How do I go about finding Great Grandmothers family with DNA help?

+6 votes
I have one big hole in my family tree I would really like to figure out.

I've DNA tested, siblings DNA tested, daughter DNA tested and I am no closer to finding my great Grandmother than I was before.  I have had a few leads that failed.  I know very little about her.  Originally my and my brother tested on 23andme but then i tested 2 of my sisters and my daughter on ancestry.  I've put all the files on gedmatch, and I've put them on myheritage.

Me-my mother-my Grandmother Carol Glass 1942, her parents Charles D Glass and Dorothy M or Ann McAndrew.  I can't figure out who the Dorothy is but I know she lived in PA when my grandmother was born (I have the birth certificate) She died before 1973 when her husband remarried and was listed as a widow.  She lived in Corning, NY.  She may have connections to Florida and Kentucky as well.  She died before the age of 66- (my grandmother died at 66 and said she had already outlived her mother)

What else can I do to figure it out?  Is there a way to filter this out with the data I have or do I need to have my mother tested?  Her father is also still alive. But her mother is passed.  

Thank you

in Genealogy Help by Lacey Warrick G2G1 (1.0k points)
retagged by Maggie N.
I found this picture and my mother says it kind of looks like my grandmother when she was younger.  I have not yet seen a comparable age picture of my grandmother to agree. She maybe could be my great grandmother Dorothy?
Your mother has DNA that you don't have, and maybe not your siblings either.  If she's willing, it might be very helpful.

Sue Runnells Berryhill


3 Answers

+6 votes
If you have cousins you can test who share the same great grandmother then that will help you to narrow down which matches may be relevant to your search, by looking at matches in common with the cousins.
by Lynda Crackett G2G6 Pilot (630k points)
Thank you.

That would work because they are only connected to me by their mother and our great grandma Dorothy. (and they'd have my grandfathers dna but that may be easy to sort through)

The only cousins I know of are my mother's sisters kids but I don't know how to get in touch with them- never met 2 of them. I wish this could work out.

Good answer, I wasn't really thinking about how they could help me find the connection.
Lacey, just some clarification.  It is true, you should be connected to them via your maternal line, It is not necessarily true that "they are connected to [you] by their mother".  They could be related to you via any Ancestral line consisting of males, females, or a mix (up to shared ancestor(s)). It could be via their mother or father.
+7 votes
I found a newspaper article from 9 June 1938, in the Mt. Carmel Item which listed all the HS Graduates from the Township School in Mt. Carmel, PA,  (next to Connorsville) and there was a Dorothy Ann McAndrews.  In the 1940 Census, for Northumberland County (where Mt. Carmel PA is located) there is a Dorothy McAndrew born in 1920 with her brothers and her widowed mother, Bridget.  It may be worth a look. Good luck!
by Jackie Wilkins G2G3 (3.4k points)
Thank you.

I haven't been able to find the newpaper article.  But I did find the 1940 Census Dorothy McAndrew with mother Bridgette.  I ruled her out because she married an Escott.  Her husband should be a Glass.  But I have not seen a marriage source for her and my great grandfather Charles Glass. i ruled some of them out by finding their death certificates and they are older than 66 when they died.  So far, from what I've found on ancestry, There is only 1 Dorothy Glass death index I found that might be her but no other records suggested and I can't connect it to anything.  I was hoping to find a cousin dna match that I could trace down from their family tree and try to find her that way.
+1 vote
I agree with Sue that testing your mother would be at the top of my list. The number of cousins and the quality of the predictions are significantly better when the relationship is closer.

Subscribing to multiple DNA services significantly increases the probability of finding a maternal cousin.

My Priority for any tester, but I am focusing on your mother, or any other maternal aunt/uncle.

1. 23andMe - The IN COMMON WITH feature will also identify those common matches that Share segments. You have to ask them to share this information which can be cumbersome at first. if these common cousins have a "yes" under the column shared, these 3 DNA testers have been triangulated. I think that 23andMe has reached 3 million subscribers. Also, it predicts your haplogroups, which may be helpful,

2. AncestryDNA - This is a very close second. I use for my research and I find connections to more distant cousins this way. I find that most of these cousins have no idea about gedmatch or wikitree. If I wasn't on AncestryDNA, most of my distant cousins would not be on gedmatch or wikitree.

3. I would transfer my ancestryDNA test to,, and (and its beta database Genisis).  These are free, and it may also connect you someone from a Service that you do not subscribe to.

4. Subscribe to FTDNA yDNA (males) and mtDNA (females). Even though you are looking to extend your maternal line, I have not personally had much success matching anyone that was not matched using auDNA.

This is only my suggestion base on my own personal experience.
by Ken Sargent G2G6 Mach 5 (57.0k points)
edited by Ken Sargent

Related questions

+3 votes
1 answer
+3 votes
1 answer
63 views asked Apr 28, 2018 in WikiTree Help by Sue Giles G2G Crew (640 points)
+4 votes
0 answers
172 views asked Sep 17, 2012 in Genealogy Help by anonymous
+5 votes
4 answers
75 views asked May 29 in Genealogy Help by Tanya Lowry G2G6 Mach 1 (14.6k points)
+3 votes
0 answers
+10 votes
1 answer
+3 votes
1 answer
+9 votes
2 answers
105 views asked Nov 1, 2016 in The Tree House by Eowyn Walker G2G Astronaut (1.8m points)
+6 votes
1 answer
92 views asked Oct 24, 2016 in The Tree House by Eowyn Walker G2G Astronaut (1.8m points)

WikiTree  ~  About  ~  Help Help  ~  Search Person Search  ~  Surname:

disclaimer - terms - copyright