DNA, Free People of Color, North Carolina, Paternal Kin

DNAnigma, no. 2.1: Another Armwood.

I seldom check FTDNA, but last night I moseyed on to study the new My Origins feature. A glance in the corner of the screen showed a  new high match, an estimated 2nd to 4th cousin whom I’ll call L.A. I emailed him, and he quickly responded. We immediately identified Sampson County, North Carolina, as a potential point of commonality, and I asked his grandparents’ names. I looked them up and found that one was the offspring of John Wesley Faircloth and Laura Wynn (or Simmons). A little further research — and consultation with Stephen Maynor, my point man for all things Sampson County — revealed that Wesley Faircloth, born about 1856, was the son of Nancy Armwood. Again with these Armwoods!

Nancy was the daughter of John and Susan Armwood, and her sister Louisa (or Eliza) was my great-great-great-great-grandfather James Henderson‘s second wife. Am I an Armwood though?

While refreshing my recollection about this family — which has always frustrated my efforts to track them properly — I discovered a previously unnoticed tangle of intermarriages between and among the Armwoods, Wynns, Simmonses and a few Hendersons in northern Sampson and Duplin Counties and southern Wayne County.

The base couples:

  • Major Armwood (~1798-??) and wife Eliza [last name unknown] Armwood (~1806-??).
  • Richard Armwood (1832-??) and wife Mary Faircloth Armwood.
  • John Armwood (~1800-??) and wife Susan [maiden name unknown] Armwood (~1820-??).
  • James Simmons (1798-1860) and wife Winnie Medlin Simmons (??-1902).
  • Gray Winn (~1815-1850) and wife Sarah Greenfield Winn (1816-1909).

And the marriages and other relationships that flowed therefrom:

And this is just a generation or two of intermarriage. I’ve asked A.G., my other Armwood match, to test with 23andme so I can compare our matches and see if she matches my known Hendersons. Stay tuned….

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