Welcome to the DNA Project

Welcome to the blog for the O'Malley DNA Project. This blog is complementary to the main project website on FamilyTreeDNA and will allow more detailed updates on the project.

The DNA project has several objectives but one of the primary aims is to identify people who are close genetic cousins to each other so that these people can collaborate, share genealogical information, and thus help each other to break down the Brick Walls in their own particular family tree research. If sufficient members join, it will hopefully be possible to determine the various origins of the O'Malley surname (and its many variants) and their evolution over time.

This project is hosted on FamilyTreeDNA (FTDNA) and you can easily access it by either googling “O'Malley FTDNA” or simply following this link here.

The project is open to anyone (male or female) with a suspected O'Malley ancestor, especially anyone whose surname is O'Malley or one of its many possible variants, including any of the following names … Mailey, Mailly, Malee, Maley, Malia, Malie, Malley, Malley/O'Malley, Mallie, Maly, Mealey, Meally, Mealy, Melia, Mhallie, O'Maley, O'Malley, O'Mally, O'Mealey, Omaley, Omalley, Omally

All three major types of DNA are accepted by the project, whether it is Y-DNA, mitochondrial DNA, or autosomal DNA (e.g. Family Finder). However, the primary focus of the project is the O'Malley surname and its inheritance along the direct male line (your father’s father’s father’s line). Hence Y-DNA is of particular importance. A Y-DNA-37 test is the minimum recommended for reliable allocation to a particular genetic family and all members are encouraged to purchase (or upgrade to) at least this 37-marker test.

You can join the project in several ways:
  • If you have already done a DNA test with FTDNA, click here
  • If you haven't done a DNA test with FTDNA ... 

You can view general information about the project, its goals, and some background information on the FTDNA website.

  • FTDNA Project Home Page - if you ever forget the weblink, you can easily access the project by simply googling “O'Malley FTDNA”
  • Overview - some relevant details re project logistics
  • Background - this gives a brief description of the history of the project
  • Goals - a brief summary of the specific goals of the project
  • Pedigree Page - this is where we post the O'Malley direct male line pedigrees of project members
  • Results - this gives a brief summary of the project status, group by group
  • Project Statistics - this includes the total number of members to date & the tests that have been taken by group members
  • Email the Administrator - just click here

Maurice Gleeson
Project Administrator


  1. Hello. I am John O'Malley and live in New York City. My father was Arthur, his father was Thomas, and his father was James O'Malley. James immigrated to America in 1872 and was born in 1860 or 1862 (all according to several different census records). His was (who also immigrated around the same time) was Mary O'Malley. I believe O'Malley was also her maiden name. James came from Swinford in County Mayo. According to a family tree on Ancestry.com done by a descendant of my grandfather's brother, James father was John O'Malley.
    I was given a 23 and Me test for Christmas, which I thought was quite accurate based on one other nationality that came to America in the early 1700's. Anyway, my Paternal Haplogroup results are different than what I see on your site. According to 23 and Me, it is S660, preceeded by S660 (3,000 years ago) and M269 (10,000 years ago). Am I reading this right or do I not have a more precise reading. I'm happy to upload these results (I may have not accepted that privilege) or do the Y37 test or Big Y if you think that will help. Also, according to 23 and Me there is another O'Malley in England with the same S660. Also 23 and Me says that S660 is relatively common with 1 in 91 customers, which to me doesn't make much sense unless we're talking about Origins and Migrations time periods. Thanks. Let me know if I can help.

    1. Hi James, the SNP marker S660 is also known as DF109 or DF105 (SNP markers frequently have several names). This is a DNA marker that is shared by participants in Group 3 of the O'Malley DNA Project, and Group 3a is believed to have ancestral origins in Mayo, where your ancestors come from. So your DNA may be consistent with Group 3a of the DNA Project, but ideally you should do the Y-DNA-37 test to see if you are a close match to people in that particular group.

  2. Maurice
    Will do. By the way, James was the name of my ggrandfather. I'm John.

  3. Hey there! I have repeatedly tried uploading my raw DNA data (obtained via Ancestry) but keep getting an error message. I can tell you that I have an O'Malley (Ellen O'Malley born in Ireland, 12/1873) on my father's side. I wanted to get further confirmation as I don't really know my father (who was adopted) and only recently found his biological father (Francis May) which is how I found Ellen O'Malley (Francis May's grandmother). Any help would be appreciated!

    1. Hi Jenn, you will need to contact the FTDNA Helpdesk for assistance with uploading the file. Cheers, Maurice


O'Malley Groups 1, 4, 5 & Ungrouped - update 2021

This is the last of the series of articles describing our Project Update 2021. Previous updates dealt with Group 2  (Limerick), the Group 3 ...