Campbell DNA Project - Results

The raw data results for the Campbell participants are shown under the Y-Results tab of this page. In this tab, the samples are sorted by Haplogroup and subgroups that I created based upon the affinity of the results. These grouping are very rough and really should be updated.

Of the over 380 samples received, 84% of the samples have been characterized as Haplogroup R1b1 and 8% of the samples are characterized as Haplogroup I.

Haplogroup R1b1 is the most common haplogroup in European populations. It is believed to have expanded throughout Europe as humans re-colonized after the last glacial maximum 10-12 thousand years ago.

Haplogroup I is nearly completely restricted to northwestern Europe. These would most likely have been common within Viking and Anglo-Saxon populations. One lineage of this group extends down into central Europe. Shetland and Orkney have a high concentration of these individuals.

These haplogroups are just two of many that exist. Other haplogroups that are represented in our Clan study also include separate isolated samples of Viking lines (R1a), Native American (C3), and central Asia (G) among others. 

Because Haplogroup R1b1 covers approximately 75% of all the people in Europe, amateur DNA researchers are conducting analysis and speculation as to how R1b may be further sub-divided. This speculation is being done by a small number of researchers on the mailing list. They hypothesize that the following R1b1 subclades might be identified based upon the DYS390, DYS391, and DYS392 markers. Below are these speculative groupings and the rough approximation of their age and composition in our study.

R1b1 Subclade.....      Campbell Study.....Origin

Scottish......................66%..........split off 4300 years ago

Gaelic/North Irish............18%..........split off 4000 years ago

Atlantic Modal (AMH)..........12%..........split off 6400 years ago

Frisia.........................3%..........split off 4800 years ago

Basque ........................1%

Participants in each of these subclades are shown on the Y-Results pages in the following colors: Scottish (Pink), Irish (Green), AMH (Tan), Frisia (Light Blue), Basque (blue).

More recently, I have been looking for better ways of categorizing members of the Campbell project. In the May and November 2007 JOGG articles referenced on the "Background" tab of this web site, I describe the nomenclature and analysis of two Oxford Professors -- Bryan Sykes and Stephen Oppenheimer who have written books on the DNA lines of the British Isles. As of December 2012, the breakdown of Campbell participants according to Oppenheimer's sub-clans is as follows. Explanations are shown below.

Clan.......Number   Percentage 

R1b-9 ....215       57% (Rox - Ancient Scot)

R1b-14a ...47       13% (Rory - NW Irish)

R1b-10 ....34        9% (Roy - AMHT)

R1b-8 .....24        6% (Rob)

R1b-11 ....21        6%

R1b-13 ....16        4%

other .....17        5%


....TOTAL 375       100%

As part of FTDNA's normal STR testing they also predict a participant's sub-clade in accordance with the YCC Genetic Tree. Some participants also opt for additional deep clade or SNP testing to further refine the FTDNA prediction. To date, the distribution of our R1b Campbell results is shown below. It can be seen from this chart that most Campbells are R1b1b2 and further testing can not subdivide this clade into more distinct groups at this time.Oppenheimer


Campbell FTDNA R1b Haplogroups (Dec 2012)

Haplogroup         Num  Percent    Short Name

R1b                 0     0%       M343

R1b1               11     3%       R-P25

R1b1a2            323    84%       M269

R1b1a2a             0     0%       R-L150

R1b1a2a1            1     0%       R-L23

R1b1a2a1a1          2     1%       R-P310

R1b1a2a1a1a         1     0%       U106 / S21

R1b1a2a1a1a1        1     0%       U198 / S29

R1b1a2a1a1a4        1     0%       L48 / S162

R1b1a2a1a1b         6     2%       R-P312 / S116

R1b1a2a1a1b3        2     1%       R-U152 / S28

R1b1a2a1a1b3c       1     0%       R-L2 / S139

R1b1a2a1a1b4       23     6%       R-L21 / S145

R1b1a2a1a1b4b       9     2%       R-M222

R1b1a2a1a1b4g       1     0%       R-L193 / S176

R1b1a2a1a1b4i       1     0%       R-P314.2

However it is interesting to note that of the
61 R1b people who were SNP tested, 39% of the
tested total are L21.

Other researchers have speculated on the DNA signatures of other historical figures.

Sir Gillespic Cambel of Lockawe. Based upon some historic, reference lines, the Campbell DNA Project has also speculated on the DNA signature of the founder of our Clan -- Sir Gillespic Cambel of Lockawe. Sir Gillespic lived approximately 800 years ago and is supposedly the progenitor of all the Campbell chief and cadet lines shown on the Campbell trees on the background page. In theory, if the traditional paper lineages are true, then the DNA of Gillespic and the blood of the Lords of Lochawe flow in the current Duke of Argyll and many tens of thousands of Campbells world-wide who might be descended from from our chiefly tree. However, it is worth noting here that no clan or surname is descended from a single individual -- especially Scottish Clans. The Campbell clan is made up of many, many lines from many different sources. Some of these lines may have originated from individuals changing their names to suit the local land lord or chief while others may have resulted from the need for multiple marriages due to short lifespans. In addition, viking and ango-saxon invasions pre-date the use of surnames which are only 600-800 years old. Given this fact alone, it is surprising that our Clan is as uniformly R1b1b2 as is demonstrated by the data.

More details in the historic Campbell lines are available in a paper printed in the Journal of the Clan Campbell Society of North America in the summer of 2004. More up-to-date and supplementary information about the project and its results are provided to project participants and others upon request.

Colla Uais. The McDonald Clan Genealogist has claimed to have identified the genetic signature of Colla Uais, father of Dalriada. Colla was High King of Ireland who seized Ulster and then took his followers to Scotland around 325AD. It stated that Colla's descendants Fergus, Loarn and Angus (sons of Erc) were the principal foundation lines reestablishing the Scottish kingdom of Dalriada around 465AD. Colla was believed to be a great great great grandson of Conn of the Hundred Battles, High King of Ireland circa 150AD. Colla Uais DNA Haplogroup is supposedly R1b while the MacDonald Chiefly line that is supposedly descended from Somerled has been documented as Haplogroup R1a.

Current Campbell historical research suggests that we are descended from the family O'Duine - originally from people speaking a language similar to modern Welsh. Historical-genealogical analysis traces us back to the district of the Lennox, just east of Argyll and linguistic analysis indicates that the Campbells are of a style compatible with the 'Welsh' linguistic influence, rather than Erse (Irish) Gaelic. This suggests that there is not a direct link between our O'Duine origins and those of the descendants of Conn as claimed in the MacDonald Press Release. However, the risk of further propagating speculative information, it should be noted that the hypothesized values attributed to Colla Uais is close to the average values of our several of our Campbell historic lines. Specifically it should be noted that the hypothesized Colla Uais line shows a genetic difference of only 3 (i.e., 22/25) with our lines that could indicate support for the MacDonald genetic theory.

Niall Nóigiallach - Niall of the Nine Hostages. A paper by a researcher at Trinity College in Dublin hypothesizes an "Irish Modal Haplotype (IMH)" and postulates the presence of a Gaelic DNA signature. They also speculate that, time-wise, this signature may be consistent with a famous Irish king of the 7th century - Ui Neill and possible his mythical ancestor the 5th century warlord Niall of the Nine Hostages. The paper goes on to state that 1 in 5 males in north-west Ireland may be a descendant of this man. As a scientific paper goes, the mention of the "common ancestor" who was a semi-mythical king over a millennium ago is wild, but interesting, speculation.

With respect to our project. a number of the "Gaelic/Irish Campbell Participants" seem more closely aligned with this line than the Scottish Campbell line more commonly seen in the Argyll area. This research is interesting to Clan Campbell as it reinforces the conventional wisdom that there may have existed an ancient Irish Campbell line that is separate from the Scottish Campbell line.

Supporting Material The following papers were published in the Journal of the Clan Campbell Society of North America. Some of these materials have been updated and revised.

CCSNA Article, Spring 2003
CCSNA Article, May 2004

CCSNA Article, May 2004 – Campbell Lines

CCSNA Article, (Duncan Beaton) Winter 2004

CCSNA Article, Winter 2006

CCSNA Article, Winter 2006 - Large Campbell Graphic

Other Reference Materials that may Aid in Interpretting Your Data
 I Have the Results of My Genetic Genealogy Test, Now What? by Blaine T. Bettinger