Ancestors have been of interest to me
since childhood, and serious collection and study began in 1952-53.
First, my father and mother lived with Francis Marion Duckworth, who
had no children. He passed on early history of the family in North
Carolina and Georgia to my parents, who passed it on to me. The most
important item was John Williamson Duckworth, father of Francis Marion
Duckworth. John Williamson Duckworth had a first cousin, James
Duckworth, who was a Baptist preacher near Brevard, North Carolina.
From that point on it has been search and study, compare and change
data in the areas of Transylvania, Burke, and Mecklenburg Counties,
North Carolina. All by the name Duckworth in these counties were
recorded in census, church, newspaper, and war records, as well as the
individual stories of their descendants.
Correspondence with Ms. Roberta Wakefield, past president of the
National Genealogical Society, and with the late W.B. Duckworth,
Attorney, 2126 East 24, Tulsa, Oklahoma (3-16-57), the first serious
researchers of the family that I know of, encouraged me with my study.
Then in the 1960s I was contacted by Malcolm Gardner, descendant of
Williams Duckworth of Anson County, North Carolina, Pendleton District,
South Carolina, Mississippi, and Arkansas. Mr. Malcolm Gardner was with
the U.S. Park Service and had majored in history in college. In my
opinion, Mr. Gardner was a first class researcher and the first
thorough researcher of the records of the Duckworth family. He was
careful not to make any statements not backed up with official records.
He did much research of the family in Burlington County, New Jersey,
Frederick County, Virginia, Cumberland County, North Carolina, and
Pendleton District, South Carolina. The correspondence with Ms.
Wakefield and W.B. Duckworth and copies of much of the research of
Malcolm Gardner are included in "The Duckworth Collection."
In 1990, I submitted several pounds of correspondence, research notes,
family briefs, outlines, etc. to the Mormon Family Library, Salt Lake
City, Utah, for microfilming. It is known as "The Duckworth
Collection." Copies of the collection may be obtained through
interlibrary loan at any Mormon Church library. Also, copies of "The
Duckworth Collection" have been placed in the Burke County Library,
Morganton, North Carolina, The Brevard Library, Brevard, North
Carolina, The East Tennessee Historical Society Library, Knoxville,
Tennessee, and The Young Harris College Library, Young Harris,
No effort to publish any history of the family is planned. A brief
outline of the family was given to the families of my father's brothers
and sisters. This paper will not be published but will be distributed
to relatives and other interested people on computer diskettes. One can
take the diskette and add his or her branch of the family.
In closing, let me say this has been an interesting study and
undertaking. Over the years I have met some very interesting people,
but the greatest enjoyment was being able to pass on to others those
items which have been obtained by careful research.