Back to Newsletters and Reports

For the Corson Cousins newsletter, October 2007

Corson Surname DNA Project

During the last quarter, one participant joined the project and received DNA results. Also, the project website moved to a new address.

Division IV (Cape May County) DNA

Participant #35, with the surname Corson, received his test results in September. He traces his ancestry to William H. Corson, who was born ca. 1804 in Cumberland County, New Jersey, and who died in 1879 in Dayton, Ohio. He wished to confirm, as his research indicated, that he was related to the Corson family in neighboring Cape May County (Division IV).

His results matched those of 4 other Corsons in the project on 36-37 markers out of 37. Three of the men document descent from Carsten Jansen (1634-c.1697), the Division IV progenitor. The fourth cannot document ancestry earlier than William Corson (bef. 1765-abt. 1823) from Cumberland County. The closeness of the match indicates that the participant's ancestor, William H. Corson, did indeed descend from the Division IV Corson family.

Some additional research will be necessary to connect William to a particular family with greater certainty. Corsons from Cumberland County, in particular, seem to have ancestries that are more difficult to untangle than other Corsons from southern New Jersey.

New project website address

I moved the project website to a new address in July. If you have Internet access and would like information about the DNA Project between issues of Corson Cousins, you can visit the project website here:

The website shows DNA results and male-line lineages for the 36 participants to date, as well as diagrams showing how participants from the same family document their descent from the progenitor. Division I (New England) currently has the greatest number of related participants (8), followed by Division IV (5). Divisions XV (southern US) and Corsons from Division III (Staten Island, New York / Bucks County, Pennsylvania) follow closely behind with 4 related participants each. Division II (Sussex County, New Jersey) has 3 related participants, while division VII (Hunterdon County, New Jersey) has 2.

Right-handed Trivia

Images of DNA appear all over the place these days, but not all of the images are correct. Nearly all DNA on earth twists to the right (in the same way that wood screws do). Yet some images show it twisting to the left, either by accident or ignorance. If interested, you can find a collection of left-handed DNA images online:

Fortunately, the logo for the Corson DNA project (on the website) is correct. I double-checked.