For all of those researching the ancestry of Timothy Brees, Revolutionary soldier from New Jersey, but have hit a brick wall in locating his parents, there is knew information from yDNA testing that may help change the course of research. Recently I had a male descendant of Timothy Brees though his son Jesse Brees tested for yDNA markers. Since this test looks at the male Y chromosome, it looks at DNA passed down from father to son over generations. The results of this test showed that the 67 markers tested did not match closely with any of the Brees males currently tested including descendants of Moses and John Brees of Morris County, NJ and Ohio who were thought to be close relatives of Timothy’s. In fact Timothy’s yDNA did not match at all. In comparing to other surname groups, I was able to determine there was a match to the Doty family and not just to any Doty family but because of a marker specific to one line, it showed that Timothy’s male ancestry came from the Samuel Doty line of Piscataway, New Jersey.
So what does this mean? There are a few possibilities with the first being that there was an illegitimate birth in the Brees line prior to Timothy or even the fact that Timothy himself was born out of wedlock, his mother probably being a Brees woman and his father a Doty. Other possibilities are naturally adoption, along with a scenario that a woman married a Doty who whom she had a child, Timothy. This Doty died and the woman married second to a Brees male who may have adopted Timothy legally, or at least his surname just changed from Doty to Brees. So in our research now, we don’t want to look solely at the Brees family in central New Jersey, but also have to keep our eyes out for which Doty male could possibly be the father of Timothy. This can be done by monitoring the Doty surname group at Family Tree DNA for descendants of Samuel Doty who could fit into Timothy’s ancestry. I would also encourage other male descendants of Timothy Doty, especially those not descended from Tim’s son Jesse, to have their yDNA tested in the Brees surname project so we can verify just was the yDNA markers were for Timothy’s descendants.
I hope to hear comments from other Brees researchers.