I’ve made some slight revisions to the email I sent to my DNA matches on AncestryDNA.
Fortunately the majority of the matches have responded. One respondent only knew his grandfather’s name. Based on his shared matches, the name of his grandfather (not all that common), and where his grandfather was from, I was able to determine the tester’s connection. I gave him very broad information our two most recent shared ancestors, but did not want to overwhelm.
Another respondent did not have any actual information, but directed me to her father. We’ve communicated once and I was able to precisely determine the relationship.
Because of AncestryDNA‘s marketing campaigns, the number of testers who are not obsessed genealogists is
small large.* I was not expecting any of my matches to be fanatical about their genealogy. I was just hoping to confirm the relationships so that I could more effectively sort more of my matches. There may matches related further back who are actively pursuing their family history, but it seems more effective to sort out as many of the “closer matches” as I can first for two reasons:
- it’s easier
- it helps me sort out the more distant relatives
Each letter I sent will contain a brief comment about how I connect to the family. Emphasis on the word brief. That helps give people a point of reference, but should be short enough that it does not overwhelm.
*-this was corrected to say “large” thanks to an astute reader.
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