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Ephraim Guffey Jr. (1740 - 1805)

Ephraim Guffey Jr. aka Maguffe
Born in Pittsylvania, Virginiamap
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married about 1762 in Virginiamap [uncertain]
Descendants descendants
Died at about age 65 in Jackson County, Alabama, United Statesmap
Problems/Questions Profile manager: Elaine Goodner private message [send private message]
Profile last modified | Created 20 Jul 2009
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U.S. Southern Colonies Project logo
Ephraim Guffey Jr. was a Virginia colonist.

Ephraim was born in 1740 in Pittsylvania, Virginia. He was the son of Ephraim Guffey and Lucy.[1]

Ephraim was in a tax record in 1799 in Cumberland, Kentucky[2]

Ephraim died in 1805 and was buried in Davis Chapel Cemetery, Alpha, Clinton County, Kentucky, United States.[1] The Memorial Stone was placed by Guffey family members. The Memorial stone was unveiled Saturday, August 9, 2003. The exact burial location is not known. It has also been noted that their burial may have been in the Guffey Cemetery.

History of Surname
The name "GUFFEY" has its origins in Scottish antiquity where it evolved from the name which was first spelled Phee and Fie. The patronymic designator "Mac" is used in Scotland to designate "son of," so Phee and Fie next became "MacFie". As years passed, the name began to be pronounced different ways and spelled "MacPhee", "MacFie" and "MacAfie" among others. (Repeat the names aloud and listen to their sound). The spelling of names was not generally a family preference but depended upon the whim of the recorder who wrote it for civic or ecclesiastic purposes. To create the GUFFEY Line, MacAphee or MacAfie easily became recorded as MacGuffie, as well as other spellings in other lines. (Americans tend to pronounce quite differently than Scots. Today we say "mack-guffey", they pronounce it "ma-guffey").
The Clan MacFie which inhabited basically the isle of Colonsay just off the west coast of Scotland became over run and dispossessed of its lands on Colonsay ca. 1623. At that time the MacGuffies scattered to various locations. Some went to Ireland, some went south to England, and others merely settled on the mainland of Scotland. The name, however, has its origins in Scotland.
Please bear in mind that our ancestors generally were illiterate, and the spelling of their name really didn't matter to them since they couldn't tell one spelling from the other. Recorders attempted to record names phonetically, hence the wide variety of spellings in different localities.
Arrival on the North American continent in the mid-1600s found recorders spelling our name Maguffie, Maguffe, Meguffey, Maguffey and later McGuffie and McGuffey. As the family with this name moved into the frontier lands of Pennsylvania, Virginia, Kentucky and Tennessee, the patronymic designator "Mc" was dropped to make our name appear more "Anglicized", and Guffy, Guffee and Guffey began to be used.[3]
Guffey Brothers in Virginia (Research)

This information was posted by Joe Guffey. It was excerpted from Rootsweb Message Board for surname Guffey. There is additional explanation that may be accessible when the web site is restored.

"The brothers, who were born in Virginia and had lived in Wayne and Clinton Counties, Kentucky, Morgan County, Tennessee, and Putnam County, Missouri, were the sons of Ephraim McGUFFEY/GUFFEY, Junr. and his wife, Nancy (nee unknown), who had lived in Pittsylvania, Patrick and Henry Counties, Virginia."
"GUFFEY researchers need to be aware when dealing with the name of Ephraim Guffey in Wayne County, KY that there were several of them. Wayne & Clinton Counties, KY is the area to which many present-day GUFFEYs can trace our roots. The oldest known Ephraim GUFFEY (I'll identify as "elder") in Wayne County had migrated there in the late 1790s and came from and had lived in Pittsylvania, Patrick and Henry Counties, VA--the property was on the same location, it simply came to be in different counties as those counties were created. The elder Ephraim GUFFEY was b. ca. 1740, and relocated to Wayne County, KY. (late 1790s) as an elderly man with his wife, Nancy, and their children, many of whom were adults at the time (see list below). The oldest son of the elder Ephraim and his wife, Nancy, was also named Ephraim, and he was b. 1765, and he married Sarah Denny. Of the elder Ephraim GUFFEY b. ca.1740, we find this IMPORTANT record dated 1802 in the Wayne County Court House Order Book A 1801-1822, page 32"
"Ephraim Guffey, Jr. and his negro man Sam are exempted from the payment of County levies in future on account of age and Infirmity."
"He was exempted because of age and infirmity--that doesn't identify the conditions of his son, Ephraim Guffey b. 1765 who would have been only about 37 years old in 1802. It definitely refers to the father, the elder Ephraim b. ca. 1740. The father, the elder Ephraim, called himself Junr. and was recorded as such at times as reflected above, apparently because his father was Ephraim, too. The son, Ephraim b. 1765, had married Sarah "Sally" DENNY."[4]
"Further, an IMPORTANT record for one of the elder Ephraim's children was recorded in the adjoining Clinton County, KY Vital Records as photocopied by Latter Day Saints on micro film roll #216.821. We find
"18 Mar 1852 Rich'd Guffey 76 male b. Virginia parents: E. & Nancy Guffey.[5]
"Guffey researchers are typically in agreement that at least the following were siblings, and we now know that Ephraim and Nancy Guffey were their parents, (Some dates appear to conflict with other dates found. This posting doesn't claim that these below are necessarily the correct dates.)"
  1. Anne Guffey. b. Mar 1, 1758. d. 1849. mrd. Yelverton Peyton.
  2. Alexander Guffey 1759-?
  3. Ephraim Guffey b. Sept 20, 1765. d. Feb 15, 1843. mrd. Sarah "Sally" Denny.
  4. Mourning Guffey b. ca. 1768. d. ca. 1804. mrd. John Davis.
  5. John Guffey 1770-1834
  6. Henry "Hal" Guffey b. 1771. d. Jan 22, 1874. mrd. Elizabeth "Betsy" Adams.
  7. Phoebe Guffey b. abt. 1775. d. 1852-60. mrd. Gabriel H. Choate.
  8. Richard Guffey b. 1782. d. Mar 18, 1853. mrd. Phoebe Adams.
  9. Constantine Guffey b. 1780. d. 1860-70. not mrd.
  10. William Guffey b. 1786. d. Oct 7, l866. mrd. Elizabeth Willis.
"In view of the above item regarding Richard GUFFEY's death and parents' names, it is assumed, rightly or wrongly, that if Richard's parents were Ephraim GUFFEY, Junr. and his wife, Nancy, that the other GUFFEY brothers share the same parents. Those brothers had lived in Wayne and Clinton Cos., KY. and then they all moved to Morgan Co., TN. and from there they separated and one went to Putnam Co., MO. (Henry "Hal" GUFFEY b. ca. 1766-71); one returned to Clinton Co., KY (Richard GUFFEY b. 1782 identified above) and two remained in Morgan Co., TN. (William GUFFEY b. 1786 and brother, Constantine GUFFEY b. ca. 1780 who lived his last 30 years in the household of William). The above-named Henry "Hal" GUFFEY and Richard GUFFEY married ADAMS sisters, Elizabeth and Phoebe, respectively. They were the daughters of Joshua ADAMS and Phebe EASLEY ADAMS."
"Because the elder Ephraim b. ca. 1740 was recorded in VA. with the name "McGUFFEY" and dropped the patronymic designator when he relocated in Wayne Co., KY, I have frequently recorded his name as "Ephraim McGUFFEY/GUFFEY, Junr.""Elaine Walling-681 16
35, 17 June 2023 (UTC)

Research Notes

  • Looking for evidence that Nancy, who married Ephraim Guffey, was born Nancy Stockton. Jerry J. Stockton, August 10, 2021.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Burial: "U.S., Find a Grave® Index, 1600s-Current," database, Find a Grave. Find a Grave®.; URL: Find A Grave: Memorial #203214545, Ancestry Record 60525 #167630842 (accessed 10 June 2023), Ephraim McGuffy/Guffey burial (died in 1805) in Davis Chapel Cemetery, Alpha, Clinton County, Kentucky, United States of America.
  2. Tax: "Kentucky, U.S., Tax Lists, 1799-1801," database with images, Clift, G. Glenn. Second Census of Kentucky, 1800. Baltimore, MD, USA: Genealogical Publishing Co., 2005, Ancestry Sharing Link - Ancestry Record 3720 #11248 (accessed 13 June 2023), Name: Ephraim Guffey; Residence County: Cumberland; Residence Year: 1799.
  3. Origin of Name McGuffey & Guffey​
  4. Marriage: "Kentucky, U.S., County Marriage Records, 1783-1965," database with images, Marriage Records. Kentucky Marriages. Madison County Courthouse, Richmond, Kentucky, Ancestry Sharing Link - Ancestry Record 61372 #2314979 (accessed 13 June 2023), Ephraim Guffee marriage to Salley Denny on 20 Jul 1803 in Wayne, Kentucky, USA.
  5. Death: "Kentucky, U.S., Death Records, 1852-1965," database with images, Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives; Frankfort, Kentucky, Ancestry Sharing Link - Ancestry Record 1222 #1362793 (accessed 13 June 2023), Richd Guffey death 18 Mar 1853 (age 76), son of E Guffey & Nancy Guffey, in Clinton, Kentucky, USA.


  • dmmc72040.FTW Date of Import: Aug 25, 2004

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DNA Connections
It may be possible to confirm family relationships with Ephraim by comparing test results with other carriers of his Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA. However, there are no known yDNA or mtDNA test-takers in his direct paternal or maternal line. It is likely that these autosomal DNA test-takers will share some percentage of DNA with Ephraim:

Have you taken a DNA test? If so, login to add it. If not, see our friends at Ancestry DNA.

Comments: 8

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The changes log show you added a photo to this profile, but it only shows the name of the photo in the changes log. Are you going to the images tab at the top of the profile to add the photo? I don't understand the first sentence in the biography. The rest of the profile looks pretty good. I would probably remove some of the research notes lines that show items that were found since the notes were put on the profile.
posted by Karen (Rollet) Lorenz
Thank you for getting back to me so quick. Did you look at the draft as I have not save changes? I was trying to delete the photo as it is not that person. I could not find a delete button.

Thanks again

Maguffey-4 and Guffey-3 appear to represent the same person because: I agree with Vicky Parrott
Sorry, that would be Guffey-3.
posted on Maguffey-4 (merged) by Vicky (Trublood) Parrott
Thanks. Initiated a merge. Now we wait for other PM.
posted on Maguffey-4 (merged) by Elaine (Walling) Goodner
I belive that these two profiles are actually one person. Does anyone else agree with me. Please merge if you do.

Thanks, Vicky

posted on Maguffey-4 (merged) by Vicky (Trublood) Parrott
I'm all up for merging but who is the other profile? I only see Maguffey-4


posted on Maguffey-4 (merged) by Elaine (Walling) Goodner
Guffey-1007 and Guffey-3 appear to represent the same person because: biography on -1007 matches data on -3
posted by Robin Lee