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DNA (and everything else genealogical) on Cyndi’s List

Sometimes the question is simply: where do we begin?

When we want to learn about a topic as broad as, say, DNA, genetics and health, where do we start?

Or, for many of us, when we’d like to give a cousin who’s just tested or is thinking about testing a place to start, where can we send that cousin?

And something came up just a couple of days ago that reminded The Legal Genealogist of one very good place to start, for this topic and — in actuality — for almost any topic you can think of in genealogy.

It’s Cyndi’s List.

Begun as a personal set of browser bookmarks more than 20 years ago, Cyndi’s List is the brainchild of Cyndi Ingle — who has just been honored by the British Society of Genealogists with its prestigious Prince Michael of Kent Award “for services to genealogy for many years of dedication with Cyndi’s List.”1

According to Wikipedia, “The society’s patron is Prince Michael of Kent, after whom the Society has named a prestigious award (created in 2000), granted periodically to a person or organisation which has made an outstanding contribution to genealogy.”2 Previous recipients include FreeBMD and the Genealogical Society of Utah.3

And there’s no doubt that Cyndi Ingle and Cyndi’s List have made an outstanding contribution to genealogy. Even in the subset of genealogy that relates to genetic genealogy.

Take a stroll over to Cyndi’s List and check out the overall category for DNA, Genetics & Family Health. The subcategories you’ll find include:

• Adoption
• Analysis Tools & Utilities
• Articles About DNA
• atDNA – Autosomal DNA
• Blogs
• Consent, Privacy & Ethics
• Ethnicity Estimates (Admixture)
• Family Health History
• General Resources
• Genograms
• How To
• Locality & Ethnic Specific
• mtDNA – Mitochondrial DNA
• Native American DNA
• Professional Services & DNA Testing
• Publications, Software & Supplies
• Social Networking
• Templates & Spreadsheets
• Thomas Jefferson
• Why and When There is No Online Tree
• X-DNA – X-chromosome DNA
• Y-DNA – Y-chromosome DNA

Open up just the General Resources subcategory and you’ll see resources ranging from the from the International Society for Genetic Genealogy (ISOGG) and its fabulous wiki to a British company where you can order products like necklaces and ties based on your own DNA.

Pop over to the Consent, Privacy & Ethics subcategory to find the Genetic Genealogy Standards and terms of service for many of the DNA testing companies. And, by the way, you can tell how much these are updated when you note that at least four entire subcategories — including that consent and ethics section — are new just since last year.

The Blogs subcategory will take you to Blaine Bettinger’s The Genetic Genealogist, to CeCe Moore’s Your Genetic Genealogist, and even back to the DNA posts here at The Legal Genealogist.

And those are just a few of the resources you’ll find, some of which may already be known to you — and some of which, I guarantee, will be totally new to you.

So check out Cyndi’s List and its DNA, Genetics & Family Health category — and all the other categories it offers for genealogical research. From Acadian, Cajun & Creole to Writing Your Family’s History, it’s still the best overall free resource anywhere to help us find what we need, even if we don’t quite know what we need or want to find.

And while we’re there… we need to do one thing more.

Cyndi's List 2018

We need to think about how much work it takes to maintain a resource like that. Think about what it costs to keep it online and free to all comers. Cyndi’s List is still, here in its 23rd year, the free product of one single individual… and it isn’t free to her at all. For that one individual, there’s an enormous cost of time, effort and real cold hard cash to keep this online and available to us.

So while we’re there, if we can, we need to go ahead and hit the Donate button on the Support Us page. Anything you can afford to support this amazing resource and to keep it online and free is a great thing to do. I hit that button myself this morning, to join the Society of Genealogists as it says thanks to Cyndi’s List and its creator, Cyndi Ingle, and as my way of giving back to the entire genealogical community.

For DNA research, for genealogical research, for all of us, join me in supporting Cyndi’s List, won’t you?

And join me in congratulating Cyndi Ingle and Cyndi’s List as the 2018 recipient of the Society of Genealogists’ Prince Michael of Kent Award.


  1. “Society News,” July newsletter, Society of Genealogists, PDF ( : accessed 1 July 2018).
  2. Wikipedia (, “Society of Genealogists,” rev. 20 Jan 2018.
  3. Ibid.
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