DNA privacy dilemma #dna

Steve Stein

High on my Ancestry DNA match list, there is a young man who I do not know and cannot identify, and has not yet responded to me. Here is what I know about him.

  • He matches me at 234cM total, with 10 matching segments, high enough not to be significantly influenced by endogamy
  • On my sorted list, he is nestled comfortably among my known full-blooded 2nd cousins, above 3 of them (ranging from 170cM to 266cM total)
  • He is listed as 31% European Jewish
  • We share matches with 3 known cousins on my paternal grandmother's family tree
  • He has an Unlinked tree online with only himself in it
  • I have tried to contact him twice, he has not responded

When he did not respond, I tried to construct his ancestor tree using public resources as well as Ancestry.com. If I have done this correctly,  I have identified all 8 of his great-grandparents, and they all appear to be not Jewish, and none from the New York area where my family was located. This leads to two possibilities, in my mind.

  • I made a mistake in his genealogy. Possible but the names are pretty uncommon
  • He is a descendant of a non-paternity event. If my research is correct, he already knows that by virtue of his ethnic analysis at the very least.

I know of only one person on my paternal grandmother's branch who migrated to the state where he grew up in an early enough timeframe to have that event or one of his sons had it. All of my grandmother's nephews and nieces stayed in the New York area except for that one. The subject's history appears to be mostly on the west coast.

I am tempted to drop the matter, as there doesn't appear that there is much to be gained by potentially revealing the suspected event if i am correct. I am interested if anyone has any alternate strategies. TIA.

Steve Stein
Highland Park, NJ USA

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