From the Book of Record, Rev. John Giessendanner, Joop Giessendanner Transcription

From the Book of Record, Rev. John Giessendanner, Joop Giessendanner Transcription

Thomas Dukes

From the Book of Record, Rev. John Giessendanner, Joop Giessendanner Transcription:

070} 1751 On Sunday June 2d ---- In Orangeburgh Church

Thomas, Son of Joseph & Margaret Duke: Born

4th September last: Susceptr: David Rumph,_

Ulrich Roth, Sertina, wife of Brand Pendarvis._

Thomas Dukes (14 Sep 1750 - 1846), married Sarah (1760 - 1840). A Duke family genealogy in the Salley Archives lists Thomas’ wife as “Sara Bruce (decendent of Robert Bruce).” No source is given for this information, or for alternative versions identifying his wife as Sarah Syphret. Sarah Bruce and Sarah Syphret could, be the same individual, listed variously by maiden name and that of a previous marriage. However, Syphrett family researchers have been unable to identify any potential parentage for a Sarah Syphrett who might have married Thomas. The Orangeburg Bruce family did not include an appropriate individual.

Thomas Duke, born 4 Sep 1750, died 1836, enlisted in the Third Regiment on 24 July 1776. (P.I.; N.A.853).[1] The source for this information is the Lists of North Carolina and South Carolina Troops and of Officers and Men of Continental Organizations Raised from More than One State, 1775-1783, National Archives, M853, Roll 16. Thomas Dukes told his granchildren of involvement in the fighting with the British in the Orangeburgh town square.[2]

However, another reference suggests that his allegiance may not have been undivided. A Thomas Dukes is listed among the privates serving 101 days in Col. Robert Ballingall's Regiment, Colleton County Militia during the 1780-81 period.[3] This was a Tory regiment drawn in part from local residents in the area below Orangeburgh Township. Ballingall had obtained 500 acres in Colleton County from John Pendarvis[4] and another 1,400 acres from Joseph Hasfort,[5] and so was a large landowner in the area.

Clark provides another interesting list, for the loyalist Ninety-Six Brigade in 1782, taken from “Pay Abstract Nr. 134, Colonel Thomas Pearson’s Regiment, Little River Militia, 60-days service.” The list includes Capt. Andrew Wriosdick (from Saxe-Gotha), and under him Christopher Metz, George Johnstone, William Pendarvis, William Fairy, John Hungerpeler, Paul Johnstone, Jacob Felkle, Melchoir Felkle. In Capt. Thomas Morris’ unit there were George Davis, Thomas Dukes, and John Pendarvis.[6] Thomas Dukes is listed as having served 4 Feb – 6 Mar 1782 and 3 Mar – 5 May 1782.

The John Pendarvis listed is apparently another besides the John Pendarvis who was killed in February 1782.

In the 1790 census Thomas Dukes was listed as having in his household 1 male less than 16 years old, 5 females, and 7 slaves in his household. At least 4 of the females are presumed to be daughters, but a name is known for only one. In this census his nearest neighbor was Andrew Govan, who purchased Joseph’s second grant. Govan lived at the Oak Grove Plantation along the Orangeburg-Branchville highway in the Rowesville area, eight miles south of Orangeburg.[7] Thomas Edwards and David Crum owned land near that of Abraham Hazelwood, about 2 miles south of Rowesville. Accordingly, we can conclude that Thomas may have lived in that same area, although perhaps not immediately adjacent. He might have been living on lands inherited from Abraham Hazelwood, who had owned very substantial properties just over 2 miles south of Rowesville.

In 1800, Thomas Dukes was listed as more than 45 years old, and was living with a male 10-16 years old, 2 females 10 or younger, and 1 female 10-16 years old.

It has been suggested that Thomas Dukes I is buried on the old Archie (A.L.) Dukes property on the Cattle Creek Road.[8] No marker survives to confirm this.

Thomas Dukes Descendants

Thomas Edmund Dukes

Joseph Dukes’ grandson, Thomas Edmund Dukes II, married Ann Ayler, who family tradition says was from the Neuse River area of North Carolina.

Thomas Edmond Dukes served in the Revolutionary War, and is listed, with his brother George, among soldiers of the 3rd South Carolina Regiment stationed at Fort Sullivan and later Fort Moultrie.[9]

Thomas and Anne lived northeast of Branchville, between Penn Branch and the road to Bowman, and are buried there in the old Dukes cemetery.[10] The markers provide the following information.

Name:Thomas Edmond Dukes

Birth:5 Jun 1786

Death:31 Mar 1847

Burial:Dukes Family Cemetery, Branchville, SC

Spouse:Ann Ayler

Birth:10 Apr 1786Neuse River, NC

Death:5 Jul 1858

According to oral tradition, Thomas met Ann on a visit to her home area on the Neuse River area in North Carolina, where he was visiting relatives. Several Branchville area families closely associated with the Dukes and Syphrett families, the Risher, Ratcliff, and Byrd families, are from the Neuse River area in Lenoir County, NC. The family of William Ailer was a neighbor, and is surely the origin of the family of Ann Aylor Dukes.

There is interesting evidence that Ann’s father or brother, William “Eyler” moved to the Pen Branch area, where he acquired land near the Dukes family:

Series: S213192

Volume: 0052

Page: 00342


Date: 1839/09/17




Type: PLAT/

Ann survived Thomas E. Dukes II, and is recorded in the 1850 U.S. census at the age of 60 with $1500 real estate, 5 household members, and 7 slaves. Their children:

1 F:Mary Winnie Dukes

Birth:29 Aug 1807

Death:26 Sep 1849

Spouse:Elijah Bruce

2 F:Anna Margaret Dukes

Birth:31 Oct 1809

Death:5 Aug 1863

Spouse:John Samuel Smoak

3 M:John William Hazelwood Dukes

Birth:18 Sep 1811


Spouse:Martha Rebecca Bozard

Spouse:Millicent Emmeline Hill Johnson

Spouse:Mary Funchess

4 M:Thomas Edmond Dukes III

Birth:23 Mar 1813

Death:16 Oct 1861

Spouse:Susan Gramling

5 F:Sarah Elizabeth Dukes

Birth:6 May 1815

6 F:Jane Mahaley Dukes

Birth:13 Feb 1817

Death:1 Dec 1899

Spouse:George Lewis Patrick

7 F:Eliza Alloy (Alphalet) Dukes

Birth:16 Jul 1819

Spouse:John Samuel Collier

Marriage:13 Sep 1838

8 F:Rachel Catherine Dukes

Birth:10 May 1821

9 M:James Dukes




10 M:Allin Gabriel Isaac Dukes

Birth:29 Jul 1824

Spouse:Martha Bozardt

11 M:Sam'l Abram (Abraham Samuel) Dukes

Birth:7 Oct 1827

Death:5 Mar 1879

Spouse:Elizabeth C. Summers

Spouse:Elizabeth C. L. Crook

Several of the sons of Thomas Edmund Dukes II later lived near Rowesville. In the 1840 census (John) William (Hazelwood) Dukes was listed near Alexander Syphrett, Frederick Felder, and the Carn family. Alexander Syphrett lived on Cattle Creek, near lands owned by Michael Dukes.

The 1849 Class Book for Sardis Church, Orangeburgh District, Methodist Church, includes Gabriel Dukes and Abraham Dukes, along with James B. Berry; John, George, John W., William J. and Jesse Fairey; Benj. McAlhany; Nathaniel, William, and John E. Byrd; Lewis Griffith; James and Henry Metts; John and David W. I. Patrick; John L. Rhode; William B. Brown; George E. Pooser; Capers Griffith; and Isham Shuler. Sardis is immediately north of Branchville.

On 26 Aug 1865 John William Hazelwood Dukes purchased a lot in Orangeburg from John C. Reeves, and at the same time sold to him “1,200 acres on the road from Orangeburg to Branchville about 13 miles from F. Frederick, estates of Dr. William Frederick and L. E. Cooner. And, 1,000 acres between public road and river and 200 acres eat of road, Part (1,600 acres) of land conveyed to me by Donald R. Barton, deed dated October 8, 1863. Wit: Antonio R. Champy and S. Dibble. Release by Mellie E. H. Dukes, wife of J. William H. Dukes.”[11] The first of these is certainly within the bounds of Abraham Hazelwood’s colonial grants.

Elizabeth Dukes

Elizabeth Dukes married Frederick Syphrett, born 1781, died October 1849, and buried in the Edwards Family Cemetery, near Bowman, SC.

John and Frederick Syphrett petitioned for military pay due in 1814, with various Kellers, Felders, etc.[12]

In 1818 there was a plat and state grant for 107 acres "in Orangeburgh District on Peter Wood's Branch of N. Edisto River" bounded by Adam Syphrett, Dan'l Syfrett, for Frederick Syphrett. In 1830 Frederick Syphrett was granted land on the south side of Cattle Creek.

There was an 1839 plat for 1,000 acres "on Br waters of Pen Branch of Edisto River" for Frederick Syfett. Bounded by land of Mrs. E. Griffith, Jas Grimes, Reich Edwards, Jas Edwards, F Syfrett, Dukes, Michael Dukes, George Summers, Harry Felder, Christopher Metze, John Metze, John Cannon. Commissioner was Isaac Dantzler, Esq.

In 1850 there was a sale of 790 acres belonging to Frederick Syphrett, originally granted to John Cannon, bounded by Joseph Edwards, Abraham H. Syphrett, Benjamin B. McAlheny, Samuel R. Gressette, and James Grimes, on the north side of the SC Railroad on Felders Bay Waters of the Edisto.

Frederick Syphrett is buried in the Edwards Family Cemetery near Bowman.


Spouse:Elizabeth Dukes

Birth:25 Sep 1783

Father:Thomas Edmond Dukes (1750-1846)

Mother:Sarah (1760-1840)

Children documented in real estate transactions related to the estate of Frederick Syphrett:

1 F:Jane D. Syphrett

Spouse:Daniel Smoak

2 M:Allen A. Syphrett

3 M:Abraham Hazelwood Syphrett

4 F:Mary Ann Syphrett

Birth:26 Feb 1806

Death:31 Oct 1891

Spouse:Jesse William Fairey Jr.

Marriage:8 Jan 1823

5 F:Eliza G. Syphrett

Spouse:Lewis Griffis

6 F:Dicy Syphrett

Spouse:David Smoak

7 F:Dorcas L. Syphrett

Spouse:Thomas David Edwards

8 F:Meldred Syphrett

Death:5 Dec 1850

Spouse:Joseph Henry Stokes

9 F:Sarah M. Syphrett

Spouse:Phillip Joiner

Ann Syphrett who married George Ezekial Dukes is also said to be a daughter of Frederick and Elizabeth Dukes Syphrett.

Another Probable Thomas Dukes Descendant

yDNA has confirmed that George Ezekial Dukes of St. George, S.C., born 1 Jan 1806,[13] was from the Orangeburg Dukes male line of descent. Only two males of the Orangeburg Dukes family were documented as having been born between 1800 and 1810. One, Joseph H. Dukes, was a son of Thomas Dukes and is accordingly shown in the household of Thomas Dukes, son of Michael Dukes I, in the federal census of 1810. George Ezekial Dukes was presumably the male child within that age range shown in the same census in the household of Michael Dukes II, another son of Michael Dukes I.[14] This could be interpreted to mean that George was a son of Michael Dukes II. However, a family story indicates that George was not raised in his father’s household. It therefore is likely that the household in which he lived as a child, that of Michael Dukes II, was associated with his mother’s family, and that she was a sister of Michael Dukes II.

Nevertheless, there is a perfect yDNA match between descendants of George Ezekial Dukes and well-documented descendant of Thomas Edmund Dukes, a son of Thomas Dukes and a nephew of Michael Dukes I. This match proves that George’s father was definitely a descendant in the direct male line of Joseph Dukes of Orangeburg.

Thomas Edmund Dukes was probably George’s father. He was the only Dukes male of an appropriate age among the cousins of Michael Dukes I’s daughters. This interpretation also is consistent with long-standing stories that Thomas Edmund Dukes was married before he met Ann Ayler.[15] Speculation has focused on Catherine Fersner as a possible wife, but it has been shown that she was married to a Bozard during the relevant time period.[16] The story of Edmund’s early marriage may have had its origin instead in his involvement (we have no evidence of a marriage) with his cousin prior to a long journey that he made to North Carolina, where he met and married Ann Ayler.[17]

This document is copyright © 2009 by Lynn Teague. All rights reserved. The copyright must appear on all copies.

Orangeburg Dukes Index


[1] Moss, Bobby Gilmer. 1983. Roster of South Carolina Patriots in the American Revolution. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc.

[2] Donald Ray "Chip" Dukes, Jr., Winnie Caroline Corbett Betsill, and Jefferson Morris Corbett. 1995. "The Dukes Family." Second Printing.

[3] Clark, Murtie June. 1981. "Loyalists in the Southern Campaign of the Revolutionary War." Vol. I. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc. Page 171.

[4] Colonial Memorials. Vol. 7, page 383, item 3. South Carolina Department of Archives and History.

[5] Charleston Deeds. Vol. 2YO, page 40. South Carolina Department of Archives and History.

[6] Clark, Murtie June. 1981. Loyalists in the Southern Campaign of the Revolutionary War. Vol. I: Official Rolls of Loyalists Recruited from North and South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Mississippi, and Louisiana. (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, Inc.). Page 308. s 303, 308.

[7] Culler, Daniel Marchant. 1995. Orangeburgh District 1768-1868: History and Records. Spartanburg: The Reprint Company.

[8] William Walter Dukes, Jr., Family File, February 1997.

[9] American Revolution Roster, Fort Sullivan (Later Fort Moultrie) 1776-1780, Battle of Fort Sullivan, Events Leading to First Decisive Victory. Charleston: Fort Sullivan Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution. Page 140.

[10] Donald Ray "Chip" Dukes, Jr., Winnie Caroline Corbett Betsill, and Jefferson Morris Corbett. 1995. "The Dukes Family." Second Printing.

[11] The Smoak Family Manuscript Collection. Transcribed for the <> list 4 August 1997.

[12] Orangeburgh German-Swiss Newsletter, Vol. I:115.

[13] Dukes Family Cemetery (Quaker Road, St. George, South Carolina), George Ezekial Dukes marker, transcribed by Lynn S. Teague, 15 Oct 2003.

[14] 1810 U. S. Census, Orangeburgh District, South Carolina, p.132 [stamped], line 51, M. Dukes; and line 52, Ths. Dukes, National Archives (NARA) microfilm publication M251, Roll 61.

[15] Donald Ray “Chip” Dukes, Jr., Winnie Caroline Corbett Betsill and Jefferson Morris Corbett, Dukes. (Orangeburg, S.C.: privately published, second printing, 1995.).

[16] Julian Dantzler Kelly, Jr., Fersner of South Carolina (Savannah, GA: privately published, N.D.).

[17] Lynn Shuler Teague, “Settlers from the Neuse River: Aylers and their Neighbors,” Orangeburgh German-Swiss Newsletter 13 (Spring 2008): 4-9.