Y-DNA Test Results
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DNA Project Results
As of January 02, 2015

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By Warren Culpepper
DNA Project Manager and
Culpepper Connections Co-Publisher

Accomplishments to Date: From our testing, we have:

  1. Determined the Culpepper's Ancient Origin.

  2. Proven that 80% of American Culpeppers are related to each other through a common progenitor: Henry Culpepper of Lower Norfolk Co., VA (1633 - 1675+).

  3. Identified unique genetic signatures for:
    (a) each of the branches headed by Henry's two sons and five grandsons,
    (b) several American branches unrelated to Henry, and
    (c) a single unrelated International branch, with members in South Africa, Puerto Rico, Australia, India and Canada, all with the 2-p Culpeper spelling.

 

The Culpepper Haplotypes (Genetic Signatures). Combining our DNA knowledge with proven family relationships, here is the currently identified genetic and genealogical structure of the family.

  1. Henry Culpepper Sr., of Lower Norfolk Co., VA. The Primary American Branch is headed by Henry Culpepper (Sr.) of Lower Norfolk, the American Culpepper Progenitor. The set of DNA values assumed to have been found in Henry Sr. are referred to as the progenitor's haplotype. Henry had two sons, Henry Jr. and Robert:

    1. Henry Culpepper Jr., of Lower Norfolk Co., VA. Descendants of Henry Jr. appear to have the Culpepper progenitor haplotype. Henry Jr. had two sons, Henry III and Thomas.

      1. Henry Culpepper III of Norfolk Co., VA. Descendants of Henry III appear to continue with the Culpepper progenitor haplotype.

      2. Thomas Culpepper of Norfolk Co., VA. With descendants of Thomas, CDYb=38, not 37, and all other markers are the same as in the progenitor's haplotype.

        1. William Culpepper of Norfolk Co., VA. With descendants of William, DYS 712 = 24 or 25, not 23, and all other markers are the same as Thomas, William's father

    2. Robert Culpepper (Sr.) of Lower Norfolk. With Robert, all markers have the progenitor's values except DYS-442 = 13, not 12. Robert had three sons: Robert Jr., Joseph, and Benjamin.

      1. Robert Culpepper, Jr. of Lower Norfolk. With Robert Jr., all markers are the same as his father's haplotype.

        1. James Culpepper (Sr.) of Nash Co., NC, son of Robert Culpepper, Jr. With James, DYS 534 = 18, not 17, and all other markers are the same as Robert Culpepper Jr.

          1. Henry Culpepper of Chattahoochee Co., GA, son of Christopher Culpepper, son of James Culpepper of Nash. With Henry, DYS 385b = 14, not 15, while all other markers are the same as James Sr.

          2. James Culpepper, Jr., of Darlington Co., SC, son of James Culpepper of Nash Co., NC, and grandson of Robert Culpepper, Jr. With James Jr., DYS 439 = 12, not 11, while all other markers are the same as James Sr.

          3. Jeremiah Culpepper of Nash Co., NC, son of James Culpepper of Nash Co., NC, and grandson of Robert Culpepper, Jr. With Jeremiah, DYS-712=22, not 23, while all other markers are the same as James Sr.

        2. William Culpepper of Warren Co., GA, son of Robert Jr. With William DYS 481 = 23 or 24, not 25, while all other markers are the same as Robert Culpepper Jr.

          1. Emanuel Joseph Culpepper of Jackson Co., AL, son of William, son of Daniel, son of William of Warren. With Emanuel DYS 712 <> 23, while all other markers are the same as William of Warren

        3. Lemuel Culpepper of Jasper Co., Georgia. Lemuel is theorized to be the son of Joseph of Norfolk, son of Robert Culpepper, Jr. With Lemuel, DYS 534 = 16, not 17, while all other markers are the same as Robert Culpepper Jr.

      2. Joseph Culpepper of Edgecombe Co., NC. With Joseph, DYS 464d = 15, not 14, and all other markers are the same as Robert Culpepper Sr. Nearly half of all Culpeppers descend from Joseph.

        1. Joseph Culpepper of Morgan Co., GA, son of Joseph of Edgecombe. With Joseph of Morgan, DYS 714 = 22, not 21, while all other 111 markers are the same as Joseph of Edgecombe.

          1. Joseph Culpepper of Jackson Co., GA, son of Joseph of Morgan, son of Joseph of Edgecombe.  With Joseph of Jackson, DYS 710 = 32, not 33, and DYS 441 = 15, not 16, while all other 111 markers are the same as Joseph of Morgan.

        2. Benjamin Culpepper of Edgefield Dist., SC, son of Benjamin, son of Joseph of Edgecombe.  With Benjamin, DYS 442 =12 (the modal value), not 13 that was introduced by his great-grandfather, Robert Sr. All other markers are the same as Joseph.

          1. Andrew "Drury" Culpepper of Henry Co., AL, son of Benjamin of Edgefield. With Drury, CDYb = 38, not 37, while all other markers are the same as his father.

        3. David Sneads Culpepper of Dooly Co., GA, son of David of Laurens Co., GA, s/o John of Jones Co., GA, s/o John of Morgan Co., GA, s/o Joseph of Edgecombe. With David, CDYb = 36, not 37, while all other markers are the same as Joseph.

        4. Evan Alexander Culpepper, Sr. of Coryell Co., TX, son of Congressman John Culpepper of NC, son of Sampson of Wilkinson, son of Joseph of Edgecombe. With Evan, DYS 449 = 29, not 28, while all other markers are the same as Joseph.

      3. Benjamin Culpepper of Edgecombe Co., NC (Erasmus). With Benjamin, DYS 561 = 16, not 15, and all other markers are the same as Robert Culpepper Sr. In this branch, only Benjamin's son, Benjamin the Ferryman, and grandson, Erasmus, have living descendants, so this haplotype has been named Erasmus.

        1. Joseph E. Culpepper of Shannon Co., MO, son of Baalam, son of John of Nash Co., NC, son of Erasmus. With Joseph E. Culpepper (the progenitor of the Missouri Culpeppers), DYS 464a = 14, not 12, while all other markers are the same as Erasmus.

        2. Osborne Culpepper of Nash Co., NC, son of Erasmus. With Osborne, DYS 437 = 15, not 16, while all other markers are the same as Erasmus.

        3. Nathan Culpepper of Warren Co., GA, son of Erasmus. With Nathan, DYS-712=22, not 23, while all other markers are the same as Erasmus (this is a tentative identification requiring the confirmation from one additional test, kit #119333.)

          1. Elisha Culpepper of Talbot Co., GA, son of Nathan. With Elisha, DYS 447 = 22, not 23, while all other markers are the same as Nathan.

  1. Other American Branches. These branches were previously thought to descend from Henry Culpepper, but hidden paternity exists. One or more of these branches may be Henry Culpepper descendants through a Culpepper daughter, or they may be descendants of an orphaned child that a Culpepper family raised.

  1. Allison Culpepper of Webster Co., GA Branch (Haplogroup I1). Three descendants of Allison have been tested, and while neither is related to any other Culpepper, they are quite closely related to each other (67 out of 67 markers). Previously, Allison was thought to be a grandson of Joseph Culpepper of Edgecombe, and perhaps a son of John of Jones Co., GA, or of John's brother, Joseph of Morgan Co., GA. There is also a Jones who matches the Allison descendants on 65 of 67 markers.
     

  2. Joel Culpepper of Harris Co., GA Branch (Haplogroup R1b1b2). Three descendants of Joel Culpepper of Harris Co., GA (1798-1878) have been tested, and while none of them are related to any other Culpepper, they are closely related to each other. Joel had been believed to be a grandson of William Culpepper of Warren Co., GA, son of Robert Jr. However, the test results of descendants of William matches the other Culpeppers, so we know that Joel is not a descendant of William.

  3. John J. Culpepper of Jackson Co., FL Branch (Haplogroup R1b1b2). Two descendants of John J. have been tested, and while neither is related to any other Culpepper, they are quite closely related to each other (34 out of 37 markers). Previously, John J. was thought to be a son of John Jefferson Culpepper and his wife Catherine Bell. However, descendants of other children of John Jefferson Culpepper show a match to the Joseph Culpepper line. We now believe that John J. Culpepper and his sister Mary Ann Elizabeth Culpepper are most likely the children of Catherine Bell and a currently unidentified husband who preceded her marriage to John Jefferson Culpepper.
     

  4. Robert Campbell Culpepper of Louisiana Branch (Haplogroup R1b1b2). Two descendants of Robert Campbell Culpepper, Jr. have been tested, and while neither is related to any other Culpepper, they are quite closely related to each other (35 out of 37 markers). Previously, Robert Campbell Culpepper was thought to be a great-grandson of Joseph Mallory Culpepper of Houston Co., GA. Since we believe the historical research for this line to be quite accurate, we conclude that there is hidden paternity somewhere between Robert Campbell and Joseph Mallory. Testing of additional descendants will eventually reveal where.
     

  5. John Culpepper of Marion Co., MS Branch (Haplogroup R1b1b2). Three descendants of John Culpepper of Marion Co., MS have been tested, and while none is related to any other Culpepper, they are quite closely related to each other (37 out of 37 markers). Previously, John of Marion was thought to be the son of Rev. John Culpepper, Jr. of Hancock Co., MS, and Rev. John was thought to be the son of John Culpepper of Jones Co., GA. However, other descendants of John Culpepper of Jones show a match to the Joseph Culpepper line. So a paternity break occurred either with John of Marion or with his father, Rev. John. We think most likely that John of Marion was adopted by Rev. John.

  1. International Branch (Haplogroup I2a)
    (Culpepers and Colepepers, all outside of the USA)

    1. The Culpepers of Barbados appeared at about the same time in the mid 1600's as the Culpeppers of America. The first Culpeper in Barbados was the Rev. William Culpeper, a descendant of William Culpeper of Hunton and Wigsell. This branch persists today as the Colepepers of South Africa, and the Culpepers (2-p) of Puerto Rico, and Canada. We have 67-marker DNA test results from two members of the Bajan (Barbados) branch, and a 67-marker test from a member of the Puerto Rican branch.  They all closely match each other, but they do not match the Culpeppers of America.

    2. Culpepers emerged in India in the mid 18th century in connection with the English-backed East India Company. It seems likely that the first Culpeper there was a descendant of the Hollingbourne branch. The Indian branch persists today with members in India, England and Australia. The only person from this branch to be tested so far is a match on 63 out of 67 markers with the Barbados branch above, and thus the Indian and Bajan branches are definitely related.

  2. Barbados-New York African-American Branch (Haplogroup R1b1b2). There is a branch of Black Culpeppers whose ancestry is in Barbados. Only one member of this branch has been tested, and he is a member of Haplogroup R1b1b2 and not related to any other Culpeppers we've tested. We would like to test another member of this branch to validate this finding.

  3. Pearson/Gradeless Branch (Haplogroup I1). We have one non-Culpepper with the surname of Gradeless who has joined our project because he is a fairly close match to some of the mainline Culpeppers. He matches the American Culpepper Progenitor haplotype on 60 of 67 markers, and the Robert Culpepper haplotype on 61 of 67 markers. The earliest known ancestor of Gradeless is thought to be a Joseph Pearson, born say 1700, who was the father of Jesse Grayless (Gradeless) born out of wedlock. He lived in Dorchester Co., Maryland, on the east side of Chesapeake Bay and north of the Culpeppers who were on both sides of the bay in the Virginia counties of Norfolk and Accomack. The Gradeless project member has the mutation that we believe distinguishes the Progenitorís haplotype from that of Robert Culpepper. He also has six other mutations (actually seven steps, since there is one two-step mutation), suggesting that his connection to the Culpeppers is ancient if it actually exists. It is also clear that he is not at all a match with the Culpepers of Barbados and India.

As we secure additional test results, we expect to identify the haplotypes for more branches of the family. It is also possible that with more test results, we will modify the names of some of the above haplotypes as well as change some of the speculative linkages within our family tree.

Marker-by-Marker Detail. The underlying 111-marker detail from which we created our groupings above can be viewed at: Tabular Analysis of Allele Values (User name and password required. If you are a project member and don't have your log-in info, send an e-mail to Warren Culpepper).

The Culpepper's Ancient Origin. A haplogroup identifies a person's major ancient population group and provides information about the origin of the male line. The haplogroup that includes the American Culpeppers descending from Henry of Lower Norfolk is designated as I1 and is estimated to have originated on the Iberian Peninsula during the last ice age. As the ice receded, descendants of the first I1 spread across Europe. Their children formed subpopulations, each having its own distinct history. While many I1 members trace their ancestry to Scandinavia, others find their roots in the British Isles, Germany, and beyond. Culpeppers, who first appeared in historical records in 12th century England, most closely match the subpopulation group called Ultra-Norse (I1-M253-uN1315). Thus, the American Culpeppers may descend from the Vikings, the Norse seafaring traders, warriors and pirates who raided and colonized wide areas of Europe from the late 8th to the 11th century.
(Also see The Culpepper Ancestral Journey. For a detailed)

Membership and Testing Status. The table below details our number of members and the separate, unrelated ancestral groups identified.

Culpepper DNA Project Summary

Culpepper Groups, Descendants of... Haplogroup

Count

Percent

Henry Culpepper III of Norfolk Co., VA

I1d-L22

3

 

79%

Thomas Culpepper of Norfolk Co., VA

9

Total Henry Culpepper Jr. Descendant Matches

12

Robert Culpepper, Jr.

28

Joseph Culpepper of Edgecombe Co., NC

55

Benjamin Culpepper of Edgecombe Co., NC

12

Total Robert Culpepper Sr. Descendant Matches

95

Don Gradeless (matches Henry Culpepper, link unknown)

1

Total Henry Culpepper Sr. Descendant Matches

108

Allison Culpepper of Webster Co. GA (incl. a Jones)

I1

4

14%

International Culpeper/Colepeper

I2a

4

Joel Culpepper of Harris Co. GA

R1b1b2

3

John Culpepper of Marion Co., MS

4

John J. Culpepper of Jackson Co. FL

2

Robert Campbell Culpepper of Louisiana

2

Total maternal, adoptive or other familial connection to Henry

19

Total Matched to someone else named Culpepper

127

93%

Not matched to any other Culpepper

10

7%

Total Analyzed (Matched and Unmatched)

137

100%

Kits at lab waiting initial test results

0

 

 

 

Total Received by Testing Lab*

137

Kits received by FTDNA but not yet forwarded to its testing lab 

0

Kits mailed back by member but not yet received by FTDNA

0

Kits not yet returned by member (Franklyn D. #293829)

1

Total Project Members

138

 
*By Number of Markers (Includes only kits received by testing lab) Count

Percent

  37 or more Markers

137

100%

  67 or more Markers

89

65%

111 Markers

64

47%

 

Signatures of the Five Major Branches

Henry Culpeper of Lower Norfolk, the American progenitor, had two sons (Henry Jr. and Robert) and five grandsons who have modern-day descendants with the Culpepper surname. A general match to the progenitor's haplotype along with a certain mutation in one of four specific Y-DNA markers is sufficient to uniquely identify and distinguish between descendants of each of the sons and grandsons.


Son
     Grandson
DYS
(Marker #)
 DYS-442
 #36
CDYb
#35
DYS-464d
#25
DYS-561
#101
Henry Jr. 12 37 16 15
     Henry III 12 37 16 15
     Thomas 12 38 16 15
Robert 13 37 16 15
     Robert Jr. 13 37 16 15
     Joseph 13 37 15 15
     Benjamin 13 37 16 16

 

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Last Revised: 02 Jan 2015

 
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