Sollenberger Name Study

Privacy Level: Open (White)
Date: [unknown] [unknown]
Location: [unknown]
Surnames/tags: Sullenberger Solenbarger Sollenberger
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About the Project

Unlike most surnames, all (most?) known Sollenberger descendants appear to have a common ancestor. This seems to extend to minor surname variations such as Sullenberger, Solenbarger, Sollberg, Zollberg, and others. This probably doesn't extend to more distant variations such as Shellenberger, Shallenberger, Snellenbeger, and so forth - but we do have multiple shared AncestryDNA matches from Sollenberger descendants to these lines. Presumably, the matches are on a non-Sollenberger line, but that's certainly a research area for our group.

We have strong mythology about Sollenberger ancestry going back to the early 1500s in Switzerland, northeast of Bern. Our single Sollenberger Big Y-700 DNA test in the world supports, but certainly doesn't prove, this theory. Perhaps the primary goal of this study is to explore this idea further.

Here is one theory of early Sollenberger descent, presented by Tom Sollenbarger. If anyone has further sourcing of this information, please comment.

Speculative Early Sollenberger Ancestors.

Sollenberger DNA Tests

Most American Sollenberger lines (all spelling variants) seem so far to be related. However, AncestryDNA tests can be misleading, as many Sollenberger lines lived in southeast Pennsylvania starting in the early 1700s (and may match through other aligned families).

As of March 2023, we know of only three Sollenberger Y-DNA Tests in the world; all of them match. It's believed, but not proven, that the three tested men descend from Ulrich Sollenberger. We currently believe that Ulrich had multiple brothers (and uncles); it would be great to get Y-DNA tests from some of their descendants.

How to Help

  • Please make sure that at least one member of the earliest living generation of your Sollenberger family has a Wiki Tree profile. Add a profile for their Sollenberger-line parent and grandparent so that researchers can connect them to known Sollenberger ancestors.
  • Encourage as many Sollenberger-line relatives as possible to test on AncestryDNA. Make sure they attach their AncestryDNA test results to an Ancestry tree (no subscription required). Tests by members of the oldest-living Sollenberger-line generation in your family are most needed (male or female, regardless of surname).
  • We need Big-Y 700 tests from more male Sollenbergers to better understand and confirm where different Sollenberger lines branched off from each other. This is most important for lines without existing Y-DNA tests.

To join the Sollenberger Name Study, first start out by browsing our current research pages to see if there is a specific study ongoing that fits your interests. If so, feel free to add your name to the Membership list below, post an introduction comment on the specific team page, and then dive right in!

If a research page does not yet exist for your particular area of interest, please contact the Name Study Coordinator: Kevin Ireland for assistance.

... ... ... is a member of the Sollenberger Name Study Project.

Once you are ready to go, you can also show your project affiliation with the ONS Member Sticker:


Research Pages

This section is under development. Please comment with your research interests and add linked research pages as part of our study.


Related Surnames and Surname Variants

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Comments: 6

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Hello I’m a Sollenberger and am inquiring about this name study. My father is interested as well. We would be happy to do DNA testing as well.
posted by Krista Sollenberger
Thanks, Krista. I've messaged you!
posted by Kevin Ireland
My father was Walter Curtis Sollenberger and his father was William T Sollenberger.

"Family legend has it" that 3 Sollenberger brothers came to America in the ship Victoria. One settled in PA, one went to OK and one ended up in GA after the Civil War. My ancestor supposedly met a farmers daughter while on guard duty for general Sherman when he burned Atlanta. Came back after the war to marry her. Take with a grain of salt.

Meyer Sollenberger

posted by Meyer Sollenberger
Cannot figure how to join this name study.

Meyer Sollenberger

posted by Meyer Sollenberger
Hey Meyer, you're in the project.

Dealing with this on WikiTree is brand new to me, so thanks for your patience. I'll be improving the descriptions and adding to explanations over the next week. For now, feel free to share information (but not about anyone living) here in the comments. We'll work things out as we go forward. Don't hesitate to private message me if needed.

I've been working on Sollenberger research extensively since about 2015. I have a large database of how Sollenbergers appear to be related to each other that I'll eventually migrate to WikiTree. Although the exact connections between certain groups of Sollenbergers are questionable, all of them (to this point) still seem to share a common ancestor.

Once I learn who your father's parents are, I'll message with you about how I think you're connected to the rest. Meanwhile, I'm adding more Sollenberger profiles from my family too.

posted by Kevin Ireland
edited by Kevin Ireland
Welcome to the brand new Sollenberger one-name study. I was raised by my Sollenberger step-father, and have been effectively conducting a one-name study on the line since 2016. I have a Sollenberger half-brother and four Sollenberger nieces and nephews.

At the start of this project, I'm aware of only one Sollenberger line in the world, but we'll no doubt discover some new branches.

posted by Kevin Ireland