A COX DNA MATCH

We have obtained our first match for our particular Cox Y-chromosome DNA. The match is with a descendant of an Ephraim Cox who settled in Rowan County, North Carolina by 1753, through Ephraimís son Moses Cox. There are three things that can be said about this, at this point: (1) it is certain that the members of the Ephraim Cox family are our distant cousins, (2) it is highly likely that both families descend from Peter Larsson Cock, the Swede who settled along the Delaware River in 1641, and (3) it is unclear exactly how we descend from Peter Larsson Cock. Still, this is a major step forward, as there had not previously been any clear indication as to which Cox family we belonged.

The marker by marker comparison for descendants of Joseph, James and Moses Cox (sons of John) and Ephraim Cox is shown below:

 

393

390

19

391

385a

385b

426

388

439

389-1

392

389-2

Joseph

14

23

14

11

11

12

11

12

11

14

14

30

James

14

23

14

11

11

12

11

12

11

14

14

30

Moses

14

23

14

11

11

12

11

12

11

14

14

30

Ephraim

14

23

14

11

11

12

11

12

11

14

14

30

 

458

459a

459b

455

454

447

437

448

449

464a

464b

464c

464d

16

10

10

11

12

25

14

19

28

14

14

15

15

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

16

10

10

11

12

25

14

19

29

14

14

15

15


As is evident from the chart, all four testees match exactly for the first 12 markers. Only the Joseph and Ephraim descendants have been tested to 25 markers (a test upgrade for James is pending). There is a 24/25 match at that level. If no other information were known, that level of match would suggest about a 50% likelihood of a common ancestor within 7 generations and about a 90% chance of a common ancestor within 16 generations. As 16 generations represents about 500 years, there is very little doubt that we derive from the same family as the Ephraim Cox descendants.

Nancy Kiser, who arranged for the Ephraim Cox descendant to be tested, identifies her Ephraim as the same Ephraim who was baptized in Chester County, Pennsylvania in 1705, a son of Gabriel Peterson Cock and grandson of the Swedish immigrant, Peter Larsson Cock. Dr. Peter Stebbins Craig, the leading expert on the settlers of New Sweden on the Delaware, concurs in that identification. The evidence is circumstantial, but very likely. Ephraim Cox disappears from New Jersey at about the same time that an Ephraim Cox appears in Rowan County. The Ephraim Cox of Rowan County seems to have had sons named Moses, Israel, Ephraim and possibly Isaac, which were all names associated with the family of the New Jersey Ephraim. A number of New Jersey settlers from Swedish and Finnish families went to Rowan County, at least some of whom Ephraim seems to have associated with. A 19th Century newspaper article by an Ephraim descendant indicates that Ephraim came to North Carolina from New Jersey. If it is correct that Ephraim descended from Peter Larsson Cock, then we surely did also. Just the fact that our type of sequence belongs to the N haplogroup points toward a Scandinavian background, as that haplogroup was far more prevalent among Finns and Swedes than it was in the British Isles. An additional proven descendant of Peter Larsson Cock is currently being sought for a corroborative test.

Identifying our line of descent from Peter Larsson Cock will take further research. Peter had five sons, although the best candidates for our line of descent are through his son Gabriel Petersson Cock/Cox. For background on both the Peter and Gabriel families, refer to Bud Thomasís articles in issues 19 and 21 of the Cox Newsletter.   See also the account of Peter Larsson Cock (Cox) by Dr. Peter Stebbins Craig.

In 1956, Rosalie Fellows Bailey, a noted genealogist hired by Narcissa (Cox) Vanderlip, suggested the potential relevance of the family of an Ezekiel Cox, son of David Cox and grandson of Gabriel Cox. This family included an Abraham Cox (the name given as Johnís father by his granddaughter, Mary (Cox) Freeland), who settled in West Virginia, although this Abraham was about the same age as John, and could not have been his father. Internet listings of Ezekielís family by various genealogists mention ten children, none of them named John. Ezekiel Cox had a brother Joseph, who is an attractive candidate to be our ancestor, in that our John Cox named his eldest son Joseph. However, Internet data provides no information about Joseph, other than his apparent birthdate of 1735.

Traditional genealogical research in conventional records will be necessary to attempt to confirm our line of descent, but at least we have, for the first time, evidence as to which Cox family we belong.


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Bill Utermohlen, 1916 Windsor Road, Alexandria, VA 22307;