Joseph S. Golden, b1846 or 1853 Tennessee d1906 Alabama

Joseph S. Golden 
Birth Oct 1846 or about 1853 • Tennessee
Death about 1906 • Scottsboro, Jackson, Alabama

YDNA testing says: R1b “Niall of Nine Hostages” line; probable origin is Ireland but could have lived elsewhere in the UK at time of immigration to the USA.

Parentage: Unknown, although several sets of parents have been suggested.

Claimant descendants disagree as to when Joseph S. Golden was born: 1846 or 1853; although all agree he was born in Tennessee.

There are two Joseph Goldens in the 1870 census and disagreement as to which one is Joseph S. Golden.

Will investigate the parentage and birth year question again at some time in the future.

About YDNA Test Results

This test has MANY matches … over 800 12 and 25 marker matches with individuals from Ireland … with several hundred others in England and Scotland, and several hundred in the USA.

>>> YDNA testing did not reveal a Golden ancestor, or a coexisting secondary related line of Goldens in the USA … but probably did identify Joseph’s ancestor, maybe even immigrant ancestor … but not one named “Golden”. A higher level (67+ marker test) could probably confirm a specific male line since the late 1500s.

Unique aspects of this YDNA indicates an Irish origin in northwestern Ireland after 600AD or in the immediate several centuries thereafter.

Unique Aspects = “Niall Of The Nine Hostages” bloodline, which is R1b and has specific STR characteristics when the DNA is looked at.

— Being a descendant of “Niall of the Nine Hostages“, an Irish King of northwestern Ireland from about 500AD, explains why there are so many matches … but you would need to read ‘the rest of the story’ to understand why King Niall is estimated to have 2+ million living male descendants.

Niall and his descendants practiced polygamy, and may have also practiced ‘right of first night‘ when it came to assuring the loyalty and kinship of their subjects. Certainly Niall’s Ireland was both polygamous and polygynous through about 1100AD.


There were seven (7) Golden family matches at 25 markers, but only two at 37 markers.

A 25 marker match that is not also a 37 marker match indicates that these male lines could have branched as much as 2000 years ago since there was last a common grandfather. Family surnames did not exist during most of this time … so related but not recent ancestors that would have a genealogy.

— A 12 and 25 marker match does not mean that these matches descend from King Niall.

>>> A match that branched 2000+ years ago precedes King Niall’s DNA contribution to defining hereditary markers among his descendants, so how do they connect?

Simple Answer: the Niall line was an R1b branch that migrated from elsewhere to northwestern Ireland.

———- My own American Golden line, which arrived in America as ‘Keeling’ (1635) shares many of the same marker values as Niall descendants  … with exception to not having the specific markers associated with King Niall.

Through higher level YDNA testing we have been able to track our line to Norway and Sweden via SNP testing … and have connected with living male kin from those areas … although it has been thousands of years since we shared a common grandfather.

The two matching 37 marker Golden families are 4 markers different than Joseph S. Golden. One claims descent from an unnamed Golden born 1830, and the other descends from Andrew Golden, born about 1830, Lackan, County Mayo, Ireland.


37 marker YDNA matches which are closest to Joseph S. Golden are not named Golden.

— At 37 markers, the names Gilmer, Gilmour, Graham, and Grey are the ‘G’ families closest in shared ancestry to Joseph S. Golden … BUT the Wilson, Murphy, Smith and McEwen families are even closer (just 1 marker different).

>>> With four generations having passed since Joseph S. Golden lived, these one marker difference Wilson, Murphy, Smith and McEwen families probably shared a common grandfather since 1500.

Are one of these Wilson, Murphy, Smith and McEwen families the ancestor of Joseph S. Golden b1847 TN? Or is there another family, perhaps even named Golden, still out there without a tested male family member?

Got info? Bill Golden,