DNA Results – NGG Goldens – an interpretation

Comments by
William “Bill” Golden


This is an analysis of the Y-DNA collected from four male descendents of Nathaniel Green ‘Samuel’ Golden in the summer of 2013. Intent in conducting this survey was to establish a baseline DNA profile for tracking related Goldens through time. Information derived from Y-DNA allows the concept of time to transcend history, allowing us also to learn more about our trek long before the name Golden or some variation of it  existed.

Below are Y-DNA kin involved in this and the relationship to myself.

  • FTDNA Kit 289065 (my Y-DNA), 67 marker
  • FTDNA Kit 300733 (1st cousin), 37 marker
  • FTDNA Kit 300735 (3rd cousin), 37 marker
  • FTDNA Kit 300736 (2nd cousin 1x removed), 37 marker

Thirtyseven Y-DNA marker tests were used. It would be very unusual for any significant genetic differences to exist inasmuch as all test takers are separated at the most by just three generations. As a general rule of thumb, some genetic mutation or evolution occurs about once every 300 years. Even this mutation should not be significant enough to prevent correlation of kinship across thousands of years.

Additional information will be discussed as I took the 67 marker test, which yields additional information of interest. Results from the 67 marker test also should apply to all of the test cases since a close kin relationship has been established.

Shown below are the DNA markers used to establish genetic kinship. All test participants had the same exact values except for DYS385.

DYS393 DYS390 DYS19 DYS391 DYS385 DYS426
13 25 14 11 11-14 or 12-14 12
DYS388 DYS439 DYS389I DYS392 DYS389II
12 11 13 13 29

The four test cases came from descendents of two sons of Nathaniel Green Golden (NGG; c.1812-1880):

  • Joseph Henry Golden (1858–1896): DYS385 = 11-14
  • John Hambright “Henry” Golden (1866–1937): DYS385 = 12-14

It would seem that there was a mutation of DYS385 during NGG’s life and that was passed to at least one son. Bottom line: a father-son change of DYS385 value by one up or one down has been confirmed in various tests. For our purposes we should consider this in the category of ‘it happens’ and so it really has little meaning.


It is safe to say that our Golden family came from the United Kingdom at the time of our family’s immigration to America. Whether we came from England, Ireland, Scotland or Wales is a more challenging question.

My own family genealogy story has been challenged by the results of this DNA test. Only a greater collection of DNA samples from a wider range of Golden males, and from some older branches of the Golden family will resolve more specifically the family’s lineage prior to Nathaniel Green Golden (NGG).

What can be said is that the DNA presents a good definition of what we are and where we traveled across the ages before we had family names.

What we are from a technical perspective: R1b DYS390=25 Haplotype #14

From a simplistic perspective, the word haplotype could be considered to mean ‘genetic clan’. At some point in the past there was a genetic Adam (Adam #14) within the R1b family of man, which experienced a common Adam (Adam #1) just over 30,000 years probably in the Caucasus region.

What the 12 marker Y-DNA test tells us is that our Adam (Adam #14) was fruitful and multiplied with his descendents ranging from The Netherlands, Denmark, Northern Spain, Switzerland, Ireland and Germany. The strong presence of our kinfolk in Denmark, Germany and The Netherlands meets the criteria for our family being of a possible Danish or Anglo-Saxon origin, or of Central European Celtic origin. There is little to indicate that this haplotype is primarily Iberian (Spain or Portugal).

What the 67 marker Y-DNA test indicates for our modern genetic kinship and pre-immigration origin is displayed on the map below. Note: to explore this further I have taken the National Genographic Geno 2.0 chip DNA test as of October 2013.

Map - R1b1a2a1a1 distribution - 2013
Map – R1b1a2a1a1 distribution – 2013 – density of FamilyTreeDNA samples living within 50km of each other.

National Genographic Geno 2.0 chip

I would be glad to discuss Y-DNA testing with you: Norfolk1956@gmail.com

DYS390 = 25 has often been associated with being of northern Irish or Scot regional descent, however it exists as well in England, and in other western areas of Europe. Here is an interesting paper (2007) on possible origins of DYS390 = 25.

DYS390 = 25 is carried by about 10 percent of the Atlantic Modal population (western Europe, Atlantic region), which is the classification of the Goldens tested above.

Ireland: DYS390 = 25 is also strongly associated with the Northwest Irish Modal Haplotype (Irish Type 1), aka descendants of the legendary 5th Century king, Niall of the Nine Hostages. It is estimated that 21% of the Irish male population are descended from Niall, most of these descendents living in northwest Ireland. Irish geneticists predict that there may be as many as 2-3 million Irish-descendent males worldwide which carry Niall’s genes. However, outside of northwestern Ireland, DYS390=25 is fairly rare. DYS390=24 is dominant in Ireland, and DYS390=24 is dominant throughout the United Kingdom as well.

There are unique markers between this group and our own line of Goldens to show that while we are DYS90=25, we DO NOT descend from the Niall/Northwest Irish.

I have tested at the 67 marker level so I have a lot more data to work with that takes analysis beyond the basics of what a 12 marker test reveals and/or indicates.