Thomas Hamilton of Bedford County, Virginia, and Some DNA results

DNA strand

Continued from Some Hamiltons in Hawkins and Sullivan Counties, Tennessee, 1784 to 1796.

I looked again at the family of Thomas Hamilton of Bedford County, Virginia. Specifically, I looked at the DNA results that have been submitted from his descendants to the Hamilton Surname DNA Project.

Benjamin Hamilton

There have been four participants in the study who claim descent from Benjamin Hamilton, whom many say is Thomas' son. Three of them, H-101, H-244, and H-083, are third or fourth cousins. Their DNA matches on 65 or 66 of 67 markers tested. The fourth participant, H-493, was only tested on 12 markers, and those 12 are a match for the other three.

So it seems safe to say that the first three men are descended from Benjamin Hamilton and the fourth is likely, pending further testing.

Samuel Hamilton

Next let's consider two submissions from men claiming descent from Samuel Hamilton, also said to be Thomas' son. These two, H-177 and H-380, only match each other on 32 of the first 37 markers. Neither of them come anywhere close to matching the results from Benjamin's descendants.

I'm just learning all this, but it looks like something is wrong with this picture. My first guess is that someone needs to take another look at their reasons for tracing themselves back to Samuel.

More importantly, since neither of Samuel's descendants match Benjamin's results, you have to start asking yourself if Benjamin and Samuel Hamilton of Bedford County, Virginia, were actually brothers. If not, were either of them Thomas' sons?


Some people say Samuel Hamilton is on the 1796 Tax List of Sullivan County, Tennessee, with Benjamin and the others. That would be interesting. In an earlier post, Some Hamiltons in Hawkins and Sullivan Counties, Tennessee, 1784 to 1796, we were looking at that list for possible fathers of Preston Fields. I didn't find him on the list, but I might have missed him.

For an article that discussed the problems with the sons in Thomas Hamilton's family see Hamiltons of Bedford County, VA, posted by Larry Wood, June 19, 2001, in the Genforum Hamilton Family Genealogy Forum.

Continued in Some Conclusions on the Hamilton DNA Research.

If you have been following this series of articles that began with Preston Fields, of Pike County, Kentucky, you might also want to read the series that starts with Joseph and Agnes (Rennie), Hamilton of Ayrshire, Scotland. Our Hamilton DNA matched a descendant of that line on 25 of 25 markers.


The image of a DNA strand comes from Wikipedia:File:DNA orbit animated static thumb.png.