Joanne Cameron, Co-administrator Clan Cameron YDNA Project www.familytreedna.com/
Our Clan is a
rich tapestry of people, history and traditions. From our Chief Lochiel, the
cadets which are represented in our Clan crest to the various septs which are
also associated with the Clan, we are a confederation of people with huge pride
in who we are and where we come from. This is well reflected in the Y DNA
results to date.
The aim of our
project is to explore the origins of the surname Cameron. In doing so we are
finding that our Clan is made up of many different paternal lines and
Haplogroups who are united alongside our main paternal Cameron line. The
Cameron Clan is not necessarily defined by who is and who isn’t related to the
main Paternal Cameron lineage.
were adopted in Scotland, around the 12th century for the upper echelons of
Scottish society and the 18th for ordinary people, not every man who pledged
allegiance to a Clan Chief would have been a descendant of the same patrilineal
There can be a
misconception that anyone bearing a clan surname is automatically descended
from a clan chief, but this isn’t always the case. They instead could have been
related through adoption, marriage or even by proximity.
The ability of
a clan to defend its territory from other clans depended greatly on attracting
as many followers as possible. Being a member of a large and powerful clan
became a distinct advantage in the lawless Highlands, and followers might adopt
the clan name to curry favour with the Laird, to show solidarity, for basic
protection, or maybe because their lands were taken by a more powerful neighbour
and they had little option!
We currently have sitting in our Group A, men who descend
from our paternal Cameron SNP R-A6138, 21 testers who break off into 5
different branches. Two branches are identified by family research to be
MacGillonie and Clunes. By far the largest sub-clade off of R-A6138 is a branch
yet to be identified. There is much potential for R-A6138 to have many
different branches or as we call them sub-clades beneath it.
about 50 YSTR testers who would most likely turn out to be in our Group A if
they upgraded to the Big Y 700 test.
majority, over 100 YSTR Cameron surname testers in the Project, are not
descended from R-A6138. They come from mainly the haplogroup R1b but a good
number are from the I1 haplogroup with some also from haplogroup R1a, J and E.
We also have
31 Cameron men who have only tested 12 YSTR markers which is insufficient to
determine where they sit in our Project. A bare minimum test of 37 YSTR’s are
needed for placement in the Project.
There are two
new Big Y 700 tests currently in progress and six new upgrades to the new Big Y
700 from the Big Y 500. The SNP above R-A6138, or as we call it the Grandfather
of A6138, is the SNP R-A7298 which at current estimates indicate was born about
the year 1042AD. A7298 is the common shared ancestor of Clans Cameron, Macnab
In my next
article I hope to bring news of the McMartin Camerons which may make us look at
their history a bit closer!