Clan MacFarlane Worldwide, Inc.

Helping To Connect You With Your Heritage

What A Ride!

What A Ride!

by Neal McFarland

Updated September 9, 2010

I'll never forget the first time my Dad took me to ride in his lap on The Comet roller coaster at the Forest Park Highlands amusement park in St. Louis. I was five or six years old, excited and giddy with anticipation. I had no idea what to expect when we got into the car and pulled down the safety bar. As we slowly climbed up the first long hill, leveled off, then plunged down the deep chute, it took my breath away and with every unexpected twist, turn, climb and drop, my heart pumped faster and faster. The 60-second ride scared the bejabbers out of me. When we finally stopped, I begged my Dad for a re-ride, which he agreed to. I was hooked! And since that first ride on the Comet, I've ridden some of the longest, fastest, steepest, meanest coasters in the country and never found one I couldn't handle.

My research into our McFarland family has been a microcosm of all those thousands of twists and turns, climbs and free fall drops. Every new discovery has been exhilarating; every dead end frustrating. But the anticipation of discovery never diminished. Like that first ride on The Comet, the search became an addiction.

As I've stated before, I started knowing next to nothing about the McFarland side of my family and only a little more about my Mother's side. Now, I can trace my McFarland line over three hundred years; my Mother's family over two hundred. And, along the way there were plenty of surprises.

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MacFarlane DNA Project Update - March 2012


Understanding the Haplogroups in the MacFarlane Project


March, 2012 update

 By Mary Helen Haines

So far, we have 220 participants in the MacFarlane project with surnames from Allan, Miller, Williamson, Weaver, Jackson, Galloway, Webster, McGaw, Knox, Robb, to all the variations of MacFarlane (McFarland, McFarlin), plus more. This number changes daily as more people decide to join the project. This includes women who have taken the Family Finder test, as I have, and people who found out they were part of the MacFarlane clan, even though their surnames were not.

Every male in the study has a unique set of markers that he acquired from his father’s line that goes back in time approximately 60,000 years to the progenitor of all living men. That set of markers is called his haplotype. Only occasionally does someone have an exact match with another person. In our study there are only two people that have an exact match at 67 markers, and they do not know their common ancestor, but are still searching. It is even possible for two brothers to have markers that do not match exactly if one of them had a genetic mutation that changed his set of markers from that of his father. He would, though, have a very close match, and probably differ by only one marker, if at all.

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Clan Events Calendar


Cambridge Scottish Festival
Sat Jul 15 through Sat Jul 15


Springfield Highland games and Celtic Festival
Sat Jul 22 through Sat Jul 22


Glengarry Highland Games
Fri Aug 4 through Sat Aug 5


St. Andrew's Society of Detroit Highland games
Fri Aug 4 through Sat Aug 5


The Monterey Scottish Games and Celtic Festival
Sat Aug 5 through Sun Aug 6


Fergus Scottish Festival & Highland Games
Fri Aug 11 through Sun Aug 13


152nd Scottish Highland Gathering and Games
Sat Sep 2 through Sun Sep 3


Longs Peak Scottish-Irish Highland Festival
Thu Sep 7 through Sun Sep 10


Tulsa Scotsfest
Fri Sep 15 through Sun Sep 17


Niagara Celtic Heritage Festival & Highland Games
Sat Sep 16 through Sun Sep 17