Ballard Genealogy and Heraldry
Early US Ballards
If you are descended from William Ballard of Andover, Massachusetts or William
Ballard of Lynn, Massachusetts or Thomas Ballard of Middle Plantation, Virginia or
John Ballard of Nansemond because it says so on the Internet then read on.
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Firstly I will apologise in advance that this is going to be a rant aimed at some individuals who believe that they are genealogists & family historians. I only hope that given the volume of Ballard material I have made available for Ballard researchers to utilise you will forgive me! That said, I am almost certain that if you are reading this then it probably doesn't apply to you since you will have arrived here from a desire to do some real research and not just stooge around on various websites trying to cut & paste your family tree together! For the benefit of "treeneologists" I have defined both genealogy and treeneology below. It should be noted that genealogy entails continuous descent, which by implication is proven, and a study of pedigrees. Treeneology on the other hand involves finding a website containing a name from about the right period and place and then, if the ancestry is interesting, i.e. goes back a hundred years or more and/or originates from an armigerous individual, just subsuming them into the tree. No proof and certainly no study is involved.
genealogy noun (plural -ies) descent traced continuously from ancestor, pedigree; study of pedigrees.
treeneology noun (plural -ies) creation of an entirely unsupported pedigree by the use of cut and paste with no intellectual contribution.
So, assuming that you're not feeling all insulted and haven't just flounced back to "Grow-your-family-tree-in-20-minutes.com" let us look at the current state of play with the early US Ballards, what is claimed, what is impossible and what might be. For each of the following, with the exception of John Ballard of Nansemond THERE IS NO PROVEN DESCENT FROM ENGLAND.
The William Ballards of Andover and Lynn, Massachusetts
I have combined these two since it would appear that very few people can tell them apart. They seem to have been ascribed the same spouses and some of the same children etc. So, if the easy stuff like their family history in their adopted country cannot be straightened out then no wonder that they also ascribe impossible parents in the English lines without any evidence.
He was NOT born in Southwell, Nottinghamshire on 12th August 1603 the son of Phil(l)ip Ballard and Joanne Fitzwilliams, their son William was born c1540 and was buried in Saxilby, Lincolnshire 14 September 1605.
He was NOT born in Southwell, Nottinghamshire on 12th August 1603 the son of Phil(l)ip Ballard and Elizabeth Townsend, there was no such couple - Philip Ballard married Joane Fitzwilliams at least as far as the Heralds' Visitations are concerned.
yDNA testing has revealed that William Ballard of Andover is actually from the same family as the Bullards of Weybread in Suffolk - more on this in due course as further research is completed in the UK.
Henry Ballard who married Elizabeth Townsend DID NOT emigrate to Virginia in 1635/36 because he died in 1622 in Nottinghamshire.
Thomas Ballard of Middle Plantation, Virginia
Thomas Ballard, son of Henry Ballard & Elizabeth Townsend was baptised 8th July 1600 in Southwell, Nottinghamshire and not in 1603 as so many people seem to think and not in Inkborough, Worcestershire. He did NOT marry Ann Napper - that is an entirely different branch of Ballards. He may be THE Thomas Ballard Snr of Virginia BUT where is the proof?
John Ballard of Nansemond, Virginia
I am not certain what the current state of play is with John but there appears to be good evidence that he was born in Bitton in Gloucestershire in approximately 1639.
So, if you have any of the above connected to an English line and published on a website perhaps I could ask you to remove the linkage. If you also have the Ballard lines from Phillip Ballard and Joanna Fitzwilliams or from Fulco Ballard or Sir George Ballard or Gregory Ballard and you have no source citations from primary evidence and you cannot describe a Heralds' Visitation or an Inquisition Post Mortem then perhaps you would also remove them? I really don't mind if people want to misrepresent the history of their families and claim descent from Adam & Eve but I do draw the line at misrepresenting the history of the medieval Ballard lines!
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