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Baschi Meyer Project YDNA Lines

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Surname/tag: Meyer
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Contents

Introduction

This space is to help describe the various Y-DNA tested lines claiming descent from Baschi and Otilla in the Baschi Meyer Project. All of the DNA tests were done through Family Tree DNA. There are some gaps in everyone's documentation, and those details are not covered here. Lineages are reported only as far as c.1800, to protect anonymity.

We have found that existing published and unpublished documentation does not consistently align with DNA test results of haplogroups. Descendants of Baschi Meyer and Tylli Mueller fall into three distinct haplogroup clusters, which means they simply cannot all be brothers or cousins as hypothesized by researchers who have relied on documentation alone. It's possible that more haplogroup clusters will be identified with further testing.

The family tree below (click to enlarge) shows the connections between various Meyer families as theorised by Richard Warren Davis [1] and Jane Evans Best.[2]

Meyer family tree constructed from family groups described by Richard Warren Davis and Jane Evans Best

However this diagram (below, click to enlarge) shows the same individuals but in family groupings based on their y-DNA haplogroup (obtained from y-DNA data of their descendants). Colours show which individuals have been shown to be related to each other.

Revised family grouping based on y-DNA tests from Meyer family descendants.

More tests are needed, as well as a new look at commonly accepted family groupings. This is still very much a work in progress.

I1 haplogroup family

The I1 haplogroup family contains three clusters.

I1 Group 1 (York Co., PA)

The first group contains the largest number of Y-DNA tested men, and they are all descendants of Christian Meyer (1708-1779) and Elizabeth (Kauffman) Meyer (1720-1798) The number of testers at STR test levels are: 1@Y12, 2@Y37, 1@Y67, 1@Y111. All testers fall under the I-M253 haplogroup, or one of its descendant haplogroups, depending on the level of detail in the test.

In this group, one Y37, the Y67, and the Y111 tested individuals are confirmed through YDNA to a common ancestor, Joseph Eby Myers (1803-1885), grandson of Andrew Kauffman Meyer (1753-1833). The other Y37 and the Y12 tested individuals are descended from Andrew's brothers, Christian Meyer (1751-) and Henry Meyer (1760-1836) respectively. Andrew, Christian, and Henry are all sons of Christian and Elizabeth. The Y12 test does not meet the WikiTree standard for confirming a DNA relationship, but is consistent with and corroborates the documented relationship.

Baschi Meyer (1592-abt.1640)

Johannes Meyer (abt.1621-aft.1685)
Christian Meyer (abt.1662-abt.1730)
Johannes Meyer (1682-1757)
Christian Meyer (1708-1779)
Andrew Kauffman Meyer (1753-1833)
Christian Meyer (1751-)
Henry Meyer (1760-1836)

I1 Group 2 (Juniata Co., PA)

The second group has 2 people who have a genetic distance of 1@37 markers, but whose common ancestor has not been identified. (Documentary research to date indicates only that Daniel Myers (1822-aft.1900) is not a descendant of Samuel Myers Sr. (1772-1828).) Specific STR values indicate that these two testers are likely more closely related to each other than to the testers in Group 1 (York). Both testers fall under the I-M253 haplogroup.

Based on the Y37 tested individual in this group, and the Y37, Y67, and Y111 tested individuals in Group 1, the common ancestor is Johannes Meyer (abt.1621-aft.1685), son of Baschi and Otilla.

Kit #1

Baschi Meyer (1592-abt.1640)

Johannes Meyer (abt.1621-aft.1685)
Hans Meyer (1665-1722)
Rudolph Meyer (1680-abt.1767) (Or possibly a direct son of Johannes Meyer (abt.1621-aft.1685))
Hans Meyer (abt.1717-abt.1794)
Nicholas Myers (c.1740-?)
Samuel Myers Sr. (1772-1828)
David Bishop Myers (1804-1868)

Kit #2 : descendant of Daniel Myers (1822-aft.1900)

I1 Group 3 (Adams Co., PA)

The third group is an individual with no documented common ancestor to any of the above, but a close genetic distance at 37 markers and a "probably related" genetic distance at 111 markers, and is in a descendant haplogroup of I-M253.

David Myers (1778-1840)
Michael David Myers (1806-1848)

J2 haplogroup family

The J2 haplogroup family includes two known descendants of Henry Meyer (abt.1723-1800) of Upper Salford, Montgomery, PA :

Baschi Meyer (1592-abt.1640)

Jacob Meyer Sr. (1636-aft.1709)
Hans Meyer (abt.1683-1748) of Upper Salford, Montgomery, PA

R1a haplogroup family

The R1a haplogroup family contains four clearly defined clusters of individuals. Three of these claim descent from Baschi Meyer (1592 - aft. 1640) and the fourth is recorded as being descended from Michael Meyer (1612-1676). No connection has previously been hypothesised between these families.

Baschi Meyer (1592-abt.1640)

Johannes Meyer (abt.1621-aft.1685)
  • Hans Meyer (c.1666-1722) of Conestoga, Lancaster, PA
Jacob Meyer Sr. (1636-aft.1709)

Michael Meyer (1612-1676)

Hans Meyer (abt.1655-1719)

Other Anabaptist Meyer lines

A number of other Anabaptist Meyer families were in Pennsylvania in the early 18th century. Y-DNA testing has shown that :

  • the family of Martin Meyer (c.1695 - bef.1754) of Manheim Twp, Lancaster, previously believed to be unrelated, does in fact have a close connection to the R1a testers in the Baschi Project.
  • the family of Peter Meyer (c.1695 - bef.1742), whose sons settled in Lehigh and Bucks Counties, is unrelated to any of the testers in the Baschi Project.
  • the family of William Meyer (c.1724 - 1760) of Bedminster, Bucks, is probably unrelated to any of the other known Anabaptist Meyer lines.
Known y-DNA-tested Anabaptist Meyer lines (at Aug 2022) - click to enlarge

Summary

We have an article being published in the July 2022 issue of the Mennonite Family History Magazine [3] :

“A y-DNA Study of Anabaptist Meyer Families in Eighteenth Century Pennsylvania”
Gina Meyers and Eric Myers.
In this article we collect Swiss Anabaptist Meyer family documentation from existing literature and our own research, and compare it to y-DNA test results from descendants of those families. A review of 22 immigrant lines shows that only 10 have identifiable y-DNA test results, and that the commonly accepted associations of these immigrants to families in 16th and 17th century Switzerland must be considered suspect. In particular, the famous Meyer "family" of Baschi Meyer and Tylli Mueller consists of immigrants from at least 3 different y-DNA haplogroups, and is thus clearly in error. We call for descendants of untested lines to help answer some questions by submitting y-DNA tests. We also suggest that other Swiss Anabaptist families are likely to be misassociated in the same way, and would benefit from this same methodology.

Sources

  1. Davis, Richard Warren (1995) Emigrants, Refugees and Prisoners Vol. 2
  2. Best, Jane Evans (1998). "Meyer Families Update". Pennsylvania Mennonite Heritage, April 1998.
  3. Meyers, G. & Myers, E. (2022). A y-DNA Study of Anabaptist Meyer Families in Eighteenth Century Pennsylvania. Mennonite Family History 41(3) 128-135.




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Comments: 2

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See Jacob, 1636. I have been to Gundersheim at least 3 times, and the son of a winery I know there has married a midwest woman who promised to help find possible relatives around there if we come back. We have not found his gravestone there , though records say he was buried there. Am not sure where Anabaptists were buried in those days.
posted by William Henry Meyers
William, it would be absolutely amazing if we could locate a Meyer descendant there who would be willing to participate in y-DNA testing. Jacob can't possibly be the ancestor of the people in both the R1a and the J2 haplogroups, and at the moment we can't even confirm whether he was the ancestor of either of them. I hope you can get back to Gundersheim one day!
posted by Gina Meyers