Tag Archives: Arkansas

Autosomal DNA: Separating Two Pryor Lines

The kids are back in school and it’s time to get back to Pryor research.

Sometimes mixed up family lines help to solve each other. I recently was looking at the Ancestry DNA (autosomal) results for a test kit that matches one of my own. This tester is descended from the line of Allen L Pryor of Sumner County, TN through his son William. The interesting thing about William is that he married a woman who was the grand-daughter of a Pryor: Absolem Bostic Pryor born about 1797 in NC. 

My tester matches to my kit as approximately a 5th cousin which works out correctly on paper if Allen L Pryor is our common relative.  If we were related also through the line of Absolem Bostic Pryor, then this cousin who tested would have more Pryor DNA than expected.  

Surnames and geography don’t prove out a family tree. I’ve seen some sloppy Ancestry trees where people see a surname in a geographic area and wrongly assume that everyone using the name in their family tree must be related.  Or even when someone finds their ancestor in one state and wrongly assumes that someone living in another state can’t be related.

So, if the DNA doesn’t point to a connection between these two Pryor families and Absolem has been placed in family trees that stem from “North Carolina” Pryors that haven’t converged with the line that includes Allen L Pryor, then I’d have to suggest that unless there’s a story of an adoption or other story that can explain the DNA — these two lines aren’t related.

Pryor Inheritance Announced for Noble Descendants

When I came across this a news article of a Pryor inheritance; I thought of all the Pryors who hope to find their ancestry in Wales:

A Fortune for somebody. The Marquis of Cordoroy, a Welch nobleman, whose family in a direct line has become extinct by his decease; has left a large personal property, worth, it is said, seven millions sterling. The family name is Pryor. which has been modernized into Pry. Numerous descendants are in America, and they are called upon by the Crown-officer, who has charge of lapsing estates, through the columns of the London Times. There are branches through the female line, entitled to shares, of the names of Smith, Tompkins, and Shores; and the Crown-officer says if there are any persons in America, by these names, they will notify him of that fact, their address, residence, &c. &c.— Not time should be lost in making applications they ought by all means to telegraph.
Arkansas Intelligencer, May 4, 1848

My suspicious were aroused by the use of “welch” rather than “welsh”. I think this akin to the modern-day email offers from Nigerian princes, although not on such a grand scale. I’ve searched for this article in other newspapers from the time and there are no other reports. There is no such person as the Marquis of Cordoroy, nor is there a Marquis of Corduroy. There’s not even a place named Cordoroy/Coorduroy.

I think this was a spoof played upon one of the Pryors living in Van Buren, Crawford County, AR. Cornelius D Pryor (a son of Nicholas Ballow Pryor of Nashville, TN) had been one of the editors of the Arkansas Intelligencer from 1845 to 1847. Perhaps the story was aimed at him or one of his kin living in the area.

If anyone can find anything different, let me know — willing to reconsider this one!

Warren County, TN – 1822 Notice


I’m passing along this notice from the 8 May 1822 edition of the Nashville Whig. It may be of interest to researchers who are working on the the line of Scipio Pryor or Joseph Pryor who were possibly from Warren County, TN. I notice that some of the names are familiar to this line: Wilcher, Ewing, England. It’s been a few years since I wrote about Scipio (see post https://about-tn-lines/scipio-africanus-pryor-of-benton-co-ar-back-to-tn/)

1778: Pryors in Buckingham County, VA

The first Pryor I spotted was “David Pryer”. His signature is on a 1778 Inhabitants Legislative Petition in Buckingham County, VA. He’s on the same page with Anthony Dibrell. (2 of David Pryor’s grandaughters married Dibrells in AR).

Also on the same petition… Edward Prior. He’s on the same page with Peter Fore (Foree), John Garrott, William Flowers, Edmund Glover, Samuel Glover, Thomas Ballow. Is this the Edward Prior who went to GA? Not so sure. When Edward in GA signed his will in 1796 he made his mark with an “X”. Could he have been too old or sick to sign his name? Or are they completely different Edward Priors?

First Woman in AR Politics – Susie Newton Pryor

How about a pleasant political story about a Pryor from the past? Susie Newton married into the Pryor family and was known as the First Woman in AR Politics.”

Susie Newton Pryor (1900-1984)

Ms. Pryor was was born in Camden Arkansas, and married William Edgar Pryor in 1927. She was the mother of four children including U.S. Senator David Pryor. She was the first woman to run for elective office in Arkansas after women won the vote and one also one of the first women to hold a school board position. Ms. Pryor was the driving force behind the Camden Community House and the Ouachita County Historical Society. At the age of 56, she served as a missionary in British Guiana for six months. Ms. Pryor’s works in the community are remembered by the Arkansas Women’s History Institute Susie Pryor award, given each year for the best unpublished paper on women in Arkansas.
-Arkansas Women’s History Institute
(this link is no longer live: http://www.ualr.edu/arwomen/biographies.htm#P)

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