Hankins Family of Virginia Colony conflated with Hankins Family of New Jersey Colony [closed]

+7 votes
Are there any Hankins family experts that can help untangle these families?
WikiTree profile: Richard Hankins
closed with the note: Original question has been resolved. For clarity, open new questions when necessary:
in Genealogy Help by H Husted G2G6 Mach 6 (68.8k points)
closed by H Husted

So I have a DNA match with Clevenger-435 probably because of Mann-1039 and Mann-2542 (they're proposed to be merged) but also perhaps because of Clevenger-38.

I'm not enough of a DNA geek to even know whether there's a way to sort that out. 

I just ran my GEDMatch profile A154680 against the GEDMatch profiles of Clevenger-48 and found between seven and twelve matching segments on each of them. This to me suggests that Hankins-1129 was her son. We would have to back her birth date up or push his forward, however.
Our YDNA project has proved two unrelated groups of HANKINS' in Virginia PRIOR to Thomas Hankins(Hankins-59) family migration to Frederick Co., VA. from northern New Jersey.  

Our project is on familytreedna.com and has over 50 participants.

Jordan Hankins

Omaha, NE. July 2018

My family were slaves on the William hankins plantation which I believe was located in Winnabow N.C. I believe it was a rice plantation. My Father met the descendants of William Hankins back in 1978 before he passed. William's brother was named Dennis, according to my Father's research. I have spoken with the Virginia set of Hankins' and there does not appear to be a relation to William and Dennis, according to their historian. My father always said that his grandfather, who was the grandson of the African, always said that William Hankins came from Scotland. I would presume Glasgow.
I am officially abandoning the "Scotland" portion of the legend and here's why: I think it's crap. If I had a nickel for every time I saw Scotland where "England" should have been in a birthplace, I'd be a rich man. It was always 18th century, and I wouldn't have figured it out if I hadn't read a book called "My Lunches with Orson" which was essentially transcripts of tapes of a guy having lunches with Orson Welles at a particular LA restaurant in the 1980s.

Orson at one point spoke of the Japanese Internment and it blew my mind as well as every history book's explanation for that decision, which Welles called a ghastly mistake--not racism. Welles had been FDR's confidant as the decision had been made. FDR had no fear of saboteurs. He feared "rednecks" harming Americans of Japanese descent just as those of German descent had been persecuted during World War I, when according to Welles FDR had seen them beaten in the streets, Wagner operas could not be performed, etc. My own grandfather, who was born in 1872, and whose father had immigrated from Hungary immediately after the Civil War (but claimed he was from Vienna) had  hung out with the German-Americans at their clubs, etc in Richmond until WWI apparently led to their disbanding  And just yesterday a friend who is a decorated Gulf War combat disabled veteran confided that he is Iranian-American and not Lebanese, and that his mother had put up with a lot of abuse in the late 1970s.

And so I imagine in the years leading up to the American Revolution, as the British hand became heavier, a lot of people who had an accent in need of explanation altered it a bit and became Scottish, well-known resisters of English oppression. In some cases I've even seen Hugenots adopt the cover story.  Perhaps its currency made that easier than trying to educate a neighbor as to what a Hugenot was, where one was from, etc.
I think you make a good point, however, it seems every ANGLOPHILE wants to be able to claim a TARTAN AND WEAR A KILT ......  I experienced this with my own husband.  But the only SCOTISH  in his life was ME!

Evelyn McKelvey (Murray-2307)
Thank you Carl! Your informarion is invaluable.
Carl do you by any chance have dates? There are several generations of Dennisen to disambiguate and if your William was a contemporary of the Dennis b. 1715 d. 1737 that's *extremely* significant versus later in the 1700s.
Hi.  I would be interested in joining your YDNA group.  What do I need to do?


Charley Hankins
El Dorado, AR
I think you need to do a DNA test

9 Answers

+3 votes
So [[Hankins-59|Thomas John Hankins Jr.]] reached Virginia from Monmouth, NJ sometime in the 1730s. Obviously there were Hankinses already in the colony.

I have recently found a single citation that links his son, [[Hankins-760| David Hankins]] with my (presumed) ancestor [[Hankins-1129|Dennis Hankins I]] of the Carolina Colony. I say presumed because family legend is three brothers arrived from Glasgow and it's possible I descend from David. Already another family member who knows he descends from [[Hankins-1198 |Hannah Hankins]] found out he's not descended from her putative father. In my mind this is down to one of two things: a river accident that claimed the lives of an as-yet unidentified Hankins father and son, and the Revolutionary War, in which then-colonel Tarleton personally ran through another unidentified Hankins, in either case possibly leaving an uncle or brother to take in a family.

Also, we have a tantalizing tidbit that the war victim's brother was ostracized for failing to avenge his brother on the spot, and that he left for Virginia (perhaps to rejoin another branch of the family).

Records are so scanty we'll need help from y-DNA unless a family Bible turns up. I'm working on raising some funds to get it done. The only other guy I have found who might be able to do the y-DNA for this ... doesn't seem to have an interest.

Also, we will likely get more information as this siloed website progresses:. https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Space:Early_Colonial_Settlers_of_Southern_Maryland_and_Virginia%27s_Northern_Neck_Counties
by Mark Hankins G2G1 (1.5k points)
edited by Mark Hankins
I have something interesting. If you do this search on Hannah Hankins you get about eleven of them at the moment. Of interest is that you get them in New Jersey, in Virginia among Hankinsses believed to have come from New Jersey, and in South Carolina, among my line:


Hannah isn't a terribly uncommon name, but unlike say "John" its use is enough to suggest a connection.
It turns out Quakers followed a fairly rigid set of rules when it came to naming their kids. This was bound to break down as families fell away from quakerism, but it can help guide scholarship where parentage is in doubt: analyze the birth order of the children and their names for clues as to who their parents might be. Monmouth was a Quaker community, so Hankinses descended from them carried their names along with them for a time.
If three brothers did indeed come from Glasgow, reading just a few pages in this book suggests they would have come around 1740, and they would have first reached the northern Virginia area near the Potomac and Rappahannock Rivers, which was the American side of a Glasgow trade route for tobacco. An immediate departure for Carolina suggests perhaps absconding from indentured servanthood, which was apparently a frequent occurrence.


So for Carolina Hankins descendents (I'm refraining from saying Dennis Hankins-1129 descendants because we may have more than Dennis in the picture) the question remains open: arrival via Scotland through Virginia vs. an earlier arrival in NJ and then down to Carolina through Virginia.
I have been involved for over 10 years with the HANKINS surname project on familytreedna.com.  We have accomplished several things:

1) proven the large family tree of Thomas John Hankins, Jr.( using your name) born ca. 1702 New Jersey or New York, married Mary Clevenger 1728 in Burlington Monmouth N.J. migrated to Crooked Run, Frederick County, .Virginia in 1737/38, with closely associated surnames BRANSON, SHARP,  BORDON, and died in 1748 at Crooked Run.  

2) we have YDNA documented descendants from sons, Richard, John, William, and probably Joseph and David from our participants.

3) we have YDNA documented at least two unrelated HANKINS lines out of Virginia.

4) we have moderately good YDNA evidence of close relation of Richard Hankins and William Hankins both having wills published in 1748 in Middlesex County, N.J. as seen in HANKINS-HARRIS book by Sharon Harris of Delaware.  It is surmised that these three men(Thomas John, Jr., William and Richard)  are brothers or close cousins.

The HANKINS-HARRIS book was a very good source with high degree of aggrement with YDNA.

Jordan Henry Hankins, Omaha, Nebraska June, 2018

+4 votes

These are the things that make me suspect we have conflated profiles.

*His name is "Charles Richard Thomas Hankins".  These multiple first names among non-royalty are a usually a harbinger of trouble.

*All his kids' profiles are wonky.  Take a look at the family group sheet.  Wife Jean Jane has her first kid at 28, her last kid at 60, moving back and forth between New York, Virginia, and New Jersey.

*Based on the profile now, Richard Hankins of New Jersey was 98 when he died and had a living brother William aged 87, living nearby who served as administrator.  Who then is said tto be the same William Hankins who was so hearty at almost 90 years old he moves back to Virginia to die in Frederick County.

*William Hankins' of Virginia's biography references a FindAGrave profile for William Hankins who died in Virginia but that site is for a William Hankins born in 1662 in Yonkers, NY. 

We need to entertain the real possibility some of these facts belong to different people.  Are there any sources connecting the same set of Hankins to New York and New Jersey and Virginia?  What about the immigrant with all the first names?  

From my point of view, the only thing known for sure so far is what's in the abstract of the will. 
*Richard Hankins of Middlesex County, NJ had a brother William, both living in 1742. 
*Richard's widow asked William to serve as administrator of the estate; William signed a bond to administer the estate 7 days after his brother writes his will.  We can assume he was living nearby and not in Virginia.

If we can agree this set of brothers is different from the Yonkers/Virginia group, let's at least change the death place and location of Richard Hankins and make a new Richard.

Thank you for your feedback.

by H Husted G2G6 Mach 6 (68.8k points)
edited by H Husted
Sometimes a given set of individuals will also be reflected numerous times over on familysearch in various people's trees. Some will be better-sourced and researched than others. Are we sure that we are reflecting the best information that can be found over there (anId elsewhere on more siloed sites like Ancestry and MyHeritage)?

I've untangled a few situations with conflicting information, or at least determined that a given date was out of the range and had to be changed. Until someone finds a key document or the DNA comes in, my Hankins line ends in Carolina and can't be connected to Virginia and on to New Jersey.
Yonkers just jumped out .... Michael Schell answered me in this thread and mentioned Mary Clevenger's parents were from Yonkers.

I disagree. I Do believe that the New Jersey/Virginia-Thomas1702-1748 tree IS related to the Richard and William Hankins whose wills are probated in 1740's in Middlesex County, NJ.    One witness is listed on one of the wills as a Mr. Barent.  I have seen that name nowhere else and believe it is a misspelling of the name PARENT, which is a YDNA-documented related line from one of our member YDNA-documented Thomas Hankins' particiipants close relation.

Jordan Hankins July 2018
Jordan, it's possible they are related, no doubt.  There's just no documentary evidence to support a relationship at this time.
+2 votes
As I had stated before, Thomas John Hankins, Jr. (Hankins-59) who married Mary Clevenger,  both were born, raised and married in  Burlington, New Jersey.    Most of their children were born there also.   They did  move to Virginia.  He died there in 1748.

Thomas, Jr. & Mary's son, William appears on the Frederick County Rent Rolls in 1759 (an early Va. Census Index)  this William married Elizabeth Jane Sharpe, he died at Frederick County, Va in 1782.

All of these people had numerous children that later spread out over the entire country, so to say that " The Hankins Family of New Jersey is CONFLATED with the Hankins' of Virginia is a gross error."   The Hankins' of New Jersey are also connected with the Hankins' of Pennsylvania and Kentucky and Tennessee.  I suggest you all  keep digging!

Evelyn McKelvey (Murray-2307)
by Evelyn McKelvey G2G6 Mach 1 (16.1k points)
+3 votes
I believe the surname Hankins has just appeared for the first time in this rather specialized database:  http://www.colonial-settlers-md-va.us/getperson.php?personID=I063098&tree=Tree1

In any case the record shows a June 11 edit date.

It's just a single entry, but these researchers are working from a lengthy list of old books, so we can expect them to eventually get around to some entries that will answer some important questions.
by Mark Hankins G2G1 (1.5k points)

Mike Marshall evidently runs that site. He replied to me and said: 


only Hankins in the Northern Neck were near Fredericksburg VA (Overwharton Parish, Stafford County, Virginia)


Hankins, Daniel   Daughter of Daniel and Hannah, born _____ 8, 1740 

Hankins, Margaret   Daughter of Daniel and Elizabeth, born February 6, 1743

Hawkins [sic Hankins], Sarah   Daughter of Daniel, born January 13, 1746  


So I guess that one won't be doing us much good. BTW, I graduated from UVa but did *not* know what the "northern neck" is. I had it confused with the Eastern Shore (which is a noncontiguous spit of land that descends from the DelMarVa peninsula and is nonetheless part of Virginia).

The Northern Neck is actually the three counties on the other side of that sound and it's a really miniscule part of Virginia. 

+2 votes
I want to let G2G and all Wikitreers  know that contrary to my previous writings, I no longer believe that Charles Richard Thomas Hankins is a real person, but fictious, made up as a composite of 3 other real  RICHARD HANKINS:

(1)  Richard Hankins arrived in Virginia in 1652 as an indentured servant for 10 yrs. to Richard Coleman. Born possibly in 1610, he would  be 42 yrs old, an old man for the time......  Further info on this man has not been found.

and  49 yrs later .........

(2)  Capt.  Richard Hankins  appears in a listing of British Sailing Ships dated 1701 -1703 in support of Capt. Edward Whitaker as Commander of ships riding at anchor at Riquotem Road.  Richard was the Captain of the ship HARRISS which is believed to have been  captured by Pirates.  There is no further record of Capt. Richard Hankins or his ship Harriss.

and ......  31 yrs after Richard (1)......

(3)  Richard Hankinson, son of Jean Jane Roderick Hankinson.  This Richard was b. 1676 at Isle of Wight, England and brought to  Perth Amboy,  New Jersey with his mother and 2 brothers in March 1683....they were all indentured servants to Thomas Warne for which they received acreage.

 Somehow, the 10 Ancestry Family trees  shown have determined that he died on 18 Jun 1700 in Aiken County, South Carolina, with no other information or source.

I have also learned that many HANKINS are also known as HANKINSON, this shows on comparison of profiles and records.  Could this be the 3 young men who were supposed to have come from Scotland?

YOUR COMMENTS on my theory will be appreciated.

Evelyn McKelvey (Murray-2307)
by Evelyn McKelvey G2G6 Mach 1 (16.1k points)
So assuming everyone who has him die in Carolina is correct, the youngest Richard is in the right place to father Hankins-1129, except he either dies too soon or we have a bad birth date for the son. The other explanation would be an intervening undocumented (or very poorly-documented--David?) generation (or the Richard dying in Carolina is the son of one of the original three--in which case we don't have his birthdate and the date of death may be likewise unreliable).
Be patient, Mark, please do not assume anything,  that just causes more confusion.   Experts at G2G are working with me to sort this all out, we just need to give them time.

A poster over on Ancestry suggests he moved to South Carolina, built a plantation and did indeed pass away there:

+2 votes
I've exhausted all sources I could locate, created profiles, connected profiles, and added content to many members of the New Jersey Hankinsons. 
I disconnected Hankins-59 from Thomas Hankinson the immigrant, and wrote the following on his profile.

There is no evidence that Thomas Hankins of Burlington County, NJ and Virginia was the son of Thomas Hankinson of Monmouth County, New Jersey. Thomas Hankinson did have a son Thomas, but his profile is represented by Hankinson-236. Thomas Hankinson married twice and died in Monmouth County in 1783.

Additionally, there is no evidence Thomas Hankinson Sr. had any sons that moved to Virginia Colony. Some stories have that his brother Richard Hankinson immigrated to Virginia, but they provide no sources. It's possible the Thomas Hankins of this profile is a son of Richard but there is no evidence of this either.

The major source for this family, This Old Monmouth of Ours, mentions only one Hankinson that immigrated to Virginia: another Richard, son of Robert Hankinson, who was born about 1740. Quote from This Old Monmouth "Richard (18), who is said to have removed to Virginia and had a large family of girls."[1] 


As Mark, Jordan, and others have pointed out, there are many Hankinsons and Hankins in Virginia and South Carolina.  It's exciting there is an active DNA project, hopefully there will be more connections made over time.

by H Husted G2G6 Mach 6 (68.8k points)
A huge thank you to Heather for all her hard work and time spent untangling and sourcing these profiles. You are very much appreciated Heather!!
Good going, Heather. Anything that reduces ambiguity, confusion amd duplication moves the ball down the field.
Thank you Heather for all the research you have done,  I attempted to send you a "Generous Wkitreerer Badge"  but it seems you already have them all.   Your hard work is greatly appreciated.

Evelyn McKelvey

0 votes
I have the beginning of a theory that may explain the Hankinson/Hankins confusion in New Jersey and elsewhere. It seems apparent to me that some folks with the surname Hankinson have family trees that include folks that others' family trees show as Hankins. And not wanting to think anyone was nuts, or messing up the geneological record  on purpose, I needed a reason for that. I think I've found it in the Monmouth rebellion.

The arrival of the three Hankinson brothers and their mother in New Jersey in 1683 is the key for me. Hankinson-466 is one of those brothers, and his given name is the one said to be Hankins-1129's father on the trees that have a father for him over on Familysearch. But those trees try to link him to the husband of Clevenger, and that union takes place too late to be his parents. Meanwhile, it's hard to find a Thomas Hankins that works. But Thomas Hankinson-466 works.

My thought is that they were dropped off in a safe place (Monmouth--which was not where the rebellion happened but likely did have a connection, perhaps being set up by the plotter or his kin) in anticipation of the rebellion and that in some cases they shortened their names later, perhaps to try to avoid blowback from the rebellion's failure in 1685. This might also be the reason for multiple conflicting versions of their origins. There was definitely a claim to have Irish origins, but we also know there were later claims of Glasgow, neither of which are born out by family being in either of those places.

So why don't we find a Hankins or Hankinson among the list of those punished? This was a seafaring family. I think his role was limited to transport from Holland to Britain. Whether he fell victim to a sinking, or otherwise died during a crossing or in exile someplace, it's simply lost to history at the moment

Sanity check: am I nuts?
by Anonymous Hankins G2G5 (5.2k points)
edited by Anonymous Hankins
The Monmouth hypothesis is pretty much a dead letter. I'm leaving it here just as a memorialization of some thinking that was being batted around.
0 votes
I've provisionally linked Richard Hankinson-467 as the father of Hankins-1129. My reason for doing so is that he is poorly documented and he went to South Carolina, like his nephew who is copiously documented and some of whose children shortened to Hankins. Richard's offspring, some of whom are now coming into focus also used Hankerson. The reasons for the surname changes are unclear. All of these individuals fit fairly neatly with respect to a trio of family legends, one of which was provided by slaves. They are:

A Hankins leaving South Carolina supposedly in shame over not having avenged a brother personally killed by British officer (not General at the time) Tarleton (the actual reason for departure may have more to do with the ruinous depression that followed American independence). https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Hankins-203

Three brothers arriving from Glasgow (The Three Hankinson brothers, Richard, Thomas and Peter, said to arrive from Ireland. Perhaps Glasgow was a port of departure).

A slave narrative that WIlliam Hankins (likely Hankinson-466's son William Hankinson-472, who was definitely in Carolina) was the "brother" of Dennis Hankins (cousin's good enough for me--I don't think planters explained their family trees to slaves).

Richard would have thus been the vanguard of the Hankinson/Hankins/Hankerson lines in SC.

by Anonymous Hankins G2G5 (5.2k points)
edited by Anonymous Hankins
Please do not add relationships or change data fields to Hankinson-467. I have not seen a source that he moved to the Carolinas or that he had any children whatsoever. If there is a primary or secondary source, please let us know. There is misinformation and conflation for these families on Ancestry, message boards, and on Wikitree.
The ancestry.co.uk discussion above has the description of Hankinson-467's SC plantation. Hankinsom, SC does exist near Augusta, GA (which is close to the SC line).
For purposes of clarification, it appears Hankins-1178 and Hankins-1242 were the brothers in the slave narrative, which would mean that Hankins-1129 and Hankinson-472 need not have been brothers. However it stands to reason that they were, as Richard Hankinson-467 would likely have taken his two sons with him to Carolina, or more likely Hankins-1129 was born there, since we have a record that Hankinson-472 was born in New Jersey.
Also the "Rosetta Stone" for the Hankinson/Hankins shortening is the fact that the geneology for Hankinson references Mary Evelmam/Evilman while a Hankins Bible also references her as well as a Hankins with Evelmam/Evilman as a middle name. The Clevenger name is also in that same genology, mangled as "Cleminger."
Hankinson-507 (Richard Hankinson II) nails down that Richard Hankinson-467 (or his issue) made it down to SC.
What would have drawn Richard Hankinson to Aiken, SC? Well, it was being heavily promoted in a cunning plan to put settlers between the established residents of SC and the Indians and Spanish...

+1 vote
by Anonymous Hankins G2G5 (5.2k points)

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