Few of us are entirely comfortable with the genealogical research we and others have done.  Many of our findings have words like “probably”, “may”, “perhaps”, and “assumption” inserted because of our doubts.  We've exhausted all the traditional research tools and all that remains is using simple, painless DNA testing to provide the answers for which we've been hunting.

DNA testing is the newest tool available to genealogists.  Y-DNA testing helps genealogists verify their paternal ancestry (father's father's father, etc.) in a quick and easy way.  It saves time, prevents mistakes,and provides invaluable data that can be obtained in no other way.  The only cost is for the testing itself, and even though it may at first seem expensive, it is probably much less than many research trips we have made that produced far less information — consider the costs of gasoline, tolls, parking, photocopying, meals, and perhaps an overnight stay.

Y-DNA testing has already proven that our Hartrum and Hotrum family trees connect someplace and analysis of all the data shows that Conrad HOTRUM is almost certainly a son of Joh: HARDRAM.

We need to test at least one male individual from each tree to see if they match the other trees.  If they don't, we should test another individual in the same tree but one that's the furthest removed from the other testee, in order to verify that their connection is correct and that their results correctly represent that whole tree.

Family Tree DNA, the company we recommend for this, will also determine your Y Haplogroup, even to the extent of performing additional tests on your sample if it becomes necessary.  This will indicate your paternal line's ancient ancestry and will show the migration routes of your ancestors of thousands of years ago through different geographic regions on a map that Family Tree DNA will send you, and also on the various genographic and haplogroup maps available on the web.

Another advantage of providing a DNA sample is that some companies will store it for many years — Family Tree DNA stores it for 25 years at no additional charge.  So as new testing methods evolve, descendants of a deceased person that has been tested will be able to get further testing performed on that same DNA sample.

You simply swab the inside of your cheek a few times in the comfort of your home.  Mail the sample to the testing company, and then sit back and wait about six weeks for the results.  You will receive a handsome certificate displaying your genetic profile — a series of numbers that are meaningless by themselves, but they hold the key to your paternal ancestry and, when matched against the profiles of others, can yield information that can be obtained in no other way.  Those numbers will be compared against other testees' results in the fast-growing database and you will likely find other individuals whose results match yours — if not immediately then in future years.  You will be notified as new matches occur.

Note that only a male with any of the subject surnames may participate in Y-DNA testing but, if you have this ancestry, you can be represented by even a distant cousin whose name is Hartrum, Hotrum or similar.  Maternal ancestry (mother's mother's mother, etc.) testing can also be performed and is termed Mitochondrial or mt-DNA testing, but obviously it is used to verify other than the surname line — see below.  For further information about DNA  read Charles Kirchner's Introduction.  Further questions and concerns are answered at Family Tree DNA's Learning pages.

We used to show the four main trees where we knew we had living male individuals that were prime candidates for Y-DNA testing but those trees didn't display well on smart-phones so we have removed them rather than have different copies of this page depending on the viewer's device.  We do however still need more male Hartrums to take a Y-DNA test and, if that person's results are needed to further our research, we will help subsidize the cost of the test.  Just check with us first to determine if this applies to your male Hartrum individuals.  We would also like to test anyone that can help confirm the relationship of the Luzerne County, Pennsylvania BRONSONs and the Michigan or Washington HOTRUMs to the rest of us.

If you would like to participate by having your Y-DNA (male only) tested for genealogy purposes then order a test kit and mail your sample to Family Tree DNA.  Note: For our Y-DNA testing we recommend having a minimum of 37 markers tested initially, but if testing 111 markers is do-able then go for it — it will eliminate the need for later upgrades.  In return you will receive comprehensive details of the results of your test — see sample reports.

If you would be willing to provide a donation to support our DNA project then please go to the Family Tree DNA website and contribute to the HARTRUM Surname Project.  Payments can be made securely via credit card or PayPal.

Our Y-DNA Discoveries so far . . .

We have proven that the New Jersey and Ohio HARTRUMs, and the Ontario HOTRUMs are very close relatives, all descending from a common ancestor.  Furthermore it appears that every Hartrum and Hotrum is related, with the common connection being in Pennsylvania or New Jersey in the mid 1700s — if only we could find the paper records to prove it! 

The other interesting discovery is a match with a descendant of Tobias HARTRANFT, who was supposedly born in Silesia in 1684 and emigrated to Pennsylvania in 1734.  So perhaps this is our original ancestral surname even though no paper records showing that connection have been found.

Other types of DNA testing:

Autosomal DNA (at-DNA) testing is today's most popular test and is available from many different companies — FT-DNA's Family Finder, Ancestry.com's AncestryDNA, 23andMe's DNA test, MyHeritage's DNA test.  These tests are all similar but there are subtle differences in what's provided later to the testee.  The biggest advantage of the autosomal test is that it can be taken by both males and females, and it is not necessary to have a Hartrum or Hotrum surname to see your match to these families.  The only problems with it are that (unlike Y-DNA) it's only usable 7 or 8 generations back from the testee and many more participants are needed to supply DNA samples.  In the absence of your parents, aunts and uncles, it is to your advantage to test as many first- and second-cousins as possible because their matches to you will identify the lineage origin of that matching portion of DNA.  Analysis of the resultant data can be time-consuming because that DNA comes from a mix of at least 256 ancestors but they are not identified for you.  On the plus side... it does permit females to participate in DNA testing, and it also provides information about all ancestral lines (not just the patriline).  Even if you don't have the time to expend on detailed analysis it's still worthwhile getting tested as soon as possible because that will permit other testees to research your connection to themselves, thereby doing your research for you!
In our HARTRUM tree the use of autosomal testing helped to discover and prove the biological parents of an adopted child, whereas in our HOTRUM tree it enabled a breakthrough by identifying the surname of one of the previously-unidentified wives.  Further breakthroughs will occur as more people take autosomal DNA tests.

If you have taken an autosomal test at any company then please create a free account at GEDmatch.com and upload a copy of your test results (the raw data) into the GEDmatch database so it can be compared to others who tested elsewhere.  Please contact us if you have any doubt or concerns about this.

Mitochondrial DNA (mt-DNA) testing provides the female line (matriline) haplotype.  While this is not normally used in a "Surname" project, we are using it to discover the parents of some female Hartrums that were born in the 1800s.  Doing this is quite complicated as it entails discovering living descendants of those females via a pure female line (except for the person being tested) —the matriline— so the tested person's mother must be related through her mother, and so on, back to the female Hartrum.


All information about living individuals is kept in the strictest confidence.

Y-DNA Results
Click here
to see a spreadsheet of the allele values of the various markers for the male individuals that have been tested so far.