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About the JOHN PATRICK LEA family from PLANTAGENET to POCAHONTAS, two sides of the Atlantic
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Welcome to the genealogical and historical website of John Patrick Lea, Lord of Lea, Shropshire, United Kingdom and of Austin, Texas, United States of America. This site is dedicated to Anne "Annie"  Jane LEA nee MILROY, AMERICAN MATRIARCH, of Liverpool, Lancashire, England and Ingleside-on-the-Bay, San Patricio County, Texas, 
United States of America, and her husband, William LEA, of The Argoed and Lightwood Hall farms, Overton-on-Dee, Flintshire, Wales and Liverpool, Lancashire, England. As it stands, much research remains which may take the better part of two to three generations of people to complete. However, I remain confident that someone (or 
better yet, several someones) will assume the honor and responsibility of volunteer by default as family genealogist and historical guru upon my demise, transferable white cotton mantle (one size fits all) and serpentine crozier with lion head included at no charge. It is very important to note that through much original research in England, Wales, Scotland, France, and Ireland that the conclusion has been reached that a 
high probability exists that we are descended from Warin de Bailleul (Balliol), first Sheriff of Shropshire following the Norman Conquest of England in AD1066 and his son Hugh the Monk. Please see "Sheriffs of Shropshire" by the Reverend John Brickdale Blakeway.

Since, at this time, we can only trace the surname through the parish registers back to about AD1600, it is only by conjecture of physical location of all Lea family members extending out from the town of Ellesmere, Shropshire (and Lega or Lee of Ellesmere) that leads one to that conclusion. Further documentation from wills, records of the court, lawsuits, et al will be necessary to absolutely tie this connection down.  For now, we trudge onward through the fog. It may eventually turn out that we are not descended from the High Sheriffs at all and that we just acquired the name as a result of where we lived.  However, for the time being, based on demographics of proven Lea family members as well as three very close matches in DNA results for 
members of the Corbin (Corbet) family, I admonish any family members continuing this research to follow the same tack until proven otherwise.

It is also my belief that Warin had a daughter who married into the Ducs of Brittany in about AD1050 prior to the 
Conquest.  This is supported by the act that Warin gave the tithes of the Church of Saint Cyr du Bailleul in Normandy to some monks in Brittany in 1050 which was much opposed by his son Hugh...so much, in fact, that Hugh sued his father over same. However, Duke William ruled in favor of Warin and life went on.

Additionally, I believe Warin was responsible for building the original structure at Arundel in Sussex prior 
to being appointed Shire Reeve in Salop in AD1071. Warin probably constructed Hen Domen near Montgomery in
Wales as well as the first wooden castle in Shrewsbury. In AD1086 at the time of the compilation 
of the Domesday Book, Warin was deceased and his brother, Reginald de Bailleul, was Sheriff. There is a definite connection with the Fitz Alan clan which was possibly established through the marriage of the daughter of Warin and a Fitz Alan while the families were still in France. The first family crest of record shows a red background with silver billets (building bricks) and a checked fess crossing the middle of alternating gold 
and azure (the Fitz Alan, I presume). It was borne by Reginald de Lea, High Sheriff of Shropshire in AD1201.

Lega (now Lee), a member of Ellesmere, 
 was given early by Warin or Reginald 
 to the 
 monks of Shrewsbury Abbey.  It is from 
 this place that the high probability 
 that we obtained our surname.  Hugh, 
 son of Warin, had a son who styled 
 himself Hugh 
 de Lega.  At the time of Domesday, 
 Reginald de Bailleul (brother of 
 Warin) held 70 
 manors in Shropshire alone...not to 
 mention several in Sussex and 

As of January of 2011, research 
 regarding members of DNA Haplogroup I1 
 (our own Lea family) states 
 the following: The most recent common 
 ancestor (MRCA) of I1 lived from 4,000 
 to 6,000 years ago 
 somewhere in the far northern part of 
 Europe, perhaps Denmark, according to 
 Ken Nordtvedt of 
 Montana State University. His 
 descendants are primarily found among 
 the Germanic populations of 
 northern Europe and the bordering 
 Uralic and Celtic populations, 
 although even in traditionally 
 German demographics I1 is overshadowed 
 by the more prevalent Haplogroup R.

When SNPs (Single Nucleotide 
 Polymorphisms) are unknown or 
 untested, and when short tandem repeat 
 (STR) results show eight allele 
 repeats at DNA Y chromosome Segment 
 (DYS) 455, haplogroup I1 can 
 be predicted correctly with a very 
 high rate of accuracy, 99.3 to 99.8 
 percent, according to Whit 
 Athey and Vince Vizachero. This is 
 almost exclusive to and ubiquitous in 
 the I1 haplogroup, with 
 very few having seven, nine, or 
 another number. Furthermore, DYS 462 
 divides I1 geographically. 
 Nordtvedt considers 12 allele repeats 
 to be more likely Anglo-Saxon and on 
 the southern fringes of 
 the I1 map, while 13 signifies more 
 northerly, Nordic origins. Nordtvedt 
 has repeatedly argued 
 that, at least for I1,[13] SNP testing 
 is generally not as beneficial as 
 expanded STR results.

Much has been hashed over and written 
 about the famous General Robert E. Lee 
 of the 
 Confederate States of America.  
 Through DNA, it has been positively 
 established that 
 we share a most common recent 
 ancestor.  However, it must be pointed 
 out that the 
 connection, although a possibility in 
 Shropshire, has a much higher 
 probability of 
 happening prior to the surname being 
 Lea or Lee since there is a difference 
 of 2 
 alleles at the DYS388 marker.  Our Lea 
 family is at 16 and the ancestors of 
 REL in 
 Virginia are at 14.  Since this marker 
 reportedly only mutates every 2,000 
 years or 
 so, one can only surmise that it would 
 be highly unlikely we would be kin in 
 Shropshire under the current line of 
 thinking by DNA experts.

In fact, the only members of the 
 Lea/Leigh/Lee families in currently 
 available DNA 
 studies conducted thus far with whom 
 we share a common ancestor within the 
 past 800 
 years spell their name Lee. The fact 
 remains that out of several hundred 
 submitting DNA samples to the various 
 studies, there are only a handful of 
 with the Lea/Lee/Leigh surname who are 
 our immediate kinfolk in the past 800 
 years or 
 so. The remainder of the Lea/Leigh/Lee 
 folks have absolutely nothing in 
 common with 
 our Lea family aside from the fact 
 that we share a common surname.  Our 
 common ancestor with most of the other 
 people with the surname Lee/Leigh/Lea 
 would be 
 10,000 years ago or more...at the very 
 least, 9,150 years before the surname 
 of Lea 
 came into existence.

Keep a watchful eye on DYS388=16 and 
 DYS455=8 should you become involved in 
 any DNA study as a 
 Lea, Lee, or Leigh. It should be noted 
 at this point there are many people 
 with other 
 surnames such as Pugh (ap Hugh..son of 
 Hugh), Voyles (welsh for bald), or 
 Hoskins with whom we 
 share a most recent common ancestor 
 than with other people having the 
 surname Lea, Lee, or Leigh.  
 Additionally, all of these folks have 
 matching markers to include DYS388=16 
 and DYS455=8.  Having 
 conducted over 30 years of original 
 research in Shropshire, Flintshire and 
 surrounding counties, 
 many of the surnames possessing 
 similar DNA match-ups look very 
 familiar to me, but I cannot 
 necessarily say just exactly where we 
 and they fit into the family tree at 
 this time. 
 However, I do belive that Pugh or ap 
 Hugh is descended from Hugh, son of 
 Warin, first High Sheriff 
 of Shropshire in 1071CE.  Also, since 
 Volyes is the welsh word for bald, I 
 am convinced that 
 people with a matching DNA to ours are 
 descended from Warin the Bald, Sheriff 
 in 1071CE.
 To revert to Warin the Sheriff...prior 
 to his venture into England and Wales, 
 resided in Normandy, France at a place 
 called Bailleul near Bailleul-en-
 Gouffern.  The moat for 
 the house (now a horse pasture) still 
 remains just to the left (as you face 
 it) of the 
 church.  Reginald, his brother, lived 
 not too far from there.  Warin, along 
 Corbet the Norman, and Picot de Sai 
 were the three advisors to Roger de 
 who lived at Exmes, just a few 
 kilometers to the southeast of 
 Additionally, there is a Knights 
 Templar Commandery and a church just a 
 couple of 
 kilometers away at Villideu-les-
 Bailleul. In 1990 I visited there for 
 the first 
 time.  The bells in the church tower 
 (which was locked, unoccupied, and had 
 electricity) started clanging wildly 
 and randomly for several minutes....so 
 much so 
 that the elderly french gentleman who 
 lived in the large stately home next 
 door came 
 out to see what was going on.  He had 
 lived there for 40 years and had never 
 the bells ring. For the record, 
 Bailleul-en-Gouffern was just two or 
 three hours by 
 horseback to the castle at Falaise, 
 the home of the Norman Ducs.

On another trip to England and Wales 
 in 2001 with my two sons, Justin and 
 Braxton discoverd a stone in the moat 
 surrouning the ancient site of Hen 
 Domen.  It 
 was marked with an ogham character for 
 the Rowan tree which is symbolic as to 
 the cattle from harm.

In regards to DNA and migration 
 patterns, it has been established that 
 the Lea family 
 of northern Shropshire and the 
 detached part of Flintshire, Wales (or 
 Maelor) were 
 part of the Norman group who joined 
 with William the Bastard in his 
 conquering of 
 England at the Battle of Hastings in 
 AD1066. Some report, because of our 
 DNA, we are 
 descended from the Tribe of Dan. We 
 are members of Haplogroup I1 which 
 originated in northern France about 
 25,000 years ago and then spread over 
 into the 
 Scandinavian countries, most 
 specifically in our case, Norway or 
 Denmark, a part of Haplogroup 
 I1a, the Vikings. Haplogroup I1 is 
 derived from Haplogroup F which 
 approximately 45,000 years ago in 
 Africa.  Haplogroup I1 of which we are 
 a part came 
 forth out of the second migration out 
 of Africa and is the parent of most 
 Y-chromosomes.  Haplogroup F goes even 
 further back into and slightly further 
 in Africa to approximately 65,000 
 years to one male referred to as Y-
 chromosome Adam. 
 Although he was not the only male 
 living at the time, he is only one to 
 have a 
 lineage on the earth today.

At this juncture, I would like to 
 highly recommend that you participate 
 in a DNA 
 study.  If you so choose, you may 
 remain totally anonymous, only 
 referring to you as 
 a member number only.

Many companies can serve you in this 
 capacity, but from what I know, I 
 would choose 
 Family Tree DNA out of Houston, Texas.  
 Their website is at: 
 spx?c=1  Additionally, there is a 
 study for Lee/Lea/Leigh. My number 
 within the Lee/Lea/Leigh study at 
 FTDNA is 98588.

Follow the trail of the serpent et 
 illegitimi non carborundum.

Once again, thank you for visiting and 
 yall come back now.

Please sign the Guest Book.

P.S. For a little light poetry 
 reading, please visit


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Getting Around
There are several ways to browse the family tree. The Tree View graphically shows the relationship of selected person to their kin. The Family View shows the person you have selected in the center, with his/her photo on the left and notes on the right. Above are the father and mother and below are the children. The Ancestor Chart shows the person you have selected in the left, with the photograph above and children below. On the right are the parents, grandparents and great-grandparents. The Descendant Chart shows the person you have selected in the left, with the photograph and parents below. On the right are the children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

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