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 Welcome to the DERRY Y-DNA Project

English (Staffordshire) DERRY line.

Wills have an ancient history in England, but official records of baptisms, marriages and burials for ordinary people were not kept until the reign of Elizabeth 1 (1533-1603). From these fragmented and fragile records comes the first gleanings in Staffordshire of the surname DERRIE, DERRY and  its variations.
The earliest found being the baptism of John DERRIE at St Mary, Lichfield on 19 January 1607/8.  
John DERRIE (probably the same one) next appears in the Protestation Rolls of 1640 at Ediall (a small hamlet close to Lichfield).
The discovery of the Wills of yet another John DERRY (almost certainly the son or grandson of the previous John) and his wife Dorothy nee BAGNALL were exciting to behold as there is no mention of the couple in any parish register apart from their marriage in 1643 at St Michael, Lichfield, however their Wills recorded all their children from whom most Staffordshire DERRYs are descended.
Furthermore, DNA testing has now given the descendants of this family a tantalising and exciting glimpse of their history long predating written records.



The DERRY line out of Frederick Co., MD, Loudoun Co., VA and the Harper’s Ferry area of Jefferson Co., VA (now WV) are of German descent. This has been confirmed primarily through church records.
The spelling DERRY is the Americanized version. The earliest record of documentation is the marriage of two men at the German Reformed Church in Frederick Co., MD. Balthasar DORRE (Doerry)married Barbara Henckel(in) in March of 1759.  
Peter DORRE (Doerry) marriedCatharina Feldman(n) in May of 1761.   Both spellings have an umlaut over the OE in the old German hand-writing. By 1783 both men had settled in Loudoun Co., VA. One theory is that they emigrated as children with their families in 1752 from Oberhofen, Germany based on a DIERY entry in a Palentine Passenger List but this has not been confirmed.
During the Revolutionary war, there is record of a married couple serving with the
British Army as enscripted German Hessians. Valentin DOERING and his wife, Mollie, served from Witzenhausen in the Hesse-Kassel Feld-Jaeger Corps, Co. 5. They deserted to serve on the Patriot side with Daniel Morgan’s Riflemen. After the war, they relocated and “came up over the mountains” settling in Georges Twp., Fayette Co., PA about 1812.
DNA testing had provided an exact 12-point match linking the PA line with the VA line but exact relationship has not been confirmed.  
Some descendants of these two ancestral families stayed in the Loudoun Co., VA, Harper’s Ferry, WV, and SW PA area but many traveled westward. The VA line can be found primarily in Ohio, Illinois and Iowa.   The PA line can be found primarily in Indiana, Illinois and Missouri.
The spelling of this surname as been recorded as DERRY, DERREY, DERY, DEREY, DARY, DAREY, DARRY, DAIRY, DEARY, DEARING, DURRY, DORRY, DIRRY, DEERRY, and the earlier versions of DORRE, DOERRY, DOERING and DIERY.


Surname DNA testing is the newest tool available to genealogists. These tests help genealogists verify their paternal ancestry (father's father) in a quick and easy way. It saves time, prevents mistakes, and provides invaluable data that can be obtained in no other way.


This Family Project is started to:

1. Help researchers on common or related families work together to find their common heritage  (See the Patriarch Page)

2. Identify the DNA of the ancestor families and compile them and their lost branches into distinct genetic lineages through DNA matches

Useful Links

World Families Network Forums
     Derry Family Forum
     Pedigree Forum
     World Families Network General Discussion

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