Related Families

We need to re-visit the information on this page. It has been long superseded by additional research.

When surnames were adopted (about 1250-1300 in Switzerland), members of the same paternal line will have have adopted different surnames. So, the Swiss Hauris should be paternally related to dozens of other German and Swiss families with different surnames. DNA test results can reveal these connections.

Because genetic testing for genealogy is still in its infancy, most families do not have a yDNA project. So, we find only a few possible connections.

Hierholzer Family

The Swiss Hauris exactly match a southern German family, the Hierholzers, at 12 markers. This match suggests that the Hauris and Hierholzers share a common paternal origin. The Hierholzer family apparently originated in and took their name from the village of Hierholz in Waldshut, Freiburg, Baden-Württemberg, Germany, just across the border from Switzerland. Both the Hauris and the Hierholzers might have originated there, say about 1200.

Lehmann Family

DNA testing shows that the Swiss Hauris are relatively closely related to the Lehmann family. Both are members of subgroup L42. The early history of both families is speculative, but some genealogists in each family put their remote origin in Steffisburg (Berne). It is possible that the two families share a common origin there.

Other Swiss Families

The Hauris will be distantly related in the male line to local families with other surnames. If the Hauris were already an old family at Beromünster in 1300, they would have been paternally related to local families. On the other hand, if the Hauris came to Beromünster from Jegenstorf or Steffisburg about 1300, they should be paternally related to other families in those areas. We currently have no information that would connect us to any of those families.

The following list shows the villages where the Hauris lived or might have originated, and the families who were citizens of those villages before 1800 (Emil Meier, Familiennamenbuch der Schweiz (Zürich 1968-71)):

  • Beromünster (Luzern): Baumli, Brandstetter, Dangel, Dolder, Ernst, Estermann, Frey, Herzog, Kopp, Lüthert, Maier, Röthelin, Schlee, Schumacher, Stauffer, Suter, Troxler, Vonarburg, and Weber.
  • Hirschthal (Aargau): Bösch, Brugger, Gall, Hauri, Klauenbösch, Kleiner, Lüscher, Müller, and Weber.
  • Jegenstorf (Bern): Aeberhard, Dürig, Eberhard, Glauser, Hubmann, Iseli, Junker, Käch, Knuchel, Kohler, Niklaus, Rufer, Stäussi, Uhlmann, Witschi, Zweiacher.
  • Reinach (Aargau): Aeschbach, Bauhofer, Buchhofer, Buhofer, Burger, Eichenberger, Engel, Erismann, Fischer, Fuchs, Gautschi, Haller, Hauri, Hediger, Heitz, Heiz, Huber, Keller, Leutwiler, Leutwyler, Lüscher, Merz, Soland, and Wildi.
  • Schöftland (Aargau): Bachmann, Bolliger, Buchser, Christen, Dätwyler, Dutly, Ernst, Fäs, Gall, Gloor, Haller, Hochuli, Hunziker, Knechtli, Lüthy, Morach, Müller, Suter, Wälty, Wellenberg, and Zehnder.
  • Staffelbach (Aargau): Basler, Basler, Berchdolf, Bolliger, Dätwyler, Fehlmann, Fehlmann, Gugelmann, Hauri, Hübscher, Hunziker, Kleiner, Knechtli, Kömeter, Leuenberger, Lüscher, Morgenthaler, Müller, Ries, Scheuzger, Stamm, and Wacker.
  • Steffisburg (Bern): Aeberhard, Bächer, Becher, Berger, Blank, Blaser, Braun, Breit, Büchler, Dummermuth, Eberhard, Eymann, Fahrni, Frank, Frey, Fues, Fuss, Gerber, Howald, Ingold, Joder, Jung, Kaufmann, Küng, Lehmann, Linder, Mäder, Matthys, Maurer, Meder, Megert, Meyer, Moser, Pfister, Portmann, Reusser, Reust, Ruchti, Rüfenacht, Rupp, Schiffmann, Schlapbach, Schneider, Schüpbach, Schütz, Schweizer, Spring, Stauffer, Tschabold, Walter, Walther, Wyttenbach, Zeller, and Zimmermann.
  • Sursee (Luzern): Aebi, Amlehn, Attenhofer, Auer, Beck, Bossart, Brütschlin, Eggli, Furrer, Galliker, Gassmann, Göldlin, Hinker, Hollenwäger, Imbach, Kämpf, Kappeler, Mengis, Meyer, Muggli, Mugglin, Rüttiman, Schnyder, Schnyder von Wartensee, Schwyzer, Staffelbach, Thowe, Tschupp, Wagemann, Winiger, Zülly, and Zust.

Note: This list shows the families who were citizens in each village. Therefore, it does not include every family that lived in the village.

The only DNA project for any of these families I have found to date is Joder of Steffisburg. The family belongs to Haplogroup I1c, so is not paternally related to the Swiss Hauris.

Other G2a Families

Continuing back in time, we can widen the search for distant cousins by looking for families with test results that are close to the Swiss Hauris. As a Germanic family in central Europe, the Hauris should have results similar to hundreds of other German and German-Swiss families with different surnames. Here, we are looking for geographic patterns over thousands of years, not genealogical origins.

The anonymous samples below are from the YHRD database. The named samples are largely from the ySearch and yBase databases. The Hierholzer sample is from the Family Tree DNA data, and the Jensen sample is from the Sorenson database. Family Tree DNA’s Recent Ethnic Origins database shows no exact matches for Hauri, but there is a Mexican family with a two-step mutation from the Hauris. Because of the nature of the database, no details are available. It seems possible that this Mexican family is descended from the Asturian family shown below.

The search for other families with similar test results has one significant caveat — because of a process called convergence, unrelated families can have the same or similar results. One way to avoid comparing apples and oranges is to compare only families that belong to the same haplogroup. The haplogroup of the Swiss Hauris is G2a, so a comparison of STR values is only significant if the other family is also known or predicted to be G2a. One of the most common examples of convergence is between G2a and I2b, two groups that often have very similar values. To minimize this problem, I have used Whit Athey’s Haplogroup Predictor to derive projections for families with an unknown haplogroup.

The numbers across the top of the table below (393, 390, etc.) are numbered locations (DYS) on the y chromosome. The numbers in the body of the chart show the number of times the pattern of nucleotides repeats at that location. The values shown in red indicate differences from the Swiss Hauris. Confirmed haplogroups are shown in green. Predicted haplogroups are shown in red. Remembering that mutations on the y chromosome take the form of adding repeats (alleles) at a particular location, and that the mutation rate is very slow, a single difference would put the common ancestor with the Hauris back some 50 generations.


The table above shows a clear geographic focus on central Europe (Germany, Switzerland, Hungary), with outlying matches in Latium (Italy) and Asturias (Spain). There are no similar results reported in Russia, which tends to disprove the assertion that the Hauris came to Switzerland from Russia in the 13th century. A simple theory would be that the Italian family put out branches in Spain and southern Germany, and that the Swiss Hauris, unknown Hungarian family, and the Danish Jensens are part of the German family. The reality is certainly much more complex, and the timescales involved span many thousands of years.

Revised Jan. 27, 2022.

Author: Justin Durand

Retired attorney. Genealogist. Ethnic Mormon. Moving Left. He/Him. My husband and I own Shining Lotus Bookstore in Denver.