4 "sons" of Hans Petrus Lance/Lentz- not!
Dear Lance Forumers,
For some time now it has been putatively suggested that Hans Petrus Lentz (or Lance) had four sons who, by various spellings, are identified as Dewalt, Bastian, John, and Peter. However, no hard evidence has ever been found to show that John and/or Peter are sons of Hans Petrus Lentz, or equivalently to show John and/or Peter are brother(s) to Dewalt and/or Bastian.
So a group of us teamed up to see what we could learn from molecular genealogical (DNA) techniques. We tested male-line descendants of each of the four "brothers". I believe we now have enough information to ascribe a robust conclusion.
The resultant DNA types fell into two narrowly-defined, but very distinct categories. There was on the one hand the Bastian/Dewalt type of DNA, and on the other hand the John/Peter type of DNA. These two types of DNA are so dissimilar that it is not reasonable to suggest that they are likely to have come from a common ancestor 12 or less generations ago.
1. Given the known baptism records of Bastian and Dewalt as sons of Hans Petrus Lentz, and the equivalance of their DNA, and the known mention in the extant but contemporaneous record of the sibling nature of Bastian and Dewalt, it is concluded that Bastian and Dewalt are indeed brothers.
2. Given the similarity between the DNA of John and Peter, it is concluded that John and Peter are closely related to each other - possibly brothers.
3. Given the divergence of the DNA as a whole, and based partly on part 1 (above) it is concluded that neither John nor Peter could be brothers with Bastian and/or Dewalt, and therefore, neither John nor Peter are sons of Hans Petrus Lentz.
I must say that I am a little disappointed with these results, because, as a John descendant, it means part of my tree got blasted. But that is the way it is. Better a short scraggly factual bush than an impressively huge, yet fictitious tree.
If you are interested in the details of the experimental protocol, or any aspect of the DNA project, you can read essentially the entire history of the project here: