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Frequently Asked Questions about the Bowles DNA Project

Who can participate?

Any male Bowles (or variation on that name such as Boals, Boles, Bolles, Bolls, Booles, Boules, Bowls, and Boyles) may participate. The important thing is that he must be a direct descendent of a male Bowles (ie. son of a Bowles male; son of a son of a Bowles male, etc).

Why is the project limited to Bowles males only?

The part of a person's DNA that is examined in this project is only found in a male. There is a separate test for females, but it cannot be used in surname research. This particular DNA segment is passed, normally unchanged, from father to son to grandson, etc. If a man has no sons, the DNA segment we need is not passed on, even if he has daughters since they do not receive it.

Which test should I get?

There are four levels of Y-DNA tests: 12, 25, 37, and 67 markers. We recommend either the 25 or the 37 marker test since they give us a much better shot at finding true matches with other Bowles descendents. The 12 marker test really doesn't tell us enough to test for positive matches, although it can tell us when a match does not exist. The 67 marker test is a bit of overkill except in certain situations where we need additional markers to verify a match, or refine the number of generations to a common ancestor. When this is necessary, an additional reading of a test can be done for a fee to upgrade to higher levels of markers without having to provide another DNA sample.

How much stock should I place in a 12 marker match?

If your first set of results (markers 1-12) show a 12/12 perfect match with someone else in the project, then you may anticipate the possibility that you and that person may share a common ancestor in genealogical time. However, it is important to wait for the second set of markers (13-37) before putting too much hope in the match. The first 12 markers are better at disproving a match than in proving one. That is why we recommend the 25 or 37 marker test.

How much does it cost?

Because Family Tree DNA sometimes offers discounted prices, it is best to visit the JOIN page (see below) and check the prices listed there.

How do I order a test?

Follow this link to the Join Page for the Bowles DNA Project. Scroll down to the order form and complete it. Select the test you want to order. Indicate whether you are paying by credit card or wish an invoice and then select continue to move to the next page. Continue to follow directions on these pages to order your kit.

Is is safe to pay by credit card online?

Family Tree DNA provides a secure page for your order. It is as safe to order online with them as it is to order online with any other reputable business.

What if I don't want to pay by credit card online?

You may order the kit with an invoice. When it arrives, complete the kit and return the invoice and your payment with it.

I would like to participate in the Bowles DNA project, but the cost is prohibitive for me.

We do have folks who are willing to consider helping to finance kits under circumstances that warrant it. If you need to discuss financial help, contact the project administrator privately.

I have another question that is not answered here.

You can contact the project administrator privately for additional answers.