Mitochondrial DNA testing?

+11 votes
I have traced my mitochondrial DNA back to the Plymouth Colony, and would like to test for specific markers on my relatively common H haplogroup to see if it might provide additional clues to 17th and 18th century ancestry.  Can anyone here suggest a specific testing company for ease of comparison with others researching Mayflower ancestry?
in Policy and Style by AL Wellman G2G6 (8.5k points)

4 Answers

+11 votes
Best answer

FTDNA has a Mayflower DNA project available.  I would suggest joining.

This link below is for the main website of the YDNA and mtDNA Project of the Society of Mayflower Descendants.


by David Douglass G2G6 Pilot (118k points)
selected by AL Wellman
+6 votes
Hello Al,

Your mitochondrial DNA follows your direct maternal line only.  Unfortunately your direct maternal line immigrant arrived after the Mayflower.

I recommend you register at and follow GEDmatch's instructions to upload your 23andMe results there.  Then enter your GEDmatch ID on your DNA Tests page in WikiTree.

by Peter Roberts G2G6 Pilot (613k points)
Keep in mind that Gedmatch is for auDNA comparisons only.  You can use for mtDNA comparisons.  When you make comparisons you get a list of matches like you did with your testing company.  Wikitree Mitosearch Project

Working with mtDNA results
My mother's profile has not yet been entered on WikiTree, but her mother was Glover-3201.
Hello Al,

I apologize for confusing your father's direct maternal line with yours!  I glanced too quickly at

I recommend you order the mtFull Sequence test (or mtDNAPlus) from Family Tree DNA at

I look forward to seeing your direct maternal line in WikiTree.

[added] I checked the direct maternal line of and it goes back to who unfortunately is not early enough.  Do you have additional ancestry for Samson-909 ?
I have some tentative ancestry, but I don't feel confident enough about the sources to enter it on WikiTree. That's why I was hoping to get more information through mitochondrial DNA confirmation.
Hello Al,

Mark the tentative mother / daughter relationships as "uncertain".  

It would be nice to see your direct maternal line in WikiTree.
+5 votes
Here's an example of a potential Mayflower lineage mtDNa test, if I can find people to take the test:  my grandfather's mother's mother's mother was almost certainly Phebe Doty, who has a proven lineage back to Mayflower passenger Edward Doty.  But there just isn't enough documentation to prove the point, and there is a hypothetical possibility that Phebe died in the mid-1820s and her husband had a completely unknown third wife who was the mother of my ancestor.   Here's the lineage:

So...  I'm hoping to find a daughter's daughter's descendant of one of my grandfather's sisters who is willing to volunteer for an mtDNA test to compare with a daughter's daughter's (etc.) descendant of one of Phebe Doty's sisters.
by Living Schmeeckle G2G6 Mach 9 (95.8k points)
+2 votes

One answer is that I have used mitochondrial results to figure out that one person's matrilineal tree had an error--we didn't have a DNA match, which led me to figure out that their tree had a faulty connection.

I have a follow up question about which companies are best to test--have folks found useful matching outside of Full Sequence testing at FamilyTreeDNA (which isn't cheap!)?

I'm working to test relationships between putative sisters using mitochondrial results. One line is haplogroup H3-T152C! and another line is X2b-T226C. The latter seemed relatively rare, so I thought that a LivingDNA 3 in 1 test might be sufficient. But I see that LivingDNA has changed their chip so I'm not sure how detailed it might be.

Also, one cousin has AncestryDNA results--does anyone think it is worth trying to mine their raw data for mitochondrial results? (I've read at the ISOGG page that their test includes some mitochondrial SNPs).

by J Long G2G3 (3.2k points)
No, AncestryDNA is not useful for mtDNA.  In my opinion, the only viable choice right now is the FTDNA Full Sequence mtDNA test.  Recently, it was down to $139, and I imagine it will be back to that in the next round of sales, closer to Mother's day or thereabouts.

It's probably not the only choice, but it has to be similar in that it tests ALL of the mitochondrial DNA ring, all 16500 odd bases, *and* provides detailed results such as ALL of your mutations, insertions, deletions, etc.  The LivingDNA and 23&Me tests only provide haplogroups, not the actual mutations/variants.  Haplogroups are somewhat useful, to provide negative proof, show no possible match as you did, but they are not good enough for actual matching, except perhaps to tell you that you're on the right track, that it's worth testing further.
Thank you for the clarification Rob. When I purchase the mtDNA I'll go to FTDNA. Leigh Anne

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