John Welch1

M, #216, b. circa 1520, d. circa 1568
Last Edited=26 Sep 2007
Welch Branch
     John Welch, was born circa 1520 at Dunscore, Dunfrieshire, Scotland. He was also known as John Welch of Coliston Coliston is in the parish of Dunscore, Dunfrieshire, Scotland, bordering on Craigenputtock..1

In Welch Records in Sumter District and Other Areas of South Carolina Book 1, by Brian E. Welch, he states the following:

"Where did they come from? The primary source cited is by Leonardo Adrea's Collection at the Caroliniana Library in Columbia SC. In addition, there are many manuscripts and genealogies that cite similar explanations as to the question 'Where did they come from?'

"Early Welch History involving South Carolina and the John Knox connection...:
     1. John Welch of Coliston-parish of Dunscave, Dunfrieshire, Scotland, born 1520-1568 and married Marian Grier.

     2. Rev. John Welch of Ayre (1558-1662) married Elizabeth Knox, the daughter of the Reformer John Knox.

     3. Rev. Josias Welch of Temple Patrick (1590-1634).
     4. John Welch of Irongray (1612-1681), and active Covenanter.
     5. Thomas Welch (born ca. 1645 in Scotland) married Jane and came to Charleston, SC around 1682. Two known sons: Walter & James. James* and family moved to Pennsylvania. Walter remained in South Carolina.

     6. Walter Welch ca 1698-1754 married Mary.
     7. James Welch born ca 1733 married Elizabeth Ervin on christmas Day 1755.**

     8. Richard Welch born 1762 Sumter SC of Revolutionary War eventually moved to Natchez, Mississippi.

Future searchers should not the following:

Many do not believe this descendancy from John Welch of Coliston.

* his children migrated to Pennsylvania prior to James going to PA.
** It is stated that James Welch and Elizabeth Ervin had issue of:
John Welch, Ann Welch, Mary Welch, Thomas Welch, Richard Welch. It is further stated that all of the children perished in an epidemic except for Richard Welch.

This compiler can NOT find any evidence that John Welch, Ann Welch, Mary Welch and Thomas Welch perished in an epidemic. Furthermore, I am unable to agree with the older statements that James Welch, son of Thomas b. 1645 and Jane, known as James Welch of Paxtang is connected to our Sumter District Welches. However, I do believe that our James Welch of Sumter District did remove from Charleston SC.

When first starting a search for the early Welches of Sumter District, the older generation cited one of four stories, with little variation, as to our origin:

1. Came from Charleston.
2. Came from Welch's Neck from around Society Hill, SC.
3. Came from Albemarle Sound (now NC) by way of Pennsylvania or Upnorth.
4. Came from Wales, were Presbyterians, and descend from John Knox.

Over the past 17 years, this compiler has searched these possibilities with the hope of proving or disproving the contentions. It is with regret that I am unable to fulfill my original objective with any clarity and evidence...

I have cited this history in order to be fair and show some value to our family stories, traditions and pride. In addition, this tradition has been around for about 300 years. Without these family values, we would be unable to write about, have friendly disagreements and enjoy our histories."

Brian Welch further states that he believes that the Sumter County Progenitors that lived in Sumter District prior to 1815 and are our likely ancestors are James Welch of Douglas Swamp; Thomas Welch SW on Lynches Creek, Henry Welch of Pudden Swamp and Redding Swamp, John Welch of Neland Branch on S side of Lynches Creek, Daniel Welch of Boggy Gulley; Samuel Welch of NW side of James Welch's land at Players Branch on waters of Pudden Swamp, and Richard Welch of the South Side of Lynches Creek bordering the land of Stephen Jones.2

John Welch married Marion Crier.1

John Welch died circa 1568.


  1. [S27] Unpublished genealogy of Richard Welch and descendents, W. S. Welch Document, June 1950, a printed copy is in the personal records of this researcher, Florence, Pinal County, Arizona.
  2. [S100] Brian E. (Gene) Welch, Welch Records in Sumter District and Other Areas of South Carolina, Book 1 (419 Arbor Drive, Columbia, SC 29206-5004: Privately published, 1995). Hereinafter cited as Welch Records.