Lewis Name Study

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Surnames/tags: Lewis Lewes Lewys
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How to Participate

Please contact the Study's coordinator Michael Lewis or post a comment at the foot of the page. If you have any questions, just ask. Thanks!


This is a One Name Study to collect together in one place everything about the LEWIS surname and the variants of that name, LEWES and LEWYS. My hope is that other researchers will join this study to help make it a valuable reference point for people studying lines that cross or intersect.

Task List

  • Determine different LEWIS lines in the United States and Canada.
  • Research their European origins.
  • Create new profiles for all LEWIS family members.
  • Capture orphaned LEWIS profiles and bring them into the study.

Lewis Lines


  • Lewisiana - The Lewis Letter [1]

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Comments: 25

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Hi, for those interested in the lineage of John Lewis of Bellefonte, Augusta, Virginia (1678-1762) and his wife Margaret Lynn (1693-1773) and their descendants, I have compiled a report that brings together available information from WikiTree and elsewhere.

The report's coverage is extensive, reaching 732 pages and covering four generations: the starting couple, 6 children (and a possible seventh), 42 grandchildren, and 237 great-grandchilden. (And in many instances the names of the great-great-grandchildren are listed with their parents).

Further details regarding the report can be found at the WikiSpace John Lewis (the Pioneer) and Margaret Lynn and descendants, including the table of contents and information on how to download the full report (it is around 80MB, too big to host on WikiTree).

posted by Jeff Lewis
A New Netherland Lewis line to add: Thomas Lewis (1628-1684)
posted by Mark Weinheimer
Hello. I'm doing research on my husband's family (Lewis), and have traced his line back to 1770 with the birth of his ggg grandfather Andrew Lewis. Unfortunately, I've hit a major brick wall trying to determine Andrew's parentage, or anything else about the man. What I know is this: Andrew Lewis, 1770-1850; born in either Nobleboro or Boothbay, Maine; married Martha (Patsy) Chapman; and died in Palermo, Maine. I've tried tying him to all the better known Lewis lineages, but can't make any connections. This is definitely a 'lost' Lewis line that needs to be included in your research. Any help would be greatly appreciated. June Lewis
posted by Michael Lewis
Hello My name is Ruby Lewis, I am researching my G Grandfather David Lewis, born North Carolina, died in Leslie County Kentucky. Thanks
posted by Ruby Lewis
Welcome Ruby!

I'll be adding a "North Carolina/South Carolina/Georgia Lewis line soon. Do you have a birth date and town for your Grandfather?

posted by Michael Lewis
Hello my name is Adrianna Lewis and I would like to know how to search just north carolina for my results?
posted by [Living Lewis]
Hello Adrianna:

You can search for a surname in a particular location. In the upper right hand menu, under "Find", click on "Search. That takes you to a form where you can enter a name and birth or death location. This will narrow down your search from 35,000 Lewises, to 1700 Lewises from North Carolina. You should be able to sort through that list to find your ancestors.

posted by Michael Lewis
edited by Michael Lewis
Hi Michael and others:

I am curious whether you have any insights or clues on how another early Lewis lineage is connected into the ones you have identified. My interest is in John Lewis, the "Pioneer", (Lewis-440) born on 1 February 1677/8 in County Donegal, Ireland and died on 1 February 1762 in Augusta County, Virginia. According to some sources, his parents reportedly were French Huguenots who left France for Ireland, but the evidence trail for this is limited, the identify/lineage of his line further back somewhat muddled, both here on WikiTree and in the broader literature. If he is connected to any of the lines you have identified, then it must be further back, and I don't see any likely candidates. Would welcome any suggestions. Thanks, Jeff

posted by Jeff Lewis
Hello Jeff:

The world is replete with John Lewises. Unfortunately, there is no evidence of the birth place of this John Lewis of Virginia, nor evidence that the John Lewis of Ireland was the same person as the John Lewis buried in Bellefont Virginia.

British emigration records often did not include where a person came from, where they were going and where they ended up. Unless there are written records of an immigrant of his or her origins, it's almost impossible to determine where and when they were born.

It's very possible that this John Lewis lineage is connected to other Lewis lineages in the Olde Country, and it's possible DNA research will help us tease out those older relationships, but so far we just don't know.

posted by Michael Lewis
Hi Michael

Thanks very much for the reply, and yes, the world is replete with John Lewises!

Perhaps my enquiry was misconstrued. We in fact know a great deal (and of course are still ignorant about even more) regarding "my" John Lewis -- we know where he came from, when he arrived, when his family arrived, where he settled, what his children did, where he was buried, etc. There are myths and puzzles (as his profile explains) but a lot of stuff that is verified and proven. [See, for example, Frazier, Irvin; Cowell, Mark W. Jr.; and Fisher, Lewis F. (1985). The Family of John Lewis, Pioneer. Fisher Publications, Inc., San Antonio, TX. 1985.]

I guess my question was really whether he and his lineage was worthy of another "Lewis Line" entry because of its distinctiveness and prominence, or whether you had evidence that it might be part of one of the existing lines that you have already identified. As I noted in my first post, I do not see any obvious linkages to the lines you have, based on my reading of his ancestry and the other lines you show, but I thought it worth asking.

If there is no (obvious) link, is it worth adding him as another Line? [It is not clear what criteria are used to create each of the Lewis lines you have so I am not sure how bold this suggestion might seem]. If this is a bridge too far, not a problem.

Thanks again for responding, Jeff

posted by Jeff Lewis
Hello Jeff:

I've added John Lewis to the list of Lewis lineages.

Since there is no documentation of his date or place of birth, I've included an approximate birth date and place of his earliest records.

I'm sure all of our Lewis lines have myriad legends about their origin, mine included. However, it is rare to find primary documentation (ship's passengers lists, birth, marriage, immigration or emigration) connecting Lewis lines in the United States with ancestors in Great Britain or elsewhere before the 18th Century.

While there are wonderful, intriguing legends of John Lewis's origin there is no documentation to back them up. Perhaps some day they will be found and the origin data entered in Lewis-440 can be verified.

posted by Michael Lewis
M Smith

I would like to join the Lewis Group. My Great Grandmother was Rose Ann McGowan and her mother was Jane Baker

posted by [deleted]
I've created a research area for the Lewis Name Study for Lewis Name Study: Y Haplogroup I-L1272. We currently believe that there are 7 Y-DNA tested Lewis men (plus hundreds more untested Lewis men) who fall under this haplogroup. The ancestral connections between the men are unclear - but they indicate a paternal Lewis line going back to SE England to at least the 1500s.
posted by Kevin Ireland
edited by Kevin Ireland
Hi Kevin:

Good work! This sounds interesting, but the link to the study doesn't seem to have formatted. Can you redo it so it is clickable?

posted by Michael Lewis
Should work now. Let me know if it doesn't.
posted by Kevin Ireland
Michael Lewis, I want to create a new Space for the Lewis Study that goes beyond my known line. My first cousin, M Lewis, is FTDNA kit# 890293. He has five Y-DNA matches, all surname Lewis, but he's the only Big Y-tested member (Big Y-700) of FTDNA Lewis group I2#7.3.

Although we know that all of us share a common Lewis ancestor, it's not clear yet who that common ancestor is (at least on my family's side). For this reason, we don't really fit into your current naming structure of Lewis lines for the Lewis ONS. My goal with the space is to collect additional information about these 6+ Y-DNA matching Lewis lines.

Do you have any preference as to how I name the new Space? I was thinking something like Lewis_I2_73. Once I have your approval, I can either add the space as one of the "Lewis Lines," or as a new section to the study called something like "Research Interests." Thoughts?

We have a detailed Lewis genealogy for my family that goes back to the 1500s in Kent, but the sections between 1500s and early 1700s aren't considered DNA-confirmed yet: "A LEWIS GENEALOGY: Being the Record of 12 Generations in America of the Lewis Direct Lineage from John Lewis I of Bossenden-in-Blean, Kent, England" by Percy Williams Lewis, 1969. Some of the information contradicts other Lewis claims (as is often the case with early Lewis histories).

I'm happy to share the genealogy with Lewis researchers, but it includes detailed information about living people - so I'm not comfortable sharing it publicly on WikiTree.

posted by Kevin Ireland
My name is Natasha Lewis, and I would like to participate in this Lewis Name Study. I am myself a Lewis, I born in Shrewsbury, Shropshire, England, UK in 1989, and I'm currently living in SW United States. I would love to know more about the Lewis name and find possible family connections! My tree is very new and a work in progress, but if any of it can be of use to anyone, I'll gladly share/help however I can.
posted by Natasha Lewis
My grandfather was John Charles "Jack" Lewis born in South Africa in 1889. His father was Edgar Lewis who married Aletta Barkly in South Africa. He was thought to have come from New York originally. He had 5 children in South Africa. After that he allegedly eloped with "one of the Johannesburg Jeppe daughters" and was thought to have returned to New York with her. He later sent Aletta ship passage tickets for her and 5 children to join him in New York. She refused to board the ship at the last minute and remained in South Africa. He is our dead end - is anyone able to assist please?
posted by Trevor Thompson
edited by Trevor Thompson

I would like to join the "Lewis Project" and would be grateful for any information.

My great-grandfather was John William Lewis aka "Capt'n John" born Dec 1867 in Wilkes County North Carolina. Our more recent family group would like to create a booklet of our family genealogy.

Thank you in advance for any information or direction on our path. Best, Dan

posted by Daniel Smith
Hello Daniel: You've joined the project by contributing your information about your Lewis line. You can look through the lines above and see if any of them lead to your Captain John Lewis.

Have you done a DNA test? That will help us tease out these lines as well.


posted by Michael Lewis
I'm most interested in the history of the Lewises living in Wantage, Sussex Co., NJ around 1865.

My paternal-line great grandfather Noah Cortright was the bastard son of an unknown Lewis, but triangulation of multiple DNA lines show his paternal grandfather most likely to be Peter Lewis (Lewis-38690) of Wantage. In the course of tracing present day DNA matches I have enough data to add profiles for the many descendant lines of said Peter Lewis, which I will make an extra effort to do now...

posted by Joe Murray
Hello Joe:

In my database, I have a Peter Lewis, born in 1791 in Somerset County, NJ, son of Jacob Lewis and Mary Brabant of Basking Ridge, Somerset County, just 50 miles from Wantage. If this Peter is not your Peter, it's likely that they are related, and would therefore be in the Edmond Lewes of Lynn, Massachusetts line.

I'll look in my sources for a connection.


posted by Michael Lewis
Hi Michael,

Any clue / help is appreciated!

My Peter is very likely born ~1805 based on seven agreeing census accounts, so probably not that 1791 Peter, but maybe related somehow. My earliest record likely to be my Peter is in Frankford, Sussex Co, NY in the 1840 census (link below.)

Sussex Co. Historical Society has a couple of Lewis lines published (links also below) but none include my Peter.

- Joe

1840 Census: https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:33S7-9YY5-W4X?i=22&cc=1786457&personaUrl=%2Fark%3A%2F61903%2F1%3A1%3AXHYW-XSG

Northern NJ Lewises: http://www.sussexhistory.org/annals/family-outlines-sussex/lewis-family-northern-nj/

Sussex Co. Lewises: http://www.sussexhistory.org/annals/family-outlines-sussex/lewis-families-sussex-county-nj/

posted by Joe Murray
I am from a Lewis family I would like to become involved in your Lewis Project. My Lewis ancestors were

John Lewis 1669– BIRTH 30 NOV 1669 • Chemokins, New Kent, Virginia, USA and Elizabeth Warner m cousin 1690 1672–1719 BIRTH 24 NOVEMBER 1672 • Warner Hall, Gloucester, Virginia, United States DEATH 1719 they were my 7th great grandparents

posted by Wendy Browne
Hello Wendy:

Your lines follows within the of John Lewis of Breconshire, Wales (1594-1657) "Warner Hall, Virginia" line, a line that is well documented, though not completely established in Wales.

posted by Michael Lewis