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Genetic Genealogy Eliminates Two As Descendants of Joseph Smith

Update: Ugo Perego is not affiliated withh the website mentioned in the last two sentences.

Did Joseph Smith father children with any of his plural wives? The Deseret News has a lengthy article about recent efforts by a geneticist to answer the long-debated question about the founder of the Latter Day Saint movement.

Ugo Perego, the director of operations at the Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation, has used genetic genealogy in an attempt to identify or rule out potential descendants of Smith. In 2005, Perego showed that three males were not descendants of Smith, and new testing has shown that two more alleged descendants of Smith are not his true descendants.

In order to rule out descendants, it was first necessary to characterize the Y-DNA thought to belong to Joseph Smith. According to the article:

“Perego has mapped Smith’s DNA by retrieving samples from living descendants of two sons he had with Emma Smith [his first wife] — Joseph Smith III and Alexander Hale Smith. ‘Their Y chromosomes were identical, so we know for 100 percent sure what Joseph Smith’s Y chromosome looked like. We can now use that standard to verify any other alleged sons,’ which he did with those who have been eliminated as possible descendants.”

Interestingly, Perego was able to show that the men (1) were not the descendants of Smith, and (2) were actually descendants of the other men who were married to these wives of Joseph.

I especially like Perego’s motivations for doing this independent project supported by Sorenson:

“As a scientist, I like to look for truth. If there is a book that says this person was Joseph’s son, and I have evidence that’s not right, it’s important for me to offer an alternative explanation from science that people can refer to. New authors in the future can then take that new genetic evidence into consideration.”

Perego has an interesting website describing his efforts.  There is a website that discusses the ongoing DNA research, but Perego is not in any affiliated with that site.

Blaine Bettinger

Intellectual property attorney, genealogist, and author of The Genetic Genealogist since 2007

8 Comments

  1. Someone pointed me to this posting about the interview I had with Carrie Moore from the Deseret Morning News. I just wanted to clarify that the link to the website mentioned in the last sentence is not mine and I do not contribute to its content. Thanks.

  2. thank you, sa joseph smiths desendends have lied so is the book of Mormon see Thomas Murphy skin, sinand seed. all religions are cults. none of thr bible or book of Mormon names items or situation could have happened in that time period. Our alphabet is only 375 years old. 26 letters since 1630.see missing letter J part one or erreous name Jesus. there was no alphabet of any of the names 2000 years ago. translation or changing a name is a lie. the camel is from austrialia it and the donkey were taken to the middle east in 1585.first grade education proves religion wrong.the temple in salt lake was built in 1610 by the mexican people with rock from mexico as the territoral capital building it is the oldest building in north america see Eichard Packham@teleport.com bi-metrics will prove most of our names wrong . would’t god or Jesus have told Joseph Smith his name was a welding term a suffix and that the name Jesus was not correct? others that say they have see or talked to god or Jesus have the same problem. they are called lires. thank you John Cunningham a biometric name that fits my finger prints johncunningham1956@netzero.com

  3. Thank you, you say that Joseph Smiths descendants have lied, So did Joseph Smith saying he was related to Joseph of old. of the bible. Their was no one with that name before the English alphabet. The bible as you may remember was translated, Some say in 1611 other say 1622. then there is the fool who says he has a bible published in 1530 in color. Way before England became a county, or a word. Using English names would violate our or their bio-metric names. Doing so before the alphabet is a marical. I do not think Joseph Smith’s relitives were from the middle east.He being a coward started a church rather then join the military, we don’t have that problem now, so why live the lie? Not only did Joseph Smith lie, so is the book of Mormon. The DNA does not fit.(see Thomas Murphy skin, sin, and seed. also the Book of Mormon DNA) he is the college chair person of antropology. Our alphabet is only 375 years old with 26 letters since 1630. Before that it only had 19.(see missing letter J part one and erroneous name Jesus). There was no English alphabet 2000 years ago.No John the Baptist,a term used in early bearing material. No king James, no Paul or any other bible name. translating names is not allowed in history or reality. technology has proven bio-metric names and symbols come from our finger prints. translation or changing names is a lie. You could have had symbols that had or have a sound. Then phyniticly show how it is pronouced in another language or alphabet. but that is not what was done in the bible or book of Mormon. No item or situation that is in the book of Mormon or bible was available in those places in those time periods. The camel is from austraila. The donkey is from new Mexico, north america. They were ship to the middle east in 1585 by the old navy see the ship manifest records. First grade history. religion verses First gade, first grade wins. The salt lake city temple was built in 1610 by the Mexican people with rock from Mexico city as the northern terittoral capital building. It is the oldest still standing building in north america. How can you allow a cult with no truth in anything violate our education system?(see Richard packham@teleport.com) ian in the word christian is a suffix a place not a person. Joseph Smith is a welding term and a suffix. Would’t Jesus or God have told him about technology, language theromes and that his name and the name Jesus were not correct? It prove he and others such as betty Eddie that say they have seen or talked to Jesus even in prayer are lieing and if he talks back they are mentaly ill. And those woh say they have seen dead peolpe or spirits. they would not have cloths, if they do your bran is tricking you as in a dream or they are liers trying to be noticed. notice them and challenge them. Thank you from John Cunningham a bio-metric name that fits my finger prints,My parents knew the truth in 1956 why did’t yours? johncunningham1956@netzero.com

  4. My understanding about DNA is that the further back in time you go the less accurate it is. Josesph Smith is less back in time than the people of the Book of Mormon so yes it is reasonable to assume DNA about Joseph Smith is more reasonable. For all you Evangelicals who howl and scream than DNA proves the Book of Mormon false does not it also prove your views on the Bible as false since it proves Adam was not the first man? DNA says humans have been around way before Adam. I am sick of the inconsistency of Evangelicals. Mormons may be wrong about some things but SO ARE EVANGELICALS. We need to stop giving Evangelicals and Protestants a free ride. They too have made mistakes.

  5. i know that joseph smith was and is a true prophet. You just have to read the book of Mormon with a sincere heart and ask of God yourself, if it is true? Do you not believe in the power of prayer? The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is the Lords church and you would be wise to investigate it. True happiness comes by living the gospel of Jesus Christ. Where is your faith? Do not be foolish and think so negatively about things that are different. Faith is believing with out seeing. You do not need to see, for the spirit speaks truth and penetrates deeply and no amount of seeing could make it more clear.

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