A Knipp Puzzle

Traditionally, genealogy is supposed to be fairly easy, right? You start with yourself, list your parents, their parents, etc. Then at some point, you hit a brick wall. This happened to me when I got to my great grandfather, David Brazille Plunk. I’ve written about him numerous times before so I won’t go into the whole story again, as far as his family knows, of how he became a Plunk.

Until I discovered the combination of DNA and genealogy, I thought his line would always be a dead end. But now, my dead end is a brick wall. Brick walls can be torn down.

I now have all these pieces of information to fit together. It is just like a puzzle trying to find where all the pieces fit. Unlike most people, I can’t travel up my family tree to find where the pieces go. Instead, I have to go up, down, and sideways. Very much like a cross word puzzle.

I’ve also written before about the fact that the descendants of three men, David Brazille Plunk, Thomas Lee Boatwright, and Edmund Knipp match on their Y line DNA exactly 47 markers out of 47 markers and why I think all of them belong to the Knipp family. I’ve explained too about my own autosomal DNA tests with genetic cousin matches to people that also descended from this family.

Before genetree closed, I had manually entered 42 markers of David’s Y line DNA, matched no one, and promptly forgot about it until I received an email notice that genetree was closing and I should download any match information before it was no longer available. I did so, and was pleasantly surprised to find this match:

Protected 41/42 97.62% KNEPP [United States]

What that means is that this tester chose to not make his name and email address available to matches, that he matched the Plunk YDNA 41 out of 42 markers, that the strength of the match is. 97.62% and he’s descended from Knepp. In a Court of law, a test to determine paternity comes back at 99.9%, you’ve proven the father of a child. To me, 97.62% is pretty close!

This man did provide somewhat of a family tree:
Daniel Knepp
Verner Knepp, Virginia

Not much to go on, but! Do you remember that I said from my own autosomal tests I have genetic cousin matches to the Knipp family? The most notable of this is a man than is matched to me as a relationship range of 3rd to 5th cousin, and suggested as my 4th cousin. His line to Knipp goes like this:

Lula Rebecca Bible – mother
Andrew Bible – grandfather
Leann Knipp great grandmother
Daniel Knipp 2nd great grandfather
Varner Knipp 3 great grandfather

Do you see it? The unknown tester at genetree is claiming descendency from Verner Knepp through his son Daniel Knepp. My genetic cousin match is claiming his descendency from Varner Knipp through his son Daniel Knipp.

If Mr. Reed is my 4th cousin, there is no way Verner Knipp, 1760 – 1839, is the father of David Brazille Plunk, 1879/80 – 1955. But, let’s look at the age of Mr. Reed. He was born 1914, Greene County, TN. Sadly, Mr. Reed has recently deceased, however, I was able to confirm with one of his relatives that the man born in 1914 was the man who took the test and the lineage I have for him is correct. What does that mean? I was born a whole lot later than 1914! Now we look to see if Mr. Reed and I could be 4th cousins.

If I go to my gedcom program and make David’s father unknown, his grandfather unknown, and Verner Kniptp as his great grandfather, along with Mr. Reed’s lineage, look what happens. Mr, Reed is your 4th cousin!

So, for me, a piece of the puzzle fits together and I get to remove a brick from that wall. I may not know the father of David Brazille Plunk, or even his grandfather, but it appears to me that Verner Knipp is David’s great grandfather.

What do you think? Did I just find the great grandfather of my great grandfather?


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