Go to the home page...


About the Project
How It Works
What We Must Do
How We Will Proceed
Who to Contact
Some Brantley Lines of Particular Interest
Progress Report (Dec 5, 2006)

About the Project (top)

In 2004, we initiated a DNA project on the Brantley family. To date, we have had 125 persons participate in the project by either being tested themselves or sponsoring a cousin in the test. The test results, so far, have proven to be an invaluable too in clarifying the different lines.  We have even proved the true DNA surname of John Brantley (d1785) of Nash County, N.C. He was the descendant through the “Buffalow” family. The testing, originally only a 12 marker test, now has expanded from 12 to 25 to 37 to 67, and 111 Y-DNA markers. A 37 marker test is the biggest bang for the buck. It can give significant detail on the probable line from which you descend from Edward down to recent generations. The Y-DNA, like the surname, in most cases, follows the male lines. For a man descending from the family be qualified for the Y-DNA test for that family, he must be a male, born through the unbroken line of males in the Brantley family, thus, unless an adoption, so will his surname be the same.  

How It Works (top)

The value of the overall testing is based on the number of participants.  Some people have asked; how did you get the DNA from Joshua Brantley who has been dead for over 150 years. We do not have to go to the grave of Joshua to get his DNA. All we have to do is get the DNA from a proven descendant of Joshua, such as Sid Brantley of St. Louis, MO. Since he has descended from Joshua, by a father to son line directly, his DNA markers read near exactly the same as Joshua’s would. Understand that the value of the program is dependent on participants.  If a Brantley male took part in the DNA testing program and did not know his lineage and the results matched Sid for 37 markers, we would know that he too was a likely descendant of Joshua, or at least Joshua’s father. 

What We Can Do (top)

While several lines have been adequately tested, most need additional participants. I want to encourage Brantley descendants to participate in the program. We need to further pen down the various lines back to Edward. I have concluded that:

  1. We need to make known (to association members and other Brantleys we meet) the Brantley DNA project and the need for participation

  2. We need to decrease the expense of participation for member who cannot spare the money to have a DNA analysis done.

    Here is one example: One of the first participants was member, Barbara O’Nan, who is a descendant of Kentucky James Brantley . Since she was a female, she recruited her Brantley brother to be tested. As a result, we now have the DNA results of this James Brantley for 37 markers. Were she and her brother the only benefactors of the test? NO: Every descendant of KY James benefits.  We have 44 families who are members of the association alone who descend from Kentucky James. This does not include the close kindred of these; the cousins, siblings, aunts, uncles and the father. Had all these joined in the cost, each would have paid less than a dollar to have the benefit of these results instead of Barbara and her brother bearing the entire $249 cost in 2005. Today, the test for 37 markers is only $119. For the record, know that all members of the association and, in fact, all descendants of Edward Brantly, to one degree or another, benefit from the knowledge of his DNA results. If you want to go further, there are those yet unborn who will benefit


How to Proceed (top)

  1. First, I would like members to become recruiters of participants.  That is, unless your line has already been thoroughly tested, go among your family members, and collectively sponsor a qualified male Brantley for the DNA test.  One volunteer perhaps should spearhead the project. It would not take too many to reduce the cost to only a small portion of the cost, again, for which all will benefit.

  2. In the case where Brantley males who qualify for the test on a line are unknown, they should coordinate with the Association to help identify them.

  3. There is, still, a small DNA fund held in abeyance for unidentified lines.  One example is for the testing of a qualified descendant of Brittain Brantley, a revolutionary war soldier who died in the Battle of Briar Creek, in Georgia. Whether of the adopted line (John) or not, we know he was of the lineage, blood or adopted, of James and Ruth Brantley, the apparent adopted parents of John. We are not sure whether he was a son of John, or James. The DNA test results should answer that question. I have identified two descendants, but am unable to solicit either for the test, although we agreed to pay for it.

I am hopeful that additional members will take part in the effort and forward this to their Brantley relatives who they can locate.  While much has been learned from DNA testing, this whole elephant can be eaten if we all just join forces. Remember, it is not just beneficial to you and your kindred now, but for Brantley descendants who will follow in generations to come.  Please do not put this aside.  Become active in the project now. If you would like to initiate a project on your line, let me know as I can advise whether one is already started. In any case, be sure to have the results go also to the Brantley Association DNA project. There we can compare with the many test results already submitted.


Who to Contact  (top)

Family Tree DNA is the company that is currently running our project.
You may call them, in person, at 713-868-1438
The most up to date pricing can be found here.

Please know that although we promote the testing and may be responsible for many participants to the Brantley DNA project, we do not receive one dime in any way from the DNA research company. If you have questions or concerns please contact me here.

Some Brantley Lines of Particular Interest (top)

Robert Edward Brantley (b 1842) of AL , LA, and California
Young B. Brantley (b 1816) of NC, TN, MO, and Arkansas
Zachariah Brantley (b 1814) of NC & Georgia:  Married Eliza Kersey
Roscoe Brantley (b 1887) of Ark and Washington State
Charles Brantley (b 1745) of VA, NC, and Montgomery Co, TN
Calvin Morris Brantley (b 1839)  of Washington Co GA and FL
Brittain Brantley (b abt 1740) of VA and NC – or Wyatt Brantley
Dr William Theophilus Brantley (b 1787) of Chatham Co NC
William T Brantley (b 1825) and Lucinda Davis of Walton Co GA
Reuben Brantley of Chatham Co, Georgia
Aaron Brantley ( b 1789) of Telfair Co, GA:  Married Nancy Rae
Abraham Brantley (b 1819) of Clinch Co, GA
John Brantley (b abt 1785) of Ga, AL and Holmes Co, MS; married Nancy Askew
William Brantley (b ca 1800) of GA, AL, & Mississippi; married Marinda Jolly.
Benjamin Brantley (b 1764) of NC of Hancock Co, GA
Eugene Hamilton Brantley (b 1853) of GA and Texas
Godwin Brantley (b abt 1788) of GA, LA and Texas
Francis (b 1807) or Joseph Brantley (1813) of Conecuh Co AL and Florida
Anthony (b 1798) or William Brantley (b 1796) of  SC and Florida
Newman Brantley (b ca 1818)  of Ga and FL