A couple of weeks ago while I was visiting my sister in Harbor Beach, I got a surprise email. As it often goes, when I am away from my mountains of family history information, someone contacts me about something family related. A few years back I asked my brother to do a Genealogy DNA test for me. He did, we got the results and the data was filed with several genealogy DNA database sites. At the time, there were no Smith matches! All that changed with one email. An email from a world wide Smith DNA database! Our James Smith had a brother and his name was Joseph Smith! Another common name for a Smith family but it fits right into the pattern of names that I have been chasing for years.
Through a DNA Smith Website called www.smithsworldwide.org, I receive an email informing me that they had recently received DNA results which closely matched ours... within two markers! This means that our James had a brother named Joseph who was also born in Ohio. The person related to Joseph who had the DNA test done, did the 67 marker test and we did the 48 marker test so they have a few more markers than we do but none the less we only have 2 different makers out of 48. In the database we, James and Joseph, have been grouped together as a family!
I have contacted the person who registered the results through the website but so far they have not responded. I cannot email them directly due to privacy issues. I have however been researching on Joseph and have found some very interest information. I cannot determine whether Joseph and James lived in Darke County or if just James did. I do not know for certain the exact place of birth, both indicate Ohio only.
Accord to the descendant of Joseph who had the DNA test done, Joseph settled in Warren County, Indiana. He married Mary Ann Best from Ohio and they had at least one son. Francis Marion Smith was born in Indiana in1853. Francis Marion Smith settled in Iroquois County, Illinois and married Mary Ann Hobson from Iroquois, Ill??? I am check these facts... It is quite ironic to me that these Smiths ended up in Iroquios County, Illinois since this is the birthplace of my husband, Greg Gerkin. I have continued to work on this data all week.
I have looked at this area of Illinois and Indiana before for our Smith roots because a large group of Smiths from Darke County settled in the Newton, Benton and Jasper Counties of western Indiana and some of them ended up in neighboring Iroquois County, Illinois. I thought that we might have all been related but after months of searching through this large Smith family the evidence just does not support a connection.
I continues to search for information about Joseph and his connection to us and will keep you posted in the weeks to come.