This blog is the result of 25 years of research.  For the first 20 or so years this information moldered in file folders, tucked away in boxes, but we reasoned that it is only useful if people can see it, so we began publishing on this platform in 2011.  At its inception we called this site Ballard of Virginia & Kentucky, but changed the name to Ballard of Virginia to reflect what it has become: the story of the families sharing the Ballard surname that settled in Virginia beginning in the mid-seventeenth century.  Certainly their progeny have gone on to other places: Kentucky, North and South Carolina, Maryland, Georgia, Ohio, Louisiana and beyond, but the basic truth is that they all first set foot on these shores in Virginia.

In order to understand how these Ballard families are related, it has been necessary to study all of them.  The journey began with my own line and that of Thomas Ballard of James City County, Virginia (1630-1689).  Many researchers seek to connect to him, his being a distinguished and storied line; we are certainly no exception, but with the advent of “genetic genealogy,” we are now able to correct a lot of long-held (and often erroneous) family histories.

The Romantic genealogies from the late nineteenth- and early twentieth century are the foundation of many of today’s family trees.  Those works have value because they often contain information that is unavailable elsewhere; for example, they may have had access to records, particularly bible records and that like, that have since been lost or destroyed.  Others lack academic rigor, merely linking similar names without regard to space or time.  The goal of many of the early works seem to be to find a connection, however tenuous, to the landed gentry or even Royalty.  Pick up any old genealogy and inevitably the first plate is an image of the “family arms.”  The author of a work that appropriates a family’s arms in this manner is irresponsible, and the work immediately suspect, because usually there is no familial connection at all.

Surname-focused DNA tests allow genealogists to verify their father’s father’s . . . father’s paternal ancestry, and it can be very powerful when combined with traditional paper trails. The information is useful only when combined with a well-researched family history.

As outlined on the projects’ website, the Ballard DNA Surname Project was started to:

    • Help researchers from common or related families work together to find their shared heritage.
    • Identify how the participant’s families are connected, both genetically and through paper trails.
    • Identify and confirm genetic Lineages of ancestral families.
    • Ultimately catalog pedigrees and genetic connections of all of the known project families.

Patterns have emerged in the Ballard DNA Surname Project.  The families participating in the project are grouped based on their Haplogroups, which are further refined by comparing the “short tandem repeat” (STR) markers.  Participants are placed in Lineage groups based on these similarities.  The more markers that are tested, the greater the reduction in the range of generations back to a common ancestor.  The individuals in each Lineage group are closely related in a “genealogical time frame,” which is defined as the most recent one to fifteen generations.

To help understand what that means, Family Tree DNA has created charts that explains how to understand genetic distance depending on the level of testing chosen.  The 111-Marker level is presently the highest available.  The next level down, with 67-Markers, is also very informative.  There are corresponding charts for each Marker level; visit Family Tree DNA for additional information.  For genealogical purposes, each Lineage Group, while sharing a surname, do not share the same genetic information and therefore, within a genealogical time frame, are separate families.  There may be a common ancestor, but it is likely one who lived prior to the adoption of surnames in Western Europe — in that context, we are talking about a very long time.

According to David Boyett, Administrator of the Ballard DNA Project, as of January 2015,

The Ballard Project continues to grow with over 130 members and 15 different unrelated DNA lines. Of the 15 groups, 6 share a distant (back thousands of years) common ancestor in the Haplogroup R1b. R1b is the most common group for all surnames from England, Ireland and Scotland (British Isles). The other group is Haplogroup I2a. Each group has taken additional testing to confirm deep history back to Anglo, Saxon, Viking and other early tribes. We also have some families with a rare Haplogroup F that goes back from the Virginia Colony to England and France.

Take a moment to study this chart.  Each participant submitted a short genealogy chronicling their male line as best they knew.  You will see from the chart that individuals in both Lineage Group I (one person, No. 157224) and Lineage Group III (two people, Nos. 275010 and 115902) claim descent from Thomas Ballard of James City County.  From what we know of y-DNA testing, this is not possible; it could be one or the other, but definitely not both.  Or neither.  All of the genealogies that assert a connection claim descent from William Ballard and Philadelphia ________, who this researcher, based on the evidence presented in this site, does not believe that this William is the son of Thomas Ballard; rather, the records show (and sadly, there are very few) that William Ballard, son of Thomas of James City County, lived and died in that part of Charles City County that was once part of James City County.  One additional person in Lineage Group III includes William and Philadelphia as ancestors (No. 157027), but does not claim Thomas.

This compiler has been placed in Lineage Group I, and that family has been the focus of this research.  Those placed in Lineage Group I descend from a Ballard family that settled in Virginia in the late seventeenth or early eighteenth century in the area that eventually became Caroline County in 1727.  Ancestry prior to 1700 is unclear.

Lineage Group II, which is also studied here, is unique for having documentation in the form of a ship’s passenger list from 1659 proving a point of origin, and good evidence of a place of residence in Virginia.  Unfortunately they settled in Nansemond County (now the independent city of Suffolk), but the country records have burned on three occasions and sorting out the families there is quite challenging.  This is complicated by a major boundary adjustment that took place in 1729, when the North Carolina line was moved north approximately 50 miles, and families thought to have “moved” to North Carolina did no such thing; North Carolina came to them.  Fortunately the records in many of those northeast North Carolina counties have not suffered the fate Nasemond endured, and the families can be traced there in later generations. The remaining Lineage Groups, to date, either show origins in other places, such as England and New England, or states as diverse as Texas, Alabama and Mississippi, or lack the critical mass needed to definitively place a point of origin and identify a “patriarch.”  This will change as more men join the project.

Lineage Group I or one of the other Lineage Groups may very well descend from that Thomas Ballard, but to date, no male that has documented descent from him has been tested, or that connection has not been made, either for the loss of records or a failure to complete a comprehensive research project.  We need confirmation.  In order to truly sort out these early relationships, there would need to be participants who trace their descent from proven descendants of:

This information would help prove whether or not Bland Ballard of Spotsylvania County and his brothers do descend from the “the Founder,” Thomas Ballard of James City County, Virginia, and perhaps shed light on the relationship with the Maryland branches.  Testing would also provide evidence that our unproven assertion that the the Ballards of Mecklenburg County descend from Thomas of James City County and the Ballards of Charles City County.

Many researchers are increasingly relying on what they find on the Internet, while there are numerous repositories with documents yet to be studied and published.  The cruel irony of genetic genealogy is that usually those being tested are those with the least amount of knowledge about their families.

Our confidence in the pedigrees appearing in the Ballard DNA Project would be greater if we were provided with sources and justifications, along with the assumptions. We have tried on this website to outline our assumptions, though at times some groups are, at best, an educated guess based on our knowledge of the history of the region and settlement patterns.  We hope that the reader takes “probably” or “likely” to mean just that, and not assume that sentences containing these phrases constitute “proof.”  As a rule, we will only include information that is derived from primary sources, meaning those records that were created contemporaneously with the event documented.  Many online genealogies, for example, will cite as “proof” a listing from some other compiler’s online family tree, or a book of dubious scholarship, such as William Ballard Derby’s Ballard-Ballord Bits (1978).  Certainly secondary sources (those created by others using primary and secondary sources) have been consulted, but unless proof in the form of citation to documentation is included, that information will be removed as these pages are revised and updated.  In some cases pages included herein are “place holders” while research continues, and some family trees borrowed from others to use as templates while we work out the details.  In the course of refining and editing we may have erred by retaining such information, and will remove it when it is discovered.  Note also that out of respect for privacy, information on the living is intentionally omitted, but are identified as [son] or  [daughter], or whatever label is appropriate.

In the work at hand, naming patterns and allied families do provide clues, and present persuasive evidence when analyzed in conjunction with surviving records.  But definitive proof of the ancestors of Bland Ballard, Sr of Spotsylvania County, Thomas and John Ballard of Albemarle Counties, Richard Ballard of Caroline and Bedford Counties, and William Ballard of Caroline County, Virginia and Rowan County, North Carolina  — the “patriarchs” of Lineage Group I of the Ballard DNA Project — still eludes us. So for now, we content ourselves by identifying their father as an unnamed “Progenitor.”  The results of additional y-DNA tests, coupled with those individuals family histories, may provide that proof.  One of these days we may even bridge the Atlantic and connect to the Ballard families in the United Kingdom.

Thank you for visiting, and feel free to post questions, comments, and most of all, share information you may have that no one else does.  Please understand that these pages are constantly being re-evaluated and tinkered with, because new information may come to light or some insight might spark the re-evaluation of a conclusion.  Some pages may bear a notice that “this is a work in progress,” but truly, that disclaimer applies to every page.

If you’ve found your way here, no doubt your Ballard heritage interests you — so if you are a male descendant, please join us and participate in the Ballard DNA Project.  Family Tree DNA offers occasional discounts; contact David Boyett for details.

— Stephen M. Ballard

Saxe, Virginia
March 2015.


Below are the brief genealogies provided by each participant in Lineage Group I of the Ballard DNA Project.  If known, there are links to the appropriate page within this site.  Visit these pages to see the participant genealogies for Lineage Group II and for Lineage Group III.  To see the genealogies of all the participants, please visit the Ballard DNA Surname Project.


Ysearch ID: KQ276 N40008
1. Thomas Ballard b. 1717
2. Bland Ballard b. 1735
3. Garland Ballard b. 1786
4. Warner Ballard b. 1816
5. Robert Louis Ballard b. 1851
6. William Mac Ballard b. 1893
7. Bill Ballard b. 1925


Ysearch ID: UGUTY
1. George Washington Ballard b. Nov 1830 VA d. 7 Jun 1900 Pike Co AR
m. Sarah Boswell b. abt 1852 Tate Co MS, d. 21 Sep 1915 Pike Co AR
2. George Washington Ballard Jr. b. 3 Aug 1879 VA, d. 20 Jun 1951 Pike
m. Jane Alvin Cocke b. 27 Sep 1879 Tate Co MS, d. 4 Feb 1919 Pike Co


George Washington Ballard b. Nov 1830 VA d. 7 Jun 1900 Pike Co AR
m. Sarah Boswell b. abt 1852 Tate Co MS, d. 21 Sep 1915 Pike Co AR


Ysearch ID: HPTWW
1. William Ballard b. 1813 d. 1863 TN
m. Rachel b. 1820 TN d. c 1880 TN
2. Thomas Maston Ballard b. 1839 TN
m. Emma Savannah Cochran b. 1852 NC, d, aft. 1900
3. Grover Cleveland Ballard b. 21 Jun 1883 TN d 1965 AL
m. Minnie Violt Ford b. 1895 TN d. 11 Mar 1978 GA


Ysearch ID: HPTWW
1. William Henry Ballard 1813


See John Ballard of Albemarle County, Virginia (c.1722-c.1779).

Ysearch ID: 87674
1. John Ballard b. c 1755
m. Elizabeth James
2. Joseph Ballard b. 9 Nov 1784
m. Sallie Arwood
3. David Ballard b. 25 Apr 1823
m. Nancy Vian Harwood
4. John Henry Ballard b. 23 Oct 1844
m. Mary Jane Reeves

Ronald Jack Adams (adopted), birth name:
Kenneth James Ballard b. Set 12 1931 Rush Co IN, probably Anderson or Muncie
d. Feb 2 1986 Redlands, CA


William Ballard, b. ? in Virginia, d. abt. 1845 in IN, m. Elizabeth ?, b. 1805-06 in Virginia, d. ?[material gathered from 1840/1850 Federal Census for IN]
l. Fletcher Ballard, b. 1831 in Tenn., d. abt. 1860 in IN,
m. Vashti Baylor b. 1831, m. 9 Dec 1852, Crawford Co. IN
2. Jacob Clarence Ballard, b.18 Nov 1853, Corydon, IN. d. 2 Oct 1889 in Oaktown, IN,
m. Sarah Elizabeth Robinson b. 18 Jan 1856, at Knox Co. IN m. 27 Nov 1872 Knox Co
3. John Henry Ballard, b. 8 Aug 1875, Sullivan Co. IN. d. 11 Jun 1942 Sullivan Co.
m. Flora Alice Cox b. 7 Nov 1881 at Plainfield, IN, m. 30 Mar 1897
4. Ray Eveleth Ballard, b. 29 Sep 1917, Dugger, IN, d. 21 Apr 1994 Melbourne, Fl.
m. Violet May Richards b. 13 Mar 1919, Ironwood, MI m. 16 Dec 1944


1. Thomas Ballard b abt 1620-1630 England????? d 24 Mar 1688-89 Middle Plantation, York co, Va
m Ann Thomas b bef 21 Mar, 1637-38 England, d 26 Sep 1678
2. Thomas Ballard b abt 1654, Middle Plantation, York co, Va d bet 1706-1711 Middle Plantation, York co, Va
3. William Ballard b abt 1687 James City co, Va d 2 Oct 1754 King & Queen co, Va
m Philadelphia Ludwell ( Lee??) b 1682 Essex co, Va, d aft 1754
4. Bland Ballard b abt 1700 Essex co, Va d 3 Jan 1792 Spotsylvania co, Va
m Mary Deering b 1710, Orange co, Va d aft 1753
5. John Ballard b 1734 Spotsylvania co, Va d Jul 1823 Madison Co, Ky
m Mary Ann Proctor b abt 1734 Spotsylvania co, Va
6. William Proctor Ballard b 2 Dec 1755 Spotsylvania co, Va d 1818 Bardstown, Ky
m (2) Mary Ann Woodard b 1784 in Maryland
7. William Proctor Ballard, Jr b 7 Feb 1809 Nelson County, Ky d 3 Nov 1899, Marion co, Ky.
m (2) Mary Jane Wheeler b abt 1810
8. George Hilary Ballard b 1 Sep 1846, Marion County, Ky d 28 Oct 1911
m Mary Emma Haydon b abt 1851 in Ky, d 26 Oct 1909
9. Evaristus Ballard b 16 Oct 1888 St Raphael Parrish, West Louisville, Daviess county, Ky d 27 Jan 1978
m Birdie Wayne Leigh b 1 Sep1894 Hebbardsville, Henderson County, Ky
10. Edmund Evaristus Ballard b 13 Feb 1914 Owensboro, Ky d 28 Nov 1995
m Mary Martine Howard b 14 Feb 1918 d 21 Jul 2007


1. Samuel Ballard b. 1810 Cherokee, TN d. 16 Mar 1863 Red Clay, TN
m. Susie Wolf NI-GU-DA-YI b. 1806 Cherokee, TN d. 1832 Indian City, Payne, OK
2. Alexander Ballard 1824-1864 Cookson, OK
m. Lucy Swimmer 1828-1945 Cookson, OK
3. Thomas Ballard b. 1845 d. 12 Mar 1886 OK
m. Caroline Eliza Romine b. 16 dec 1848 d 1902 OK
4. William Ballard 1874-1942 Indian Territory (IT) OK
m. Sallie Rattlinggourd b. 1879 IT OK d. 5 Jan 1956 Tulsa, OK
5. David Ute Ballard b. 17 Feb 1911 d. 15 Feb 1999 Tulsa, OK
m. Ruby Esther Fisher b. 31 Oct 1911 Peel, AR d. 26 Mar 1993 Tulsa, OK
6. Donald Le Roy Ballard b. 15 Feb 1933 d. 29 Feb 2002 Tulsa, OK
m. Sandra Irene Bell b. 8 May 1937


1. Bland Ballard b. 1759 Spotsylvania Co. VA d. 1853 Shelby Co. KY
Consort: Flora Unknown
2. Dowan Ballard b. c.1825 Ghent, KY d. 21 Jul 1909 Jackson, Madison Co. TN
m Matilda Bartlett b. 1835 d 7 Dec 1907 Jackson, Madison Co. TN m abt 1854
3. William Henry Ballard b. 31 Oct 1862 Franklin Co. KY d. 28 May 1954 Lexington, KY
m Elizabeth (Bessie) Hudson Brady b. 25 Jun 1870 Nashville, TN d. 19 Sept 1946 Lexington, Fayette Co. KY m 28 Dec 1892
4. Edward Hunter Ballard, Sr b. 2 Apr 1899 Lexington, Fayette Co. KY d. 26 Jun 1988 Los Angeles, CA
m Estelline Wilhite b. 19 Jun 1902 Birmingham, AL d. 13 Apr 1959 Los Angeles, CA m c. 1922
5. Edward Hunter Ballard, Jr. b. 2 Dec 1923 Lexington, Fayette Co, KY d. 5 Nov 2002 Las Vegas, NV
m 8 Jan 1945 New Orleans, LA


1. (Micajah Ballard?) b. c 1787 Bedford Co VA d. 1860 Campbell Co TN,
m Nancy Ryan
2. Silas Ballard b. c 1826 Campbell Co TN d c 1884 Union Co/Campbell Co? TN
m. Mary (Longmire?)
3. James Sherman Ballard b. 1867 Campbell Co TN d 1939 Campbell Co TN
m. Lockie Bridges
4. William McKinley Ballard b. 1898 Campbell Co TN d 1976 Campbell Co TN
m Rachel Capps


This William is probably William Jackson Ballard, son of John Ballard of Union County, South Carolina (1765-1838).

1. William Ballard b. abt 1797 South Carolina d. aft 1880 [Carroll Co., GA?]
m. Elizabeth b. abt 1800 SC
2. John Ballard b. abt 1830 [Anderson Co.?] SC d. aft 1880 [Dongola Co., IL?]
m. Sarah Mills b. Jan 1832 TN d. aft. 1900 [Stokes Precinct, Union Co., IL?]
3. Thomas Ballard b. Oct 1852 TN d. ca. 1920 (Sikeston Ward, Scott Co.?) MO
m. Mary Elizabeth Darnell b. Oct 1858 Sulphur Springs, Williamson Co., IL d. d. aft 1910 (Sikeston Ward, Scott Co.?) MO m. 1896
4. Elmer Otto Ballard b. 5 Jun 1895 Wayne Twp., Bollinger Co., MO d. 1 Mar 1969 Lilbourn, New Madrid Co., MO
m. Delia Belle Lawrence b. 2 May 1908 Catron, New Madrid Co., MO d. 7 Jan 1980 Kalamazoo, Kalamazoo Co., MI
5. Harvey Eugene Ballard b. 13 Dec 1935 Catron, New Madrid Co., MO
m. Marilyn Imogene Hambright b. 4 May 1939 Kalamazoo, Kalamazoo Co., MI m. 29 Sep 1955? Kalamazoo, Kalamazoo Co., MI


See John Ballard of Albemarle County, Virginia (c.1722-c.1779).

1. John Ballard b. 1755 m. Elizabeth James
2. Joseph Ballard b. 9 Nov 1794 d. Nov 1884 m. Sallie Elizabeth Arwood (Arrowood) 1815 Reems Cr. Valley, Buncombe County N.C. b. 1796 d. 1850.
3. David Ballard b. 25 Apr 1823 d. 2 Dec 1905 m. Nancy Vian Harwood b. 16 Mar 1825 d. 15 Dec 1909.
4. John Henry Ballard b. 23 Oct 1844 d. 8 Jul 1934 m. Mattie Honeycutt 23 Sep 1866 b. 25 Nov 1847 d. 5 Oct 1890, m. Mary Jane Reeves b. 1867 d. 1944.
5. Roscoe Ballard, from John Henry’s Ballard’s 2nd marriage to Mary Jane Reeves, b. 1896 d. 1977 m. Maria A. Pyde.
6. Roscoe Blaine Ballard Jr. b. 1931 m. Rita Munford


William Ballard b. Unknown d. Unknown
m. Unknown
Samuel Ballard b. Abt. 1780 Old Cherokee Nation East d.16 Mar 1863 in Red Clay, TN
m.Diana Otterlifter b. 1802 d. 1838
John Ballard b. 1827 in Cherokee, Georgia, USA d. 1865
m. Sarah Arthur b. 16 Jun 1830 in Cherokee Nation East, Habersham, Georgia, USA d. 5 Feb 1917 in Maysville, Washington, Arkansas, USA
Henry Clay Ballard b. 13 Nov 1860 in Prairie, Canadian, Oklahoma, USA d. 12 Feb 1952 in Vinita, Craig, Oklahoma, USA
m. Nancy Almira “Alma” Parks b. 20 May 1865 in Delaware, Cherokee, Oklahoma, USA d. 13 Oct 1957 in Vinita, Craig, Oklahoma, USA
Thomas Henry “Tom” Ballard b. 15 Oct 1900 in Oklahoma, USA d. 6 July 1983 in Grove, USA
m. Vinita Perry b. 17 August 1905 in Oklahoma, USA d. 29 May 1997 in Grove, OK


“In the list below, we can’t prove to everyone’s satisfaction that John Ballard is the father of Joseph Ballard, but very much believe this so.”

Thomas Ballard 1717 – 1781
m1. Susannah Hesson
Thomas died in Albemarle County, VA, where his Will, dated June 30, 1779 names his daughter-in-law Mourning but not her husband, his son, John. This implies that John Ballard predeceased his father. Records in Buncombe County, NC give more information.
John Ballard ca 1740 – ca 1779
m. Mourning (Miller ???) died in Kershaw County, SC about 1827. (from her estate file)
John Ballard ca 1765 – ca 1841
m. Elizabeth James
John Ballard and Samuel Ballard, brothers, are both named on the 1800 Census of Buncombe County, NC, where deed book 3, page 198 and Probate of Deed minutes for January 1800 name the Will of their father John, and their mother Mourning. They are selling their inheritience to Robert Patton. Exactly what was sold remains a mystery. John Ballard bought land in nearby Burke County, NC in 1795, bought land in Buncombe County in 1798, lived in Sevierville TN 1808 – 1818, lived in Roane County, TN 1828-1839, before moving to Cooper County, MO by 1840, which is believed to be the last place they lived.
Joseph Ballard 9 Nov 1794 – Nov 1884. Is buried in Buncombe County near Weaverville.
m1. Sallie Arwood
m2. Elizabeth Penland.
David Ballard 1822 – 1905
Joseph Newton Ballard
William Dennis Ballard
Burley Ballard 1907-1957


Bland Ballard, b. VA d.1791 Spotsylvania Co., VA
William Proctor Ballard, Bardstown, KY b. 1755 d. 1818 m. Elizabeth Hammett
James Ballard b. 1785 Nelson, KY d. 1846 Nelson, KY m. Jane Thompson
George Lloyd Ballard b. 1814 Nelson, KY d. 1 Jan 1889 Marion, KY
James Marion Ballard b. 4/16/1835 Marion Co, KY
Joseph Wilfred Ballard b. 6/24/1870 Louisville, KY
James Meteles Ballard b. 7/20/1900 Louisville, KY

118 thoughts on “Introduction.

  1. Dear Sir, Do you have any information regarding the Ballard Line of North Carolina My Great Great Great
    Grandmother Penelope Ballard born about 1775 married in Orange Co., N.C. to Sion Record. They did move
    to Maury Co, Tenn., and Penelope died there in 1838, she was known to visit family in Kentucky several times.
    This has been a 30 year search I so hope you can help me. You have really put a lot of work into this and I think that is wonderful. Jacqueline Record Straney

    • I am actively researching the Ballards in North Carolina, but really just beginning. You say Penelope Ballard visited family in Kentucky; can you tell me which counties in Kentucky? Do you know who they were? I remember visiting Hillsborough, the county seat in Orange County, and learning of the extremely active Great Indian Trading Path that passed in front of Ayr Mount, a beautifully preserved plantation just outside of town. That just has me wondering if it would be worthwhile to study those old roads to see where they took people. Perhaps a group of Ballards traveled to the area down one of these roads (from Virginia, presumably). Where did Sion Record’s people come from? There is actually a Trading Path Association that is working to preserve and promote this little known part of our history. This poster gives a good illustration of the route.

      • This is an amazing site. Thank you for making it public.

        Do you know anything about the William Ballard who died in Halifax, N.C in 1774? I saw him listed in the Lynne Miller work on NC Ballards but nothing about who his parents might be. When he moved to Halfiax Co. N.C., the witness for his land purchase was a Benjamin Ballard (!). This implies a close relationship, I have been told. What do you think?
        It has been written that he married Elizabeth Clopton but no proof of that has been found, to date.
        Betty Sparks

      • Betty,

        I have a long wish list of subjects to study more, and the North Carolina lines is among them. At the moment finally working through another study of the Albemarle County lines. Also on the list: the Ballards who settled in Maryland, and the Albemarle descendants who settled in North Carolina and South Carolina. I exchanged emails with John Wiesner (who graciously allowed me to publish his work) who mentioned the connection of the Ballards with the Cloptons, which he thought showed a family connection to the York county line. He said he would share that with me, but never sent it — I haven’t pestered him for it. You’re probably familiar with this note:

      • I descend from the Edward Finch mentioned in that site.(married to Martha Ballard) I can prove (to DAR standards) to William Ballard, d. 1774 in Halifax, NC. But cannot prove (yet) the Clopton connection. I think I am attemtping to do what you are attempting: to PROVE each connection. What I’ve read about existing records in Va. makes our task daunting!! I am not aware of any living male descendant of my William Ballrd to have DNA tested.If there are, I will pay for the DNA tests. I have two other lines that DNA has upended previous held beliefs but this is o.k. What we want it the truth, whatever that may be.

        Would love to hear from anyone on this line:

        And please keep me in mind with anything you might find on NC Ballards, especially WHO WAS THAT BENJAMIN BALLARD who witnessed for my William Ballard?

        Betty Sparks

      • Do you have an abstract or transcript of that deed you could share? Were there other witnesses?

        Poking around I found reference to a deed in Mecklenburg County, Virginia, in which a William Ballard of Halifax County, North Carolina, sold 200 acres in Mecklenburg. This suggests that this William may formerly have lived in Mecklenburg and was selling his land there after removing to North Carolina. Ignore the comment about halifax County, Virginia — it appears (to me) that they focused on the wrong thing.

        “Does anyone know if this is William Ballard a Quaker? Have heard there was a small Quaker settlement on Banister Riv in Halifax Co VIRGINIA, Page 362. Mar 11, 1767 from William Ballard of Halifax Counry, North Caralina, to James Farrell of Meck, for 40 £, a cerrain tract at land of about 200 acres in Meck on the lower side of Allens Cr bounded by Isbell, Nowell’s{Novell, Noel??} old line, Parks, Hatchel, Roffe, new line.signed William Ballard. Wit – > Edrnund Bugg, George Freeman, Anselm Bugg. Recorded Apr13, 1767.”

      • The Deeds of Halifax CO, North Carolina 1758-1771 abstracted by Dr. Stephen E. Bradley Jr. p. 63

        793-(389) MARY DODD and WILLIAM DODD of Lunenberg Co, Va. to WILLIAM BALLARD of Halifx Co 1 Oct. 1763 30 pounds of Virginia. 150 acres on south side of Roanoke River “near the mouth of Pork Creek” The land given to said Mary Dodd by her father’s will. Mary Dodd (x), William Dodd Wit: George Maybury (x), John Maybury, BEN BALLARD 17 Jan. 1764. AJ. : Jos. Monfort

  2. This is so cool to find! I am thoroughly researching all of my family lines, although jumping around a bit – I started back up again with the Ballards and found this blog.

    My lineage is:

    10)Col Thomas Ballard (1631 – 1688)(10th great grandfather)
    9)Col Thomas Ballard Jr. (1655 – 1711) Son of Col Thomas
    8)William Ballard (1682 – 1754) Son of Col Thomas Bland 7)William Ballard Sr. (1704 – 1792) Son of William
    6)Phillip Ballard (1750 – 1824) Son of Bland William
    5)John William Ballard I (1785 – 1875) Son of Phillip
    4)William R Ballard (1811 – 1865) Son of John William 3)Squire Woodson ‘Wood’ A Ballard (1834 – 1912) Son of William R [GGG Grandfather]
    2)Sarah Belle Ballard (1857 – ) Daughter of Squire Woodson[Great Great Grandmother]
    1)John William Figgins (1888 – 1939) Son of Sarah Belle
    [Great Grandfather]
    0)Berle Wilson Figgins Sr. (1921 – 1995) Son of John William [Maternal Grandfather]

  3. This is an outstanding web site. Perhaps you can help me. I am trying to locate the diary of Harris Ballard. It is referenced in the SAR application of Henry Smith Ballard in 1942 and also in the work of Lynn Miller. I am hoping someone has made copies of it. I am a descendant of Harris Ballard.

    • Martha,

      We’ve corresponded over the years — nice to hear from you! My source of that information was the Sons of American Revolution application you reference. I would suspect that the diary of Harris Ballard was in the possession of Henry Smith Ballard in 1942; are there cousins you’ve lost touch with who might have it, assuming it survives?

      • I thought you might be the same Stephen Ballard I communicated with many years ago. I am so impressed with your site, an enormous amount of work has gone into it and it’s a line that has never been explored before.
        I’m trying to track down the descendants of Henry. I have the SAR application but the Hatcher Family Assoc won’t accept it as proof of Harris’ children, they want a copy of the actual diary. It would be nice for everyone in the Harris line so see the actual diary. I wish I knew a Ballard male descendant for the DNA test. If I hear anything on the diary I will be sure to let you know.
        Vancouver, WA

  4. I’m hoping you can help me. My great-great-great grandmother was Charlotte Ballard, allegedly the daughter of John Ballard and Elizabeth Nalley, born in 1823 (again, allegedly because years of birth on census records are suspect). She married James Matthew (Madison) Johnson, and their daughter Annie married Richard Hilary Watson. Their daughter Mary Willie married Victor Ivo Boone. Their daughter, my grandmother), Mary Willie, married William Oscar Sweat.

    I know her last name is Ballard based on death certificates of her children. She’s listed as Lottie Ballard. The one thing, try as I might, I can’t actually confirm is that John Ballard and Elizabeth Nalley were her parents. She was born in Nelson County, Kentucky, and I know the Ballards were quite the presence in Bardstown, Nelson County, Kentucky.

    The last child in your section on John Ballard and Elizabeth Nalley is Ann Lucretia who was born in 1822. Could this be the same person? Were there possibly children born after Ann Lucretia?

    At present, at least with the Ballard line, I’m stuck. Thanks for any help you can offer.

    Brentwood, TN

    • My knowledge of this line is limited to the secondary sources you see here, so unfortunately I have nothing more to add (at the moment, anyway).

      However, coincidentally, I have exchanged a couple of messages with another descendant of this line. May I share your email with her?

      • Yes, please share my email with her.

        I did find, in the Proctor Ballard section, a notation mentioning Charlotte (and her marriage to James Madison Johnson). She’s listed in the section about John (131) son of Proctor and Elizabeth Hammett.

        I believe she is related to this Ballard line, I’m just not sure how. My guess is that all the Ballards in Nelson County at that time were related. I’d just love to figure out her connection, and verify, if possible, if she’s the daughter of John and descended down through the generations from Thomas.


      • Hello, My name is bland Ballard the fourth I was born in Lexington Ky My father is Bland Ballard the third and my grandfather is Bland Ballard the second and so on this is amazing! My Email is share it with who ever you would like

  5. I am trying to find some information on the father of Lucy Ballard b 1799 in Virginia?? d 1882 in Dougherty County, GA. I think her father was James Ballard and it appears he died some time between 1805 and 1814. His wife was Francis ??? but later remarried and was Francis Ballard Gafford who I think died 7 Sept 1857 est.

  6. I am was so excited to have found your Ballard Blog!!
    I am searching for something specific on Thomas Ballard B: 1630 and his son Thomas Ballard, Jr B 1665 in VA. I am trying to prove Thomas (Jr.) daughter, Elizabeth who married William Smith.
    I am hoping someone might point me in the right direction or have what I am in search of.

    I do have info on Elizabeth Ballard & William Smith children. Several of their grandsons served in the American Revolution.

    • It took a while for me to find time to look into this — unfortunately, I have not researched the descendants of William Smith and Elizabeth Ballard. If there is anything you could share, it would be greatly appreciated. Everything I have on them appears on the blog.

  7. Wow! I too am glad I found this site. I am in the beginning stages of trying to locate my relatives. I was born into the family of R.S. and Thelma Hawkins Ballard August 15, 1942 in Pensacola, Florida. I was given up for adoption at birth. My father was believed to be a part of the U.S. Army at the time of my birth.

    If you can point me in some direction to begin the chase I would appreciate it. Gerald Ward

    • Gerald: The 1940 census will be out around April of this year ( and that may be a huge help in tracking your family. You can get a two week free trial on ancestry but you can also look at family trees on ancestry for free. A heads up though, many of the trees have incorrect information on them, but you may connect with others researching your tree.
      I had a couple Ballards in my line that wandered into Florida, I’ll check my line. Good luck.

  8. Greetings,
    This is a beautiful blog in both content and style! I happened upon your site while researching my own first cousin lines of the marriage between John Thomas Ballard (b. 1/6/1834) m. (9/7/1854) Effie Winlock (b. 5/13/1833). Her grandfather, General Joseph Winlock is my 4G grandfather. I believe we share many ‘allied’ family crossovers—across hundreds of years. Thanks for the excellent and responsible genealogy tome. I am grateful to find this as an inspiration for my own work.

    How did you publish the fabulous rainbow colored pedigrees to your blog? They are so easy to follow. Is there some kind of pedigree app (or Word Press app) you have used for your entire site?

    Thank you so very much,
    Jane G.D.F.R. (initials only for privacy concerns)

    • Thank you so much. I wanted pedigrees to use as illustrations of each family group so its easier to comprehend relationships. I use Mac Family Tree to keep track of all the family lines, and with it I am able to generate the pedigrees, which I then copy as a jpeg file to my desktop, then insert into each page as an illustration. See this link for more information. I can’t say if its better or worse than others; its the only one I’ve used, and it has served me well.

      I do wish I had more time to devote to the blog — I have an important update I need to work on, but the living keep interfering.

  9. Mac Family Tree rocks! I downloaded the demo after your post and LOVE it. Have struggled with reports in the (other) program I have been using…thanks TWICE today from all the living in me and our 86G,
    –Jane G.D.F.R.

  10. Stephen, is connecting William Ballard of MA with Thomas Ballard of VA with Henry and Elizabeth as parents.

    Do you have any knowledge of the relationship?

    Charleston, SC

    • I’ve seen many variations of this claim, but no proof has ever been presented, to my knowledge. Does this tree you consulted provide documentary proof? I just did a search on Ancestry and came across the following persons listed as the parents of Thomas Ballard of James City county, born 1630:

      1. William Ballard and Elizabeth Lee
      2. Henry Ballard and Anne —
      3. Thomas Ballard and — Chelsey
      4. Henry Ballard and Anna Napper
      5. William Ballard and Mary Elizabeth Grissel
      6. Thomas Ballard and Anna Napper

      I know some of these names from the Herald’s Visitations, but no proof of connections of those families with America.

    • Hi Don. I’ve been digging up Ballards for about 30 years and have seen folks try and tie the northern and southern lines together for all 30 years but no real proof has been forthcoming. I love ancestry but there is a lot of wishful thinking in some of the trees.

  11. Hello,

    Your site is very informative. Thank you for putting all of the information together. My mother’s maiden name is Ballard and we were going over the information she has on our family tree and she has our line of the family as descendants from Dowan Ballard.

    She had a few questions to verify the information that she has. Could you send me your email so I can ask them for her? My email is

    Ray Reyes

  12. Stephen;
    I am still working finding proof of Harris Ballard b. 1785 (probably really 1765) being the father of my Jesse Ballard. The SAR application of Henry Smith Ballard that refers to the diary of Harris Ballard has not been found. The only male descendant of Henry Smith Ballard died without issue and there is no existing record as to what happened to his personal effects. The SAR has been totally uncooperative regarding the application and supporting documents that may have accompanied it. The local SAR believes the national office destroyed all supporting documents they had years ago. (That made me scream) Henry Smith Ballards bio is so full of errors as to be useless. I have tracked down a few supposed descendants of Harris Ballard but none have enough interest to agree to a DNA test.
    The hunts continues.
    I spend a great deal of time at my local FHC reading microfilms. If there are any films you would like looked at I would be happy to order them and give you a report and/or scan of any records of interest.

  13. Hello. My maiden name is Ballard and I was doing some research on the name and found this. Just trying to find more info on my family. Thanks, by the way there are tons in the state of Maryland!

  14. I am interested in using your research and need to reference it. I am only ‘publishing’ to my immediate family. Can you please let me know how you wish to be referenced eg as a blog?

    I am related to the Ballards of Mecklenberg County, Virginia on my maternal grandfather. I’ve seen alot of the Ballards on my paternal grandfather Quaker side although we are not directly related.


    Trish McDonald

  15. hi Stephen,

    Just wanted to say thanks for all the work you’re doing. I’m a descant of Bland W and have been trying to work through some of the details of the movements of the Ballard’s from VA to KY (my grandfather was Jack Ballard (Joseph Damon) of Marion County). Best, Jack Ballard, Jr.

    • Many thanks, Jack — always appreciated. Have you had a yDNA test? If you’re a descendant in the male line, you should, and participate in the Ballard DNA Group. Family Tree DNA is having a “sale” until the end of the year. The more people who test, the larger the pool of genes to compare and help sort out those nagging problems where records may not exist. Test to the highest level you’re comfortable paying for in order to get the best data.

  16. 10th – Thomas Ballard is my direct 10th great paternal grandfather. For lineage is:
    9th – Thomas Ballard, Sr. (1630-1689)
    8th – Thomas Ballard, Jr. (1654-1711)
    7th – William Ballard (1675 or 1687 – 1754)
    6th – William Ballard Jr. (1715-1794)
    5th – David Ballard (1750-1822)
    4th – Joseph Ballard (1770–1848)
    3rd – John Ballard (1793-1846)
    2nd great gfa – Gov. David Wesley Ballard (1824-1883)
    great gmo – Florence Ballard (married John Berry Slater) (1861-1934)
    gfa – Ronald Ballard Slater (1892-1972)
    fa – Ronald Ballard Slater Jr.
    Ronald Albert Slater (me)

    I have research.

  17. I understand that this site is mainly for the Ballards of VA & KY, but I was hoping someone out there could help me with some info on the Ballards of MD( Somerset/Worcester Counties). I am trying to find the parents of Daniel Ballard born 1791-94 in Snow Hill, Worcester Co. MD. He was married to Nancy Bowen on 1/7/1840. His children were my great grandfather Edward(1841) who married Mary A. Hall in 1868, William(1843) & Virginia(1848). Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    • I see from the 1850 census that your Daniel Ballard (age 56) and his wife Nancy (along with the children you name) are enumerated on the same page as George R. (54) and Levin (65), who are probably his brothers. The three households come one after another — the proximity is no accident.

      Daniel’s house was in Manokin, in Princess Anne County, according to this National Register application.

      Levin and Daniel appear to have served in the Militia during the War of 1812, having mustered out of Somerset. See page I-59 of the attached. A “Severn Ballard” is also named. I have no idea who Severn might be, but someone of the name appears in several British publications of the time, usually as “John Severn Ballard.”

      Interestingly, a Levin Ballard is named in a lawsuit from 1769 in Somerset, which suggests it may be worth looking at this individual as a possible relation, assuming they are brothers.

      If Levin and Daniel do prove to be brothers, then you need to explore the following. The paragraph in the link below describes the lineage of one William Wirt Ballard, born in November 15, 1835. The 1850 Census mentioned above (available on shows Levin Ballard, age 65, Sally, 60, Sarah, 29, Margaret, 23, and William W., 14 (born 1835 — the census enumeration took place in September 1850).

      According to this sketch, this William Wirt Ballard was the son of Levin Ballard and Sarah M. (Willing) Ballard. Levin fought in the War of 1812 and was a Captain, as we saw from the muster list above.

      Levin’s father was Jarvis Ballard, a revolutionary war soldier.

      Jarvis’ father was a George Ballard who came to America from England in 1732.

      I don’t know the source of all this information, but its a good start. Note that it was written when William Wirt Ballard was living, so he was likely the source of this lineage.

      I find this very interesting. Your job now, I think, is to confirm whether or not Levin, Daniel and George are brothers (note: there is a William H., age 62, listed in George’s household – no clue of their relationship), and take it from there. Hope this helps.

  18. A correction: the Daniel Ballard farm referenced above belonged to a different Daniel Ballard. This is evident from reading the National Register application attached to that document.

    Interestingly, a Jarvis Ballard house survives, and is listed in the National Register as “The Waddy House.” See the Somerset County, Maryland listings here:

  19. Stephen do you have to be male in order to get in on the DNA testing? My 4th great grandfather
    was Proctor Ballard of Bardstown Ky. I descend from his 2nd wife Mary Ann Woodward..

    • I’m not an expert but I just learned that you the test to take under those circumstances is an autosomal DNA test. Family tree DNA has one called Family Finder, and it’s just $99. I just ordered it myself; no results available yet. You should do it.

  20. Stephen; While we are on the subject – I recently submitted YDNA to Family Tree for another line. I do have MT DNA on my brother, a descendant of Micajah Ballard and Thomas Ballard via our great grandmother. (solid paper trail) Would it be beneficial to the DNA study to have his results trfr’d to FT?

    • Martha, I am also a descendant of Richard and Micajah Ballard…do you have info on Richard’s ancestry? Do you think they descend from Thomas (b.1630)?

      • This isn’t Martha – Martha Cieglo has nothing to do with this blog, other than occasionally commenting.

        Personally, I do not believe that Richard Ballard from Essex/Caroline was a relation of Thomas Ballard of James City County. There are no geographic or familial connections that I have come across.

      • Hello Mary.
        I have never even tried to trace Richard Ballard. I am hoping DNA tests will point us in the right direction. Have you submitted any dna? The Ballard matches I have had with DNA confirm the Richard relationship but have not seen any results that take us back farther. Stephen would know more than I do on this.

  21. Hello Stephen,
    I have just started researching this side of my family tree. I have just discovered the Ballards in my roots. I am in KY…ran into the Ballard Lineage 4 generations back… 4 times Gt, her father Larkin Ballard, his father Phillip, and his father William Ballard…places of birth are Monroe Co, VA, St. Ann’s Parish Essex Co Va, and Orange Co, Va. Any info on this family would be greatly appreciated!! Thank you so much.
    Joyce Bowling

    • Is there anyway I can be of help? My great grandmother was Sarah Bertha Ballard Born in 1879 in Lexington, KY. Apparently, via some information my aunt sent to me, her grandfather was a Henry Ballard who was from Fayette County, KY and married Eliza Jane Griggs. Henry and Eliza had a son named James who we believe was Sarah Bertha Ballards father. At one time I understood that I would need to find a Ballard family sponsor to do any testing. So far, I have not been able to find any that I know of. Any thoughts appreciated. John Ballard Heuring Jr.

      • Clarified a little better: Henry Ballard who married Eliza Jane Griggs in 1846 and had one child (that I know of) James (b.1847) who married Anna Devorah White in Fayette, Cnty,KY in 1870 and had a child Sarah Bertha Ballard.

      • Hi Stephen, I don’t really have the total resources or knowledge to do much more than google around online to the various ancestry related forums as I have done over the years. Haven’t had much luck. Of course i have always hoped something new would turn up online. Quite a few “Henry” Ballards out there it would seem but haven’t seen any trees that have been put together that might conform to that date (1846) with a Henry, James or, of course, the Griggs or White maiden names as spouses. Of course I was hoping my tree info may help someone else fill in some blanks as well. If Henry married in 1846 it would mean, I would think, it would have put him to have been born in the 1830 + or – time frame?? I guess it is possible it could have been a second marriage when he had James.

    • Hi Joyce, Just read your info. on Stephen’s blog (my first time finding his blog). We seem to be from the same line! Sarah Sallie Elizabeth Ballard (m. John K. Pettit) is my 2nd gr-grandmother. Her father was Larkin Ballard (m. Rebecca Elizabeth Gaines). Larkin’s father, Philip Ballard, is in my DNA Circle on, but I have no DNA evidence so far for generations earlier than Philip. However, I do count my Ballard line back to Thomas Ballard (1630-1689), as you do. My hope is that DNA tests will enable confirmation of the paper trail back to Thomas (1630-89).
      I am female, but my brother also did the DNA test, so it might be useful in some way. Our surname is not Ballard, so my brother does not qualify for Stephen’s DNA project referenced above on this blog. If you have or will take the DNA test, it’s likely that we would be in the same DNA Circle. At any rate, it’s great to locate you as a “cousin” who is interested in our family trees. If you wish to see my tree, it is public on –jaturner

  22. Good evening Stephen.
    I wonder if you would be kind enough to send me an e-mail where I can send you a confidential message/question regarding a Y-DNA test result.
    Thank you,

  23. Steven,
    I believe that I am a descendant of Col. Thomas Ballard of James City. I don’t know if you want to here from me; my name is Richard Thomas. I have researched my family lines back to Thomas Ballard through John Ballard of Mechlenburg County Virginia. I would be willing to send my documented genealogy work to you to decide if my participation in the DNA project would be helpful. At any rate my file would certainly be helpful some some people. I would participate with DNA. I won’t log in or request notices until I know what you have to say.

  24. I have been trying to find out who are the parents of a Dudley Ballard. He was born between 1740 and 1750 I believe In North Carolina or Virginia. I have had my DNA done. I have Been searching for over 5 years and cannot find anything. He was married to A Sallie Duke.

    • If you’re tracing the male line, you need to test (or cause to be tested) a male relative with the Ballard surname. Unfortunately, I don’t have much on the Dudley Ballard who married Sallie Duke. I’ve seen records online, and he is on my “to do” list, but I don’t have an answer for you. Has a male Ballard relative of yours been tested?

  25. I noticed that somebody said this site was primarily for Va and KY lines. I hope it’s okay for me to post. I finally found the line of descent to Reuben Ballard’s wife Apsilla (who was also a Ballard, daughter of Abraham of Perquimans, NC, perhaps cousins?) of NC, GA and KY. I’m interested in Reuben and Apsilla because they were in the same places as my Humphrey Ballard of Granvillle, NC and Wilkes Co., GA. As far as I can tell, Reuben and Apsilla left Wilkes for Mercer County, Kentucky. Reuben died about 1820 in Warren Co., KY. I can trace Apsilla’s line but not Reuben’s. I am so stuck with Humphrey Ballard that I am looking at a lot of Ballard lines. Reuben and Humphrey did interact by witnessing some deeds, etc. Can anyone out there help me? I have found a male Ballard, descended from Humphrey, who is submitting his DNA for Y-37. I’m putting a lot of hope in this test.
    Jane Brazell Sisolak

    • Please read the introduction. I began with Virginia and Kentucky (my own lines) but have branched out into following the lines wherever they go, and lately concentrating on North Carolina. I’ve seen your postings on newsgroups about this line, and I’m very interested in learning more. And I’m definitely looking forward to learning the yDNA results of the descendant of Humphrey Ballard.

      • FTDNA received the Ballard DNA from Humphrey’s line today. I will let you know as soon as I know something. Meanwhile, I’ll keep looking.
        Jane Brazell Sisolak

      • That’s really awesome. I’ve been working with a couple of other researchers on trying to figure out these Virginia/North Carolina lines. I’ve only recently (in the last year) started studying them in earnest.

      • Question: what are your thoughts on this deed abstract from Warren County, NC? Do you think Humphrey is William’s brother? A son? A cousin?

        DB-l, page 71. 19 August 1765. WILLIAM BALLARD, Planter, to my loving son JOHN BALLARD, both of Bute Co. Deed of Gift, for love, good will & affection, to all lands, goods & chattles in my present possession in Bute Co., already delivered to him and contained in an inventory of this same date. Wit: HUMPHREY BALLARD, MATTHEW MACKMILLION, JOHN EDWARDS. Deed, with schedule annexed, proved by MATTHEW McMILLION, Bute January Court 1766, and Ordered Registered, BEN McCULLOCH, C.C. Schedule lists: 186 A. of land, description of marks of livestock, etc. Wit: HUMPHREY BALLARD, MATTHEW MACMILN, JOHN EDWARDS. Proved by MATHEW McMILON, Bute January Court 1766, BEN McCULLOCH, C.C.Deed & Schedule Reg: 4 November 1766, by WILLM. JOHNSON, P.R.

  26. My name is Justin D Ballard – Descendant of William Marion Ballard sr – Born-death 1806-1890 in Rowan County, North Carolina. Any information about his father or generations behind would be greatly appreciated. Thank

    • I don’t know anything about this gentleman, but there is someone in the DNA project claiming descent from a William Marion Ballard who was born 1807 in North Carolina, died 1870 in Hill County, Texas. I don’t know if this is the same person. This particular family is listed in “Other” — there aren’t enough participants of that particular line that could allow anyone to make any conclusions about the line. If this is the same line of descent, it would be a great help (to you!) if you would join in.

    • I’m a desendent of a Dudley Ballard Of Rowan Count NC also I’m totally stuck I cannot find for sure if he was born in NC or Virginia. So I’m kinda in the same plce. I also had my DNA done and it hasn’t really helped but I’m still trying to find what I can.

  27. Hello, Assistants is needed on Ballards in Virginia. My G Grandfather. George Washington Ballard(GWB), was born in Virginia in 1830 and so was his parents according to his Census records. in my search through many records, have not been been able to find a GWB born in 1830. Could all of Virginia’s records been destroyed in the Civil war? Accord to some DNA work on some of his living relatives, he is in lineage group one. Are there any experts Virginia Ballards that could give me some guidance? Ken Ballard Thanks in advance!

    • I think you need to search the land records for the relevant counties and find every mention of him possible. Did he own land? If he did, a conveyance might, for example, recite “To George Washington Ballard of —- County, Virginia (or wherever he came from before arriving in that place). I understand he has been found in the 1900 and 1880 Federal census, but what about 1870, 1860 and 1850? I’m not familiar with Arkansas records (I’ve looked at a few in Tennessee), but I imagine there are tax lists.

  28. Hello Virginia Researchers,
    Can anyone tell me anything about George Washington Ballard(my great grandfather) born in Virginia in 1830? This information was obtained from a 1900 Census taken in Pike county Ar. shortly before his death. Would like to know where he was born in Virginia, the name of his parents an if he had a family there before he married my great grandmother in 1869 in the state of Miss. Thanks Ken Ballard

  29. Hi Stephen, I’m Ronald Allen Ballard, I’ve gotten back to Henry Ballard 1577, my family has been in eastern NC since the civil war and in VA before that

  30. Hi Stephen,
    For those seeking info about Dudley Ballard, I do not have specific knowledge, however, I strongly suspect he is the son of William and Jane Ballard Dudley. As I recall, she may be a widow of a Ballard husband with children by him. She married William in 1740. He is my gggg grandfather’s(Richard) brother. They are sons of Captain George Dudley and Judith Armistead of Virginia.

    If anyone has taken an autosomal test, they can check for common matches with mine. I have matches to Armistead, Lee, Burwell, Ware, Taylor, Valentine.These are allied families to Armistead.

    The Y DNA test for males is more important at the moment for sorting out the various Ballard lines, but also take the autosomal as well, if you can afford to. Both male and females can compare common matches and DNA segments. I had a group administrator of a surname DNA site confirm several autosomal matches against a specific lineage Y group of that surname.

    And for the reason I am on this site, I am a Ballard descendent as well. My ggg grandfather was Robert Ballard of Marion County, South Carolina. I suspect he is either of the Onslow County, NC Ballards or of the Tyrell County, NC Ballards. The name Robert runs in the Tyrell branch. It appears that line moved into Camden, Kershaw, Lancaster area of South Carolina. There is a Robert in that area on 1790 Census.

    There is a record of a Robert in the Orangeburg, SC area. Census shows a John Ballard there 1790. My Robert is on 1810 Census in Marion. I have an Orangeburg connection. My Robert is married to Rachel Barrow, daughter of James Barrow and Ann Gibson. Ann remarried to Samuel Roark of Orangeburg. Additionally, not far away, in Marion(now in Dillon) County, resided Ann Ballard Shackleford and Francis Shackleford. Ann is of the Onslow Ballards. A brother Benjamin Ballard moved to Orangeburg a generation earlier. Another brother was Jesse who married a Shackleford. This Jesse may have been the Lighthouse keeper in Charleston and also on the coast of North Carolina. In the adjacent County of Horry near the coast was another Jesse Ballard, perhaps a son or nephew, who was married to an Elizabeth Skrine. Nearby was a William Shackleford. In Georgetown port, the first lighthouse keeper in 1800 was John Shackleford. The Georgetown area Jesse and Elizabeth Skrine had a daughter named Susannah, born in 1792, who married a Dr. Shecut of Charleston. He was a prominent citizen and an announcement was placed in the Charleston Courier.

    I suspect my Robert to be a son Benjamin, but am not sure yet. His wife was a Herman, and I match some Herman/Harmon, but not many.

    Jeff Dudley

    • I haven’t spent much time with Dudley Ballard, but I find this very interesting because a Dudley Ballard served in Robert Ballard of Mecklenburg’s company during the Revolution, and it makes sense that he could have been a nephew or cousin. I need to study this — thanks for writing.

      • Apologies for my massive posting error, I meant Dudley Ballard was probably a NEPHEW of William and Jane Ballard Dudley. So, unless a daughter of Captain George Dudley and Judith Armistead married a Ballard and had a son named Dudley Ballard, the Armistead matches will not apply. I found an internet reference that Jane Ballard Dudley is the daughter of Robert Ballard and Jane Wyeth.

      • Keep up the good work ! Hope you are on the right track cant wait to see what else you find for us. .

  31. Have 2 questions. Father did the 64-DNA test for Poindexter lineage, can it also be used for the Ballard lineage? Samuel Ballard (Cherokee des) is in the line also. Any info connecting the two lines?

      • Hi Stephen,
        Feel sure that there may be information gained by contact with my second match:
        Mr. Donald Leroy Ballard Jr.

        email FTDNA Tip note GEDCOM Viewer Y-DNA111 FF
        Samuel Ballard, b 1800. d.1862 R-CTS4466 CTS4466 6/16/2015
        Kenneth Lee Ballard

  32. It is delightful to discover your blog, and thank you so much for sharing your work. I am descended from one of the “North Carolina came to us” Ballard family — as far as I can tell from Abraham Ballard, but at my great-grandmother Annie Ballard (one of Stephen D. Ballard’s daughters), the line follows down the female side. I have had one of the Ancestry DNA tests within the past year.

    Although you are looking for male samples, if the newer DNA tests on women would be useful to your research, please let me know. After realizing that many of the assertions on Ancestry family trees is suspect (to be polite), I’ve been going through my lineages and looking for reliable sources — not just someone copying someone else’s tree. I’ve got a long way to go before finishing that project. Virginia releasing scans of the actual birth, marriage, death, and divorce records has been a tremendous help, though. Still, even those aren’t always correct. My grandfather gave information for his brother-in-law’s death certificate, and gave the incorrect father’s name.

    Coincidentally, I came across Derby’s Ballard Bits tonight, as well as your site. You’ve listed Ballard Bits as questionable … is there a particular reason to believe it unreliable? It is my intention to check his citations, if possible, at least as far as my line is concerned.

    Best regards,

    • Thanks for writing, and I hope you find information that’s useful to you. My opinion of the correctness of various lines evolves as I delve deeper in the records.

      As far as Derby’s work is concerned – I’ve checked many of his references, and nearly all of them are secondary sources which, as you know, can often contain errors and wishful connections. In several places his documented source is a letter from another researcher, and there is no way to check that. It’s a good resource, but use with caution.

      • Yes, your site has already been very useful, not only to help me understand my particular line better, but also reinforces the principle of caution and question everything when researching. I came across some folks on Ancestry who were documenting Ralph Ballard with a naturalization record showing him repudiating his allegiance to King George V … and a few other people just blindly accepting and incorporating into their trees. I don’t know which is more disturbing, the blind acceptance, or that these people seem to have no idea George V was King during WWII, and that if Ralph Ballard died in 1722, he was buried several hundred years before some other man, Stanley Ralph Ballard on the document, repudiated allegiance.

        On the other hand, the internet can be a lovely thing. You may alread have this in your files, but it gave me a smile to find the original images of Jethro Ballard’s (d.1802) will, inventory and probate. Also, an image of Jethro Ballard’s marriage bond to Elizabeth Sumner; however, I’m not very good at reading the old writing, so I’m not certain who paid and who received the 50 pounds mentioned, only that there was 50 pounds involved in the marriage contract! The Colonial Records of North Carolina, Volume 4 – 1734 to 1752, contains a transcription of the session appointing Abraham Ballard as a Justice. I’d love to see the original, handwritten version, but suspect if I did, I wouldn’t be able to read it. It’s probably in the hundreds of thousands of document images North Carolina has put online, but I just haven’t found it yet.

        Best regards,


      • I think when studying the Ballards in North Carolina who found themselves there after the boundary change, we need to literally map out where they were living in order to tease out relationships with other families nearby. This is something I have not yet had a chance to do. Actually, a company has done it for us but I need to get a PC (I have a Mac at home) to use their software. See The Index for Suffolk county lists (and maps) the early patents of Elias/Elisha/John/Joseph Ballard in the vicinity of Nansemond.

        The posting of online records really is a boon — but I share your bemusement when trying to decipher some ancient writing. Paul Ballard in England is a genius at it, but then he’s had practice deciphering ancient medieval manuscripts and translating some things from Latin. But then sometimes you find the same record in differing collections of abstracts, and that compiler may have interpreted the same writing differently.

  33. Stephen, I told you that I would let you know when my male Ballard cousin’s DNA came back. He tested for Humphrey. I see that you have already discovered it. Also, I found someone to do the test for Reuben and that is also back and I see that you have found it as well. It confirmed what I believed about Humphrey and Reuben, that they share a common ancestry, but I do not know how. Brenda Pfluam and I are starting to work on that. Reuben and Humphrey are one marker different from Lewis.
    Jane Brazell Siisolak.
    If you would email me, I’ll try to send you the court paper naming Elisha Ballard as guardian of Apsilla and Bathsheba Ballard, daughters of Abraham Ballard.

  34. This message is for cullowheedawg who posted a few years ago. I found this information in Wilkes Co. GA probate records. I looked at it carefully because there were James Ballards descended from Humphrey Ballard, my ancestor. As I recall, a man with the last name of Gafford was the administrator for this estate. His widow, Fannie Willis married Mr. Gafford during the process and the admr. was changed. I had more information on payouts but can’t find it now. This James Ballard died around 1811, I think. I hope this helps if you haven’t already discovered yourself.

    Page 207–BALLARD, JAMES, dec’d. est. Thos. Grant, admr. Paid Daniel Owen, gdn, $150.00. Received in full of a note on Dunwoody Harrison, $134.50. To amount of judgment vs Fanny Gafford, admr in favor of J. Ballard, dec’d, $1270.24. Sept. 1, 1817.
    Page 221–Returns of Daniel Owen, gdn of Lucy, Sophia and Matilda Ballard, orphs of Jas. Ballard, dec’d. Paid Benj. Hill legal representative of Lucy Ballard, now Lucy Hill, $750.00, Feb. 15, 1817. Clothes, side saddle etc bought for Sophia and Matilda, Jan. 6, 1818.

    Jane Brazell Sisolak

  35. Stephen, this Ballard information is fantastic but I have only had time to read about my husband’s Ballard line: Bland Williams Ballard of Shelby County, Kentucky (1759-1853) >James Ballard of Oldham County, Kentucky (1783-1841) > Bland William Ballard of Aquilla, Texas (1824-1904). Is this the proper forum to discuss errors in your data and to provide additional information? Thank you.

    • Not having an editor, I welcome and encourage corrections and welcome additional information. The information on Bland Williams Ballard’s descendants was culled from an online genealogy (lacking references, unfortunately) from a Shackelford family. That’s there as a placeholder until I can study the lines and develop the section.

      • In the section for Bland Williams Ballard of Shelby County, Kentucky (1759-1853), p8/16:
        I believe there are errors in the paragraph of his son, James. 1.) Please check the James Ballard who represented Shelby county in the Kentucky Legislature in 1813 and 1814. Wasn’t the James, representative, the son of Bland Ballard Sr and a brother of Bland Williams? 2.) You have listed Martha (who married Bland A. Williamson, possibly the widower of her sister Elizabeth Ann) but James and “Betsy” (Shackelford) Ballard did not have a daughter namded Martha. They only had four children to reach adulthood. 3.) In this paragraph you list the youngest son as John Thomas Ballard but his names was James Thomas Ballard who married Lotsey Cross. I will send more information concerning the family of James and “Betsy” in another message tomorrow. Thank you.

      • I see, and I know where the error came from — relying on secondary sources like Ballard-Ballard Bits by William B. Derby. My disadvantage for the Kentucky lines is not having easy access to the Kentucky records. Thanks so much for the input — I’ll fix it.

  36. Recorded in Deed Book A, Page 1 at the Oldham County Courthouse in LaGrange, Kentucky is a deed dated 11 February 1824 “between Bland W. Ballard of the county of Shelby and state of Kentucky of the one part and James Ballard of the county of Oldham and state aforesaid of the other part witnesseth: that the said Bland W. Ballard for and in consideration of the natural love and affection that he has for his son James Ballard, and for the further sum of one dollar to him the said Bland W. Ballard in hand paid the receipt he doth hereby acknowledge the said Bland W. Ballard hath bargained and sold and by these presents doth bargain and sell unto the said James Ballard his heirs (etc) forever, one certain tract or parcel of land lying and being in the said county of Oldham on the waters of Harrods Creek……”. The deed goes on to tell how Bland W. Ballard obtained the land and gives a description of the property. I have a copy of the deed but had to scan it in two parts as my scanner was not large enough to copy the entire page.

    I also have a copy of a deed dated 7 February 1854 and recorded in Deed Book I, Pages 15-16 that shows James Thomas Ballard sold his share of this same land to Addison M. Ballard, both of Oldham County. This deed states that he, James Thomas Ballard, received the land as a devisee of James Ballard, dec’d; the same tract was conveyed by Bland W. Ballard the father of said James to said James Ballard by deed (recorded on page 1, Deed Book A in Oldham county); the same tract of land allotted to said Bland W Ballard (Sr) in a division which took place between himself & his brother James Ballard of a tract of land (supposed) to contain 325 acres originally pattented to Bland Ballard the elder…..(continued wordage, signature and recorded).

    I hope these deeds help to document the relationship of Bland Williams Ballard of Shelby County, Kentucky, James Ballard of Oldham County (married Betsy Shackelford) and the children of James and Betsy.

  37. Stephen, I posted the above mentioned deeds on the Ballard Family History and Genealogy site on Face Book. What is the best method to share information about the James and Elizabeth (Shackelford) Ballard family with you?

  38. Hi, I was unable to find out who was the father of Lucinda Ballard who married John J. Case. I have thought by the association of people in the same area that her father might have been James Harold Ballard b. in 1788 in NC. He evidently had a son of the same name who is buried in the same cemetery as Lucinda. John Case died in the Civil war and is buried in VA. Can you help me with this line. Thanks, Elizabeth

  39. Thank you Stephen for opening this blog and sharing your 25+ years of research with us.

    I am hoping to find information about my line, like yours, also possibly descended from Thomas Ballard of James City County, VA. I am also very interested in the DNA tests, and being the only child (and female) of my father’s Ballard line, I would need some instruction on which one to choose and submit to the project.

    My known direct paternal family line, in pedigree order:

    Kathryn Ballard Shut (b. 1972) daughter of
    Timothy Lee Ballard (1948-2009), youngest son of
    Thomas Ballard (b.1920 in AL- d. Nov 1967 in Kansas City, MO), son of
    William Elga “W.E.” Ballard (b. 1893, Dorsey, MS – d. 1954 in TX), youngest son of
    Thamas Coggins Ballard (b. 1850 in SC – d. 1922 in MS), eldest son of
    John Alfred Ballard (1827-1898, of namesake Ballardsville, MS), son of
    Thomas Coggins Ballard (b. 1797, of Virginia; died before 1850 in Union, SC) …

    . . . and this is where I want to ensure that the rest of my research is correct, tracing back to several John Ballards, Colonel Thomas Ballards, and finally to Thomas of Virginia himself.

    I appreciate your help and those family members associated with this project.

    Best wishes,
    Kathryn Ballard Shut
    Denver, CO, USA

    • Kathryn,

      Glad to hear from you. Every inquiry seems to take things in a different direction — things being “me.” I had been working on trying to better understand the Ballards who settled in parts of Virginia that became part of North Carolina with a boundary adjustment in the 1790s, when I begin corresponding with a researcher with pretty compelling information about the ancestors of my earliest ancestor, Bland Ballard of Spotsylvania (which I am still parsing through). Someone else sent a news clipping from 1819 that opens another avenue of research, and now yours.

      First, DNA tests. Unfortunately since you are your father’s only child, there is no DNA test that would help with researching the Ballard line. The test subject for yDNA research must be a male descendant. Do you have a male cousin or uncle who could take the test for you?

      The best person to ask about this is the Ballard DNA Project administrator, David Boyett.

      Second, Thomas Coggins Ballard, who died in Union, South Carolina. I have not done much work in South Carolina; I need to find time to get to the Library of Congress to study whatever abstracts might be available there. I will point out, however, that a John Ballard of Union County, South Carolina left a will dated 21 August 1838 that names his son “Thomas C.” Ballard. I think I found this in the online records for the South Carolina archives. I believe he is the son of John Ballard of Albemarle County; John of Albemarle’s parentage is not clear, but like I said, I am working on information recently shared with me about that. I did a blog post about it, but I’m still working on the details.

      See this post.

    • Kathryn, the best test for a female who is looking for DNA relatives is the Family Finder Test from Family Tree DNA. As the other reply said to trace the yDNA is the most reliable but in my opinion there should be two tests. if you get an uncle and a cousin to test, they shouldn’t be father and son. That said, sometimes it is impossible to get more than one. Also you can get hair tested if the follicle is intact. It is expensive but it can be done. I’m not sure if FTDNA does this or not. If I were you I would do the Family Finder first and see who shows up.

      • Thank you so much, Stephen and Libby. Stephen, I read your excellent research on John Ballard of Albemarle and agree that this line is likely the same one whose descendants ended up in the Carolinas and further South to Alabama, Mississippi (for sure), and on. When you get to that point in your research, I am happy to share who we are and what I know.

        Libby, thanks for your answer about what females can do in this project. I will check the Family Finder DNA test, and see what I can find. We do have a few living male Ballards from my direct line, and I will reach out to see if they may be interested in taking the yDNA for the project here.


  40. Dear Sir,

    What an amazing site. While I am not a Ballard, I am seeking a photograph of the late Sen. Thruston Ballard Morton in his Navy uniform. My research of veterans records has been fruitless and my single attempt to contact his son was not successful.

    Do you have any recommendations? Thank you very much.

    – John T

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