• 97 members

About us

Welcome to the Poindexter Descendants Association's DNA Project!

All those who have tested at ftDNA and believe they descend from the family (Poingdestre, Poindexter, Pendexter, Puddester, or similar spellings) are invited to join this project.


The primary goal of this project is to gain deeper understanding of the origins and migrations of our patronymic lineages. We do this by focusing on the paternal lineage (following the surname) lineage of male members of this project who have a solid male to male lineage along this surname. Secondary goals include assisting members whose lineage is not along a male to male line, that is sometime in their past they descend from a Poindexter daughter, or do not know how they connect to the family. See more in the Goal's tab.


The most ancient spelling of the name is Poindestre and Poingdestre, found in records from Normandy in the 12th century. Variations in spelling have occurred over time, geographical location, and the literacy of the informant or the person writing a record. Much more is known of the Poingdestres that have been on the Isle of Jersey since at least 1300 A.D. Poindexter, Pendexter, Puddister or Puddester are most commonly found in North America.


Based on the Y-DNA results, project members fall into one of three large groups, where a common ancestor is predicted within a group, but no common ancestor is predicted for all three groups. See our chart.

Groups 1 and 2 are those Y-DNA test subjects using the Poindexter spelling are assigned to two unrelated groups.

  1. Group 1, based on genealogical research of records, descend from George Poingdestre/Poindexter. George came from Jersey to the Virginia colony in the 1650's. He lived in Middle Plantation (Williamsburg) and built the plantation manor known as Criss Cross in New Kent County. George was the son of Thomas Poingdestre, the seigneur of the fief es Poingdestres and owner of land in St. Saviour Parish in Jersey.
  2. Group 2, the earliest ancestor we have identified for this group using genealogical research is John C. Poindexter, who was born c.1750s and lived in Hawkins County, Tennessee.
  3. Group 3, DNA indicates several testers by the name of Poingdestre, Pendexter and Puddester do have a common ancestor, likely in Jersey in the 16th century.

Additional groups are also shown on the chart, including known and unknown connections to the surname via a female line.

Reports by the PDA Research Committee are published in the PDA Newsletter, which are mailed to PDA members and are available to PDA members online.

Key Steps to Take

  1. You must have a test result with Family Tree DNA (ftDNA). To read more about Y DNA testing check the DNA FAQ item in the menu above. National Genographic Project testers can easily join, but first you must transfer your test results to ftDNA. If you are ordering your first test kit from ftDNA, please order at minimum, the 111 marker Y test. If you have not yet tested to at least 111 markers, please consider upgrading your test. Even better, upgrade to the Big Y test.
    1. 111 Marker Test can:
      • Identify your signature markers, guiding you on SNP/haplogroup testing and saving money on that kind of testing,
      • provide additional and better matches on your myFTDNA matches screen, even new matches can show up,
      • improve precision for Time to Most Recent Common Ancestor (TMRCA) estimates,
      • and going all the way to 111 Y STRs supports family tree building when you reach brick walls in your genealogy, since the 111 STR panel is estimated to have a change once every three generations.
    2. Big Y-500 is the preferred test. It is probably the most important test you can take. It is a Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) test that discovers new SNPs by scanning over 10 million locations on the Y chromosome. The tremendous benefit in this is you will discover SNPs for just your paternal lineage as well as identify ancient SNPs that you may share with many, many other people. Big Y has the ability to discover SNPs that are pertinent to the genealogical time-frame, the last couple of hundred years. The Big Y learning web site has more details. familytreedna.com/learn/y-dna-testing/big-y
  2. To join this project click on JOIN in the graphic banner above and login with your FTDNA account ID and password.
  3. Log into your Kit's account at ftDNA and click on MANAGE PERSONAL INFORMATION. This is critical to finding potential relatives and understanding origins. We have to share data for the project to be successful.
    1. If you are managing a kit for someone else, we recommend using the tested person's last name as the Contact Last Name. Use the First Name field for your full name with "c/o" in front of your name.
    2. Go to PRIVACY & SHARING, scroll down to:
      • Matching Preferences, set Y-DNA Matching level to All Levels
      • Group Project Profile, check the Opt In to Sharing box.
    3. Go to PROJECT PREFERENCES to grant Full or Limited Access for the current project administrators. We can't help you if you have not granted at least Limited Access. Advanced access is even better.
  4. Join and participate in the Poindexter Descendants Association, a 501(c)3 not-for-profit for the research of our family history and socializing with your cousins all year and at annual family reunions. Visit our web site at poindexterfamily.org for more information.
  5. Join the PDA's discussion group for this project. Project administrators and genealogists are available to help answer questions. Click here to subscribe.

Project Considerations and Operations

The project administrators are volunteers and are members of the Poindexter Descendants Association. They do not represent ftDNA nor receive special benefits.

This is a public project. The more of us who test and share our information, the more we will all know. When you join you're making surname, ancestor and DNA related results public, from which they can never be fully retracted. Please remove yourself if you don't want to share publicly. We do not publish your full given name or contact info.

This project is operated as a system of record project. It is intended to operate for posterity purposes. Our descendants and family members and distant cousins can continue on when we are not able to or have new focuses in life. New generations can build upon our work. Subgroupings are done by SNP validated testing with a chain of evidence to the test results. Surnames and STR based predictions are not used to assigned subgroupings. SNP results researched without FTDNA test validation are not included so please validate findings with FTDNA testing. Outside research is good, but please validate branching at FTDNA for the project test results. As changes are made to project administrators the subgroupings can be reconstructed or re-validated as needed given they are based on test results on the Y DNA SNP report page of the project.

Thank you for your consideration. Please review the Results web page. If you have specific questions please join the PDA's Y-DNA discussion group linked to in Number 5 above.


Much of the general information above about Y and STR testing and personal preference settings comes from the R1b All Subclades Master Project and Gateway. If you are a male who has taken a Y-DNA test, please consider joining that group as well. Their researchers are looking at Y DNA for the haplogroup that the Poingdestre families fall into, beyond just looking at our surname. Our haplogroup is common in western Europe as a point of origin and we are focused only on our Norman origins.

The Poindexter DNA Project was started by PDA members Robin BUTLER Daviet and her sister Doris Ann BUTLER Lucas. Today the primary administrator of this project is Jamie Diana POINDEXTER, chair of the PDA Research Committee. Administration of this project is done by volunteers, as is all research and all other activities of the PDA.