Yanking The LONG New Hampshire DNA Chain

The use of DNA studies as part of surname projects are quickly becoming the method of choice to resolve genealogical roadblocks.  One fairly new project, the Long Surname DNA Project, is of special interest to me (and possibly to you also).

New England traditionally has seen a plethora of LONG families who immigrated from Europe in the 1600s and 1700s.  PIERCE LONG removed from Limerick Ireland to Portsmouth New Hampshire in 1730. His granddaughter Mary “Polly” Long was the first wife of the famed Col. Tobias Lear, private secretary and friend of General then President George Washington.

Several other LONG families include those of Robert Long of Charlestown MA (1636), Joseph Long(e) of Dorchester MA (1636), Deacon Robert Long of Newbury MA (1637), and Richard Long of Newbury & Salisbury MA (1659). There were indeed twelve different identifiable LONG families who settled in New England before 1700.

To say that most of these families were prolific would be an understatement. That so many of them used the common first names of John, Joseph, Robert, Samuel, et al, and that often times two or more families lived in close proximity complicates genealogical research. When searching online databases and newspapers, the name LONG is not only a surname but such a common word (as in “long distance,” and “long time”) that thousands of unrelated “hits” produce results that are often quite tedious to sort through.

I state from experience that research into these early New England LONG families was difficult and time consuming at best. In addition to these families who settled in New England, there are countless other seemingly unrelated LONG families who can be found in Tennessee, Maryland, Virginia, and Pennsylvania.  These appear to also be of European origin, some from England, Ireland and at least one family from Germany.  Perhaps some day DNA studies will show which of these LONG families are related to each other.

My most recent LONG ancestor (who used that surname) was Minnie Almira Long.

Minnie Long and spouse Charles Kilborn, probably a wedding photograph.

She was born 16 March 1866 in Boscawen or Concord NH and died 27 September 1890 in Webster NH.  On 6 September 1882 in Webster NH she married Charles Albert Kilborn [photograph of this couple shown above] They were a farm family of modest means. Minnie died at the young age of 22, leaving her surviving daughter Mattie to be raised by her husband’s second wife.

Minnie Almira Long’s parents were Moses Edwin & Almira (Runnels) Long.

Moses Edwin Long.

Moses E. Long  [photograph shown above] was born 6 April 1837 in Amesbury MA and died 15 March 1890 in the “Mast Yard” section of Concord New Hampshire. He had married 20 Oct 1859 Almira Runnels, who was a descendant of two ancient and notable families–the Runnels [Reynolds] and Abbott lines of New England.

Fortunately I was able to obtain documents and proof of Moses Long’s ancestry.  He was the 7th generation from Deacon Robert-1 Long of Newbury MA, (via Moses Edwin-7, Nathan-6, Nathan-5, Nathan-4, Benjamin-3, Abiel-2, Robert-1). He was a cousin to the famed American explorer and surveyor, Stephen Harriman-6 Long.

DNA Studies can be helpful in other ways.  In Portsmouth NH DNA is being used to determine the African origin of slaves, whose remains were discovered in 2003 during routine sewer repairs. Special DNA ancestry services now exist to help you learn more specifically about Native American ancestry.

Curious about whether your surname has a current DNA Study or Project?  I’ve provided some resources below.  This article was written as a submission for the 35th Edition of the Carnival of Genealogy, being hosted by Blaine Bettinger at “The Genetic Genealogist.”


**DNA Surname Studies of New Hampshire (and other) Families**

Cindy’s List: Surname DNA Studies and Projects
also use the search engine on this web site to find more.

DNA Project Surname List (Alpha)

Berry Family DNA Project (Rye, NH)

-Thomas Edgerly Family DNA Project (NH, New England)-

Hill Family (NH, and other locations)

-Long Surname DNA Project (NH and other locations)-

-Pearsall Family of New Hampshire (NH and other locations)-

-Perkins family of Hampton New Hampshire-

Presbury/Presby family of Bradford & Old Chester (Auburn) NH

Rasey (Joseph of Worcester MA > Cheshire Co NH)

-Smith (Families of New England, Et Al)-

-Sweet Family of New Hampshire-


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