his own charge he built and endowed a church--making his place of sepulture within its walls--at his beautiful seat of Fasque in Kincardineshire, which he had purchased. He likewise built two churches in Liverpool, and one in the immediate neighbourhood where he had long resided.