upload image

McCool Name Study - Townsend Ontario Line

Privacy Level: Open (White)
Date: [unknown] [unknown]
Location: [unknown]
Surnames/tags: McCool McMillan Scotland
Profile manager: Kevin Ireland private message [send private message]
This page has been accessed 144 times.

This is one of several research areas of the McCool Name Study.

The Townsend Ontario McCool line includes all descendants of Archibald McCool (abt.1740-1780), who died (along with his eldest son) at the Battle of Charleston fighting on the side of the British. His remaining children and his widow moved from Orange Co NC to Townsend, Norfolk County, Ontario in 1794.

Archibald and his wife are believed to have well over 1,000 living descendants today. We're currently tracking more than 150 apparent descendants who have tested on AncestryDNA. Many of them each match on AncestryDNA to 70+ other Archibald McCool descendants.


Y-DNA Haplogroup: R-FGC11674

Initial Big Y-700 results from our single Y-DNA test from this line, FTDNA kit# 893868, arrived on 2 Feb 2021.

The existing test comes from a great-grandson of Joseph Lewis McCool (1810-1888). Although we don't yet know the final terminal SNP on this McCool line, we know he distantly matches [at genetic distance (GD) 9 and 10 at Y-111] to eight men named McMillan (various spelling variants).

With his Big Y results in, we see he currently matches to 46 Big-Y tested men. 40 of the 46 men have reported the surname of their earliest-known paternal ancestor; none is McCool. 27 of the 40 men report that their earliest-known ancestor's surname was some variant of McMillan. This doesn't mean that this McCool line descends from Clan McMillan. However, he shares a direct paternal line ancestor with many McMillans - probably prior to surname standardization.

Eupedia gives a great description of the U106 branch of R1b at https://eupedia.com/europe/Haplogroup_R1b_Y-DNA.shtml.

Additional Y-DNA Confirmation Needed

Archibald's oldest son died in the Battle of Charleston as a teenager, presumably with no children. We currently believe that the line of his second son, William, may have "daughtered out" (meaning there are no living male-line McCool descendants of William to take a Y-DNA test). However, we continue to work to find a male McCool on William's line.

If William has no male McCool descendants, then our only place to get a second McCool Y-DNA test for this line is from a descendant of Joseph McCool (abt.1776-abt.1851). That new Y-DNA test should come from a son of Joseph who doesn't descend from Joseph Lewis McCool (1810-1888) (the source of our current Y-DNA test). It would be sufficient to have a Y-37 test, but a Big Y-700 test would be ideal.


All of Archibald's children removed from North Carolina to Ontario with their mother after his death - where they all lived out the remainder of their lives. Several of his grandchildren and many of his great-grandchildren moved back to the states in the mid-1850s, usually to Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, and Ohio.

Today, his descendants are spread across America and Canada - although a number remain in the Townsend, Ontario area.

Allied Families

Walker: Three of Archibald's children married three children of William Walker UE (1744-1819). Many descendants of all three Walker/McCool lines match to each other on AncestryDNA, supporting their genealogy paper trails.

Ireland surname: Two of Archibald's great-granddaughters married two sons of Robert Ireland Jr (abt.1809-1863).

Hight: Two of Archibald's great-grandchildren married two Hights. This information isn't yet included in WikiTree.

WikiTree Profiles

We are just getting started on porting known information about this line to WikiTree. Only a fraction of it is currently available here, but more will come in 2021.

Early Roots - Speculation

Due to naming conventions, our line was always thought to be part of the Toberhead McCool Line. In that line, the eldest child is named after his grandfather. We assumed that "our" Archibald was the grandson of Archibald McCool (abt.1685-abt.1740).

Based on very limited Y-DNA testing, we currently believe our line is unrelated to the Toberhead line - at least on the direct paternal line. That conclusion may change with additional Y-DNA tests.

One speculative possibility (with no evidence other than the naming convention) is that our Archibald was born to an unwed daughter of the Toberhead Archibald. His theoretical mother might have named him after her theoretical father. However, we've now learned that many Big Y matches to this line descend from one or more Archibald McMillan ancestors.

Based on Y-DNA testing, it's almost certain that the roots of this paternal line are Scot-Irish - and likely that the line has resided in the British Isles for more than 2,500 years.

  • Login to edit this profile and add images.
  • Private Messages: Send a private message to the Profile Manager. (Best when privacy is an issue.)
  • Public Comments: Login to post. (Best for messages specifically directed to those editing this profile. Limit 20 per day.)

Leave a message for others who see this profile.
There are no comments yet.
Login to post a comment.