Incoming Family Tree DNA Big-Y700 Test

Since I’m on a bit of a DNA testing kick and the test is on sale (until 3 January 2021!), I decided to go ahead and purchase the Family Tree DNA Big-Y700 test. It isn’t the cheapest test out there, but is probably the best for matching with others over the paternal DNA line over the last thousand years.

Like the 23andMe test, this test is testing Y-DNA SNPs. Unlike the 23andMe test, which put me in the R1-DF13 haplogroup (about 4000 years old), the expectation is that the Big Y test will have enough information to provide me with a terminal haplogroup on the Y-DNA tree. Depending on how quickly my paternal line tends to mutate, this could put me inside of 200 years of the last change. This puts me in reach of paternal Keatings who I have names for.

However, this all depends on matching with other family. I’d love to see some of my more distant Keating paternal line family take the test, perhaps my Florida cousins who descended from Thomas Patrick, or descendants of the immigrant Patrick (the Cleveland Keatings and the Elyria Keatings). Barring that, it would also be great to see anyone descended from Keating family in County Kildare or County Dublin, where my family is said to come from.

Why not take the Y-DNA111 or Y-DNA37 test? While the STR tests are great for finding general family groups, they only estimate the haplogroup. This means that an ancestor shared with others can have lived as far back as 10,000 or more years. To get deeper results, you’ll eventually end up wanting to upgrade to the Big-Y test. (Although you can always upgrade your existing FTDNA test.)

I’ll follow up with an analysis of my results. With any luck, I’ll match with others who have already taken the test. If not, I’ll need to wait for others to match to me.

If you are interested, here’s the link to the test. The price is reduced until the 3rd, so now’s a good time to order it. If the price is too high (and it has been for me for many years), consider the Y-DNA111 or Y-DNA37. Like I said, they can be upgraded over time.

(Note that at the time I write this article, I do not currently receive any monetary reward from FamilyTreeDNA or any other DNA company, although I am a co-administrator of the FTDNA Keating DNA Project. Some of the DNA companies offer affiliate links, but I have not yet started using them. When it comes to the DNA tests, my overriding goal is informational, not monetary. If I do decide to begin using affiliate links in the future, the affiliate links will be indicated as such.)

4 Replies to “Incoming Family Tree DNA Big-Y700 Test”

  1. Hi John, I can trace my Keating family to the Blanchardstown / Mulhuddart / Clonsilla area of Dublin. This area is where Kildare, Dublin and Meath come together and my Keatings moved around alot.
    I have trace back to John Keating who lived from 1806-1884 in that area. I believe he had a brother named James and a sister named Bridget. I believe John’s father was William based on the name of his first son.

    I’m also DF-13 which like you said isn’t that helpful. I am curious as to where you saw that it originated in Ireland 4000+ years ago. That would be very interesting.

  2. Hello, Bill!

    Wikipedia’s page for the haplogroup has it as originating some 4200 years ago and coalescing about 4000 years ago. []. It references, which now has DF-13 as originating about 4300-4525 years ago. (I’m still trying to fully grok the difference between the time of origin (divergence time?) and the coalescence time.) As more data is introduced, a better idea of the time can and will likely be established, although with no documentation from that time, we’ll likely never know the exact originator of the haplogroup.

    I suspect it didn’t originate in Ireland, although a large number of people within that haplogroup ended up there. Essentially, this is early enough that it accounts for the largest part of the Irish, Welsh, Scots, and Bretons populations and a significant percentage of the people from England, North France, and Iberia.

    There are some YouTube videos from genealogy conferences over the past 10 years that try linking various haplogroups to known (or suspected) population movements into Ireland. This one by Brad Larkin is one I’ve watched recently:

    I’m still waiting on the results of my Y-700 test. My hope is that it will match with others who have already taken the test. There are ten testers in the Keating surname project who have taken a Big-Y test and show up beneath R-DF13, not including myself. There’s another who’s estimated a step up at R-L21 and many (many) more estimated another step up at R-M269. I created a haplogroup tree for the various members of the Keating surname group. Keep an eye out for a public version of it on this site.

    I suspect my Keatings moved around a bit as well. John C. Keating, my immigrant ancestor, father (b. ~1800) and grandfather (b. ~1770) were supposedly from Dublin, according to a claim made by his daughter (although I haven’t found definitive backing proof yet).

    His father, Patrick, was in the textile trade (“merchant by trade, wool, hides and so on”). Given the textile mill ( in Ballymore Eustace, this probably explains how John C. ended up being married there, even if his family may have originated elsewhere. Ballymore Eustace is now in County Kildare, but at the time was considered part of Co. Dublin. Patrick was married to a Mary E. Murphy “born in Killarney and noted for her beautiful voice and music”. Killarney is even further afield from Dublin than Ballymore Eustace.

    His grandfather, John C. Keating, (according to the same daughter) “was born in Dublin, Ireland. A teacher. He was taken away from his home at night and never seen again. He was trained by the S.J’s.” The elder John C.’s wife “was Elizabeth Kilmartin, a music teacher trained by the Sisters of Mercy, Dublin, Ireland.”

    Do you know what trade(s) your Dublin Keatings were involved in?

  3. I’ve only found two occupations for my Keatings. Laborer and herder. I understand the herder was a rather prized occupation to have. Probably compared to a regular laborer’s condition I’m guessing.
    Do you know what the middle name was these folks? The “C”?
    Any idea when the teacher was supposedly taken? What year? And does it coincide with any uprisings? Based on the records I’ve downloaded from it seems there was an increase of the Keating population in the Dunboyne / Blanchardstown parish after the 1798 Uprising. I’ve downloaded hundreds of records from counties Meath and Dublin searching for Keatings. I’ve only looked at a couple of parishes in Kildare though. Maynooth, Celbridge and Kilcock.
    When someone perfects time travel I’m going to demand they take back typewriters to these parish priests.

  4. Bill — I’ll sign on to the “Typewriters for Arthritic and/or Palsied Parish Priests” movement in a heartbeat!

    My immigrant ancestor was John Charles Keating, so its a likely assumption that his grandfather shared the same name. Since I haven’t found proof though, I tend to just refer to him as “John C.”. Not sure of the date, and I’ve often wondered if it had something to do with the Uprising in 1798. A Keating (whose first name was not mentioned) was arrested around that time in Ballymore Eustace. (Although if Patrick and John C. were from Dublin, how likely is it they would have been arrested in Ballymore Eustace?) Additional Irish court records have been released on FindMyPast.IE, so I’ve plans to do a dive into those records at some point. Perhaps I’ll find him “alive and well” in Australia with even more cousins to trace! 🙂 One possible clue — I’ve found a family of Keatings on Upper Dorset Street in Dublin, including one Mrs. Elizabeth Keating who ran a boarding school at 113 Upper Dorset that may be intriguing… A John Keating, a Daniel Keating, a Martin Keating, and a Catherine Keating also show up in this cluster. Next step is to try to time-box these different Dorset Street Keating references…

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