Michael Cooley's Genetic Genealogy Blog
12 May 2016

About Michael Cooley

Genealogy has been one of my hobbies since 1977. Although I've never worked as a professional genealogist, I published The Pettit Correspondent, The National Queries Forum, and premiered one of the early non-.edu genealogy websites, Genealogy Online (genealogy.org), in 1994. It was purchased in 2000 by RootsWeb and, from them, Ancestry.com. My personal genealogy website is ancestraldata.com.

The news about the mitochondrial DNA extraction from Ötzi the Iceman in about 1990 was an eye opener. A few years later I read about the Y-DNA research on the Cohens and what is now referred to as Y-chromosomal Aaron and recognized the potential of DNA for genealogical research. It wasn't until 2006, however, that I discovered that DNA testing had become affordable. I now maintain or help maintain fifteen surname DNA projects at Family Tree DNA, including the Cooley DNA Project and three projects at Facebook.com: The Worldwide Cooley YDNA Project, the Pettit-Mellowes Y-DNA Project, and the R1a-YP4248 Subclade Project.

I started this blog with a collection of catchup emails written to Cooley project members during the spring of 2016. Cooley is frequently the topic in these articles but this site is not intended to be specifically for (or about) any one surname. Included are studies of other names. (Akins, Duncan, Whitfield, Cochran, and Strother, for example). Although the articles are specific to the topic at hand, the techniques and methods of analyzing the data, which I discuss, are ubiquitous. It's my hope that anyone interested in genetic genealogy will find some use among these pages.

I have given presentations and seminars in genealogy, genetic genealogy, history, and film for the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at Humboldt State University and have given presentations about genetic genealogy in Oregon, Washington, D.C., Salt Lake City, and at various venues in Humboldt County, California, and Santa Rosa, California, where I now reside. Returning to school late in life, I graduated with a degree in history at HSU in 2013 and received an MA in English (creative nonfiction writing) through Southern New Hampshire University in December 2017.

Other interests compete for my attention, of course. See my personal website at newsummer.com for more information.