Thursday, April 5, 2012


My Native American Connection

The Sizemore family has had a long, colorful history that has become part of our national fabric. The name is found as early as the 1500’s in England as, probably, Jewish merchants who came to the Colonies as landowners. They fought in every war from the Revolutionary War onward. Some were heroes and at least one may have been hung as a Tory (British sympathizer) during that war. That’s a story for another day.

They mixed with the Native American tribes of Shawnee and Cherokee and probably Creek. They helped members of the Cherokee nation escape the terrible Trail of Tears and they blended into the white American society. They refused to sign the original rolls of recognized tribes for different reasons. Not the least of which was to save the land and property they controlled at that time. 

Because of this, they were denied their rights and government money that were owed to them and then went out and started their own band, the infamous Whitetop Laural Band of Cherokee. 

As with any search into genealogy, we find discrepancies in dates and places, names and nicknames. The people who wrote these stories and records were only human and could only do the best they could with the information they had at the time.

You probably noticed different names being used for the same person or that the first female Native American to join the family is referred to as Shawnee and then as Cherokee from different sources. Such is the nature of historical records. 

However, the Sizemore family is one of the most researched and documented families I have worked with in my short history as family genealogist. There is a wealth of information out there for anyone willing to search but, for starters, you can check out the sources at the end of this piece. These, along with several books and websites on the different tribes are enough to keep one busy for quite a while. 

The question I can hear you asking is “How much of that is part of us?”

We know that most Sizemore descendants (who have been tested) have been found to have the Y chromosome haplogroup Q which is distinctly Native American. Further, we know that the family is a mixture of NA tribes as well as European groups. The family has been debating for years about whether they should join the group that goes by the designation of Me’tis or Melungeon. I will leave that decision to you.

Our closest ancestor that I have found from this line is Rebecca Jane Sizemore who married Thomas Munsey Cooke, my 2nd Great-grandfather.

 A group of families left North Carolina which included Sizemore’s, Greens, and possibly Rose and Atkins (all names in our family tree) and moved to Wyoming County in Virginia which later became West Virginia.

I have a copy of the 1860 Census for that county that shows my 3rd ggrandmother Mary Green and her family in the same household as 9 members of the Sizemore family including Edward and Owen. The next three houses down the road are also Sizemore families.

My wife says you have to look no farther than the pictures of my Grandfathers – Green and French – to see the resemblance of NA traits. We have Indian blood, there is little doubt but, how much? We are pretty far removed from the pioneer families that had a high percentage of Indian blood. 

However, in the next two weeks or so I should receive that very information from the Family Finder DNA test I recently submitted. I hope we won’t be disappointed.

Until then, rest in the knowledge that the blood that flows through your veins has been passed down from many different families - heroes, statesmen, warriors, preachers, farmers and patriots. We are the people - the very fabric - that made this country the greatest nation the planet has ever known.

--, S. J. ( 2003, September). My Sizemore Family History . Retrieved March 8, 2012, from Adams and Sizemore Family History Website:

 Catalogue, F. T. (2009, March 26). Eastern Cherokee Applications of the U.S. Court of Claims, 1906-1909. Retrieved Mar 31, 2012, from Fold Three:

Dawes Act. (n.d.). Retrieved April 1, 2012, from

DeGidio, W. W. (1999, Nov 6). Hall Family of Rhode Island - Virginia. Retrieved Mar 26, 2012, from

History of Women in the United States. (n.d.). Retrieved Mar 27, 2012 , from

History, N. G. (n.d.). Treat of New Echota. Retrieved March 8, 2012, from

Indians-201-Native-American-Marriage. (2011). Retrieved March 8, 2012, from

Nationl Park Service, Department of the Interior. (n.d.). Retrieved Mar 30, 2012, from Trail of Tears: . (n.d.). Retrieved March 22, 2012, from Historic Jamestowne:

Powell, K. (2002, Jan 10 ). THE METIS HERITAGE of the Sizemore family. Retrieved March 31, 2012, from

Sizemore. (n.d.). Retrieved Mar 27, 2012, from

Sizemore family crest. (2009). Retrieved March 9, 2012, from House of Names:

Surname history. (n.d.). Retrieved March 22, 2012, from Sizemore DNA Project:

Surname History. (n.d.). Retrieved Mar 28, 2012, from Sizemore DNA Project:

The Metis Heritage of the Sizemore Family. (2001 , September). Retrieved March 9, 2012 , from The Multi-racial Activist:

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