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Old 03-21-2019, 09:00 AM
Location: Cumberland
4,919 posts, read 8,029,919 times
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I think of all of these various tools as part of a kit. Just like a tool box at home, not every tool is suited for every job, and some tools in the box may be overkill for the task at hand, or be something an individual hasn't been taught how to use yet.

Autoclusters is probably not going to show much value unless you have a very well drawn out family tree and/or you come from an endogamous community where it helps to visually see the interconnections between your cousins. If you have a very detailed family tree, you have a better chance at finding someone in the cluster that shares a surname in their family tree, or common place of origin and thus conclude the cluster is showing you cousins descended from that family line. For instance, my biggest autocluster is clearly the descendants of colonial era Catholic ancestors who moved en masse to Western Maryland around the time of the Revolutionary War. I have a solid paper trail on these colonial ancestors, so I know that cluster are Porter/McKenzie descendants.

If you or an ancestor come from an endogamous community, it is really hard, if not impossible, to sort out the exact relationship between two people because you aren't looking for one common ancestor, you are looking at a number of them. Autoclusters helps visually sort these people into groups, that at least in the case of my wife, link up very well to specific Aegean islands, which is just as interesting and useful, just in a different way.

Last edited by westsideboy; 03-21-2019 at 09:55 AM..
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