The O’Dea/O’Day/Dee (DNA) Project

Dysert O`Dea Clan > Announcements

The 10th International O Dea Clan Gathering, organised by the Dysert O Dea Clan Association (, will be held in Ennis, Co. Clare, Ireland, from Thursday 10 May 2018 to Sunday 13 May 2018, to mark the 700th Anniversary of the Battle of Dysert O Dea on 10 May.

In conjunction with the 2018 gathering, we have set up the O’Dea/O’Day/Dee (DNA) Project at:

At the clan gathering, Paddy Waldron, co-administrator of the DNA project, will talk about our O Dea DNA, as well as holding a workshop for all who are interested in using DNA for family research. Paddy will explain the various genetic origins of the O Dea surname and the pros and cons of DNA testing, and will show attendees how to make the make the most of testing, including determining whether they descend directly from Conor O Dea who led his clan at the battle in 1318.

This is an appeal to O Deas worldwide (and those with derivative surnames such as O Day and Dee) to submit their DNA for inclusion in the analysis to be presented at the May 2018 clan gathering and also to attend the gathering.

If you are already a customer of FamilyTreeDNA, then all that you need to do is click on the JOIN button at:

We invite male clan members and other O Deas who have not already done so to take the FamilyTreeDNA Y-DNA37 test (or higher), which can be purchased at a special project rate of USD149 (plus shipping) via

If you are female you can’t take the Y-DNA test as you don’t have a Y chromosome. You will need to find a close male relative with the O Dea surname to take the test on your behalf.

For some time now, clan members have had considerable success at establishing our different family trees, as can be seen by the number of family trees that have been submitted to our clan archive in the Local Studies Centre of Clare County Library in Ennis. Most of these are now catalogued and can readily be found and consulted at the library and are also available online to Financial Members of the clan. The diligent research and written records handed down to us by our ancestors, indeed the good memory of somebody in our family or a family connection, all have helped us in our quest to find our relatives. It is a matter that we should all be grateful for and any family that has a member who pursues and compiles such records, is a treasure.

Many clan members have succeeded in pushing the boundaries back to the latter half of the 18th century and have successfully located their ancestors from that period. Beyond that timespan, however, there are few in our O Dea Clan who can go further back in time to claim their ancestors. With this in mind and to tie up some of those yet unconnected and undiscovered ancestors, the DNA project has been established.

Why submit your DNA?

Taking a DNA test today has become more affordable and increasingly popular. Companies such as FamilyTreeDNA and AncestryDNA have been advertising their autosomal DNA kits. Millions of people have put their DNA results in genealogy databases and the numbers are growing every day.

As a surname organisation, we are more interested in the Y-DNA that follows the male line, like the O Dea surname, than in the autosomal DNA that comes equally from both parents and (on average) from all four grandparents, etc.

Whether you have already taken a test or are considering doing so or have taken one but aren’t sure how to interpret the results, there will be something of interest for you at the clan gathering. We hope to meet you there!

How can we use a DNA test?

A DNA test can be very insightful, enabling you to make connections with distant relatives, verify your research and potentially break down brick walls. There are some downsides to bear in mind, however. Firstly, a note of caution. How prepared are you to be surprised? How would you feel if you discovered that your family line wasn’t actually yours? Be prepared to uncover that you might not be genetically related to who you think you are. You might discover illegitimacy or adoption in your recent past that you were unaware of.

Also understand that DNA testing is not a substitute for genealogy research; rather the two approaches help to corroborate each other.

The Y-DNA test doesn’t tell you exactly how you are related to your DNA matches, but just gives you the genetic distance between you. The smaller the genetic distance, the closer the relationship.

What can a Y-DNA test do for me?

For a start, it can help verify your research. It can indicate that you have the correct ancestor, when you match people who also descend from that person. DNA testing can reassure you that your ‘paper research’ is correct. This is a real benefit to testing. Finding matches in the databases will corroborate your research.

Another reason to test is to connect with relatives in the databases. The vast majority of connections will be distant cousins, just because statistically we have many, many more distant cousins than close relatives. Making contact with your newly discovered cousins, particularly those to whom you are more closely related, may assist your research. For example, they may be able to tell you what happened to people who disappeared from your tree, if they are a descendant. They might have family stories or documents that you don’t have. They may have broken through a brick wall that you are confronted with. By working together, you might be more successful in progressing your research than you would be alone.

When you look at the matches you may also get tantalising clues that you can explore further. For example, you might find that locations keep coming up. While you might not think you have anyone in your tree from that village or town (or even country!), this may be an indication that in fact you do.

There are challenges thrown up by DNA testing. As well as the potential shock of finding that your tree isn’t right or discovering paternity surprises, a downside is that making the most of the results can be time consuming. It may be fairly obvious how you are connected to some people, but often it isn’t and working out how you are, takes time. Many people in the database will not have a public tree or maybe have not done any genealogy at all, so unless you contact them and they are responsive, many matches can be a dead-end.

Having an O Dea Y-DNA database will be an obvious help to many in the clan. So we encourage as many members as possible to take the test.

James O Dea
Paddy Waldron
Co-administators, O’Dea/O’Day/Dee (DNA) Project


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Enhancements to the O’Dea Clan Website

Dysert O`Dea Clan > Announcements

To members of the Dysert O’Dea Clan Association,

This is to let you know about the recent enhancements to the O’Dea Clan Website in order to improve performance, reliability, and usability.

In summary:

  1. We’ve transferred the Website and email accounts to a new hosting provider to improve response times and reliability.
  2. We’ve made a number of improvements to the Website to make it more user-friendly.
  3. We’ve made extensive use of images to provide a smarter way of handling secondary navigation.
  4. We’ve added a Members Area to make it easier for members to find common Website functions.
  5. We are making use of social media platforms to extend our communications reach.

You can read about these enhancements in the presentation we gave to the Clan members who attended the 4th Australian Clan Reunion in Adelaide in April 2017: ODea Clan Website – 08 Apr 2017

Please check out the Website and tell us about:

  1. Areas for further improvement.
  2. Additional items that could be added to the Members Area: Members Area

Please feel free to add your own Website content.

  • Financial members of the Dysert O’Dea Clan Association who have provided us with an email address are registered on the web site as authorised users.

If you have any questions or comments about any of this, please get in touch by email:

Regards, Tom and Ruth O’Dea
Webmasters, Dysert O’Dea Clan Association


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How to access the O’Dea Clan Website

Dysert O`Dea Clan > Announcements

To members of the Dysert O’Dea Clan Association,

This is a reminder about how to access the O’Dea Clan Website.

  1. The Website address is:
  2. You can view most of the information on the new Website without the need to login using your Website username and password.
  3. You only need to login using your Website username and password in order to access a number of services where authorisation is needed.  These include:
    1. Publishing a new item on the site, e.g. an Advertisement.
    2. Posting a comment about a Website item.
    3. Posting or replying in the new Blog.
    4. Uploading a photo in the Photo Gallery.
  4. When you do need to login to the Website, you can do so here:
    • Please note that you don’t need to remember your username – you can login by entering your email address and your password.
  5. If you’ve not received your new Website username and password or if you’ve lost your Website password, you can reset your password by simply entering your email address here: Reset Password
  6. You can reset your password at any time by simply entering your email address here: Reset Password
  7. If you have any difficulties resetting your password, please ask for help by sending us an email:
  8. If you have any questions about any of this, please get in touch by email:

Regards, Tom and Ruth O’Dea
Webmasters, Dysert O’Dea Clan Association


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Catholic Parish Registers now Online at the National Library of Ireland

Dysert O`Dea Clan > Announcements


Images of Catholic Parish Registers can now be viewed online free of charge at the National Library of Ireland:

The website contains images from the NLI’s collection of Catholic parish register microfilms. The registers contain records of baptisms and marriages from the majority of Catholic parishes in Ireland and Northern Ireland up to 1880.

Please note that these are the images only. There is no accompanying index.


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Ken O’Dea – Book

Dysert O`Dea Clan > Announcements

ken-odeaLima’s Catcher: Ken O’Dea –  is a 170-page, spiral-bound book about an O’Dea family that emigrated from Newmarket-on-Fergus to Lima, New York, and a descendant of the family who played major league baseball in the 1930s-40s with the Chicago Cubs, New York Giants and St. Louis Cardinals.

Contact Neil Hogan: 

Information about Ken O’Dea is available on Wikipedia:


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