- Marriage License. Locating Mabry’s 1879 marriage license which named his parents as “Hal and Rainey.” No surname was listed for the parents on the marriage license.
- Surname Search. Doing a surname search of PAIR marriage records in Greensville County, VA which revealed that a Rainey Pair married a Joseph Briggs in 1867.
- Census. Search of the 1870 and 1880 censuses for Rainey Pair Briggs and Joseph Briggs where Ardie and Mabry were found living with their mother and stepfather in 1870.
Since I had not found any documentation on the paternity of my ancestor Ardie, I turned to DNA testing for answers. I wanted DNA test results to prove or disprove a paternal connection between Ardie and Mabry Pair.
In order to test these two lines, I needed to test direct male descendants of these two families. In October 2008, a great grandson of Mabry Pair took a 46-marker DNA test from Ancestry.com DNA . In November 2008, my father, who is a grandson of Ardie Pair took the same type of test. Results for both tests were received in late November with exact matches on all 46 markers. The paternal Haplogroup for these two tests is E3a.
The 46-marker test results mean that these two families share a paternal ancestor within the last six generations or 150 years. I do not know when Hal, the common ancestor in these two families, was born or died; however, I do know that he was a common ancestor within the last five generations of this family.
Further, these matching results also mean that the descendants of Mabry Pair have the same African connection as the descendants of Ardie Pair. In July 2007, one of my father’s brothers took a Y-chromosome test through the African Ancestry DNA Company) The results of this 8-marker test match present living people in three African countries:
- Balanta people in Guinea-Bissau
- Yoruba people in Nigeria
- Akan people in Ghana.
These African Ancestry results mean that the Pair family has genetic African cousins living in these countries and that we share a paternal ancestor who lived thousands of years ago.