Friday, November 15, 2013

Family Finder Matches for Sara Ann Hawkins

I just received information on results for my mom's and my mother-in-law's FF tests.  They have been more fun that my own matches.  The three closest matches for my mother are clearly matches with Mom's Logan County, WV and Eastern Ky ancestors.  And I have filed our chats via e-mail on this in file labelled DNA my FF matches, since  all of mom's matches that are close are also matches to me.

However, I just received an e-mail from a man in Australia whose sister is a match...she is not a close match.  What is of great interest is the fact that he says that the match is on chromosome 6 which has shown to be a strong McDonald section of his sister's DNA.  As I began to answer his e-mail, I decided that I did not want to loose the ideas that he had sent nor the ideas that I was thinking about.  So here it is posted to the blog.

First I looked to see what I could find about McDonald.  First I looked at the area of Scotland from which the McDonald name is associated:

Map from:

The website calls the map The Lands and Islands of Clan McDonald

Note that the lands include County Antrim in Northern Ireland as a stronghold of the McDonald Clan.

Next I looked to see what surnames are associated with Clan Donald:

Here is what I wrote back to Rob:

We live in West Virginia.  Mom's ancestors were on these shores very early.  They seem to have been mostly in the area of Virginia during the Revolution and then moved west into Eastern Kentucky and what is now southwestern WV just after the Revolution.  These people were very likely to have been Scotch-Irish .....Here are some of the surnames that are likely to have connected:

Mom's maiden name is Salmons.  A lady named Ruth Sammons Nassar who was a first cousin to my mother's father did a great deal of research on the Salmons family in the second half of the 20th C.  Ruth says in her book:  The Salmons came to America in the 17th C and were probably descendants of the Highland Scots who migrated across the North Channel into Northern Ireland as early as 1584....Ruth also suggest that it was possibly at one time McSalmon (Son of Solomon).

However, a quick look on-line tells me that the name could also be associated with England or Wales.  So while this is a possibility, it is not certain that this is the link.


Don't know yet about origin of Wooten/Ooten name.  Websites on-line associate it with English:  The Anglo-Saxon name Wooten comes from when the family resided in the county of Kent.  Their name is derived from the Old English words  wudu meaning wood and tun meaning enclosure or settlement.  This family is first found in Kent where they had a family seat at Marley before and after the Norman Conquest in 1066.  Hensley

Hensley seems to be English in derivation when one looks on-line


I have recently been in touch with a lady named Betty Harrell Gerlack who wrote a book (that I have ordered from her) connecting my Edward and Sally Burchett Osborne to the Thomas Osborne who moved from to Virginia in 1619.  Others on-line tie this line in with an English Thomas Osborne.  I will correct this when I read the book if Betty does not agree with the English ties for this line.


Websites say that this is an English and Scottish occupational name for a Weaver.

Family History Monthly ( says:
The surname Webb is England and Wales’s 79th most popular surname. This isn’t surprising as it was an occupational surname for a weaver and without weavers our ancestors wouldn’t have had clothes. Weaving required skill and also fairly complicated equipment, in the form of looms, and these were passed down in families for generations – in fact, this is how we derive the term ‘heirloom’.


Other researchers tell me that my Morrison line moved to Pittsylvania County from County Donegal in Northern Ireland in the last half of the 1700's.  Morrison is clearly a Scots name from looking at Wikipedia and other websites.

above map from: and also paragraph below:

There is little in the way of historical information on the origins of Clan Morrison. It is generally accepted that the hereditary judges, or brieves, of the Isle of Lewis were chiefs of the clan until that office disappeared in the early 1600's. The seat of the brieves was at Habost in Ness, near the Butt of Lewis. One tradition is that this line of brieves were descended from a Morrison heiress of the original line and a Macdonald of Ardnamurchan who married her in the 1300's. The Morrisons of Harris claim to be of the original line.


Ward seems to be English according to casual google search.


Again a brief google search shows Castle to be a Norman-English name as well as having French and German associations. Wikipedia


Wikipedia suggests that Carey is likely to be Irish in derivation:

Carey is a surname arising from: 1) at least five distinct patronymics in Ireland,[1] and therefore numerous;[2] 2) a habitation/topographic name in both Somerset and Devon, and possibly also Cornwall, occurring also as Cary;[3] 3) a habitation/topographic name in NormandyBurgundy and Franche-Comté in France, occurring also as Carrey and Cary;[4] 4) less frequently a habitation name from DyfedWales, which normally exists in the formCarew.[5]

and on Ancestry the Irish connection is corroborated:

Carey Name Meaning

Irish: Anglicized form of Gaelic Ó Ciardha, a midland family name meaning ‘descendant of Ciardha’, a personal name derived from ciar ‘dark’, ‘black’.Irish: Anglicized form of Gaelic Mac Fhiachra ‘son of Fiachra’.English: habitational name from Carey in Devon or Cary in Somerset, named for the rivers on which they stand; both river names probably derive from the Celtic root car- ‘love’, ‘liking’, perhaps with the meaning ‘pleasant stream’.English (of Norman origin): habitational name from the manor of Carrey, near Lisieux, Normandy, France, of uncertain origin.Welsh and Cornish: variant of Carew.Possibly an Americanized form of German Gehrig or Gehring.


According to Wikipedia:  
Carter is a family name, and also may be a given name. Carter is of English origin and is an occupational name given to one who transports goods by cart or wagon.[2] It is the 64th most common surname in the United Kingdom.[3] Within the United States, it is ranked as the 40th-most common surname.[4]


Quick google search shows at least three sites agreeing that Burchett is English


Much to my disappointment McNeely is not one of the names associated with Clan McDonald.  It seems that McNeely is not Scots as one would guess with the "Mc" prefix.  Surname Database says that it is generally recorded in Ulster and translates as son of the poet to the clan.  There seem to be McNeely's named in County Down and County Antrim.  House of Names says that they are first found in Armagh and Monaghan where they held a family seat from ancient times.

Ancestry site says:

Scottish (Galloway) and northern Irish: Anglicized form of Gaelic Mac an Fhilidh ‘son of the poet’.Irish: Anglicized form of the Connacht name Mac Conghaile ‘son of Conghal’ (see Connolly).

So it seems that the most likely connections would be with Mom's surnames of Salmons/Sammons, Morrison, and McNeely.  How to explore these ideas?

1.  we might look to see if the known McNeely, Sammons, and Morrison matches with Mom share the Chromosome #6 match that Rob's sister shares with mom.  I have to stop for today, but I'll try to look at that possibility later.

2. I might find a Morrison male to test for both yDNA and also FF while the FTDNA test is going on.

3.  I might zero in via Chromosome browser to see which of Mom's other matches might share this match by putting in Mom and Rob's sister and then checking against other matches.

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