Towey DNA Genealogical Analysis

We Toweys, including us with variant names, could compare our DNA analysis with other Toweys of known Irish descent. The popularity of latest DNA test methods makes it easier to pinpoint our Irish heritage and Irish relationship.

Why DNA Testing

  • Encoded in our DNA is the geographic region our ancestors, even ancient ancestors, called home.
  • DNA analysis helps determine which geographic regions our ancestors originated and migrated through.
  • Using a persons saliva sample, his/her DNA sequences are compared and matched with DNA samples already in the company database that have been specifically identified to exact geographic regions.
  • It breakdowns our ethnic makeup by percentage and our ancestral lines by geographic region.
  • The accuracy of an individual’s saliva is only as precise as the size of the company’s DNA database.  Greater accuracy is expected as each company’s DNA sub-group database is expanded.


What are the types of DNA Tests
DNA analysis is offered by several genealogical companies as advertised on TV.  Though not mentioned in ads, they perform an autosomal DNA test and analysis.  And may even offer yDNA and mtDNA analysis.

  1. Autosomal DNA testing is the most recent and most popular. Autosomal (atDNA) utilizes DNA from 22 pairs of autosomal (body chromosomes) inherited from both parents  —  the father (yDNA) and the mother (mtDNA), plus our four grandparents, our eight great-grandparents, etc., etc., etc.  This test does not distinguish between paternal and maternal, ancestors or ethnicities.
  2. yDNA testing: Only males have a Y chromosome, inherited father to son, and so yDNA can only be tested by males to explore their direct paternal ancestor line – the father, grandfathers, great grandfathers, etc.
  3. mtDNA testing: mtDNA (mitochondrial DNA) is inherited only through female parent ancestors.  Only egg cells, and not sperm cells, keep their mitochondria.  This enables genealogy researchers to trace maternal lineage far back in time – the mother, the grandmothers, great grandmothers, etc.


The International Society of Genetic Genealogy (ISOGG): ISOGG is dedicated to promoting the use of genetics for genealogy. To learn more, visit the ISOGG website at

What are the companies offering DNA testing


Here is some DNA Terminology

  • Genes: A specific sequence of genetic compounds in DNA that is usually located on a chromosome and is a functional unit of inheritance. Genes inside the nucleus of a cell are strung together in such a way that the sequence carries information: that information determines how living organisms inherit various features
  • Chromosome:  A DNA molecule and its proteins which line up and make a long string of genetic material (genes). First 22 chromosomes are inherited from both parents and all recent ancestors.  The 23rd is the X-chromosome that follows a special inheritance pattern.
  • Genome: Every person inherits two copies of a human genome, one from each parent. The parent’s two genomes crossover and randomly recombine in that person.
  • DNA: deoxyribonucleic acid:  DNA stores biological information. The main component of chromosomes and is the material that transfers genetic characteristics down through all life forms.
  • Mitochondria: Found in certain types of cells to produce energy needed for cell activities (cell growth, division and death ) from foods we eat.
  • Haplogroup: Haplogroups are used in conjunction with yDNA and mtDNA tests to define where ancestor populations originated geographically then migrated elsewhere, such as people of European descent, Asian, Jewish, Native American and African. yDNA haplogroups are named from A to T with subgroups using numbers and lower case letters. For example:   R1b1b2 identifies Central European and West European ancestors, including Ireland and Great Britain.
  • Markers: SNP and STR markers are used in yDNA and mtDNA testing to further define genetic mapping and establish common ancestry within recent centuries. The first 12 SNR markers for a person are considered “deep ancestry” markers and may show matches with people of same or different surnames even before surnames came into use.


One Towey Family’s Autosomal Analysis
Griffiths Valuation Survey of 1856 together with Ireland census records, earliest is the 1901 census found at,  shows that 71% of Towey families in Ireland were living in townlands within a 20 km (15 mile) radius of Ballaghaderreen.  These townlands may be located on the 1901 Census and Coach Tour Map.

Given this historical closeness, we Toweys, surname variants and others of Irish ancestry, et al, may wish to compare our DNA analysis with another Towey.  Three autosomal DNA analysis were performed for William J Towey, Webmaster 2010 to 2017, who is of known Irish and German heritage.  You may also wish to compare differing results provided by  three genealogical DNA companies.  See DNA Autosomal Analysis William J Towey.

A deep yDNA analysis showing migration of his paternal ancestors in terms of Halogroups and Markers is shown at DNA Paternal Haplogroup William J Towey.

This analysis could also apply to his brother Richard E. Towey, Clan Genealogist 2001 to 2012 and his sister Janet Towey Mann, Chan Secretary 2004 to 2010.  Dick and Janet physically researched ancestor birth records in Ballaghaderreen.  Dick’s and Janet’s genealogy research of our ancestor’s birth records identified we are Irish 56% and German 44% (our great grandmother of Irish descent was born in Great Britain and married in Germany).

Towey Clan DNA Project
Way back in 2004, Dick Towey (1928 – 2017), Clan Genealogist 2004 to 2012, undertook the first Towey Clan DNA Project to help tie together some common genealogy relationships for the Towey Clan.   The Towey Clan DNA analysis at that time focused solely on the male yDNA analysis, but has not been updated since 2007.  Results are located at

Dick generated the Towey Clan yDNA Information Chart for the eight Toweys who took the test.  It a bit technical and portrays our Irish relationship in terms of DNA Haplogroup and STR markers.  It also displays our genealogical relationship with Mike Towey, Clan Chieftain, who was Irish born and raised near our Ballaghaderreen homeland.  It also identifies that male Toweys, along with about 20 percent of all other Irish males, are genetically related to a common ancestor, i.e.,  Niall of the Nine Hostages, an ancient Irish leader at Tara about 379 to 405 AD.

DNA analysis testing has advanced significantly the past five years.  We are now able to find our ancient heritage as humans migrated across the continents over thousands of years.  Autosomal DNA testing is more widely advertised, is much easier to understand and still discover more about our ancient ancestral heritage.  yDNA and mtDNA testing will give us the deep ancestry leading to our R1b1b2 Haplogroup.