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Using DNA to break thru brick walls.

I was able to identify my unknown 2g-grandparents using Ancestry DNA. Has anyone else been successful using DNA to break through a brick wall? If so, please share your story.

I will say I have used my DNA and have found cousins through my 5th great grandparents. It is pretty amazing what you can find.

I had searched for my 2g-grandparents for over 15 years when Ancestry announced ThruLines.  I had purchased a DNA test several years earlier from 23andMe but I didn't find it very helpful for genealogy.  After reading about Ancestry's new ThruLines feature, I decided to purchase an Ancestry DNA test.  My plan was to identify my closest common ancestor for each of my DNA relatives that had public family trees and 30cm or more shared DNA.  My reasoning was that since I had documented all of my lines to 3g-grandparents or greater except for one, if I couldn't find a common ancestor with a DNA match, the missing common ancestor would likely be in my "brick wall" line.

After receiving my DNA results, I spent an afternoon identifying my closest common ancestor with several hundred matches.  There were three DNA relatives with public family trees that didn't share a ThruLines common ancestor with me.  As a result, I examined their family trees looking for a shared name.  Eureka!!!  All three had the name Conrad Meyer who had resided in Will County, IL, where my great grandparents were married in 1868!  The next day I located Conrad's estate papers that named Rachel Brunner, wife of Samuel Brunner, as one of his children...brick wall smashed!

My next challenge is to find Conrad's and his wife Julia's parents.  Census records indicate that they came from Prussia.  I think this level will be even more difficult to crack!