Hollow DNA Project, Results update May 2019

There have been two recent additions to our Hollow DNA project, Ross and Dan. Before explaining the importance of these two tests I might recap the results as shown.

We have three groups or haplogroups in the DNA project and they all can be traced back to Zennor by written records. The Zennor Group 1 members all have identical or nearly identical DNA from their Y 37 DNA tests. In a Y37 test the DNA at 37 places on the Y chromosome is compared. If testers share a common surname and there is only one or two variations over the 37 positions they are considered a positive match. The differences are shown with pink coloured patches on the numbers in the chart.

The results chart shows the results divided into the three different groups according to their haplogroup.

NumberNameOldest Paternal AncestorHaplogroupHaplotype
Zennor Group 1
1ColinJohn Holla b. c1670 ZennorR-M2691323141110141212121313291691011112715193014161718111119231615171636381212
2RobertJohn Holla b. c1670 ZennorR-M2691323141110141212121313291691011112715193014161718111119231615171636381212
3RossWilliam Hollow b. c1660 ZennorR-M2691323141110141212121313291691011112715193014161718111119231615171636381212
4JoeJohn Holla b. c1670 ZennorR-M2691323141110141212121313291691011112715193014161718111219231615171636381212
5MaxJohn Holla b. c1670 ZennorR-M2691323141110141212121313291791011112715193014161718111119231615171636381212
6RichardWilliam Hollow b. c1660 ZennorR-M2691323141110141212131313291691011112715193014161718111119231615171636381212
7JamesWilliam Hollow b. c1660 ZennorR-M2691323141110141212131313291691011112715193014161718111119231615171637381212
8WallyWilliam Hollow b. c1781 St Ives?R-M2691323141110141212131313291691011112715193014161718111119231615171637381212
9RossWilliam Hollow b. c1781 St Ives?R-M2691323141110141212131313291691011112715193014161718111119231615171636381212
Zennor Group 2
10AdrianWilliam Hollow b. c1660 ZennorI-P37132315101215111512141130188911112514182911141415101021211410181634351210
11RobinWilliam Hollow b. c1660 ZennorI-P37132315101215111512141130188911112514182911141415101021211410181634351210
12JohnWilliam Hollow b. c1660 ZennorI-P37132315101215111512141130188911112514182911141415101021211410181634341210
Zennor Group 3
13JimIshmael Holla b. c1723 ZennorR-M5121324151111151212111311301591011112314203112151516111219211616171634371211

If you look closely at their paternal ancestors (the furtherest we can go back using written records) there are three different paternal ancestors, John Holla born circa 1670 (lemon yellow), William Hollow born c1660 (Pink) and William Hollow born c1770 (green).

The fact that the DNA of that group is almost identical indicates that each of the paternal ancestors had a common ancestor. That is a Holla born one or possibly more generations before John and William were born in the 1600s.

The three Zennor Group 2 (John, Robin and Adrian) individuals have written records that indicate they go back to William Hollow born circa 1660 but their DNA test throws up a different haplogroup. This indicates that there is an error in the written records. Somewhere a non- paternal event has occurred, in other words a male has been born and given the Hollow name but his father was not a Hollow. We need to go back to the records and see where this has occurred. More news on this later.

The Zennor group 3 has just one individual, Jim, and the written records indicated Jim's oldest male ancestor was Ishmael Holla born c 1723, he was baptised in Zennor on November 12 1723. Ishmael was the base (illegitimate) child of Jane Holla from Zennor. We can pretty safely say that Jane would have been related to the other Hollas in Zennor. Zennor was a small settlement in Cornwall.

A look at the results shows that all seven people in Genetic Group 001 have almost identical results. Each of them has one or two differences. This is not unusual for pedigrees that cover over 400 years. A difference in the value of one or two sites is pretty regular in such pedigrees.

When I looked closely at the male descendant lines they show that the people who have tested are not closely related. The closest relationship is third cousins,the rest are even further apart.

What do these results tell us?

The consistency of the results means we can confidently say what the marker haplotype or identifying haplotype of the Holla/Hollow family from Zennor is. Any male Hollow whose tests show this same haplotype, give or take a couple of differences, can be confident their ancestry goes back to John Holla and Chesen Thomas whether they can trace the line back by available records or not.

The new results.

Ross' results are interesting in a couple of ways. Although he goes back to William Hollow born circa 1660 his DNA is identical to two others, Robert and Colin, who are descendants of John Holla b c1670. Further, Ross took a Y67 test. Colin has also taken a Y67 test and both Ross and Colin's DNA remain identical for all the 67 positions. I haven't extended the chart to show the 67 positions.

Dan is the second new tester. His written records go back to William Hollow born circa 1770, as does his fourth cousin Wally. Dan's test is just one position different to Wally and James and identical to Richard. So a further indication that the written records are correct and that everyone in Zennor Group 1 share a common ancestor.

Where to now?

The testing done so far gives us a strong indication that the Hollow lines probably go back to one individual. However there are still some lines of the family Hollow that have not been tested yet. There are two early Holla individuals who married in Madron (adjacent to Penzance) and have many descendants.

John Holla - Jane Holla Line

John Holla married Jane Holla 23rd February 1716, at Madron. John was from the Madron parish and Jane was from the parish of Gulval. This line has 569 descendants in our database some remained around Penzance but others have spread to Illinois, and Michigan, USA, Oamaru, NZ, St Buryan, Cornwall and then to Australia and N.Z. We still have to find a person in this line to take a Y-DNA test.

John Holla m Elizabeth Bennetts Line.

John Holla married Elizabeth Bennetts 14 Oct 1732 Madron This line has 218 Descendants in our database. One branch migrated to Utah, USA last known male of the line is John Frank Hollow died Los Angeles, CA 1946. Another branch took on the name Hallo, some came Australia, to South Australia then to Western Australia. Others migrated to Victoria. There are still Hallo families in these places but none are on the Hollow mailing list so not any volunteers from this family yet. The story of this family was in Hollow Log 53.

Don't forget Jim of the Ishmael Holla line.

In the third of our haplogroups, R-M512, Jim is the only tester. In order to confirm that this is a haplogroup that goes back to Ishmael Holla b 1723 son of Jane Holla we need more people on this line to take the test. Without new testers we cannot be sure that Jim's DNA is that of his oldest Holla/Hollow ancestor, Ishmael. This line has 795 descendants in our database. This includes some Ludgvan Hollows that spread to the US and Australia but others have remained in the UK including Cornwall. We still have to find more people in this line to take a Y-DNA test.

If you think you may belong to any of these families and you are a male Hollow or have a Hollow father or a Hollow brother please get in touch with me and we can work out whether a DNA test would help further the research. We test with Familytree DNA from Houston Texas. A Y-37 kit is currently $149 US if you join the Hollow DNA Project. I can get the test kit cheaper from the Guild of One-Name studies. Before spending any money contact me, Colin, to work out if you or the person you nominate fits the criteria needed.

The Earliest Hollows

With the results in the DNA project seemingly supporting the notion that there may be a single Holla, progenitor, it may be time to recap what is known of the early Holla clan. We can go back to 1500 when surnames for ordinary people were in their infancy.

The earliest being a record of a legal matters that was found at the National Archives of Great Britain amongst records from 1486-1515 showing a John Holla owned a messuage in Penzance somewhere in that period. A messuage is described as a dwelling with an associated piece of land. That is something more that a house. It suggests John Holla may have been a yeoman, a person of property, a man holding and cultivating a small landed estate.

In 1522 and 1524 government surveys of males over 16, suitable for military service showed a Thomas Holla and a Robert Holla in Penzance in 1522 and a John Holla and a Thomas Holla in Madron in 1524.

The next survey of which there are records was in 1545. The results show the Holla family is expanding both in people and in where they live. In Madron there is John Holla and Thomas Holla. In Penzance there are two Robert Hollas listed. Then further afield there is Henry Holla in Towednack and Raw Holla in Zennor.

A survey document from 1569 shows two John Hollas in Madron and a William Holla and a John Holla in Paul. Paul is to the south of Madron/Penzance. Documents from 1598 record a Holla line of Thomas Holla son of John Holla and grandson of John Holla, deceased. All of whom are described as Yeomen. Then there is a gap in the records, the next we have is parish records that begin in the 1580s. We have trouble linking the Zennor Hollas with the Madron Hollas. We can assume they are related but a DNA test from the Madron/ Paul families would help show we might all go back to John Holla owner of a messuage in Penzance in 1500.

Copyright 2019 Colin Hollow

Last Modified 12 December 2019

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