The Dalton International DNA Project (DIDP)

The Dalton International DNA Project is one of the largest and most respected projects of its type internationally and has many sets of DNA markers in its database. We still need to expand it further, particularly with individuals who have documented ancestral lines that take them back to known British or Irish Dalton origins. The strength of the database as a family history research tool lies in its size, and its continued growth is of paramount importance to us all.

We now have some 212 registered participants in the project and well over 80% are members of one of the 15 identified genetic families.

So, if you are a Dalton male and you have yet to take the plunge, please do think about joining this well established and exciting project. If you wish to participate, you should contact either myself (michaelndalton@aol.com) or Karen Preston (karen@golden-hills.com) as the project administrators, and we will be pleased to discuss what is involved in more detail.

Chris Pomery, our DNA consultant, joined us at our Annual DGS Dinner at the Yorkshire Gathering and gave us a brief update on what is planned in terms of project progress reporting between then and the summer of 2013. You will find more about this in the latest DIDP update here or on the appropriate link below.

Chris summarises our current position as follows:

The DIDP DNA project is growing from strength to strength year on year. Our goal this year is to recruit more Ireland and UK-based Daltons in order to build up a comprehensive and more accurate genetic picture of British and Irish Dalton trees.

With this picture in place, we can then accurately assist any Dalton living outside the UK to identify the correct tree they should be researching their link with. Our focus is gradually shifting towards checking the documentation of the trees which project members have submitted, and creating trees for those that haven't.

This is a long-term task that we cannot avoid working on in order to develop the project, but each and every one will greatly contribute to clarifying the overall picture and answering the big question:   'how many Dalton families are there?'

Last update: January 2014. An overview PDF of the 2014 report can be found here. The links below give access to previous reports.

 

 

Project History

DIDP was established by the DGS in May 2003. At the end of 2005, the Society appointed Chris Pomery, an authority on genetic genealogy, as consultant to the project, to advise on interpretation of results and lines for future research. In October 2006 a preliminary presentation of the project findings was made at the DGS American Gathering in Hampton, New Hampshire, USA. This first report included 71 testees and appeared in November 2006. In July 2007, Chris spoke at the DGS Gathering in Worcester, UK. There were 99 participants included in Issue 2 of the report published in January 2008 and Issue 3 was published in October 2009 and had 126 sets of markers recorded and analysed. Many participants extended their number of markers and this added considerably to the value of the database as a whole to our Dalton family history researches. This is a link to the information from our 2011 Gathering in Salt Lake City.

Our DNA consultant, Chris Pomery made a video presentation on Saturday 31st July at our 2010 Gathering. Entitled “Getting the best from traditional and genetic genealogy – the future for the Dalton surname project”, it stressed the importance of undertaking traditional genealogical research alongside the DNA results in order to extend and maximise our knowledge of the family history associated with each identified genetic family.

During 2011 we published six reports providing updates for each individual genetic family, as follows:

- Genetic Family A - the Virginia Daltons (December 2010)

- Genetic Family B - the Eireann Daltons (September 2011)

- Genetic Family C - the Carmarthenshire Daltons (September 2011)

- Genetic Family D - the Golden Vale Daltons (September 2011)

- Genetic Families E, F, G, H, J and K and R1b singletons (December 2011)

- Genetic Families Q, W, X, Y and Z and non-R1b singletons (December 2011)

There have been a number of innovations in this series of six reports and one of the most important of these is the inclusion of details of the oldest documented Dalton ancestor where known. Chris Pomery has emphasised to us the importance of sharing this information as part of our quest to reconstruct and establish all our Dalton family trees, and to identify the links between them. Where this data is incomplete, we have asked project participants to supply details of their oldest documented Dalton ancestor if known, so that it can be recorded in the next update of the report.

The first four reports were available in time for the Salt Lake City Gathering, with each of these groups well represented by delegates, and much useful discussion took place, both formally and informally. On the formal side, Chris Pomery gave a video presentation updating us all on the project, and then participated in a discussion and question time via a live link up from his home in Yorkshire, UK. Also Melanie Crain, Rodney Dalton and Cathy Negrycz gave presentations about groups A, C and D respectively.

This all helped us to take forward both the details of the project by identifying specific further research for these groups, and also the project as a whole by demonstrating its breadth and depth, and the ways in which it will help other delegates in due course. Links to all the presentations and the supporting slides will be found here.

We thank Chris for the superb work that he has done in preparing these reports for us. They are truly excellent pieces of work and set a formidable standard for all those engaged in one name Y-DNA studies. We are indeed fortunate to have Chris as our consultant and eagerly anticipate further reports focusing more on the geographical origins of the earliest known ancestors of each DIDP participant.

Meet Chris Pomery in the video of an interview given by him at "Who Do You Think You Are? Live!” in London in February 2009.