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Y-DNA Study: What Our First Three British RUSCOE Tests Have Proved
Posted by: John Guittard (ID *****6550) Date: March 07, 2009 at 20:20:47
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Our first three British RUSCOE testers from County Cheshire and adjacent County Shropshire in England have been compared with our previous American Roscoe tester tracing back to the Ruscoes / Rouscoues of County Essex. None of these four Ruscoe lines are related for the last tens of thousands of years. Our Roscoe Family History Y-DNA Study for Roscoe, Ruscoe and similar surnames, has identified for each line a unique and completely separate haplogroup profile, providing an important basis for further testing, matching, and tracing and for building a comprehensive over-view picture of the different Ruscoe families in the British Isles.

1. Our Cheshire Ruscoe tester has been identified as Haplogroup I1 – predicted subclade I-M253-Anglo-Saxon 2.

Haplogroup I is an ancient haplogroup lineage defined by markers M168, M89 and M170, and descended from a Middle-Eastern clan that migrated northwest into the Balkans and later spread into central Europe. These people may have been responsible for bringing into western Europe the Gravettian culture about 21,000 – 28,000 years ago. Named after a site in La Gravette, France, the Gravettian culture used communal hunting techniques, hunted big game with stone tools having a distinctive small, pointed blade, created shell jewelry, used mammoth bones to build their homes, and may have discovered weaving about 25,000 years ago. During the Ice Age, descendants were forced into refuges in the Balkans and Iberia, and later recolonized central and northern Europe when the weather turned warmer around 10,000 years ago. Spencer Wells, DEEP ANCESTRY, National Geographic Society, 2006, p. 212-3. Haplogroup I now represents 10 to 45% of the population in most of Europe, and is divided into four main sub-haplogroups.

Haplogroup I1 (formerly I1a), defined by mutation M253, is the most common I subclade and is estimated to be 3,500 years old. It is found mostly in Scandinavia and Northern Germany, where it can represent over 35% of the population. Associated with the Norse ethnicity, it is found in all places invaded by the ancient Germanic tribes and the Vikings. It has several Anglo-Saxon subclades, some of which are found in the British Isles.

The Cullen subclade prediction for our I1 Cheshire Ruscoe is I-M253-AS2 to an 83 % probability. Subclade I-M253-AS2 means I1 haplogroup, Anglo-Saxon 2. Prof. Ken Nordtvedt has dated the Most Recent Common Ancestor (founder) for I-M253-AS2 at 2100 years ago – about 100 BC.

2. Our Shropshire Ruscoe has tested R1b1b2 – predicted subclade R1b-Ub (Ubiquitous).

We expected our Shropshire Ruscoe to match our I1 Cheshire Ruscoe, considering the fact that Cheshire is next to Shropshire, and based on observations from the parish registers that Shropshire Ruscoes drifted over from Cheshire. These two counties contained 83% of all the Ruscoes on the 1841 England census.

However, our Shropshire Ruscoe turned out to be R1b1b2 -- completely unrelated to our I1-AS2 Cheshire Ruscoe tester. Our Shropshire Ruscoe’s Cullen subclade prediction is R1b-Ub (Ubiquitous) to a 97 % probability.

R Haplogroup, defined by mutation M207, originated as a clan over 40,000 years ago in central Asia from Haplogroup K. R split into two groups, with R1 (mutation M173) moving northwest and then west into Europe and R2 (mutation M343) moving south into the Indian sub-continent.

R1b haplogroup, defined by mutation M343, arrived in Europe around 40,000 years ago. R1b is thought to be the direct descendant of Cro-Magnon -- the oldest Homo Sapiens settlers in Europe, who first arrived in Europe 40,000 years ago and superseded Homo neanderthalensis, which disappeared around 30,000 years ago. R1b expanded west through northern Italy and on into France and then south into Spain. During the extreme severity of the last Ice Age, R1b took refuge in the warmer areas of Spain and Italy. After the last Ice Age when the weather began warming up about 10,000 years ago, the refuge R1b population is believed to have expanded north rapidly along the west European coast and throughout Europe as humans re-colonized Europe.

R!b is now by far the most common haplogroup in Western Europe, subdivided into numerous subclades, and reaching over 90% of the population in some parts of western France, northern Spain or Ireland. The highest R1b concentration in Western Europe is found in the Basque Country of northern Spain, where 98 % of native men have this R1b haplogroup. Current inhabitants of Britain and Ireland are closely related to the Basques, reflecting their common origin in the Spanish refugial area.

R1b1b2, defined by mutation M269, is the most common European sub-haplogroup and contains the Western Atlantic Modal Haplotype.

According to Prof. Nordtvedt, the R1b-Ub (Ubiquitous) subclade is a small subclade with an unusual pedigree distribution. It is found at low frequencies in many places -- Iberia, the British Isles, Germany, Denmark and Sweden -- hence, the term ubiquitous. No specific origin, people or culture has so far been determined for this subclade. It has modal characteristic markers 390=24, 391=10, and YCA=19, 22. The subclade is considered to be a descendant population from a single founder with a unique haplotype.

3. Our third British Ruscoe tester, a British citizen tracing back to the Cheshire Ruscoes, has now been identified as a third separate Ruscoe line -- haplogroup R1b1b2 -- subclade R1b-S.Irish.

Though the tester's family has been called Roscoe for the last 100 years, he apparently traces back on the English census records 1841-1901 to GEORGE RUSCOE, born c. 1801 in Cheshire. His predicted subclade is R1b-S.Irish to an 86% probability, supporting an oral tradition in the tester's family that his Roscoes came down from an Irish ancestor in the Middle Ages.

4. Our three British Ruscoe testers -- I1-AS2 Cheshire, R1b-Ub Shropshire, and R1b-S.Irish Cheshire -- are completely unrelated to our G2a Essex Ruscoe / Rouscoue tester within the last tens of thousands of years.

This Essex Ruscoe tester traces back on the important Essex-Hartford line through WILLIAM RUSCOE (c. 1594 Billericay, Essex - 1682 Queens, New York). William sailed to Boston with his family in 1635 on the famous ship Increase, and settled in Cambridge, Mass. William founded Hartford, Conn. and the New England / New York Ruscoe line. William reportedly traces back to JOHN ROUSCOUE OF COUNTY ESSEX, who was taxed as an alien (immigrant) in 1545 in County Essex. The family line is said to have been Flemish or Dutch in origin during a time of active Huguenot migration to England.

Haplogroup G, defined by marker M201, appears to have arisen from Haplogroup F on the eastern side of the Middle East, perhaps close to the Himalayan foothills in Pakistan or India during the Ice Age about 30,000 years ago. G is Central Asian in origins, and is now found mostly between the Near East and India. The only ethnic group that has a majority of G Y-DNA are the Ossetians in the Caucasus. G makes up 8 to 10% of the population of Mediterranean Europe, but is fairly rare in Northern Europe. One famous member of haplogroup G was the Georgian Joseph Stalin.

G2, defined by marker P15, is a lineage that arose in the Middle East and soon spread westward through modern Turkey into southeastern Europe more than 15,000 years ago.

G2a, defined by marker P16, is the most frequently detected subclade within Haplogroup G. Most European G's belong to the G2a subclade and are thought to be descendants of the Neolithic farmers from the Caucasus region. The Romans probably contributed to spreading this haplogroup northward. G2a provides over 80 % of Haplogroup G in the Czech Republic. It is the most frequent subclade in Turkey, and the second most frequent in Crete. G2a3 includes many smaller subclades and is suspected to account for most of Haplogroup G detected in Europe.

The spread of G across Europe, notably into France, Greece, and the Ukraine, has been significantly influenced by the Armenian Diaspora -- the dispersal of Armenians outside Armenia following the loss of Armenian statehood in 1375 and accelerated by deportations forced by the Ottoman Empire during and after World War I.


Thus, two Roscoe testers have turned out to be Ruscoes, giving us four separate Ruscoe family profiles for future testers to compare with for possible matching and tracing. We have found various cases of Ruscoes changing their name to Roscoe, but no cases of Roscoes changing their names to Ruscoes. Nor have we found any original Ruscoe lines that were related to any original Roscoe lines.

We need the usual confirming test for each of these four lines to verify the profile as correct and preclude the possibility of an unrecorded adoption, friendly neighbor or research mistake.

For more information on Ruscoe and Roscoe related surname origins, notables and patriarchs, family lines, subclades, ancient migrations, ancestor locations, etc., please see the Roscoe Family History Forum (free) at

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