The GANZ FamilyTreeDNA study (also GANCZ, GENZ, GANS, GENS, GANTZ, GENTZ, etc.) - News

This project was founded on May 25, 2005.

In summer, 2009, this project managed to re-connect three branches of the GANZ/GANTZ family! All three families had their origins in small towns close to each other in Maramures county, which is today in northern Romania (formerly Hungary).

The first branch is that of the project administrator's husband, which can be traced in paper records back to circa 1850 in the town of Sacele (Sacel). The second branch belongs to the family of a Holocaust survivor now living in in Australia, whose Ganz family can be traced in paper records back to circa 1809 in Dragomiresti (Dragomerfalva). These two branches match each other exactly on 63 out of 67 markers (or 64 if you count a RecLoc as only one mutation), putting their common male ancestor back around 1700, give or take 100 years. The third branch came from another nearby town, Salistea de Sus, and is a perfect match to the other two at 12 markers, but markers 13-67 are still pending for him at the lab.

All three of these families are in the same haplogroup, of course -- haplogroup E1b1b1. All have Ashkenazic Jewish backgrounds. Because the DNA evidence shows that their common Ganz ancestor probably did not live very long ago, and because some 17th and 18th Century census records and tax records for their area of the world have survived in the Maramures county archives in Baia Mare, Romania, it is hoped that further conventional paper trail genealogy can someday be used to discover their common Ganz ancestor's name.

The other members of the Ganz surname DNA project do not yet have matches with other people named Ganz. However, all of them have decently-close matches with several families with other surnames, giving them clues to other possible intra-family relationships. For the Ganz project members with Ashkenazic Jewish ancestry, this is as expected, as most Ashkenazic Jews did not start using surnames until about 250 years ago.