My advice: Forget they are your ancestors, and treat them like total strangers. Try not to let handed-down family stories bias your research, and start fresh from the things you can prove. John A Brantley had a wife named Donie and/or Massey. 1900 Census says they were married about 1879. She died in 1904. They had children, etc. Don't look for Robertses or Macedonias until or unless you find records connecting those names. Look for John's marriage around 1879. Look for children's births, marriages, and deaths, which might show a mother's maiden name. Who were their neighbors? What apparently unrelated people lived with them? Look for obituaries. If you have DNA results, follow up DNA matches. Do what you would do if you knew nothing about them. You might find things that don't match what you've been told, and those might be the things most worthy of further investigation. For what it's worth. Happy hunting!