JG 8 – The QUAKER JORDAN TREE Evaluation

First a bit of background how I came to work the JG8 Tree. We have the name Cornelius being used for several generations beginning with Matthew’s grandson. The name is not that common.  The name is also a surname so it could find its way into and through different families.

When I began my family history work I joined Ancestry.com.  I was quickly able to build using raw records to Matthew. However from him what I found on Ancestry was mainly pre-DNA published pedigree work, what is called secondary data stream material.  These genealogies connected us to Cornelius of Edgecombe and then all the way to SAM the Ancient Planter who transformed Beggar’s Bush into Jordan Point (near Hampton VA)! WOW was I thrilled.  We were Quakers.   Sort of made sense.  This all occurred during my salad days of research before I found myself in the murky contradictory histories of the 1700s!  Ironically,  I have found myself a dissenter, the term used to initially describe those who practiced the Quaker faith.   I had found the work by Mr. Parker, a NC researcher who wrote the account of Thomas the Quaker being the son of Sam the Ancient Planter and the explanation for Thomas being excluded from Sam’s will (there were NO male heirs at all by the way) was Thomas had gone against his father and wed a Maryland gal who was a QUAKER! I needed to verify the veracity of Mr. Parker’s work independently.  I had heard from the administrator of the JORDAN SURNAME PROJECT it was fiction and there was DNA evidence Mr Parker’s work was wrong.

When it came to Quakers in NC during the 1700s the region was  filled with Quaker meeting houses.  I read where the first meeting house was supposedly built in Pasquotank on land owned by a Joseph Jordan who didn’t actually live there but by some of his tenants, one of them a Toms.  Most histories give the credit directly to a Francis Toms of Pasquotank for the 1698 Symonds Creek meeting house and a subsequent school built in 1705.

Cornelius Jordan was granted several parcels of land in what was known as Edgecombe County in the 1730s/40s and is now Wilson County. I could not connect any first data stream material, raw records of any kind, noted or included with any of the published genealogies to support much of what was written about Cornelius SR and any connection to our Matthew M Jordan family!  But wait a minute. He was supposed to be QUAKER.   There were records, right?  QUAKERS kept records!  Cornelius Jordan’s descendants were laid to rest along QUAKER Road!  His neighbors were largely if not wholly Quakers too.  I read about Cornelius’ son Cornelius JR who was shot dead in the doorway of his home by Regulators.  Some accounts say he was targeted because of his religion. Others say it was because of the close connection he and his Jordans had with the Crown of England. Something was amiss in the various accounts.  According to generally accepted history the Quakers were persecuted, marginalized citizens.  Why would any Quaker family be on good terms with the Crown or their representatives in the colonies? How could such a man gain so much land in the first place!  Then again there was William Penn and his efforts to provide a safe place for Quakers to leave England and elsewhere and set up home in what would become Pennsylvania (and parts of Delaware and Maryland).    When I tried to find the name Cornelius  JORDAN in the Nahunta Quaker records I couldn’t.  What was going on!

Trying to zero in on the actual Quaker church records for JOHNSTON county or nearby Nahunta which would have been the closest Quaker meeting house and community proved puzzling. There apparently were several fires and at least one group of Quakers from along the Neuse who migrated to what would become OHIO and they took their records with them and like the two attempts by the General Assembly in the 1800s to hire someone to create a historical reference work for NC led to valuable records leaving the state never to be seen again the same fate happened here with some Quaker records. Places like Trent and Core Sound records were gone and I found myself questioning the veracity of the Nahunta holdings!

I turned my attention to the Quaker faith itself. I knew there was an annual convention held by them in Philadelphia where North Carolina records might have found their way.  Afterall, before and after Washington DC became our National Capital it was Philadelphia which was our National repository for records!  I confess my efforts to do continued studies in Philadelphia for early North Carolina records is not complete.  My attention and interest is to find Matthew’s parents and properly identifying any and all branches of Jordans who called NC home during the 1700s.  And honestly the costs of staying in Philadelphia along with not fully having all of the Jordan branches delineated made me focus on the DNA and then later, if God allows, I will go to Philadelphia again and this time stay longer and maybe even take a group to help advance the work!

The Quaker immigration to the North American Continent is not clear.  There are two versions.  One claims the first arrived via the Massachusetts Bay Colony from Barbados. The other claims the group arrived in Rhode Island. Rhode Island was originally settled by the Dutch.  The Massachusetts Bay Colony’s land holding were vast and so I have chosen to use the Bay as my marker on my JG8 JORDAN Map.

By Kmusser (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
The starting date for the Quakers was between 1648 and 1656. Different Quaker history books, different starting points and dates for Quakers finding their way to what would become the USA.  Remember there is no immigration records for the various (and many ports) along Carolina in the 1500s, 1600s, or 1700s, or 1800s, or 1900s!  So I needed to see when the Quaker faith began in ENGLAND.   I hold firm in the belief if folks on both sides of the Atlantic would do their genetic genealogy correctly and have their eldest living boys submit DNA kits through FamilyTreeDNA.com and anchor the kits to include both the Ymarker 37 or greater and the Family Finder tests we could provide the lab and the scientists behind the magic curtain enough DNA to properly create population clusters on this side of the Atlantic! Remember FTDNA is partnered with National Geographic.  The goal of that partnership is to create migration maps for mankind through time.  I am a lowly researcher whose goal is to produce a population cluster for EARLY NC Families and hopefully create migration ribbons from one side of the Atlantic to the other using a combination of science and genealogy work.  My work like National Geographic’s is contingent on cooperation and submissions by people today!  Each of us have to start with the history we believe to be true.  And then we apply science to confirm and clarify our work.

When it comes to Quakers, or as they prefer to be known, The Society of Friends, the starting point for them both geographically and chronologically is England. It began as an English movement. There is no dispute about the country of origin. But plotting the actual starting location in England gets a confusing.


Most Quakers see George Fox as the founder of the movement/religious order. George Fox was the son of Christopher Fox whose occupation was a weaver and wife Mary Lago Fox.  He was born in 1624 and raised in Drayton-in-the-Clay, Leicestershire, England. The location is now called Denny Drayton.

BUT if you read his biography his wife’s family, the Fell family, were already prominant followers of the Quaker faith!  And the location for exactly where Quakerism began is either George’s Leicestershire or Lancaster, England. Those were and are not the same place!  I have included both locations on my map at the end of this page. Remember the Ymarker DNA test’s reach is 26 generations. We can figure out the actual dates and get this murky history resolved if we work together. This is why the earliest families, the ones who belong to the Colonial Dames or the Society of Cincinnati or anyone who thinks their pedigree tracks back to the earliest chapters of USA history need to get their branches established.  There is a well established JG Jordan Tree specific to MAINE, it is the JG2 tree.  Those folks are not matching the earliest SOUTHERN JORDANS.  The quest is who was here first and who belongs to which tree?  With DNA we can solve both questions.



When I submitted our Matthew kit to FTDNA I learned we were part of the JG3 Jordan Tree.  But I didn’t see any kit for Cornelius of Edgecombe, I call him Cornelius of WILSON!  I didn’t know which tree he belonged!  There was this weird Rootsweb site built by the administrator of the Jordan Surname Project (and a couple of TX cousins) and one of the pages created was called “DNA COUSINS” and on that page was the claim GRAY and CORNELIUS were DNA cousins.  I believe that claim tracked back to a genealogist who worked or volunteered at the State Archives in the 1970s. That researcher merely suggested the two men might be cousins!  Decades later it was being published on the internet by the person who held the reins for all work JORDAN via FTDNA!   Well, I knew what I needed to do. I needed to build out Cornelius Jordan’s branch and locate a boy who would help me. Two of Cornelius’ direct line did DNA kits!  I was so grateful we had science to apply to our work.   The notion of allowing speculation to take root and at times flourish into some volume desperate researchers hungrily accept as fact bothers me to my core.

I hoped the kit would return as JG3.  Nope, it returned as JG8. So, I was off to the races with a second JG TREE.  I realized there and then I was going to have to work any tree for any kit I was allowed to submit or asked to help work.  There was no confidence in what was put to paper.  I had found two mistakes associated with the JORDAN SURNAME PROJECT!  So I began my own geographic and chronological DNA cluster project, nc1700sJordans!  Every early NC Jordan line needed to be found and established!

Now let’s get down to the evaluation of the JG8 work.  First thing to do after a kit populates is to work matches.  I also have to evaluate the  JORDAN SURNAME PROJECT’s corresponding JG Jordan Tree.  Remember the folks in a particular tree may NOT all be included in your specific kit’s match results.  It is a question of how far apart you are in the same tree.  Only those who are 4 or less markers different will show up in your match report.  If everyone would (or could) join the JORDAN SURNAME PROJECT it would make the work easier for researchers and I believe help the work move quicker for one and all.   My first work was with the JG3 tree and I spent nine months cleaning up that tree to get as many kits as possible out to 37 or greater markers as well as getting as many kits anchored as possible.  Here is what the results page looks like for my first JG 8 kit ( I now have two different kits I personally submitted and three more I am actively working.  Each one is stuck at a different place and with a different generation. I will go into the specifics but for now let’s look at the two reports.

The results page for my kit shows there are 24 kits submitted by others who belong to the same JG8 Jordan tree, be advised a growing number are returning with the surname DIXON, not JORDAN.  Interesting?  With the reach of 26 generations there is an open question which came first NIXON or JORDAN?   They belong to the same tree. In the case of two of my kits they connect on the same branch! However, there are problems.  There are 11 kits which do not include pedigree charts (ged.coms) at all!   This makes the work so much more difficult.  There are several who have no contact information or any earliest ancestor information so working the match is next to impossible! AND there are twelve – HALF – of those tested didn’t anchor their kits.  That is to say, they are missing the necessary Family Finder test.  Remember the Ymarker test’s reach is 26 generations and it only provides the single line of information passed from father to son to son to son to son.  On a traditional pedigree chart the top line of information. 



The Family Finder test’s reach is 5-7  generations worth of information but it is completely different information from the Ymarker information.  It isn’t tied to any particular line of information. The Family Finder test is autosomal. It is an admixture of information one inherits from both sides of the family and from each parent at each generation going back 5-7 generations, from the tester.  Think of autosomal DNA as a cocktail uniquely developed for YOU. Your mom has inherited her own cocktail from each of her parents as has your dad.   The ingredients and portions passed to each child may be some of the same but the amount of each ingredient will vary. And each generation the ingredients get diluted.  So for us, we need to look for the eldest living in our families and get both the girls and the boys to do Family Finder tests to help us reach back as far as we can and use the information to help us make connections with others who have submitted Family Finder tests. The Family Finder test acts like a net.  It captures connections/matches with folks who are related at each generation node reaching back 5-7 generations from the tester.   Those connections will help us put an ancestor in a particular location and at a particular generation node.  Look at the pedigree chart again. 

For this particular line of JG 8 Jordans, there were no candidates over the age of 70!  So the reach for this kit falls  closer to the middle of the Reach chart above. Even with not having a 70 plus year old to do the test, the reach is still back to the 1740s and 1750s for ALL of the branches of this Jordans pedigree.  This chart is an example of one of 16 different charts which exists from the 3rd generation.  Look at the various surnames in play.  The goal of family historians today who are working early colonial families should include first and foremost establishing and anchoring each side of your family and then working with cousins to make sure they do the same as you work back generation by generation.   The initial screenshot focused on the Ymarker information and began with Wade Garland Jordan and his paternal line. The second chart includes the tester’s maternal side.  The tester is the son of Wade Garland but I will not name any living person anywhere on my site.  I care about privacy and families should be able to identify their lines by what I do include on my site.

Because some FTDNA kits have not been anchored properly or are not out to at least Y37 markers, there is a lot of information missing for half of the men who fall into the JG8 Jordan tree who turned to DNA to help them with their JORDAN work.  Notice the mysteries in the pedigree I included such as the parents of Elizabeth Womack and Ruth House.  These mysteries could easily be solved if the early NC (and possibly VA) WOMACK family whom Elizabeth belongs or the HOUSE family whom Ruth belongs do DNA kits and anchor their work to include the Family Finder test!  When it comes to Cornelius Jordan’s branch here is the descendant chart I have created.  It is far from complete because I need help finding the children and much of this is a work in progress meaning each of these lines needs to do DNA kits to confirm their connections to Cornelius.  It isn’t enough for it to exist in a book. There is so much wrong genealogy out there. I don’t want anyone to presume this chart is complete or confirmed. It is the starting gate for CORNELIUS SR.

Everyone who submitted kits appear to be working Colonial lines of Jordans which are within the 5-7 generation window.  A generation is normally 30 years.  Here is the chart – again that explains why family finder tests are so important.


Well, I found no other NC Jordan who connected with Cornelius or any of his sons or his father Joshua existed as far as I could tell!  RATS!  The map I have included on my LOCATION tab has all of the JG8 branches I can identify.   They are the brown push pins. This Jordan tree has families who now reside in VA and/or Carolina!  The quest is to sort them properly into their actual family units and connect them back to the right people is ongoing and depends on Jordans from both states to establish their branch. This is supposed to be Thomas the Quaker’s tree!  Some researchers want to believe this tree can’t be THAT Quaker tree because so many branches are missing!

Let’s move on to the JG 8 SURNAME PROJECT.  Here is a screenshot.

As you can see there are 21 kits in this JG group/tree. I like many are struck by the number of missing kits for a tree that is supposed to track back the Thomas the Quaker’s line of Jordans.  The masthead lists WILTSHIRE England based on one kit’s earliest ancestor claim.  No Jordan family in England has submitted a kit to collaborate this claim.  It is my hope more VA, NC, and ENGLAND JORDAN/JOURDAN/JORDON/JORDEN kits will be submitted very soon so the work will progress.

I have located two different unique NC geo node for the JG8 Tree: one for Cornelius of Wilson and one for  James, an early BERTIE (Hertford County) JORDAN branch of Jordans who lived along the Chowan River.  In order to advance more kits are needed.  I created a chart to highlight where kits are needed.  This chart shows where in the 1700s early 1800s a family of Jordan lived.  Now they could be anywhere in or outside these targeted areas.  Could be your family has stayed in one of these regions since the 1700s.  Please establish your line! Could be you think your Jordan tracks back to this region. Please establish your line!




















There are kits needed to confirm Cornelius’ line, kits needed to confirm James’ line, and kits needed to help establish other sons of Thomas.   I am particularly interested in the MATTHEW, son of Thomas lines!

Additionally you will see some JG8 kits which submitted their kits a long time ago and yet they remain stuck where they were when they submitted their kits. The reason?  Missing NC and VA JG8 branches!  The work is not progressing as possible.

There are two particular JORDAN families – one in TX and one in AL who know they are part of the JG8 tree and one knows his family tracks back to NC but neither has found their close match or close enough to be able to re-examine classic records to find their actual Jordan ancestral line.  I believe this continues because the JG8 Tree is a tree where many Jordans think they connect to the JAMESTOWN sect and they do.  And they think they know their pedigree.  They might!  But the information passed down to them from their fathers may hold the keys for their brothers or uncles lines.  So even if you think you know your direct pedigree line you may hold the keys to Jordan kin who have done all they can and need you to establish your branch so they can have enough information to find their way and it will add to your understanding of a generational node of Jordans who are part of your family tree.

Neither of my kits are visible in the Jordan Surname Project’s public report.  I want all researchers who are pondering submitting DNA kits to realize one does not have to join a Surname Project but I believe it is helpful.  Since my work involves many different surnames I deal with other project managers. Most all Project Managers will tell you it is a good thing for your branch to be visible in their public report.  This is not the case of the JORDAN SURNAME PROJECT though.  And I believe this has crippled the work

I explained on the JG1 evaluation page, it is critical for a kit to have at least 37 markers.  It takes that many markers for a kit to communicate properly with others.  FTDNA no longer sells 12 or 27 marker tests.  WHY?  Because the scientists understand it takes 37 to identify the tree and branch properly.  67 ad 111 will fine tune the placement on a branch for you.  When it comes to these early NC or VA families, 37 is  not the best choice but it is a good starting point.  Let me be clear I fully appreciate why there are deficient kits.  If you look at the kit numbers one is a transferred kit (there is a letter at the front of the Kit ID).  There is no way to upgrade a transferred kit. One would have to order a new kit.  This may be difficult for someone to afford.    There are many who tested a long time ago. Perhaps their contact information is no longer valid. I can tell you they don’t have contact information so it is very difficult to track down the kit owner/tester. These men paid hundreds of dollars for only one or two panels of information.  They watched while the cost went down for others to submit kits but the cost to upgrade just cost them more.  And most of these men are elders.  I know there are some men in the JG8 tree who are generous but they are focused on finding their close match.   The kits which are incomplete may help the whole tree but with the JG8 tree having so many deficiencies is it any wonder the men who are JG8 are having a tough time making progress?  The men who submitted kits 6759, 20733, 31247, 38763, 93123, and 95763 all need to pull their kit out to at least 37 markers so they communicate correctly with the rest.  The man who moved his raw data to FTDNA with kit N4143 needs to order a new kit.  It is my hope that FTDNA will see what is necessary to help move the work forward and create a fair pricing structure for upgrades.  From where I sit, these men who did the earlier kits helped the scientists find ways to improve the tests.  A fear is some of the men who tested have abandoned their genetic genealogy out of frustration. I hope they will find here a gal who wants to help them and is actively trying to get missing branches submitted so all can achieve their best results.


At this time if you are submitting a new kit to establish your Jordan branch there are so many established Jordan trees I would suggest ordering the 67 if you can.  BUT know it is more important to have your kit anchored and include both the Ymarker and the Family Finder so you may find like me the Y37 test is the place to start because of financial restraints.  Once you learn you have a 0-1 match, then each of you need to pull your kits out to 67 at the very least.  There are some gifted JG8 researchers.  They just need the missing branches established  and anchored and the early kits to be out to at least 37 markers and all of the kits anchored!

It is my hope FTDNA will offer a special sale some day just to help folks who need to upgrade their kits.  Many of the progressive men who did the 12 marker test when it first came out paid a lot more than we must pay today for more markers. I hold the opinion if the lab would provide a financial incentive these kit owners would do it or in the case of the JG8 tree there are men in that tree who would help out.  The problem is partly how to do donations per subgroup?   Maybe there is a JORDAN somewhere who can offer a grant to help get this tree in better shape!





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