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For the Corson Cousins newsletter, October 2010

Corson Surname DNA Project

Since the last report (October 2008), 9 participants have joined the project, bringing the number of participants with results to 48.

Project Status

These 48 participants belong to 16 different genetic lines: 5 representing known Corson progenitors (Divisions I, II, IV, VII, and XV), 2 documenting descent from Division III, 1 documenting descent from Division IV but exactly matching individuals with the surname Lee, and 8 remaining unmatched within the project. Surnames in the project include Corson, Courson, Coursen, Colson, Corsa, Corsaw, Courser, Coursey, DeCoursey, DeCourcy, Vroom, and Raisor. Amazingly, the 8 participants tested from Division II have 6 surnames among them!

Recent Results

Division I

Participant #50 documents descent from Isaac Corson (c. 1770-1832), documented great-grandson of Samuel Corson (1686-1764). Compared to Samuel’s estimated genetic signature, he shares a mutation (15 instead of 14 on marker DYS 446) with Participant #29, his documented fifth cousin once-removed. This mutation appears in no other Division I participants, indicating that it can be used to identify descendants of Isaac (and possibly those of his father, Moses (c. 1744-1802)). He also has a mutation on DYS 439, which arose in him or one of his post-Isaac ancestors.


Recent results also come from Participant #49, a third cousin to Participant #7. Both document descent from Cornelius Corson (1793-1859), their most recent common ancestor) and documented great-great-grandson of Benjamin Corssen (1686-1740). Compared to Benjamin’s estimated genetic signature, the new Participant has one mutation (14 instead of 15 on marker DYS 19). This mutation can be used to identify descendants of a particular descendant of Cornelius Corson (as far back as one of his sons), if other descendants are tested.

Division III Corssen-Vroom Split

Participant #49’s results continue the pattern of differing genetic signatures found in descendants of Benjamin Corssen and Hendrick Vroom (1683-1769), both documented grandsons of Cors Pieterszen (1612-1655), as Gale Corson describes in his Division-III article in this issue.

To move closer to determining which genetic signature (if either) represents that of Cors, we need to identify and test documented male-line descendants of brothers of Benjamin Corssen (Christian, b. 1676; Jacob, b. 1681) and Hendrick Vroom (Cors, b. 1677; Hendrick, b. 1683; Hans and Ryce). If done, a Corssen descendant whose genetic signature matched that of the Vroom descendants would indicate that Cors carried the Vroom signature. Likewise, a Vroom matching the Corssen signature would indicate his having carried the Corssen signature. It also would indicate “misattributed paternity” for Benjamin or Hendrick.

Between issues of Corson Cousins, information about the DNA project is available at the project website ( or via interim DNA-project e-mail newsletters (you can subscribe at