Brewer DNA Project (includes Bruer, Brower, Brew, etc.) - News

Recent NEWS Highlights

FTDNA’s New Test: “The Big Y” 

At the project administrators' conference in Houston, Texas, 9 November 2013, Family Tree DNA announced a new product. They are calling it the BIG Y. According to Family Tree DNA:

The BIG Y product is a direct paternal lineage test. We have designed it to explore deep ancestral links on our common paternal tree. It tests both thousands of known branch markers and millions of places where there may be new branch markers. We intend it for expert users with an interest in advancing science.

It may also be of great interest to genealogy researchers of a specific lineage. It is not however a test for matching you to one or more men with the same surname in the way of our Y-DNA37 and other tests.

The Product cost is $695 and is: 

  • For men only.
  • Most comprehensive Y-DNA test available.
  • Provides your deep ancestral origins.
  • Uncovers new branches (SNPs) on the paternal tree.
  • Find recent branches (SNPs) unique to your direct paternal line, your family, or you.
  • 10 million base-pair coverage.
  • Nearly 25,000 known SNPs tested.
  • We store your DNA for free, so that you can upgrade the tests in the future.
  • NO subscription fee.

What does that mean for us? Estimating that it will find SNP mutations every 1 to 4 generations, then there is the chance to correctly map the many branches of our direct paternal lineage through recent generations, historic events, and deep ancestry. The test price is steep but not as expensive as the Walk Through the Y which it replaces, but to have many results in one place will prove priceless. It will be most effective where people from the same sectors, groups or clades order the Big Y so that results can be compared for shared SNPs and family or private SNPs. 

Project members wanting to know if they should order this new test, how it compares to Family Tree DNA's other products and if it would benefit them and why, we recommend the discussion by Roberta Estes who has tried to combine most of these questions and answer them in this article.

You can find additional answers to questions about BIG Y in the Family Tree DNA Frequently Asked Questions section here.

To order Big Y or any Special Offers, log into your Family Tree DNA kit or family member's kit, select Order An Upgrade, then from the new page, select Special Offers.


There are six project members awaiting BIG-Y results. See below under the heading "Members awaiting Lab Results"

Beginning 18 November, in anticipation of Big Y test results available in 2014, we have expanded the administration of our Brewer surname project. Terry White has joined the team as project co-administrator. Terry will be concentrating on the Brewer/Lanier sub group but can handle any questions you may have about the Brewer surname project as a whole as well. Chris Chester specializes in the Adam Brouwer subgroup while Richard Brewer will be concentrating on the Jan Brouwer subgroup. All of us will support the other subgroups. See descriptions of the groups below and under the RESULTS tab. 

We continue to see increased
Project Membership

As new members join the project the chances of finding a match increases and each new member adds to our ability to define family ancestral groups. With the greater participation much more information regarding the various Brewer family ancestors is available to assist family genealogical researchers. Many earlier members previously identified as “unassigned” have now found genetic matches and have been assigned to their own ancestral family groups. 

With this data we have been able to significantly expand in scope the pedigrees of two early 17th century immigrant settlers of New Netherland, Adam Brouwer Berckhoven and Jan Brouwer, to include information on their first four to five generation lines of descent. New information, both genetic and genealogical continues to be unearthed. See the "RESULTS" page for more detail.

  • PEDIGREE information for the above groups as well as seven additional smaller groups plus "Unassigned" members can be found on the "RESULTS" page under the "About This Group" pull down menu at the top left of this page.
  • To see additional examples of how your DNA signature may help you trace your own family ancestry, you are invited, and encouraged, to view the web pages at ADAM BROUWER SITE and Descendants of JAN BROUWER. Examples of what can be learned about your own deep time genetic history (through your haplogroup) are provided along with introductions to the terms used in genetic genealogy and how to understand and interpret your own genetic signature (Haplotype). The web sites hosting these patriarch’s pedigrees provide explicit examples of the utility of DNA testing for identifying family groups, matching genetic signatures, identifying and resolving incorrect lineages, as well as testing speculative conjectures. With DNA as an adjunct to standard paper documentation methods, genealogy has become an empirical science. 
  • Site for Researchers of the Brewer/Brouwer/Brower surname. Established by Chris Chester, this Brouwer Genealogy Blog Site provides a broad source of information and a gateway to discovering and tracking the descendants of the original New Netherland Brouwer progenitors, namely Adam Brouwer of Gowanus, Jan (or Johannes) Brouwer of Flatlands and Willem Brouwer of Beverwijck (Albany). All three have descendants living today with the surnames Brower or Brewer. You can view the site at: Brouwer Genealogy
  • See also Brouwer Genealogy Database an associated resource provided by Chris Chester that is indispensable in helping researches discover their correct Brouwer, Brower or Brewer ancestry. Descendants are encouraged to use this database in conjunction with their participation in the Brewer DNA Project. The objective is to gather an accurate account of all lines of descent from the original Brouwer family progenitors. 

  • mtDNA Effective 11/17/2013 The mtDNA page option has been removed from this website because it does not contribute to the goals of the surname project and can not be adequately monitored by the administrators. Those interested in their mtDNA are best served by joining the appropriate mtDNA Project at FTDNA and/or by pursuing their matches through their own personal "MyFTDNA" page.



BIG Y tests Ordered --  Lab Results expected mid February 2014

Kit 28385  Ambrose Brewer group Haplogroup R1b1a2 (R-M269)

Kit 44994  Jan Brouwer group Haplogroup I2b1c  (I-M223  P78)

Kit 161350  Adam Brouwer group Haplogroup E1b1b1 (E-M35.1)

Kit 233441  John Brewer of Sudbury, MA Haplogroup R1b1a2 (R-L21)

Kit N10743  Ungrouped Haplogroup  I-M253 (I1*)

Kit 26646  Ungrouped  Haplogroup (R-L48)