DNA Mysteries

Here are the mysteries we are investigating so far with Y-Chromosome DNA testing.

To answer these questions, we need several Pitcock/Pidcock derived surname males per question to guard against unsuspected anomalies like lost generations in the genealogical record, adoption, and erroneous paternity. Please spread the word. If you select the Y-25 test, your DNA results may help solve more than one of these puzzles.

Financial sponsorship, no matter how small, can help underwrite the cost of kits for individuals who qualify genetically and have a willingness to participate but lack the discretionary funds. You can direct your contributions as incentives to help find individuals needed to answer specific mysteries by clicking here.

1. Are all Pidcocks/Pitcocks and families with similarly derived surnames related?

Minimal Test:  12 marker Y DNA kit
Results: No
Commentary: So far we have:
2 DNA pattern from the 2 Pidcocks, born in England, who has been tested.
In North America we find 3 distinct DNA patterns, indicating all together 4 totally unrelated Pitcock/Pidcock families.
No DNA information from Pidcocks born in other parts of the world.

2. Are Derbyshire Pidcocks of Anglo-Saxon descent ?

Minimal Test:  12 marker Y DNA suggests Haplogroup (“tribe” in the most ancient sense)
Results: Yes… but Nottinghamshire Pidcocks are of Celt descent!
Commentary: All Pidcocks tested so far, EXCEPT those descended from Nottinghamshire ancestors, are of haplogroup ‘I’ as expected for a family of Anglo-Saxons descent.
All Pidcocks tested so far descended from Nottinghamshire ancestors, are of haplogroup ‘R1b’ as expected for a family of Celt descent.This means, based on DNA alone, a Pidcock/Pitcock can learn where his ancestor was living when surnames were established.

3. Are the 3 clusters of Pidcocks in Derbyshire, England: the Darley Dale/Bakewell cluster, the Matlock cluster and the Ashbourne/Wirksworth cluster related?

Minimal Test:  25 marker Y DNA kit
Results: ?
Commentary:This is a key question. We desperately need several Pidcocks from each group. So far, we have 1 Pidcock from the Darley Dale/Bakewell cluster.

4. Did John Pidcock, who married the widow Mary Mee (nee Bradley) at Ratcliffe-on-Soar, Nottingham on 17th November 1701 belong to the Derbyshire Pidcocks?

Minimal Test:  12 marker Y DNA kit, may choose to upgrade to 25 later
Results: No
Commentary: Besides the need for Derbyshire Pidcocks, mentioned in question # 3, We need Pidcock descendants of this John Pidcock, Nottingham Pidcocks who remained in England.

5. Is the oral tradition that the Bucks Co. PA, Pidcock line is of Scots-Irish ancestry correct?

Minimal Test:  25 marker Y DNA
Results: ?
Commentary: We need Pidcock descendants whose pedigree traces back to an ancestor who lived in Ireland and or Scotland prior to 1679.
Part of Ireland has been under English rule since 1541 when Henry VIII tried to control the Irish, so there could have been Pidcocks sent there and given land any time after that date.
– During the Civil War (1642-8) a Thomas Pidcock acted as a messenger of the Committee of Two Kingdoms (Puritan Parliament during the Interregnum). He made 45 trips from London to Puritan armies of Cromwell and others in the field, 1642-4. Cromwell confiscated land in County Meath, Ireland and gave it to English who had served him, apparently sometimes in lieu of paying wages when he was short of funds. This Thomas Pidcock is the ONLY Pidcock Dr. John A. Talmadge traced in Ireland after looking at 20 volumes of state papers of England 1640-60. However the abstract (all that remained after the Dublin castle fire) of Thomas Pidcock’s will does not indicate John Pidcock as an heir.
The only connection, so far discovered, between Pidcocks and Scotland is that
from 1813 onward, many Pidcocks of this branch are active in the Presbyterian Church (which was started in Scotland).

6. Are Pitcocks and Pidcocks who trace their roots to early 18th century Pennsylvania related?

Minimal Test:  may choose to upgrade to 25 later
Results: No, but Pitcocks may descend from William Pidcock who arrived 1679 Burlington NJ on the Friends Adventure.

7. John Pidcock, who settled along the Delaware in Buck Co, PA before 1680, does not appear on any ship passenger lists. Was he a mariner who returned temporarily to England in 1684 to settle his affairs ?

Minimal Test:  25 marker Y DNA kit
Results: ?
Commentary: We have 3 descendants of John Pidcock, the Bucks Co. PA settler. We need descendants of Thomas and/or Samuel Pidcock brothers of John Pidcock, mariner, from St. Maty Islington Parish, Middlesex Co. England

8. At the turn of the 17th century Jonathan, Emanuel, Benjamin, Robert and William Pidcock lived along the Delaware in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Are these men related?

Minimal Test:  25 marker Y DNA kit
Results: Emanuel & Jonathan & William appear unrelated.
Commentary: We have 3 descendants of this John Pidcock.
Robert’s line disappeared without a trace and Benjamin left only female descendants.
We need descendants of Emanuel (Pidcock & Pidcoe lines) and William (Piddocks & Descendants of Horatio Pidcock).

9. Jonathan Pidcock (1729-1812) married Ankey. Was Ankey a Lenape Indian or was Ankey his wife’s maiden name?

Minimal Test:  mitochondrial DNA kit
Results: DNA results reveal she was European
Commentary: Jonathan Pidcock had two daughters, Phoebe (b. 10/8/1759), who married a Kitchen and Charity (b. ~ 1760) who married a Pittinger.
We hope to find one or more WOMEN who can trace their unbroken MATRILINEAL line to either of these women.
‘Early Settlers of Solebury, Pa (p.70)’ by Eastburn Reeder mentions Wm. Penn granted a 300 acre tract of land to Spike Anke. The deed was dated Ap. 4th 1683, recorded in book 3 page 319. Spike sold the land to Rainer Jansen 09-05-1687.
So Spike was a neighbor, who could have had a daughter ….

10. John Pidcock emigrated to Ohio in 1812 when he was 15 years old. Did he emigrate with his older brother Gilbert ?

Minimal Test:  25 marker Y DNA kit, may choose to upgrade to 37 later
Results: ?
Commentary: ‘John Pidcock born Dec. 18, 1797, Wirksworth, Derbyshire’ may refer to a John Pidcock born 11 February 1797 at Ashlehay, Derbyshire, christened 16 April 1797 at Wirksworth, Derbyshire, son of William Pidcock and Anne (Howard/Heyward) of ‘Doveswood Farm’, Ashleyhay, Wirksworth.John emigrated to Ohio in 1812 when he would be only 15 years old. John had an older brother Gilbert (shown in the registers as both Pidcock and Pitcock) who, after losing two sons and his wife (buried 18 July 1812), left his young daughter with relatives and emigrated. The Register of Deaths for Savannah, Georgia records that ‘Gilbert Pitcock, a Native of England – seaman – died of yellow fever in Yamacraw on October 07, 1819.’ Another brother, William Pidcock, inherited the farm and was actually buried in the cemetery in Doncaster, where he died on a visit to a daughter.To solve this mystery, we need descendants of John Pidcock who emigrated to Ohio and William Pidcock remained in England.

11. Did the ancestors of William Hazelgrove Pidcock (1832-1906) of Mansfield, Nottinghamshire derive somehow from the Derbyshire area where more Pidcocks are prevalent ? We seek male Pidcock descendents of William Hazelgrove Pidcock’s uncle, William Pidcock (1789-1825) who married Anne Burton in 1813 at Mansfield to take the test.

Minimal Test:  12 marker Y DNA kit, may choose to upgrade to 25 later
Results: Probably not
Commentary: William Hazelgrove Pidcock’s descendants belong to haplogroup ‘R1b1’. To solve this mystery, we need Pidcock descendants from Nottingham, England who do not descend through William Hazelgrove Pidcock to confirm that they too are of haplogroup ‘R1b’. As in mysteries #2, we also need more Derbyshire Pidcocks to understand the full range of Pidcock/Pitcock DNA patterns.

12. William Hazelgrove Pidcock (1832-1906) had 4 wives and 33 children. Were they all his?

Minimal Test:  25 marker Y DNA kit, may choose to upgrade to 37 later
Results: Yes, so far male descendents of 3 of the 4 wives have tested and match.
Commentary: 4 of William Hazelgrove Pidcock’s sons married and thus provide potential lines for testing. Descendants from 3 different sons have been tested. Their genetic distancce is 0-1

13. Are Yorkshire & Lancashire Pidcocks related to Derbyshire Pidcocks?

Minimal Test:  25 marker Y DNA kit, may choose to upgrade to 37 later
Results: ?
Commentary: The biggest concentration of Pidcocks now seems to be in Yorkshire and Lancashire. This is probably because of coal mining, with collieries opening up first in Nottinghamshire and then further north in Yorkshire.

14. Can we recognize different migrations of our family & trace their paths across the North American and Australian continents?

Minimal Test:  25 marker Y DNA kit, may choose to upgrade to 37 later
Results: ?
Commentary:So far all migration routes are on the North American continent

15. Your personal family puzzle.

Minimal Test:  12 marker Y DNA kit to identify your Pitcock/Pidcock family; 25 markers to determine the probability of a common ancestor within genealogical time frame; may choose to upgrade to 37 later
Results: ?
Commentary: Even if you can only trace your ancestry to your parents or grandparents, your DNA may match one of the patterns currently identified, giving you genealogical clues as well as revealing your ancient heritage.

16. Could Anthony Pidcock, bachelor, who died in 1658 at sea on the “John and Thomas” been enroute to Pennsylvania and been accompanied by Bucks Co. PA settler, John Pidcock or his father?

Minimal Test:  12 marker Y DNA kit to identify your Pitcock/Pidcock family
Results: ?
Commentary: Anyone with a pedigree connected with Anthony Pidcock’s parents, could help with this mystery by seeing if they match Pennsylvania Pidcocks or Pitcocks

17. Could the first Pidcock in England have been a Flemish Wool Merchant living in the late 13th century?

Minimal Test:  Flemish descent with any surname and 25 marker DNA matching any Pidcock/Pitcock DNA pattern.
Results: ?
Commentary: Surnames were not universal in 1298-1301, identifying a wool merchant as Peter’s son was sufficient.
Peter may have had brothers who remained on the continent. Finding a match with a Continental
family of Flemish ancestry, might indicate when and why our family came to England.

18. Were the three earliest Darley Dale Pidcocks mentioned in the Parrish records: Henry married 1541, John married 1558, and Anthony married ~ 1562, related?

Minimal Test:   12 markers would confirm the family, 25 markers would help trace it
Results: ?
Commentary: We have 1 descendent of Henry in our study. We seek descendents of John, married 1558 and Anthony, married ~1562.
Ideally we need at least two descendents from each, to recognize erroneous results due to ‘undocumented conceptions’.

19. From which son of Jonathan Pidcock (grandson of the 1680s PA trader) does Donald C. Pidcock Jr. descend?

Minimal Test:   37 markers
Results: Phillip, determined by DNA and traditional genealogical research
Commentary:Genealogical evidence revealed that Donald descends from Philip Pidcock through a branch with whom the family had lost touch. It therefore makes sense that his DNA is very similar to other descendants of Jonathan Pidcock but does not carry the mutations found in descendants of Philip’s brothers.

20. How does Gary Lee Johnson from North Carolina fit in with the Pidcock line ?

Minimal Test:   Descendant Charles Moe has tested extensively -contact administrator for specific tests
Results: ?
Commentary: Charles Moe’s closest genetic matches are with Bucks Co. PA Pidcocks. No matches are close enough to indicate paternity.
Gary Lee Johnson came from NC, so he wonders about a Pidcock connection from the south. If others upgrade to 67 markers, he can see the Pidcock pattern.

Submit additional Pidcock / Pitcock and similar surnames mysteries to the group administrator for listing on this page.