by Phillip G. Goff, GGFA Director of Genetic Genealogy

The Gough family of Wolverhampton, Staffordshire, England has a refined genetic banner. The previous descriptor of 1849 GOUGH (GB-STS) R-Y61318 has been updated to 1849 GOUGH (GB-STS) R-Y74432. The revised genetic narrative for this family, like all such narratives, is on the GGFA site under the following series of links:

> Archives & Research > DNA Surname Study > Current GGFA DNA Family Groups”

Here are the major changes:

  • Pre-surname matches have taken Big Y 700 and split the very long list of YSNPs, resulting in the new terminal YSNP of R-Y74432. The first man with the R-Y74432 YSNP was born about 1250 AD, according to FTDNA’s Discovery report. This is 300 years more recent than the previous terminal YSNP of R-Y61318, which mutated around 950 AD. While both are in the pre-surname period, the new designation is within about 100 years of the adoption of hereditary surnames.
  • The Gough Big Y 700 participant was and remains on somewhat of a genetic island. However, it is now clear that the closest match is just prior to the adoption of hereditary surnames. A Winward Y111 kit was known to match on 101 of 111 markers, but these markers are unstable, leaving uncertainty when the most recent common ancestor lived. Big Y 700 reveals that the Winard and Gough participants shared the R-Y74432 paternal ancestor, who was born around 1250 AD. The Winard participant traces his lineage to John Wynnarde, b. 1521, Standish, Lancashire. Standish is about 84 miles or 135 kilometers from Wolverhampton.
  • A slightly more distant match, surname Arculus, traces to Thomas Arculus who died 1645 in Feckenham Parish, Worcester, England, about 26 miles or 43 km south of Wolverhampton.

Please periodically check the GGFA DNA Surname Study link for changes to your genetic Gough/Goff/McG* family.

Phillip Goff is the co-author, along with Roy L. Lockhart, of The Four Goff Brothers of Western Virginia. Since 2004, he has run the Goff/Gough Surname DNA Study, which today has about 500 participants.

For more information, please check our GGFA DNA Surname Study pages or email Phil at Each new participant helps to fill in the history of the Goff/Gough families.

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