North Carolina Bradford Project


  • The database for this project is finally online! Check out the database at The database is still in its infancy stage and there is a lot more to do. There are still a lot of people in the database marked as "living" who really are not, and I'm in the process of fixing this.

About the Project

Why is there a project on the NC Bradford lines? Very simply because there were so many of them and it has been a real pain to sortthem out, who belongs to which line. This project has been underway for about 10 years. At the time the project started, researchers, including myself, though there were only 3 lines of Bradfords in NC. Through DNA research and original records I've found, there were at least 4 lines, possibly 5, all before 1800! 1 line, which I am descended from, was primarily centered in Cabarrus and Mecklenburg Counties, close to the SC border. 2 lines were up North near the VA border. 1 of the northern lines was centered in Granville County and the other was centered in Orange County.

How are the goals of the project being met?

The goal of this project is to seperate and identify the various lines and Bradfords in the state of North Carolina. There are 2 ways that I am trying to acheive these goals. The first is that I am asking anyone with NC Bradfords to contribute their information. I am keeping a database of the NC lines. I am not asking you to send the information so I can hoard it or keep control of it, I will gladly accept help. What I am doing with the information is 3-fold.

  • First,I created a database that is publicly accessible (no password). This database is continually updated. If you have already sent in information, feel free to send updates, and please do! The database is a work in progress, there are still some problems in the tree, so if there is no source citation for the person, I suggest you take it as a clue rather than fact.
  • Secondly, I am entering all names and any information contributed information. While doing this, I make note of any documented information specified and any estimated information (for instance, born between 1790-1795). When I enter this information, I also note for every documented information and name who sent the information. I use this information so that if someone else sends the same line, I can put you in contact with each other. I also use the information so that if I dig up anything for your line, I'll know who to contact.
  • Third, I have a TON of NC resources at my fingertips and have easy access to the state archives and aim to do research on the NC Bradfords on a regular basis, and while doing so, updating sources in the database. So far, I've found wills, marriages, land information, court records, and more. I make copies of all records I find and hopefully can fill in some missing information for you and make them available online through the database.

The Database

You can access the Database at I chose to ue tribalpages for the database because it's so easy to use and update. When you go to the page, you will notice a navigation menu that includes edit. Note that I am the one one who can actually edit, but if you have information to add or edit, please do feel free to contact me.

Why is there a need for the project?

  • In the 1700s, there were about 5 David Bradfords in three counties of NC.& In the 1800s, there were about 10.
  • In the 1700s, there were about 13 Elizabeth Bradfords primarily in the Granville and Orange County lines. In the 1800s, there were about 8.
  • In the 1800s, there were about 13 George Bradfords in both northern and southern lines.
  • In the 1700s, there were about 6 James Bradfords in both northern and southern lines. In the 1800s, there were about 8.
  • In the 1700s, there were about 8 William Bradfords in all lines, in the 1800s, there were about 23!

As you can see, It is really easy to confuse these lines and they can get jumbled up into a huge knot. For instance, three lines had a David Bradford all living around the same time before the 1800s. 2 of those Davids has sons named David, both born around the same time. There are many cases of Thomas and William and Philemon in both northern lines, all living around the same time. Through the DNA project, we know it is not a case of folks moving back and forth between counties or owning land in both counties, they are distinctly different lines. And to top it all off, none of the lines are related. It's my goal (and I'm sure others!) to untangle that knot.

What next??

Originally, I was adding transcripts of documents directly to this site, but in the past 3 years, have been adding it to the database and then linking the record directly to the person. You can also look at all the documents at once by going to the photo albus. Below are documents I've already added to this page. If what you are looking for is not on the site or in the database when you come, check back periodically, it may be uncovered, or sitting in my "to do" pile. I try to spend time each week on the database, but my time is limited as I have a full-time job.

What you can do is, if you haven't already, send me your NC Bradford information. No gedcoms, just text. I will add it to the database. At this point, it would be unlikely if you did not connect with anyone as there are over 500 Bradfords in the database, and I'm still in the process of adding others.

Also, you can help by sending biographies of your NC Bradford ancestors. I've seen some very interesting information sent to me, as far as occupations and records they've found, but I'd love hear more about the individuals and I'm sure others would as well.