For another look at how Color Clustering works with 4th cousins, I created a Color Cluster chart then added the test taker's top twenty-five 4th cousin matches. I was able to easily sort all but one of these 4th cousins into Color Clusters!
Original Color Cluster Chart (click here for Color Cluster Method)
|Color Cluster chart for actual test taker.|
Names changed for privacy.
This test taker's AncestryDNA 2nd & 3rd cousins fell into 4 Color Clusters, labeled C1 through C4, with three "unclustered" cousins.
- 2nd & 3rd cousins who are in more than one cluster are in red: Barbie, Ken, & Mark.
- 2nd & 3rd cousins who did not have shared matches with other 2nd & 3rd cousins are in "unclustered" columns: Lena, Sue, and Mike.
Color Cluster chart LABELED
|Labeled Color Cluster chart|
The test taker's four sets of great grandparents were identified from her research as follows:
- G1 - Bailey/Bowman (father's father's line)
- G2 - Stark/Dunn (father's mother's line)
- G3 - Hillard/Morris (mother's father's line)
- G4 - Washington/Manning (mother's mother's line)
I looked at each cousin's tree and did one of the following:
- Put a "NO" in the cell if there was not a tree and I couldn't easily identify to which cluster(s) the cousin belonged.
- Typed G1, G2, G3, G4, or a combination of those in the colored cell if the person had a tree and I could determine which surnames they fit in under OR if the genealogist had done research and discovered the relationship herself. (Note: the "unclustered" cousin, Lena, was identified as belonging to G4.)
I then labeled the columns according to the cousins found in them: G1, G1, G2, G3/G4, G4, unclustered, and unclustered.
Adding 4th Cousins
|Twenty-five 4th Cousins added into Color Clusters|
|2nd/3rd/4th cousin Color Cluster chart|
Above is the final chart which includes all of the 2nd/3rd cousins (sharing <400 cM) and, below it, the first twenty-five 4th cousin matches. A few things to note about the 4th cousins:
- Owen - at this point, Owen is still not in a cluster
- Mary & Bill - they both matched previously "unclustered" cousin Sue, so the three created a new cluster. We do not know what part of the family this cluster belongs to at this point
- Others - a few did not match any 2nd/3rd cousins, but when I opened their top match, they DID match a 2nd/3rd cousin, so I added them to that column
NOTE: Trees were not used to match the 4th cousins to the appropriate Color Clusters. The sorts were based only on shared matches. This Color Cluster method is a quick, visual way to see how your cousins are related.
If you give this method a try, please let me know what you think and how it works for you.