Oxfordshire- Background




·     Richard Merry (dna@ofhs.org.uk), Group Administrator

·     Sue Honore (dna@ofhs.org.uk), Group Administrator

NEWSFLASH - see 'news' tab under 'About this Group' for details of Oxfordshire DNA matching service


This Geographical Dual DNA project provides for both Y-DNA and mtDNA for people with a direct paternal or maternal ancestral line originating in the English county of Oxfordshire. Participants can order either a Y-DNA (Y-chromosome) test to find out about their direct paternal line (your father, your father's father, etc.) or an mtDNA (mitochondrial DNA) test to learn about their direct maternal line (your mother, your mother's mother, etc.). The only requirement for joining the project is that participants must have a documented paper trail to Oxfordshire prior to 1900 on the direct paternal line for the Y-DNA test (preferably at least 19th Century or earlier) or on the direct maternal line for the mtDNA test (preferably three generations or more residency in Oxfordshire). If you have completed appropriate DNA testing with FTDNA (that is, you have an FTDNA kit number), you can join this project most simply by entering ‘Projects’ on your myFTDNA page and clicking ‘Join’.  Members are asked to be as specific as possible with a geographical location for their Oxfordshire ancestors (see Results section). 

Please don’t hesitate to contact the administrators if you are uncertain about these requirements or wish to know more about the project.  This project is supported by the Oxfordshire Family History Society (http://www.ofhs.org.uk/) and more information about the county can be found on their web site. 

DNA tests

The project accepts both Y-DNA and mtDNA test results for male and female lines, respectively.

For some surnames, Y-DNA tests may be available which are sponsored at a reduced cost by the relevant surname projects. Since the Oxfordshire Project is new, it is not at this time  in a position to offer sponsorship for targeted surnames of particular interest to the project until the General Fund receives donations.  Periodically, FTDNA offer tests at reduced prices.  These are publicised on their web site home page.

STR marker testing for common male ancestors

Testing for 12 or 25 markers is usually insufficient for matches that are likely to identify common ancestors. If a close match is found at the 37 marker level, an upgrade to 67 or 111 markers may be needed to confirm a relationship.  Check the Tip report for further information.

SNP testing for haplogroup

Y-DNA testing for short tandem repeats (STR markers such as the usual 37, 67 or 111 marker tests) can give an indication of haplogroups.  Haplogroups are defined by single nucleotide polymorphisms or SNPs which are single mutations at a specific point in the DNA.   For example, it is common for westyern Europeans to belong to the R-M269 group (Haplogroup R with a known mutation called M269) or an indication to be given for haplogroup I or other groups.  A discussion of European haplogroups and their history can be found at http://www.eupedia.com/europe/origins_haplogroups_europe.shtml . The question then is, what wuld be the best way to proceed to obtain a more detailed haplogroup?  For example, it is probably not cost effective to pay for a single test just to prove that you are indeed M269.  It also depends on how much the person being tested wishes to spend.  First it may be wise to check the position of the expected group on the ISOGG Y-DNA tree at http://www.isogg.org/tree/ to get some idea of the number of 'downstream' SNPs.  There are then a two options.  One is to look a suitable 'deep clade' SNP tests that FTDNA provide - your haplogroup tree on your FTDNA home page will usually indicate appropriate tests or a SNP package to pursue.  Alternatively, the Geno 2.0 package of the Genographic Project may be cost effective and results can be transferred to FTDNA at no cost.  The structure of haplogroup trees are changing reguarly as new SNPs are discovered and placed in the 'tree', and accordingly the SNP tests available also change.  Please contact the project administrators by email if you wish to obtain further advice on SNP testing for haplogroup.    

Family Finder

The Oxfordshire project is also able to accept people with Family Finder results from both males and females with a documented ancestor prior to 1900 from the county on any of their ancestral lines. The Family Finder test is best used for finding genetic cousins within the last five to eight generations (approximately).  For this test we prefer people with three or four mixed generations resident in Oxfordshire within the last eight generations. 

Joining this project

There are several ways of joining this project.  If you are already an FTDNA customer, you can easily join from your FTDNA page through the Projects area (joining projects is free).   If you are a new customer to FTDNA and wish to join the project, you can obtain a discount by joining from the FTDNA home page.  On the home page, click on PROJECTS near the top of the page, scroll down to DUAL GEOGRAPHIC PROJECTS and look under 'O' for Oxfordshire.  Click on Oxfordshire, then scroll to the bottom of this page where you will find a price list, select your test and order.  You will need a credit card. 

Joining from other projects and other testing companies

If you have already had your DNA tested with Family Tree DNA as part of a surname project, a haplogroup project or another geographical project you are welcome to join this project too. Joining projects is free and not limited in number.  The project is also able to accept results from people who have tested with one of the FTDNA affiliate companies.

Oxfordshire background

Historical aspects of Oxfordshire can be found it the following web sites:



It has existed as a ‘region’ since at least Saxon times when it was at the border of Saxon Wessex close to Danish Mercia.  The county has always had a relatively low population and has been largely rural with the notable influx of students from the time of establishment of the university.  Oxford has always been the largest population centre and now accounts for about 25% of the total. Population figures over recent centuries (gathered from various directories and web sites) are shown below.  During the 19thCentury, the population grew slowly.  It is hoped that these characteristics may assist in identifying DNA that is most closely associated with the long-term population of the county.

Year                         Area  (acres)            Population

1700                          n/a                           79,000

1750                          n/a                           92,400

1801                          n/a                         109,620

1811                          n/a                          119,190

1821                          n/a                         136,971

1831                        467,380                   152,156

1841                        467,230                   161,643

1851                        472,887                   170,363

1861                        472,717                   170,944

1871                        470,095                   177,975

1881                        483,621                   179,559

1891                        485,322                   191,191

1901                        480,687                   186,460

1911                        480,687                   199,269

1921                        479,220                   189,615

1931                        479,224                   209,621

1939                          n/a                           n/a

1951                        479,178                   275,808

1961                        479,178                   309,452

1971                        479,174                   381,590

1981                        644,392                   507,230

1991                        638,162                   547,584

2001                          n/a                         605,500

General Fund

Current balance: $36.00

Type Amount Date Donor Note KitNum Donation Type
Debit $206.00 6/14/2013     293902 Unknown
Debit $245.00 6/14/2013     293900 Unknown
Credit $437.00 6/11/2013 Oxfordshire Family History Society     Individual
Credit $50.00 5/3/2013 Ray Reynolds     Individual

Project Stats

Statistic Type Count
Big Y 12
Combined GEDCOMs Uploaded 17
DISTINCT mtDNA Haplogroups 60
DISTINCT Y-DNA Confirmed Haplogroups 34
DISTINCT Y-DNA Predicted Haplogroups 0
Family Finder 80
Genographic 2.0 Transfers 7
Maternal Ancestor Information 116
mtDNA 61
mtDNA Full Sequence 46
mtDNA Plus 60
mtDNA Subgroups 4
Paternal Ancestor Information 143
Predicted Y-DNA Haplogroups 25
Total Members 195
Unpredicted Y-DNA Haplogroups 0
Unreturned Kits 32
Y-DNA Deep Clade (After 2008) 5
Y-DNA Deep Clade (Prior to 2008) 5
Y-DNA Subgroups 17
Y-DNA111 32
Y-DNA12 121
Y-DNA25 115
Y-DNA37 114
Y-DNA67 73