St*rling DNA Project Has a Big Breakthrough

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July 22, 2004 - Stirling DNA Project - Has A Big Breakthrough!

We've had a big breakthrough on the DNA research front. Keir Brooks Sterling, a descendant of William Sterling of Lyme, Connecticut, has received results back indicating that his Y-chromosome matches that of descendants of Isaac Starling of Accomac, Virginia (among whom I am included). This means that both families definitely descend from the same man. Isaac and William might even have been brothers, as both are similar in age. We'll be able to tighten this up with additional participants from among the William descendants.

These results goes a long way toward confirming Leola Starling's hypothesis that the Virginia family originated in a migration from New England, rather than arriving directly from the British Isles. They tie together what I believe are the two largest St*rling groups in North America into one family - Albert Mack Sterling would be delighted.

I'm not really much of a genealogist - I'm just the nerd who runs the DNA project. So I wanted to hand this off to those of you who are better researchers than I. Some questions: What do we know about these two men that might show how they fit together? Can we demonstrate or prove a relationship using existing records, rather than just relying on DNA evidence?

Thanks to Keir for joining the project and helping us make this connection! We have another suspected William descendant already on the rolls, but Keir's family origins are strongly documented and so his results clinch what we have long suspected.

We could still use additional male-line William descendants just to cement the findings. Let me know if you're interested. Also, if you suspect you are a William descendant but cannot prove it with records, join up!

Rick Stirling St*rling DNA Project


St*rling DNA Results


Followup: Jun 2, 2005 by Rick Stirling St*rling DNA Project Administrator


Further DNA testing now connects James Stirling of Cornwall, CT born ca 1746 to William Sterling of Haverhill Mass and Isaac Starling of Accomac. James was most probably a great-great grandson of William by his son Richard. More research is needed.


It is very interesting that the DNA haplogroup for William of Haverhill, James of Cornwall and Isaac of Accomac is "I1a" and given other DYS values this indicates a AngloSaxon heritage for this St*rling line. This comports well with the history that the maidenhead of the Stirling line in Scotland was Thoraldus de Strivelyn, an AngloSaxon noble who came north with David I, king of Scots, when king David acceded to the Scottish throne after the death of his brother, king Edgar. Thoraldus is acknowledged as the first chief of Clan Stirling by the Lord Lyon of Scotland.

Rick Sterling thoraldus @ gmail dot com


Join the St*rling DNA Project

Edited: May 22, 2006 R Stirling