Welcome to the Slaven Genealogy Exchange! Our purpose is to be a central location to collect and exchange information for Slaven, Slevin, Slavin, Slavey, and other surname variations. The scope of this exchange is world wide. We hope there's something here for the beginning genealogist, the old hand, and the merely curious!
What's New?

Changes are in the offing at the major genealogy/DNA sites. FamilyTreeDNA is to start adding a Y-DNA haplogroup to male FamilyFinder (autosomal) DNA results. This will not be as specific a haplogroup as one would get with the more sophisticated (and much more expensive) Big Y-700 test, but it could have some value if a non-paternity event is suspected in a male tester's paternal line. No word on when this will be rolled out, other than "soon," and it will be rolled out in waves-- basically, the longer you've had your FamilyFinder results, the longer it will be before they get to your results. If you transferred your results from another company (such as AncestryDNA) to FTDNA and paid for the "unlock," they'll also give a Y-DNA haplogroup if the tester was male. Also, there are rumblings that AncestryDNA is going to cut back on what it offers for folks who don't have an Ancestry subscription, but there's been no official announcement as of September 5.

Older News.

A descendant of John and Elizabeth (Stuart) Slaven, through their daughter Elizabeth (married Abraham Ingram) has been added to the Slaven Cousins DNA Registry, a table of people who have had DNA testing done and are looking for connections. Also, Bev Jenkins, with Slavin ancestry in (Northern) Ireland and Scotland, and a few hits on descendants of John Slaven of County Tyrone/Highland County, Virigina, was added a few weeks ago. Check out the registry!

The Independent Herald has added a couple more stories to their series on the cemeteries of Scott County, Tennessee, which will be of interest to descedants of Richard Harve Slaven. The Terry Cemetery was featured a couple weeks ago, and The Chimney Rock Cemetery is featured this week. See below for links to other Slaven-related stories from the Independent Herald.

St. Davog's Parish of Dromore, County Tyrone, Northern Ireland has a website, and the link will take you a 1921 booklet of the parish history. Pages 11 and 12 talk about the Slevin family.

Attention Richard Harve Slaven descendants!

Update: Here's another story from The Independent Herald that descendants of Richard Harve Slaven will probably find interesting-- a shoot-out at Zenith in 1940, involving Edward Ezra Slaven.

A search on "Slaven" on The Independent Herald's website brought up many obituaries, and a variety of other stories of interest: On Valentine's Day, The Independent Herald of Oneida, Tennessee, published a story on the Nancy Smith Cemetery, in the No Business area of Scott County. This is pretty much a Slaven family cemetery, and this story has a photo of the "RS" fieldstone that is likely Richard's grave marker. I haven't been able to get a photo of this stone for the website so it's great to see it. I'll be working on getting permission to add it to slavens.net so it's still available if this story eventually disappears.

The Independent Herald has a series on cemeteries in the county, Sacred Ground, which will probably be of interest to descendants of Richard Harve Slaven.

We have had the Y-37 DNA test come in from a descendant of Bolden Slavens of Arkansas and Texas. From various bits of evidence the Slavens and Edwards families were in Sevier County, Arkansas, before going to Texas in the 1840's, and that the Sevier County Slaven(s) families connect back to the Robert Slaven line of the Gibson County, Indiana area. The descendant's DNA fits this hypothesis, falling into the "Group A" that has descendants of William and Isabel Slaven of Rowan County, North Carolina, through their sons John, Robert, and William. In fact, he's a perfect 37/37 match of one of the descendants of Robert Slaven. We hope to upgrade the new participant to the Big Y-700 test later this month, so results could be back in late February or March.

We've had another family line do the Big Y-700 test at FamilyTreeDNA, that of John "the Latiner" Slevin. Read about it here.

Seeking descendants.

Alexander Slaven. Looking for direct male line descendants of Alexander Slaven (born ca. 1794 in Rowan County, NC, died 1847 in Williamson County, TN) for DNA testing to help confirm the family lines descending from William and Isabel (Luckey) Slaven/Esleven/etc. of North Carolina. This would be a male Slaven/Slavin who can go through his father, grandfather, great-grandfather, etc. to Alexander via his sons James B., Franklin, Newton, or George. In the 19th and early 20th century descendants were mostly in Texas, Oklahoma, and New Mexico. If this describes you or a family member-- or are unsure-- contact me at iarooster@earthlink.net. Funding is available to cover most or all of the testing cost.

(This Alexander Slaven should not to be confused with the Alexander Slaven b. 1815 Campbell County, TN, died 1897 Wayne County, KY, a son of Richard Harve Slaven. And for the hundreds of Ancestry trees that have this Alexander as a son of John and Elizabeth (Stuart) Slaven— no, just no. A woman born ca. 1726 is NOT having a baby in 1795.)

Elizabeth "Betsy" Slavon/Slavey.
Update: One of Betsy's descendants has graciously allowed me to look at her AncestryDNA matches, and they're what would be expected if Betsy was a daughter of William (the saddler) Slaven: a couple dozen matches with descendants of Richard Harve Slaven, a few matches with descendants of Robert Slaven and of John Slavin. Would still like to hear from other descendants to check that the results are similar.

Looking for any descendants of Betsy Slavon of North Carolina, b. abt. 1787, who married Abraham Sharp and lived in Logan County, Kentucky-- especially descendants who have tested with AncestryDNA and can search for Slaven/Slavin matches (or will give me temporary access to their results so I may search). Betsy had at least three children who had children: Anthony (married Lourany Lyons), Elizabeth (married Abraham Lyons), and Nancy (married George Tinsley). From matches with a couple of Richard Harve Slaven's descendants I believe Betsy is a daughter of William (the saddler) and Jane Bailey Slaven... or possibly of Robert Slaven. Looking at Slaven matches from the account of one of Betsy's descendants could be enlightening. (Or, if you're a descendant of Richard Harve Slaven, John of Garrard, or Robert of Georgia/Indiana, I can give you instructions on how to look for Betsy's descendants. Or I can look myself with temporary guest access to your results.)

I've written an analysis of the first Big Y-700 test results in the Slaven DNA project. These detsiled tests show that the Robert Slaven of Georgia/Indiana line, John Slavin of Kentucky line, and the Richard Harve Slaven line have a common ancestor born ca. 1708— pretty much dead-on for it being William Slaven/Esleven/etc. of Rowan County, North Carolina. The John Slaven of Virgina line does not connect to this line until you go back approximately 1,900 years, well before surnames were used in Ireland. Looks like I'll have to update the 20-year old web pages here that thought the connection was closer!

Civil War pension files: I got an email from Amy Billerbeck, who has been scanning Civil War pension files at the National Archives in Washington, D.C., for soldiers or survivors with a Miller County, Missouri connection. Through the NARA's Citizen Scanning Project the scanned files end up on the NARA website so that any descendant, researcher, or interested party can see the file for free. Amy has scanned the files for Henry B. Slavens and for Daniel Fletcher Slavens and you can view them or download them as a pdf at those links.

In doing a search on the NARA site, I found several other Civil War pension files available. Links are below; I hope to create a page in the Military section here with these links, Revolutionary War pension file links, and others that I turn up. But I've got a lot of things going on at the moment and wanted to get these links out now.

Rachel Slavens, widow of Samuel Slavens, Medal of Honor winner.
Elizabeth Slavens, mother of James H. Slavens of Larence County, Ohio.
Eleanor Slaven(s), mother of William Slavens of Vigo County, Indiana.
Elizabeth Slavens Peters, wife of Clinton J. Peters.
Elizabeth Hazlett Slavens, widow of William H. Slavens of Mercer County, Missouri.
Eliza Miller Slavin, widow of Erasmus M. Slavin of Scotland County, Missouri.

I stumbled across a couple YouTube videos that descendants of Richard Harve Slaven could be interested in. "Big South Fork- No Business, Looking for the remains of Richard Harve Slaven’s Homesite, or a hike looking for the homesteads of Charlie, Nimrod, and Dewey Slaven. "Papaw in the Woods" has posted a ton of videos of hikes in the Big South Fork area; this should pull up the full list.

Last fall, I started working with a Richard Harve Slaven descendant to take a new look like at his life. New records have become available, older records become more accessable (like FamilySearch "filmstrips" now available online), DNA testing has becoming more popular, etc., so maybe we could get a more definitive answer on his parentage and other questions. A major discovery has been made. But first, let's cast a critical eye at Richard's "accepted" date of birth and supposed parents. Another post will follow around June 10. I've also updated the the other posts on that North Carolina Kin for clarity.

The Big Y-700 test results are in now for a descendant of John Slavin of Garrard County, KY, Richard Harve Slavey/Slaven, Robert Slaven of Georgia/Indiana, and John Slaven of Highland County, VA. It shows the first three are all closely related (as expected as descendants of William and Isabel (Luckey) Slaven of Pennsylvania/Rowan County, NC), and that the John Slaven of Virgina line split off at minimum 1,800 years ago, well before surnames were used in Ireland. So no, William of NC and John of VA are not brothers, father/son, cousins, or anything of the sort. I'll have more details later.

We've added another person to the"Cousins DNA Registry," the father of a person already in the registry. Since Dad has twice as much Slaven DNA as his son, go check your results against Thomas Sexton and see if you're a match!

Descendants of John Slavin of Garrard County, KY, of Richard Harve Slaven/Slavey, or of Robert Slaven of Georgia/Indiana who have been tested by AncestryDNA: would you please search your matches' trees for the Strange surname and let me know if you have any, especially if the match's Strange ancestor is in the 1700's or 1800's? Email me at iarooster@earthlink.net

I've rectified an omission from the "Cousins DNA Registry," a listing for a family that's been in Australia since the mid-19th century or before. Can you help Geordy get "back across the pond"? I've also tweaked the Y-DNA extended results page to remove the speculated "bridge" test results that had been placed between Groups A and B. Since Big Y-DNA testing shows Groups A and B split approximately 1800 years ago--long before surnames-- there's no "bridge" family line between them.

I've added a new subsection to the site for the research that's been done the past few months on the North Carolina Slaven/Sleven/Slavin/Eslevin/etc. families. So far there's a short post explaining a naming convention to hopefully help people keep track of which person is being referred to, since there are so many instances of fathers, sons, cousin, etc. with the same name. And there's also an essay on when records confuse rather than clarify a person's life. Coming will be essays on the parentage of Richard Harve Slaven/Slavey, on the Gates County line, on what advanced DNA testing is telling us, perhaps more.

We have a new person for our "Cousins DNA Registry," a listing of people who have taken an autosomal DNA test (and where they have tested, information on their Slaven/Slevin/etc. family). Jenny reports that her Slevin family is from (Northern) Ireland and emigrated to Australia, and that she's had matches with a descendant of a Slevin from County Fermanagh, close to the border of County Tyrone, and with three different descendant of John Slaven and Elizabeth Stuart.

I have added a nice batch of early deeds, wills, and court minutes records for North Carolina, Kentucky, and Tennessee, the fruits of a search to learn more about the William Slaven/Esleven/etc. family of Rowan County, North Carolina, and if/how the Richard Harve Slaven/Slavey, John Slavin of Garrard County, Kentucky, and Robert Slaven of Georgia/Indiana families connect. Work is continuing. Find links to the new and updated record pages on the Courthouse page. Update: I've also added a few deeds to the Arkansas page; I suspect these gentlemen are the Rowan County, North Carolina > Georgia line. I've also added some Kentucky marriages.

A little update...

...to the missive below: Upgrades to the "Big Y-700" test have been ordered for a descendant of Richard Harve Slaven, John Slavin of Garrard County, Robert Slaven of Georgia/Indiana, and John Slaven of County Tyrone. Results for the descendants of the two Johns are in, and the Richard descendant's results should be here any day. I'll keep giving progress reports! Further update: Through analysis of will, deed, court, and other records, I had created a working theory as to the parents of Richard Harve Slaven and of other connections in the Rowan/Iredell County family. I have found a tree on Ancestry that has those same connections; I've exchanged emails with the tree owner and confirmed that the birth/marriage/death information come from a family Bible.

  • (Done. Although a couple more may be added soon.) A couple additions to the Slaven Cousins Registry. My apologies for missing an update this spring.
  • Scans of a couple handmade descendacy "reports" from the Richard Harve Slaven family. It includes some names I haven't seen before.
  • An update about using advanced DNA testing to more conclusively show that Richard Harve Slaven/Slavey, Robert Slaven, and John Slavin of Garrard County, KY are closely related (through William and Isabell Luckie Slaven of North Carolina?), and show that John Slaven of Highland County, VA is not closely related. There's been an explosion of family trees on Ancestry purporting that William of NC and John of VA are brothers, sons of a "Patrick and Ann Rogers Slaven." (Can someone show a source for Patrick being the father of either one that isn't just someone else's tree?)
  • Probably more newspaper clippings. I've got quite a backlog.

Attention descendants of John Slavin of Rowin Co., NC/Garrard Co., KY, and of Robert Slaven of Georgia/Gibson Co., IN, and Richard Harve Slaven of Tennessee.

Y-DNA testing indicates that these families are connected, possibly through William and Isabell (Luckey) Slaven of Rowin Co., NC. Let's look hard for autosomal DNA connections between the families with the Ancestry DNA test. The connection between families would be far enough back that many descendants of these family lines won't show a connection simply because so little Slaven DNA has been passed down that it can't be differentiated from random matching segments. But if enough descendants have tested (and the families truly are related) we may find matches. For example, I have many matches with descendants of Isaiah Slavens's brothers and sisters; our common ancestors (John and Elizabeth (Stuart) Slaven) would be contemporaneous with the common ancestor of the Richard/John/Robert families.

If you are a descendant of one of these family lines and have done the AncestryDNA test:

Set up a family tree at Ancestry and attach it to the DNA results. (You do not have to have an Ancestry subscription to post a tree.) It doesn't have to be a detailed tree or trace back all your family lines; getting it back to your Slaven/Slavin/Slavey ancestors is sufficient.

Make the tree public, or searchable if private, so that we can find you as we search for DNA matches.

While not necessary, dropping me a line with your Ancestry ID will also help in identifying matches. PLEASE send me this info if you don't have the time to make a tree, or have one that is private and unsearchable, but still want to help.

If you're a descendant of one of these families and haven't yet been tested, or have tested elsewhere, consider testing at Ancestry. The more descendants that have tested, the more likely we are of finding DNA matches if the families are connected.

If you have questions or suggestions, email me! FamilyTreeDNA has been sold to an Australian DNA company, myDNA. According to an email sent to project managers announcing the sale, "Our head office and laboratory remain in Houston, Texas, and our dedicated team members will continue to operate as FamilyTreeDNA and Gene by Gene." My guess is that the Y-DNA testing, autosomal DNA testing ("FamilyFinder"), mitochondrial DNA testing, and surname and location-based DNA projects will remain unchanged with. As myDNA is heavily involved in using DNA to craft diet and fitness plans for clients (see their website), my guess would be that the biggest change for people who have already tested with FTDNA is that they may start getting emails from them promoting similar "lifestyle" tests and benefits. That said, it wouldn't hurt for people to make note of or contact their DNA matches in the near future just in case changes are made. April 5 update: Just received a survey from FTDNA with questions about the types of tests I've taken, where else I've tested, and my interest in the testing that they offer elsewhere. I encourage those who receive the survey to respond; it only takes two or three minutes.

Andy Slaven shared some photos of the historic Slavin Parish church in County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland, taken in 2019. You can find the link on our "photos" page.Thanks, Andy!

Jane Slavens shared photos of a GAR memorial to Civil War veterans in Pike County, Illinois, that honors Zachariah M. Slavens, among others. She also shared a Facebook post from the Pike County Heritage Museum that featured many photos relating to Civil War Medal of Honor winner Samuel Slavens. Find the embedded post on our Links page.

If you're stuck at home and are bored, send me your info for the The Slaven Cousins DNA Registry, scans of family photos for our Photos page, obituaries, bios, or anything Slaven/Slavens/Slavin/Slevin/etc. related!

We have a new person and family line in The Slaven Cousins DNA Registry, the line of Daniel Fletcher Slavens. Slavens family researchers may be familiar with the "strange" story of Daniel Fletcher Slavens. It was always said/suspected that he had several children with Sarah (Garner) Strange after her husband John Strange died. Y-DNA testing of male descendants of DF Slavens from his marriage to Martha Hall and from Sarah Strange matched, showing (at least in the tested case) the supposition was true. But the Y-DNA testing also showed that they did not match descendants of John Slaven of Highland County; surprising, as DF Slavens's father William B. Slavens was suspected to be a son or grandson of John's sons William or Daniel, who migrated from Virginia to Tennessee and did not leave substantial records. Autosomal testing could also help confirm the relationships, but there's an additional wrinkle-- Sarah Garner Strange's mother was a Rebecca Slavens, who is also suspected to be a daughter or granddaughter of William or Daniel Slavens of Tennessee. So... descendants of DF Slavens and Martha Hall would not be expected to match with Slavens descendants, unless it's through another branch of their family. But descendants of Sarah Garner Strange-- with either DF Slavens or John Strange-- could match with other Slavens descendants as Sarah's mother was a Slavens. (I say "could" match because the connection would be far enough back that descendants from the two lines may not share enough DNA to be identified as a match.)

This would be a nice collaborative project, checking matches between the Strange and DF Slavens lines with other Slavens families. It also might be possible-- although tough, considering the number of generations involved-- to determine the true paternal line of DF Slavens. The Y-DNA testing hinted that it might be "Gore."

Here's a nice blog with instructions on how to download your autosomal DNA data from each of the major companies and upload it elsewhere, such as to GEDmatch.

Descendants of Richard Harve Slaven/Slavey might be interested in this newspaper story about hiking in the No Business area.

A Slaven Y-DNA Project member (ID B003) has upgraded his test to 111 markers, and it shows close kinship to the 111 marker test results of a descendant of John Slaven of County Tyrone, Ireland/Highland County, Virginia (ID B001). We currently only display Y-DNA test results up to 67 markers; however, you can see the full results at the FamilyTreeDNA Slaven Project results page. The two men do not share enough autosomal DNA to show as a match in the FTDNA FamilyFinder test; this is not surprising since the common ancestor would be at least 300 years and eight or more generation in the past.

Attention Richard Harve Slaven descendants.
The Oneida (Tennessee) Independent Herald had a nice story on the (former) No Business community, and Richard Harve Slaven and a few of his descendants. It's probably not news to family who still live in the Big South Fork area, but it appears to be a good overview for the general public. You can find it here. A quick scan of used book sites don't come up with any copies of Dusty Bits of the Forgotten Past, which is mentioned in the story.

About this site

This is a private, noncommercial educational site for the free exchange of information. It is not associated with Ancestry, Rootsweb, MyFamily, or any commercial site. (That means no banner ads, no pop-up or pop-under windows, no unsolicited email!)

All content on this site is believed to be compliant with U.S. copyright law and Fair Use provisions.

Because the site is an outgrowth of my personal research, it's tilted towards the Slavens surname. But that's easily fixed-- contribute your Slavin, Slevin, etc. data for the site! Here are some of the types of information that you can share:

Census transcriptions Census returns can be a gold mine of information for both the beginning and the experienced researcher, but many people don't have easy access to films. Finding your family in a transcription here makes requesting a film or a lookup much more worthwhile, so won't you share? We need people who have access to their state's Soundex indexes and are willing to transcribe the Slaven(s), Slavin, Slevin, etc. entries! It's S415 and you'll see about 20 Sullivans for each Slaven.

Biographies and reminiscences Share the bios from county history books, reminiscences from ancestors, old family letters, your own memories, the family history that was written for a reunion decades ago...

Obituaries Transcriptions of obituaries and death notices.

Photographs Share family photos, or photos of grave sites. Photos continue to be the most popular items on the site.

Links Do you have or know of a family-related site? Does a GenWeb county site offer information on a branch of the family? Share it here!

Other help! Other information that doesn't fit the categories above is also welcome.

All corrections, suggestions, criticisms, etc. are welcome too! Be sure to put Slaven, Slavin, and something meaningful in the subject line-- I get tons of spam so an email with no subject or "Hi!" will probably be deleted unread!

snail mail Larry Slavens
7018 Airline Ave.
Des Moines, IA 50322
email iarooster@earthlink.net

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