The Ancestry of Zachariah Dutton: How He Fits Into the Duttons of Charles County, Maryland

Our progenitor Zachariah Dutton (Ancestry Tree) first appears in records in Charles County, Maryland, in 1778. There had been a Dutton family living in Charles County since 1680, the descendants of Thomas Dutton and Elizabeth Hill, and we have always believed that Zachariah Dutton is connected to them somehow.

There has been a lot of speculation about Zachariah’s ancestral connections, some of which has become quite pervasive in public family trees on Ancestry.com. On Ancestry, it appears that if many people list something, it tends to be accepted as true — but often, misinformation is repeated by almost everybody as fact simply because it is repeated by almost everybody. In the case of Zachariah Dutton, we have documentation that disproves the apparent common consensus — that Zachariah was the son of Gerrard Dutton of Charles County, Maryland — and DNA that indicates he is not a patrilineal descendant of these Duttons at all.

In this article, I would like to do my best to clear up some of this confusion, first by summarizing what we know of Zachariah Dutton, then by examining the possible points where Zachariah could connect to the family of Thomas Dutton of Charles County, and finally by examining the DNA evidence.

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