Family Association

Worden Family Association


Worden Family Association 

Bill & Pat Worden DNA Fund  

DNA Testing Policy

When used in conjunction with traditional genealogy, DNA testing is now an essential tool for genealogists to help in confirming (or disproving) their genealogy. Each of the four types of DNA testing offers a unique insight into a different aspect of your family history:

Y-DNA, for males only, traces your paternal line back for hundreds, even thousands of years. It is the first choice to determine whether a man shares a common male ancestor with someone else.

MtDNA, for everyone, traces the maternal line but is not as useful for genealogical purposes because mutations occur much more slowly than in Y-DNA. Therefore, your “match” could be to someone who lived many hundreds, even thousands of years ago, beyond any paper trails.

AtDNA, for everyone, helps to connect cousins to the 4th - 6th degree and sometimes even more distant. This test is offered by Ancestry, 23andMe and Family Tree DNA.

The latest product offerings place you on the universal tree of humankind, grouping you with others who traveled a similar migratory path out of Africa and into specific geographic locales in Europe or elsewhere. This has not been useful for genealogy but rather for population and anthropological studies. The Big Y from Family Tree DNA is one of these that seeks to bring these test findings to bear on finding break points (mutations) that define sub-lineages in the 500-year range.

To determine which test to order, see http://www.legalgenealogist.com/blog/2014/04/06/2014-most-bang-for-dna-bucks/. To determine which company to use, you can check the comparison charts at http://www.isogg.org/wiki/Wiki_Welcome_Page. The Worden DNA Project has chosen to use FTDNA for its superior range of products and focus on genealogy: https://familytreedna.com/public/worden.

Recognizing the ever-increasing importance of DNA testing in any genealogical pursuit, the Worden Family Association Board has adopted the following set of guidelines. 


Every Worden male, or at least the oldest male in a family, is encouraged to have at least the basic 12-marker Y-DNA test. Because DNA testing of many male descendants has established the Y-DNA signature of Dr. Samuel Worden b. 1646, the results of this test can prove, with 99 percent certainty, that he descends from Dr. Samuel Worden b. 1646 or from his ancestor. If his results do not match the DNA signature that has been established for Dr. Samuel Worden and his Worden ancestors, then he either descends from an unrelated Worden ancestor or a nonpaternal event such as an adoption has occurred at some point in his lineage. Further testing beyond 12 markers should eventually determine where line breaks have occurred. For example, for many Worden descendants the paper trail ends in the 1700s or even later. By determining via DNA testing from which son of Dr. Samuel they descend, they would then be able to narrow their research to that particular line.


To further this goal, a special fund has been established. Of course it is expected that those who have an interest in a particular individual’s DNA test results – whether that is the person to be tested, a relative or the family genealogist – will normally pay for the testing itself. Grants will be considered only for those who cannot afford to pay. The Bill and Pat Worden Fund will help pay for these tests through grants (see Grant Application below), as follows:

  • Any Worden male who wishes to be tested and can provide some evidence of research into his own Worden genealogy but cannot afford to pay for his own test may apply to the Association for a grant.

  • Any Worden male whose initial test results and paper genealogy suggest that further testing will be of benefit to the Association may have such further testing paid for by the Association if he or another interested party is unwilling or unable to pay.

Given that the Association has a clear and strong interest in the results of DNA testing as they pertain to Worden family genealogy, everyone who has tested or will test in the future will be asked to agree to the following:


Because the science of DNA testing is in its infancy and new tests are likely to be made available in the future, I authorize the Worden Family Association to order additional testing of the DNA sample that is currently held by Family Tree DNA (FTDNA).  Upgrades may be paid for by  myself, my relatives, the Association or individual Association members. The DNA sample itself will be held by FTDNA according to its own policy. This approval can be rescinded at any time by me  by notifying the Association in writing and reimbursing the Association for this grant.

Go to the Grant Application.

DNA Double Helix

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Worden Family Association