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Adamthwaite Archive

"The website IS the one-name study!"



Have you been helped by the information on this site?  If you would like to contribute to the cost of our DNA project, just £10 would help towards the cost of DNA kits!

December 2010 newsletter

This photo was taken by Paula, and shows the view from her house (I think it is looking across Morecambe Bay towards the Lake District) .... Thank you Paula for yet another super photo, and all I can say is that if I had a view like that I should spend all day looking out of the window!

bayview fell end 250px-Sequoyah

At the beginning of November, I went up to Ravenstonedale on the train (a super journey if you ever get the opportunity) to attend the inaugural meeting of the Ravenstonedale Parish History Society in the old High Chapel.  The event was very well attended, even though it was a terrible stormy night, and it looks as if the Society will succeed in bringing together plenty of useful and

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Ravenstonedale Parish History Society

the old road through Fell End, Ravenstonedale (SM)

interesting information.  To find out more, visit the Ravenstonedale Community website  and if you would like to join the Society, here is the application form.


As a result of contacts made at the meeting, I have today received details of some Sedbergh Land Registry documents mentioning some Adamthwaites … I hope to expand the story about the ORANGE line of Adamthwaites after Christmas to include this new information.

Our Adamthwaite Family History Book

Quite a few people have expressed interest in either purchasing a copy of our Adamthwaite book, or

contributing articles and stories for inclusion.  This is a fairly long term project, so please do all start thinking about how you could be involved, and let me know so that I can gauge levels of interest.

On the DNA front ...

Opening up the Adamthwaite DNA Project on Family Tree DNA to people whose Family Finder results match my own and those of our other known Adamthwaite volunteer from the OLIVE line has created a lot of interest.  We currently have 24 members of the group – all of them interconnected in some way.  Although it is likely that many of these individuals are actually connected through other branches of my family, we have discovered a Fothergill descendant and I am currently trying to establish if her ancestor is linked to Sarah Fothergill who married my 4xgreat grandfather James Adamthwaite in 1789 in Kirkby Stephen.  See the information page about this new Family Finder DNA test which can be taken by either males or females and which can identify up to 5th cousins from any branch of your ancestry.


The other very interesting yDNA match that has just come along is a man who is almost an exact match with our two GREY line volunteers, who you will recall are both descended from John Adamthwaite and Sarah Steel.

• At 25 markers he is the only exact match with both of them.

• At 37 markers he matches our Canadian GREY line representative in 34 markers and our Australian representative in 35 markers.  No one else comes close to either of them.


I have been in touch with this man Alex GUESS, who has given me permission to share his VERY interesting ancestry with Adamthwaite researchers; although he does not carry the surname Adamthwaite.  Family Tree DNA data suggests that there is a 90% likelihood that he is connected to the Adamthwaites within the past 12 generations.


Alex told me  ...

“We have confirmed our line back to Joseph Guess, born between 1785 - 1790 in Orange county, North Carolina.  Family lore is that we are related to "Sequoia" aka George Giest or George Guess.  

George (Sequoia)'s father was a fur trader who married into the Cherokee Indians. George was half blood, married a Cherokee (multiple wives) and he then wrote the Cherokee alphabet.  One of the problems that my cousin had is that she was unable to link one of our relatives, a son, back to the birth records kept by the Cherokee nation.  My cousin says that our ancestor's parents names match those on a registry at the Cherokee nation, but that the son was never registered, so we can't be sure and the Cherokee nation won't recognize our ancestor.

Most of the test results on my Y DNA come back as English, with some Scottish, but all from your part of the world (i.e. NW Britain). So, I would think that I could be related through a common ancestor.


The spelling of the Guess name also could have changed over the years. My Aunt was the family member who would tell us what history she knew. She never told me about Sequoia, but told me of old family pictures that showed a women with very dark skin who appeared to be Indian, she said there was no name written on the photo, and she did not know who the photo was of.  When my Aunt passed away, her kids threw out all her photo's, records, etc., in cleaning out her personal items.  I was much too young then to even think about wanting them one day.”

Wikipedia tells us that Sequoyah (circa 1767–1843), named in English George Gist or Guess, was a Cherokee silversmith who in 1821 completed his independent creation of a Cherokee syllabary, making reading and writing in Cherokee possible. This was the only time in recorded history that a member of an illiterate people independently created an effective writing system. After seeing its worth, the Cherokee Nation rapidly began to use his syllabary and officially adopted it in 1825. Their literacy rate rapidly surpassed that of surrounding European-American settlers. Sources differ as to the identity of Sequoya's father. Mooney and others suggested that he was possibly a fur trader, who would have been a man of some social status and financial backing. Grant Foreman identified him as Nathaniel Gist, a commissioned officer with the Continental Army associated with George Washington. In one Cherokee source, his father is said to be a half-blood and his grandfather a white man. (source Wikipedia, accessed 20 Dec 2010)


If the above is correct, I would calculate that if Sequoya aka George GIST/GUESS was born in about 1767 and his father was a half blood but his grandfather a white man, then that white man must have arrived from Europe some time before about 1745. Could that man be linked to our GREY line Adamthwaites?  Only DNA is likely to be able to tell us!

SE-QUO-YAH - a lithograph from Indian Tribes, McKinney and Hall, 1856. This lithograph is from the portrait painted by Charles Bird King in 1828.

Recent updates to the Adamthwaite Archive

I wish you all a happy and peaceful year ahead, and don't forget to keep us informed of any new discoveries in your own Adamthwaite ancestry


With best wishes

Sue Mastel

Paula's view inspired me to produce a Christmas Card for some of my email contacts, showing the (rather less inspring) view from my own office window.  By return of 'post' I received one from Chris from the Ravenstonedale Parish History Group showing the view from HIS office window (another spectacular view, showing the Howgills)  So I have posted the various offerings here ... why not send me a photo of the view from YOUR computer and I'll post them all!