Friday, August 3, 2012

Salmons/Sammons DNA--John of Cumberland matches

I wanted to begin posting some of Ruth Sammons Nassar's information on my blog.  Of course, the first thing that I did was to google Sammons DNA to remind myself of which DNA group I belong to.  Funny that the top of the list of hits that google brought up was my own post back in Nov 2008.  So I will begin this blog with a copy of that post:

I have recently paid for a participant with FTDNA for a 37 marker 
test. I expect this participant to match with the Sammons family that 
is found in Cumberland County, Virginia in the mid 1700's. I believe 
that both the new participant and I descend from several generations 
of Roland/Rowland Salmons/Sammons who lived in eastern Ky during the 

My particpant is kit #131079.  He and I are first cousins who descend from several generations of Rowland/Roland Salmons/Sammons' who lived in Eastern Kentucky.  Our first Roland Salmons moved to Floyd County, Kentucky before 1809. The Salmons' had moved to Pittsylvania County from Cumberland in the mid to late 1760's.  The part of Pittsylvania that they moved to became Henry County.  They lived on Smith River. Rowland was living there during the Revolutionary War and is found on the tax list in Henry County in 1782.  By 1787, Rowland is found deeding 120 acres to J. Breemer.  From 1790 until at least 1808 Rowland is said to have been from Montgomery County.  During this time he married Frankie Carter in Rocky Mount, Virginia.....  

Anyone reading this who would want to know my Salmons/Sammons ancestry is invited to look at:

Our DNA group seems to be labelled with John of Cumberland as that seems to be the earliest Salmons that we have positively identified for the first six members of our DNA group.  John Sammons is our newest participant and he does not connect to John of Cumberland County.  Instead he connects to John Salmons who was married to Naomi De Priest and died in Bedford County, Virginia with will proved in the Bedford January Court 1791.  Ruth's notes say that John and Naomi Salmons' children were christened by Rev Douglas between 1759 and 1770 as recorded in Goochland Parish Register.  I can not find a parish in Virginia named Goochland.  I think that Ruth meant St. James Parish in Goochland County.  Can anyone help me with this?

Here is the transcription of the Will of John Salmons, Sr. of Cumberland County as found among the documents in Ruth Sammons Nassar's papers:

Will of John Salmon, Sr.  Will Book 1, page 219 [Cumberland County?]  [I found this in the folder labelled documents among Ruth Sammons Nassar’s information]

In ye name of God Amen the 29 January 1761 I John Salmon Sen’r. of Cumberland and Southam Parish being very sick and Weak in Body but of perfect and sound memory Thanks be given unto God therefore calling to mind the mortalltiy of my Body and knowing it is appointed for all men once to die do make and ordain this my last will and Testament that is to say Principally and first of all I give and recommend my Soul into the hands of Almighty God that gave it and my Body I recommend to the Earth from whence it came to be buried in a decent manner Christian Burial at the discretion of my Executors nothing doubting but at the General resurrection I shall received the same again by the mighty power of God and Touching such worldly Estate wherewith it hath been Pleased God to bless me with in this life I give demise and dispose of the same in the following manner  First of all I bequeath and desire for all my Debts as I owe in right of conscience to any Body to be fully paid and satisfied by my Executors hereafter named also I give bequeath all my Household goods and stock of horses Cattle and Hoggs to my wife Elioner Salmons during Widowhood not to be interrupted and if my Wife should die my eldest son John Salmons should servive I give and bequeath it into his care to be equally divided amongst my four sons John Salmons Lewis Salmons Ezkiah Salmons and Rowland Salmons after charges being paid for my three youngest Sons Schooling and maintainance and I bequeath and desire for my three youngest sons Lewis Ezekiah and Rowland to be under their eldest Brothers care and Jurisdiction until they come of age and years of discression to take care of themselves and further I appoint my Wife Elinor Salmons and John Salmons my eldest son my whole and soly Executors whereunto I hae set my Hand Seal this 29 day of January 1761.   John Salmons Sr. L.S.

Witnesses were John Newton and John Salmons, Jr. 

At a court held for Cumberland County 22nd June 1761.  This last will and testament of John Salmons dec’d. was proved by John Newton and John Salmons the Witnesses thereto and by the Court ofdered to be recorded and on the motion of John Salmons the Executor therein named who made oath according to Law Certificate is granted him for obtaining a Probat thereof in due Form giving Security whereupon he with John Newton his Security entered into and Acknowledged their Bond with Condition according to Law and Liberty is reserved to Elenor Salmons the Executrix therein named to join in Probat.  Test Thompson Swann Clk Ct

This paragraph is then repeated for Eleanor.  The document is signed Betty R. Walton, Deputy Clerk Circuit Court, Cumberland County, Virginia  [so this is answer….this was obtained from Cumberland Court]

I asked Carol Cole for some clarification on the DNA results for John Salmons of Goochland and here was her answer:

 Participants who are descendents of two of the sons of John (son of Thomas) of Goochland have tested.  One line DOES match the DNA tests of the group who believe they descend from John Salmons of Cumberland and the other line does NOT match John Of Cumberland lines.  It is a mystery at this point.  It is hopeful that we will recruit other participants to help clarify if the two lines are indeed related.  

  In the above map you can see that Goochland County is the area smack dab in the middle labelled Go.  In the below map you can see that Goochland County was divided into Goochland on the north and Cumberland in the south in 1749.

So we will want to be aware of the fact that our John of Cumberland probably lived quite close to the John of Goochland County.

John Salmon, according to Ruth Salmons Nassar, moved up the James River to settle on acreage on Snowquarter Branch which he acquired from Benjamin Dumars about 1753.  At the time of acquisition the land lay within the bounds of Goochland County, however in  1748 as the area became more populated it was decided that a new county should be created and another log court house built so the courthouse would be more accessible to settlers.  Thus Cumberland County was created.

Ruth Sammons Nassar says that that the name of the wife of our John of Cumberland County was Eleanor.  She suspects that Eleanor's maiden name was Rowland.   The following is from Ruth's book:  Vol. I My Begetters Salmons
We know the wife of John Salmons was named Eleanor/Ellinor, and I suspect she may have been a Rowland, for the John Salmons family and the George Rowland family lived close by in Cumberland, and when young John Salmons moved his entire family to Pittsylvania, which later became Henry County,  the Rowlands moved, too.  This would explain the Christian name given the Salmons’ youngest son, Rowland, which name was handed down for all future generations, including the present generation in which Ruth was living.  Ruth says that she has searched the Rowland records, as well as Salmon, but was unable to come up with proof. 

I find that Ruth was able to prove the Salmons/Rowland Connection in the John of Bedford County line.  She lists eight children born to Nathan and Rebecca Ann Ryan Salmons including Robert De Priest Salmons and Naomi Salmons.  Rebecca is the daughter of Philip Ryan and Obedience Rowland Ryan.  Obediance is the daughter of John and Mary Rowland.  John Rowland according to Ruth's notes was born c. 1730.
James (see below) was kind enough to share the link to the site on which the LDS have digitalized all of Ruth's books:


  1. My name is John Salmons from I believe the same line as this, based on information I believe to be accurate. You can e-mail me at

  2. All four volumes of the book, My Begetters by Ruth Sammons Nasser, is available on family,

  3. Thanks so much, James. I have added the site to the blog post to make it easier for others to find the books. Feel free to contact me directly at if you have anything else to add or would just like to chat.