There is little doubt if you're interested in history, you are also interested in genealogy, especially the genealogy of your own family, for "the history of the world is in the last analysis but the history of the individual". (Jesse Blaine GWIN).
As I type today, there are new individuals who are finding an interest in their past and are beginning their quest into a world once lived. I start my journey by closing my eyes. I see my grandfather at 5-years old, his older brothers and sisters, his mother and father, the horses, cattle, and his home (early 1910's) .... When I come back to reality, I remember this and want to make sure I do not make mistakes. This I do for every family member added to my tree, placing myself into that period of time.
Over the past 100 years, technology has advanced far beyond our expectations. We look back at the published research and still find some mistakes. So we question others to prove, not realizing they have deep feelings pertaining to their own history.
Our countries have fought battles and records have been destroyed. We have little to work with, time has taken its toll on our documentation and our ancestral graveyards. In most cases records do not exist, and still we have people that can not except the few documents that others have gathered.
Strangely, we are not the first generation that has searched for documentation of our heritage. Some of our close relatives and ancestors have passed their knowledge down to us, while others have nothing to begin with. There are those individuals that do not want to share their knowledge, those that want to manipulate the past, and some that just don't care. Some people have the "Adam & Eve" syndrome or a "Royalty" syndrome and just want to quickly connect their families to notable Kings of the past by duplicating mistakes created by others.
I have found that it is very difficult for some people to "publicly admit" when they have made a mistake. While I have made my share, have always stated this as "an opinion" which I'm entitled to and apologized if wrong or will. I am not a "judge" and never claimed to be one. I am not a "guru" but through the years, have gathered information from other researchers willing to share their knowledge.
I have experienced my share of road-blocks researching my own past. I struggled through the 1790-1850 time frame, with my own Great-Great-Grandfather, F. M. GWINN's birth about 1829 .. and only now, in 2010, after getting results of a Y-67 DNA Test along with a Family Finder Test, can I truly state my opinion of my GWINN heritage, with some degree of skepticism.
First, I think the following..... How wonderful it would be if could get past the 1700's with other members of the Gewin, Ginn, Guin, Guinn, Gwin, Gwinn, Guyn, Guynn, Gwyn, Gwynn, O'Guin-OGwynn, and McGuin-McGwynn basic family surnames. This will be very difficult, because we are NOT ALL RELATED, but some of us ARE RELATED. Some of us can legitimately trace our heritage overseas, but do not know if there were any cousins or distant relatives which made the trip earlier.
I ask everyone .... What can we do.... ??? How can I help....???? Answer: This is why I started the DNA Project.
1.) .. DNA testing has proven that Baysden GWINN-GWIN (m. Sarah Maddox) of South Carolina was "VERY CLOSELY" related to the George GUINN-GUYNN (m. Annie Wheeler) of Missouri ... This is a great discovery and would never of been known without testing. How close is still questionable. ( until more participants volunteer, and upgraded testing is performed on current members, time will only tell ).
2.) .. DNA testing has proven that Robert GWIN (m. Jean Kincaid) of Augusta Co., VA was "NOT THE BROTHER" of Patrick GUIN (m. Jinny McDonald) of Rockingham Co., Virginia. But they did share the same paternal Guin-Gwin ancestor calculated about 900-1100 A.D. ... This is another great discovery and would never of been known without testing. ( Note: would like to verify more branches of their suspected son's descendants ).
3.) .. DNA testing has proven there are currently 12 groups, but we know there are many more, possibly as high as 200 to 500 groups with our similar surnames. We know that some with the R-M222 Haplotype are of Irish or Lowland Scottish descent and are tied closely to "Niall of the Nine Hostages". We know some of our GINN, GUIN, GWIN, GUYN, GWYN ancestors were from IRELAND, WALES, ENGLAND, FRANCE, CANADA, AUSTRALIA, USA, and some were Native American Indians. We know our history with the Civil War, and the Africian American slaves took on the surnames of prior owners. ( They're entitled to benefit from a DNA Study as well as everyone else ).
In the early 1600's, IRELAND had been devastated by the ENGLISH, during the Siege or "Battle of Kinsale" (1601) and the "Nine Years' War" (1607), hence the "Flight of the Earls" ... On May 14, 1607, Jamestown was established as the 1st colonial establishment in the New World. The Mayflower arrived on September 6, 1620, more ships soon followed with many immigrants. Over the next 200 years thousands of ships arrived to the New World with millions of immigrants. The majority of them were poor, few had wealth, some prospered and some did not. Some were of Irish, Scottish, English, French, and German descent. Some changed the spelling of their surnames as the moved westward and some did not.
So my main questions are: Where do you fall into this picture...???? Do you know your true heritage...????
Are you really from the Bartlet clan, the Baysden clan, the Champion clan, the Hamilton clan, the Hardin clan, the Hardy clan, the Mordecai clan, the Malcolm clan, the Owain clan, the Robert clan, the Patrick clan. ..... or possible other clan that began with the name of Andrew, or Albert, Alfred, Benjamin, Charles, David, Donald, Franklin, George, James, Joseph, John, Nicholas, Peter, Robert, Thomas, William, .... or progenitor with one of these surnames: Gewin, Ginn, Guin, Guinn, Gwin, Gwinn, Guyn, Guynn, Gwyn, Gwynn, O'Guin-OGwynn, and McGinn-McGwynn.
DNA Testing ... using various techniques, such as the (paternal) Y-67 test and Deep Clade test, combined with the (autosomal) Family Finder Test can answer so much more of your questions about your past, especially when the paper trail runs dry. By matching distant cousins of known lineages, you could possibly complete your research into history.
The information we obtain through DNA testing can only strengthen our knowledge of the past. This can be exciting, with your participation.
Michael A. Gwinn, firstname.lastname@example.org
Ginn, Guin, Gwin, Guyn, Gwyn, O'Guin->McGwynn Project Group Administrator (and all variants) www.FamilyTreeDNA.com
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