WALLACE Y-DNA PROJECT

The new advance of DNA testing has provided genealogists with another valuable tool in their toolbox. Y-DNA is passed from father to son relative unchanged for hundreds of years. This is extremely helpful for surname research where matches between two samples indicate a common male ancestor within a certain time period based on the number of markers tested and the number of markers that match.

With the assistance of my closest male cousin, Hurley Wallace, Jr., our Y-DNA has been submitted to the Wallace DNA Project at Family Tree DNA for comparison with Wallaces from around the United States and the world. Another cousin, William Lucian Wallace, Jr., also greatly assisted by taking the National Geographic Geno 2.0 test to confirm our HAPLOGROUP as R-L21.

The results can be found below and on the Wallace Y DNA Results. Group 19 is the group containing the descendants of Everet Wallace.

Matches [as of December 2014]

The matches to our results have been interesting and challenging at the same time. Utilizing the results of 14 Y-DNA matches, we have been able to reconstruct the Y-DNA of our most recent common ancestor. Based on the match levels below, each of the following individuals descend from that elusive ancestor.

Descendants of Everet Wallace 1770-1845

• Hurley Wallace, Jr. matches 110 out of 111 markers. Hurley descends from Everet Wallace 1770-1845 via son Isham Wallace 1801-1882 and grandson Emsley WallaceEmsley Wallace > Lucian Wallace > Hurley Wallace Sr.

• Ronnie Mitchell "Ron" Wallace matches 110 out of 111 markers. Ron and Hurley Wallace Jr. both descend from Everet Wallace via son Isham Wallace and are 3rd Cousins Once Removed. He then descends from Virgil Spinks "Byrd" Wallace > Isham Wallace > Claude Cleveland Wallace > William Lewis Wallace.

• Rodney Wallace matches 110 out of 111 markers. He descends from Everet Wallace through his son John Wallace and grandson Nathan Wallace. Rodney is the great-great-great grandson of Nathan. John migrated from Moore County, NC to Bibb County, AL in the 1840's and Nathan and his descendants continued on to Cherokee County, TX. Rodney and Hurley Wallace Jr. are 4th Cousins Twice Removed.

• Michael Howard “Mike” Wallace matches 43 out of 43 markers. He descends from Everet Wallace through his son Joseph Wallace. Joseph's son Ruffin Wallace fought and died in the Civil War. Ruffin was the father of Jerome A.Wallace and grandfather of Audrey Howard Wallace. Mike and Hurley Wallace Jr. are 4th Cousins.

Finding these matches was extremely helpful in confirming our Wallace line through three of Everet's children [Isham, Joseph and John]. It is especially helpful to match with the descendants of Joseph and John as it confirms Everet as the most recent common ancestor of these four individuals.

Additional Wallace Match

• Jimmy Wallace matches 107 out of 111 markers of our most recent common ancestor. He descends from John Wallace [1809-1893]. John was born in Union County, SC and moved to DeKalb County, AL by 1835. We haven’t been able to verify John Wallace’s father and grandfather yet but there seems to be a connection here. According to FamilyTreeDNA, the level of this match indicates there is 56% chance that we share a common male ancestor within 8 generations, 76% chance within 10 generations and 88% within 12 generations. One interesting thing to note is that a Robert Wallace lived in Chatham County, NC during the 1780’s-1790’s before migrating to Union County, SC where he died in 1801. This Robert owned a tract of land in Moore County, NC [near the Chatham County border]. Jimmy has been trying to confirm a relationship from his John to this Robert but hasn’t been able to verify anything to date. This deed reference is the only mention of Robert Wallace in Moore County and we have never been able to establish a connection with him.

Ritter Connection and Results

• One of the more interesting findings of our DNA results is the connection to the Ritter family of Moore County, NC. Several male Ritters descending from Jesse Ritter [c1735-c1807/1808] are very close matches to descendants of Everet Wallace. There is no known direct relationship between Everet Wallace and Jesse Ritter but the DNA results clearly show a close one. According to FamilyTreeDNA, the level of this match indicates there is 62% chance that the Wallace and Ritters share a common male ancestor within 6 generations, 84% chance within 8 generations and 94% within 10 generations. Given these results it is very likely that further back either Everet Wallace’s father or grandfather was a Ritter or that Jesse Ritter, Sr.’s father or grandfather was a Wallace. An interesting piece of circumstantial evidence is that Jesse Ritter, Sr. had a son named Everett Ritter [c1760-aft1850]. Ritter Y-DNA matches include:

• James Everett Ritter [matches 109 out of 111 markers], a descendent of Jesse Ritter, Sr. > Jesse Ritter, Jr. [1770/1780-1838 Marion County, AR] > Everett Solomon Ritter > James Henry Ritter.

• Eli Ritter, deceased, [matches 109 out of 111 markers] who was a descendant of Jesse Sr. > John Ritter [1760-1828 Moore County, NC] > Thomas Wesley Ritter > Captain John Ritter > John Spinks Ritter > Eli Junior Ritter > Gilmer Allison Ritter.

• David Thomas Ritter Sr. [matches 107 out of 111 markers] descends from James Ritter who married Melinda Ballentine in 1841 in Clarksville, Montgomery County, TN. Given the DNA connection, it is very likely that James was a descendant of Jesse Sr. More research will need to be done to narrow down the connection..

• Gurney Smith Cornwell III [matches 66 out of 67 markers] can trace his lineage back to Jason Ritter Cornwell 1817-1862 of Southampton County, VA, son of Margaret Cornwell and unknown Ritter. Given the time frame Jason Ritter was likely a grandson or great-grandson of Jesse Sr.

• John Ransom Ritter [matches 37 out of 37 markers], a descendant of Jesse Sr. > Everett Ritter [1760-aft1850 Tippah County, MS] > Benjamin Franklin Ritter > John Robert Ritter.

• Arbuary Gene Ritter [matches 37 out of 37 markers], a descendant of Jesse Sr. > Jesse Ritter Jr. [1770/1780-1838 Marion County, AR]> Mark Ritter > Wiley/Lively Ritter.

• Darrell Jackson Ritter [matches 37 out of 37 markers], a descendant of Jesse Sr. > Thomas Ritter [1768-1848 Moore County, NC] > John Thomas Ritter > George D. Ritter > Ashley Aaron Flowers Ritter.

• Morgan Townsend Ritter [matches 36 out of 37 markers], no information available on his ancestry at this time.

• Bruce Ritter [matches 35 out of 37 markers], a descendant of Moses Ritter [1730-1819 New Hanover County, NC] > James Bradbury Ritter [1757-1816 Surry County, NC] > Lazarus Ritter > Joseph Ritter > John Franklin Ritter. Moses Ritter was the brother of Jesse Ritter of Moore County, NC. He lived in Wayne County, NC prior to migrating to New Hanover County, NC [present day Pender County] where he lived near Moore’s Creek.

Additional Wallace Results

• John Mack Wallace III and Christopher "Chris" Wallace, descendants of John Mack Wallace [1845-1927], have also been tested. Mack's mother was Franey Wallace, daughter of Everet Wallace and we have been trying to confirm the oral history that had been handed down through generations that Mack's father was a Hunsucker. Both of these samples closely match the Y-DNA of several Hunsucker male descendants likely confirming the oral history. The most likely candidate for John Mack's father was Abraham/Abram C. Hunsucker [1806-1869], son of George Hunsucker [1775-aft 1860] and Sarah Spinks.

• Tom Wallace a descendant of William Lane Wallace [1814-1886] was also tested. William Lane Wallace was born in Moore County, NC and was closely related to Everet and his descendants. We have been unable to identify William Lane's parents but given his date of birth and proximity to Everet it has been believed that he was likely a son or grandson of Everet. Tom's DNA did not match any of the tested Wallaces likely indicating that William Lane was a grandson of Everet through one of his unidentified daughters. Tom's DNA was an exact 37 marker match for the Meacom/McCombs/Combs family of Virginia. We have yet to be able to identify a Moore County, NC connection with these surnames. Further research will be needed to fully understand this connection.

• Additionally, we have tested two descendants of Eli Wallace [1790-1855]. Eli was born in Montgomery County, NC and migrated to Graves County, KY during the 1830's and is believed to have had brothers Isham and Nathan Wallace. It has always been my belief that these Wallaces families of Montgomery and Davidson County, NC were related to Everet. Clifton Wallace and Chuck Wallace both descend from sons of Kendrick Wallace. Kendrick was Eli Wallace's son. Unfortunately, neither of the 37 marker samples from Clifton or Chuck matched our Wallaces nor did they match each other leaving the finding inconclusive at best. More research and more samples will need to be tested to gain a better understanding.

• Recently two descendants of William Wallace [1791/1800-1843] of Montgomery County, NC tested via FamilyTreeDNA. William is believed to have been closely related to the Eli Wallace above and potentially related to Everet Wallace. Larry Wallace descends from William > James Alvis Wallace > Chisholm Clark Wallace > Claude Clark Wallace [Larry’s grandfather]. Kurt Wallace, another descendant of William Wallace via son Alexander Clark Wallace [migrated from Montgomery, NC to Graves County, KY] > E. Milton Wallace > Herman S. Wallace [Kurt’s grandfather] tested 37 markers as well. The results were pretty fascinating as Larry and Kurt’s 37 marker test results match a number of Wallaces throughout the country who either trace their ancestry back to Scotch-Irishmen James Wallace [1690-1748] and wife Elizabeth Campbell or Peter Wallace, Sr. [1680-1723] and wife Elizabeth Woods. The connection between James and Peter Sr. has not been established but a number of their descendants share similar Y-DNA. Many of their children immigrated to America and based on the timeframe it is likely that William Wallace was a great-grandson of one of these men. More research is needed to determine the connection but it is possible that William’s father lived in Rowan County, NC and his father came from MD/VA to NC.

• Lynn Wallace, a descendant of Thomas Wallis [d. 1800 Randolph County, NC], was tested 37 markers. There has always been a question as to whether Thomas Wallis was related to the Wallaces of Moore County, NC or the Wallaces of Davidson/Montgomery County, NC. Unfortunately, the test results do not show a match with any Wallace men across the country. The closest match is a descendant of William Hancock [b. 1801 SC]. More samples will be needed in order to draw any reasonable conclusion.

• Dennis Wallace, a descendant of William Wallace [1814-1886] of Chesterfield County, SC tested recently on the belief that the Chesterfield County Wallaces could have possibly descended from the Montgomery County/Davidson County, NC Wallaces. Unfortunately, the tests were inconclusive on the Wallace connection. Dennis’ 111 marker sample did not match any Wallace samples to date but was a very close match to multiple samples from the Britton/Brittan family likely meaning that within the last 4-8 generations the Brittons and Wallaces share a common male ancestor.

For more information, please visit the Wallace Y-DNA Project website.