Moses Tullis Was Scottish!
A Tullis Family Tree DNA Update
by Thomas S. Tullis, Editor
As described in the last issue, the Tullis Family Tree DNA
project tests the Y chromosome of male Tullises to determine if they share
a common male ancestor. (See http://www.tullistrees.org/SurnameProject/
for more information.) As of my last update, the tests for only two of
us had been completed: Craig Tullis and myself. We came back as an exact
match, confirming what we both believed: that we are both descendants
of Moses Tullis (b. abt. 1725) of New Jersey and Virginia. Since then,
we have received the results of three more tests: Peter John Tullis of
Australia who traces his line back to Scotland, Richard G. Tullis of the
U.S. who traces his line back to Claudius/Cloud Tullos of Virginia, and
John Philo Tullis of the U.S. who traces his line back to Scotland.
Peter John Tullis traces his line back to Alexander Tullis (1819-1891)
who was born in Cupar, Fife, Scotland. Alexander and his brothers were
profiled in Tullis Trees, Vol. 2, No. 4. Peters results came back
as NOT a match with Craig or me. Of the 12 markers tested,
all 12 were different, so the results were not even close. This led to
the hypotheses that either Moses Tullis (ancestor of Craig and me) was
not from Scotland, that he was from Scotland but from a completely different
Tullis line, or one of the paternal lines involved isnt exactly
what we think it is.
Richard G. Tullis, who has done extensive research into the Tullis/Tullos
families in the U.S., traces his line back to Claudius/Cloud Tullos of
Virginia. This line is often referred to as the Virginia Migration
while the Moses Tullis line (and his presumed father, Robert Tullis) is
referred to as the New Jersey Migration. One of the interesting
questions is whether these two lines were somehow connected. Richards
test results came back as indicating a genetic distance of
2 from Craig and me. This means that of the 12 markers tested, 10 of them
matched. Unfortunately, this doesnt give us a very clear-cut answer.
It means that we might be related, but that it would be many generations
back. According to the Family Tree DNA website, the probability that we
shared a common male ancestor within the past 500 years is about 60%.
We could possibly get more information by enhancing our tests to the 25-marker
or 37-marker versions. The more of these markers that match, the closer
the connection. Were currently awaiting the results of a test by
Lindsey Lee Tullos, who also traces his line to Claudius/Cloud Tullos.
John Philo Tullis is a descendant of David Tullis who came over to the
U.S. from Scotland in the 1800's. So at the time David came over, the
descendants of Moses Tullis had already been in the U.S. for over 100
years. The surprising finding is that we got an exact match on all 12
markers between John, Craig, and myself! This means that we all share
a common male ancestor. The DNA testing people tell us there is a 50%
probability that the common ancestor is no more than 14 or 15 generations
back. In essence, this proves that Moses Tullis and his presumed father,
Robert Tullis, were of Scottish extraction! See the chart below that shows
Johns line as far back as he knows it and my line as far back as
I know it.
It could even be possible that John's earliest known ancestor,
a John Tullos who was born about 1644 in Leuchars, Fifeshire, Scotland,
was the father of our Robert Tullis. (Only three children of John Tullos
are currently known, none of which is a Robert, but the name Robert was
used in the next several generations of John's descendants.) More research
in Scotland is needed to try to figure out the exact connection.
Stay tuned for more test results! And we still want more Tullis males
to participate in the study. Contact me (TomTullis@aol.com) for more information.