by Phillip G. Goff, GGFA Director of Genetic Genealogy

As of April 2023, 34 genetically distinct Goff, Gough and other surname variants have been proven through YDNA. At least 10% of these families trace to Ireland. Genealogy research in Ireland is particularly challenging for several reasons. First, most 19th century census records were destroyed in a 1922 fire. In addition, most civil vital recordkeeping in Ireland only started in 1864 versus 1837 in England.

While many key Irish records do not exist due lack of recording or loss from calamity, the Y-chromosome of males of Irish descent holds a perfect account of the family history. New Big Y 700 results shed light on one of the oldest Irish Gough families.

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For the full analysis and genetic chart information on this family, please click Archives & Research > DNA Surname Study > Current GGFA DNA Family Groups. These pages are regularly updated for new information.

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

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 400 participants.

One thought on “Irish Gough Family Comes Into Focus

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    Robert Davis-Goff says:

    Very interesting!

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