This portion deals with the several possible Scenarios of The Helms saga:
 1) English/Barbados
 2) Rhode Island
 3) Irish
 4) German
 5) Bethlehem, PA, Possibly Bethlehem TWP, Hunterdon Co., NJ
 6) Dutch and Holstein
 7) Swedish
 8) Religion
 9) French
10) Summary
11) Table which shows the locations of people having names associated with the Helms.

The English/Barbados Connection

Barbados was settled starting in 1627.  There were no Helm(s) in the list of original Barbados settlers in 1634.  But Helms are listed as immigrants to the American Colonies from Barbados as early as Major Thomas in 1675 and Major John and Thomas in 1679, but were but not listed in available birth records there, but  were in their parent's wills.  Major Thomas Helmes held 134 acres of land and Captain Thomas Helmes held 60 (view Barbados Map).  Major John Helme had 200 acres, according to John Medford, a researcher in Barbados.  Both Thomas's had more than 50 servants and slaves, according to Parish Registers there.  The wife of the first Major Thomas Helme was Sarah, Will summaries, for both Major Thomas and his wife Sarah, are available.  These provide a good glimpse at their children and at least some of their children's partners.  It appears that there was a son, John, the son of Thomas; and, one Thomas, son of Thomas and Sarah, a Colonel (possibly awarded that rank posthumously).  Analysis of these Barbados Helme/Helms generations is ongoing.  The exact places of settlement of these Helmes have not been determined.  The military activity of these Helmes was in the Militia, not the regular English Army, according to J. Medford.

There were numerous Elmes in England and the Caribbean. Some have been shown to have migrated to the continent in Colonial times. Some to New England and SC. We have not discovered and in our lines; However we have carried along extensive work on this. Also there was some Falkenburg data in Barbados.

The William found there may be significant.  The results of my searches in the Library of Congress and those in Barbados by Medford and Susan Grimshaw are discussed in Appendix A.  Recent disclosures by Susan Grimshaw, from her 3 visits to Barbados, have generally confirmed, and extended, the information we had on Barbados.  She tried to get enlarged versions of the Barbadian Helmes wills in England, since some possessions in England were mentioned.  However, that did not succeed.

A review of Barbados History shows that the collapse of the sugar trade and the English disturbances leading to the Cromwell regime may be factors in the Helme's migration from Barbados. The arrival of the Helme's in Barbados
coincides with the demise of Charles I, and the return to the reign of Charles II in 1666 caused many in Barbados to have their land titles from the Commonwealth period to be questioned.

There were Catholic-Protestant struggles in Barbados of which we do not have information. We do know that some of the English Helme's were Catholic in Lancashire, England. Susan Grimshaw is developing a rationale where the Helme's in Dorset County, England, were involved with Barbados. One George Helme had a brewery in London. A link with Barbadian sugar is a potential. Recent searches in St. Christophers (Kits) mention the sale of former Jesuit property there. That Catholic phase is not documented.

The French had moved into the Great Lakes in 1673, but that seems a long way from Barbados.  However, the French had Caribbean Settlements and naval friction could have been a factor, and the friction between them was widespread.  In a later time, King George's War (1744-48) broke out in the Caribbean because of trade conflicts, which had likely begun before that time.  By 1761 the French Navy and Merchant Marine had been demolished, but that opened the door for French piracy in the Caribbean.  Also, Barbados is a small 160 sq. mile island and could have become crowded. 

Moses Helms (sp. Hellim) had a lot at the Raritan River in Piscataway in 1740.  The settlement at Piscataway was established by a Barbadian, Captain William Standiford, for whom several pieces of land were found in Barbados.  A Welsh promoted Baptist Church had been founded at Piscataway in New Barbados TWP in about 1700.  It would be logical to link Moses or the NC Helms brothers with the Welsh Baptist church there, and the Welsh Baptist/Presbyterian groups in the PA/DE area.  Moses established a Presbyterian Church in VA, later, possibly because of his wife's influence.  The Jamison's in PA were Presbyterian.  (Moses wife's family, Jamison, was not explicitly found in PA; but, Jamison's were found in Baltimore and NY in 1703, and extensively in PA, particularly in Warwick TWP at Jamison, PA.)  Her father's name is supposed to have been William.  There were timely Jamestown in Lancashire, England who have not been searched.  There were Baptists in Lancashire, too who have not been searched either.

The Helms in NC were Baptist. I associate their Primitive Baptist church with the English Particular Baptist branch, because of having similar practices. Recent information traces the Helms Church to the Welsh settlement in SC, most definitely (see note from W. Helms of SC.) However, Baptist-like principles are to be found in Dutch, and German and French Reformed groups such as the Huguenots in France.

Additional data has been found for Barbados.  However, data for additional Helmes and associated families has been found throughout the Caribbean.  That will be dealt with in the English Section.  The disappointing thing is that, so far, none have been definitely found to have come from the Caribbean and having a definite trail here.

In addition, much new data has been found relative to England itself, which will also be reported in the English Section.

In lost Virginia records recovered from England, a William Helms and a George Tilman/Tilghman have been found in Prince Georges County, Va. about 1704.  George is tied to Christopher Tilghman/Tilman who had settled in Charles City County, VA earlier.  William may tie to the Virginia Pioneer, John Helme/Hilme, at Jamestown early 1600's, which is about 30 miles away.  There was a Tilghman girl Elizabeth (b. 1694) in Christopher's line who may have been the Helms brothers' Mother. William may be the father.  This information comes from Mrs. Grimshaw.  See the following sections for details. 

We have long known that the basic HELM/HELME/HELMS name was spelled a number of ways in England, and elsewhere, and some of the spellings have persisted until today, more or less establishing independent lines.  We have a collection of  data for Barbados settlers which shows some of those spellings.  Even the spelling HOLMES was sometimes  used interchangeably with Helmes.   Therefore, we have to extend our searches to those variations. One reason is that data for decades in Barbados is sparse and by considering those names, maybe we can better establish connections to the American mainland, and by that reflect back to England for their origins. 

In addition, we have found a number of other lines connected with the HELMES in Barbados and, possibly, by a little looking around, we will be able to better trace people to America.  As an example, Broome is a name which occurs together with the HELMES in the Caribbean and the HELMS in America, and there are others. 

A collection of such data, grouped in lines for various families found in Barbados, is shown in this table.  To view the table CLICK HERE.  Broome's and Jones are examples of possible connections found both here and there.  The reason the connections with the mainland are so sparse is that many of the  Ship's Passenger listings have been lost because of the Bridgetown fire, the many hurricanes, the tropical climate, and neglect, as discussed elsewhere in this website. 

The Rhode Island Connection (Christopher HELME/ELME - 1632)

Christopher Elme/Helme of Long Sutton, Lincolnshire, England settled in RI.  His children were born after about 1700 and his grandchildren were born after about 1730; therefore, Christopher was not likely to have been a direct ancestor of the NC Helms.  A data file for Christopher Helme is located on this site.  Click here to access that data in a new window.  The link at the bottom of the page will take you elsewhere.

Christopher had great-grandchildren named Thomas and Jonathan who would have been born one generation later than the NC Helms brothers.  Thus, Christopher Helme of RI is not seen by this writer as a root person in the NC Helms Brothers lines.  I do not know if William Helme of Long Sutton, Lincolnshire, England had other children who came here.  That William had three wives.  The relationship, if any, of the families of Thomas Helme of Goosnargh and William (father of Christopher) of Long Sutton have not been defined.  Sarah Helme's will in Barbados said that son Barraby/Barrely returned to England.  A search for him there has been made without success, unless the name was a nickname and, in England, he was listed as Barnabus, who was found on a timely basis.  Some of the Helm children were educated in France.  It is possible that Barrely did not actually go to England from Barbados.

Joseph W., Nathan, and Byron Helme were said to have been in MA Colony, along with Rozetta (Helms) Williams.  Helms could have followed Roger Williams to RI, since Rozetta was married into the Williams family.  There were a number of Williams in the MA Colony.  It is not known if any or all went to RI with Roger.  So far as I know, no descendants of the MA Helms are known.  Any possible relation between Christopher and Joseph, Nathan and Byron Helme is not known.  A group from the MA Colony migrated to Greenwich, Fenwick's Colony in Salem, NJ. No list has been found.  They probably founded a Baptist Church in NJ.  There is considerable confusion of the Helme and Holme names there.  Also, it appears that the New England Helmes used the Elme/Elam/etc. spellings rather than the "H" spelling.  They are traceable with that revised spelling.

No significant new data has been found by our research group, but Don Strahle of Canada has considerably expanded the lists of descendants of the original Christopher Helme/Elme of Rhode Island.  He has published his book and is working on the Allied families.  It continues to be felt that there is no connection with the Helms brothers in NC, in 1747.

The Irish Connection

In my review of the Moses Helms material which I have - looking for something on his being in or coming from Dublin-- I rediscovered some Hibernian Research Company material which Gerald Helms had sent me earlier.  In it, there was some information on an Isaac Helme (Hilme).  They mention a Will of Isaac Helme (Hilme) of Dublin City in 1688. He was listed as a "clothier".

Just recently, we have followed up the prior Irish search by Hibernian with a researcher in Dublin.  The results may be seen on another page, Click Here  to view the results.  Ms. Byrne found additional data on Helme people in Ireland.  These two efforts are inconclusive except to show that there were persons with Helms related surnames in Ireland in the right time period for us.  However, this data does not show any movement of these people towards America.  It does indicate that more attention should be paid to Ireland.

It is known that the Polk family from Robert and Magdalene Pollock/Polk, who were associated with the Helms in NC did come to America through Ireland, the family having originated in Scotland.  There, the name is also listed as Pollock and some Polk settlers continued that spelling here.  Extensive data exists for Polk/Pollocks in MD, PA and NC.  It is planned to have a Polk section in this website in the future.

We did find data which showed that Moses and Thomas Helm came here from Dublin and that Thomas appeared in Cecil Co, MD Court for Ann Drenon, in 1716.

Pertinent date abstracted from the will is repeated here for convenience:

Isaac Hilme/Helme of Dublin, Clothier, 6 July 1688, proved 16 July, 1688.

Wife Sarah (Deane?)
Children Martha and Deborah

Brother, Abraham Helme
Sister Sarah, wife of John Wade
Nephew, John (son of Abraham) probably born about 1650, Niece Deborah (Daughter of Abraham)

Daniel Falkner
Richard Tolkin (?)
Anthony Sharp
Henry Mason

There was another 1696 will for Sarah Helme, alias Deane, widow, likely the widow of the Isaac Helme/Hilme above.

I also note that they did not find any sons of Isaac in the above Will, but suggested further searching in Church records there but had run out of funds on the requested search.  They searched records of several Dublin Churches.  My view would be that the births of that Isaac's children were not in Dublin, possibly not even in Ireland in about 1650.  Several items in the collections of family stories involve Dublin.  My idea had been that they were transients; but if they were early Protestants, or Catholics, they may well have had to get out of England in the 1600's.  The English immigration to Londonderry County, Ireland began about 1613.  Records show that some Irish Presbyterians (likely Scots) emigrated to Boston, with Potatoes, in 1718.   It may be significant that this Irish Isaac was a clothier, similarly to George Helm at Winchester, VA and Moses Helim at Piscataway, NJ.

I like the name Sarah for Isaac's wife - it fits my idea about what the name would have been for Tilman's mother (Sarah, Elizabeth, or Mary).  This fits in with the English habit of reusing the same names over and over in succeeding generations.  Anyway, someone who died in 1688 obviously would not have been the father of Tilman.  He might have been a grandfather.  The nephew, John Helme, in the Will is interesting.  I'd guess nephew, John, and daughters, Martha, and Deborah were born about 1650 +/- 10 years, depending on the age of Isaac at death.  The idea of John and Isaac Helms there is itself interesting.  My list of possible names of the father are William, James, and John, rather than Isaac.  Anyway, I assume that Gerald did not ask them to continue a search at Dublin, since it looked unpromising there.  Abraham might have been a younger brother of Isaac; so, there may have been other sons of Abraham later, and the absence of listed sons in the will does not necessarily mean that there were no sons of Isaac.  The will does prove that there were Helme's in Ireland.  A better place to look would have been Londonderry or Armagh Counties.  I would associate the people leaving from Dublin as caused by the fact that it was an oceangoing port.

In about 1610, numerous German "Palatine Protestants" were sent to Ireland by the English.  Some were settled in Dublin, some in Western Ireland.  Their identification and disposition has not been addressed.  Likely some came here, some are known to have gone back to England

Bob Law, who wrote the book on Moses Helm, thinks that Moses may have come from Tyrone County, Ireland.  Also, it seems to me that, at most points for various Helms "moves", we have seen other Helms there at the same time or before.  I have mentioned the role of Moses as a possible way-station at Piscataway, NJ, at Winchester, and in Bedford County, VA - even the Thomas Helms who had an Inn at Williamsport - even though it was in a later time period (1800) -maybe there was a Helms there as a forerunner to that Thomas Helms in 1800.  (A Thomas H. was listed in York and Washington County, PA 1790 census).  Then, there are the several Helms trickling out of Barbados, and there is Moses trail of lots (Piscataway, Winchester, and Bedford County, VA).  These could have been relatives of various sorts.  That might say that there was a relative(s) at Bethlehem for Moses to go to in the Bethlehem area in 1741-43.  I have checked that out very carefully.  Only Germans were there initially; although, some "locals" were used in the construction. Others were not permitted to buy property there.

In fact, since none of them had been naturalized, someone had to sign papers for them.  It took 8 years to be naturalized; in the meanwhile, they could not own land.  If the Helms were German, seeking out other established Germans would have been customary and logical.  I have not seen anything which placed them in the German group.

That could well have been Tilman and others.  We also have the possibility of multiple Helms trips from PA to NC, remembering that the Deeds there were staggered, with the earliest going to George and Thomas in 1749, with Tilman and Jonathan being later.  Then, there are the multiple Helms at Barbados and various ones coming here on different dates.  I see a possible relay system in play. Later, the list of Helms in Barbados was expanded.

I noticed the Deane name for Isaac's wife.  The Deane's were from the same area in England as the Goosnargh English Helmes.  One of my daughters married the son of a 2nd generation Dean family here.  I know something of their background.  Recently, I found records of Deane's in Dublin, in the time of King John.

The German Connection

Anyone dealing with Helms genealogy must deal with the possible German connection.  The German migration into PA Colony, while generally a second wave, was especially strong, and there were a number of Colonial German Helm(s) there.  The earliest German Helm coming from Beerfelden Parish in 1750 was Johan Nicholas.  One Johan Jacob Helm was listed as immigrating in 1754 but one is listed as being in Philadelphia in 1752.  Thus, there were possibly 4 German Helms from Beerfelden Parish in this time period.  These were all too late for present purposes. Samuel K. Helm mentions a Simon Helm who went from Germany to England and was sent to NY to manufacture pitch, presumably in early times, but does not give dates for him.  He was likely a Palatine.  Samuel also mentioned other German Helms who were identified with, from that description.  There was a Simon Helmr, probably Helmer, listed in the 1790 NY Census.  He was trying to deal with the apparently German George Helm (1723-1769) at Winchester, VA.  That George is not believed to be a possible parent to the brothers, but a contemporary.  His background and relationships are not known.  Some think that the obviously German inscription on George's gravestone may have been done by/for his German or Swiss wife.  However, the absence of German genealogical data means that some Helms will remain unattached to their roots.  David A. Helms book provides a wealth of Helm genealogy and identifies an area in Germany from which the Helm lines could have descended.  The writer has studied that book for clues.  I believe I have located the German source of the Winchester Georg Helm at Airlenbach, from where John Jacob Helm emigrated in 1754.

See also the recent modification in Section One, "Context of the Overall Search", which mention the Thomas Helms recently found in Hunterdon County and other counties of NJ, 1755-1772.

Reverend Gregor Helms, a currently practicing Baptist minister, of Bremen Germany has written indicating that his family has resided there for over 180 years.  Obviously, we need more information on Gregor's family.  He is preparing his family history and will send it to us at a later date.  He only writes in German so we have been corresponding in German.

The Captain William Helm of NJ, mentioned above was initially though to have been German but has been shown to have been English.

George Helm (1723-1769) in Winchester, VA in 1744, who seemed to be German, was a contemporary of the Helms brothers; so, it is not necessary for me to decide his relationship at this point.  He could have been a brother or cousin.  It would help if we knew the father of George.  Rereading Samuel K. Helm's book section on George, I noted that George had a loom, which could tie him to Moses, who was also a weaver.  Moses Helm (Hellim) had a lot in Winchester in 1744, but is not known to be related to that George, although it is known that they had business dealings. Moses and his wife are thought to have come from England, via Ireland. Also see above discussion of the Falkenburg's and another George Helm near Edinburg, VA.

Recently interest in the 33,000 Germans who were labeled Palatines, who emigrated from Germany in the early 1700's, resided for a period of time in London, and were dispersed - some to Ireland, and a large number to NY and some to the Carolinas, PA, and MD.  This was well ahead of the second big wave dealt with in David A. Helm's book.  This group is a more logical group to expect to find the NC Helms, if they were German.  Current interest for our search centers in that group, a recent book by Jones on the Palatines has been studied and does not include any Helms. Since this was written, definitive connections have been made with Falkenburg's, Hargate's, and Preslar's from that group of Palatines.  Also, just recently Pressley's of English descent have been found in the Colonies; so, it is not certain that there is not a mix of Preslar's and English Pressley's in NC.

In the search of records of German settlers, particularly the Palatines, evidence exists that the Helms of North Carolina had significant involvement with several Palatines.  One case is, Johan Henrich/Heinrich Herget (John Henry Hargett). The book, "The Hargrett's of Georgia and Their Ancestors in Germany and North Carolina", by Felix Hargrett has been reviewed. The author is from the Georgia line which used the different spelling. Of chief interest, from our point of view is the Johan Heinrich Herget (later John Henry Hargett) in NC, whose descendants were married to descendants of Tilman Helms, and to descendants of Thomas Preslar/Pressley, a fellow German living in western NC in the mid-1700's.

The book is obscure in exact identification of the German identity, and his exact location in Germany. The author groups him in the Palatines who began coming here after about 1715. The first appearance of the name is in the June 2, 1709 group which responded to Queen Anne's call to the "poor protestant Palatines" to come to England. In that list, there was one Jacob Nicol Hargart, Lutheran, age 30, with wife, two sons and a daughter, listed as a husbandman and vinedresser. However, a Peter Hargett with a wife and one child, was listed among the 2257 who, in 1709, were sent back to Holland, sic (because they refused to sign the oath denying their Catholic religion.)

Between the years from 1709 to 1753, six persons with Hargett-type names came to Philadelphia.
(1) Petter Hugett, 1737
(2) Franz Carel Huget, 1738
(3) Friederich Herget, 1748 To Lancaster\, Pa.
(4) Johan Henrich/Heinrich Herget, signed the oath of allegiance and abjuration Oct. 2, 1749, in a list of people from Swabia, Wirtemberg, and Dormstadt who came on the ship Jacob, Captain Adolph de Grove, from Amsterdam, to Philadelphia via Shields, in England. This is the German immigrant who went to Anson County, NC, and lived in close proximity to Tilman Helms. He became a part of the Helms family inheritance. The author favored Darmstadt as his place of origin. His immigration point was Philadelphia. His path to NC is not known.
(5) Petter Hergedt, 1750 To Frederick Co, Md.
(6) Johannes Herguth, 1753, b. Rosenthal, Hesse To Pa.
The kinship of these people is not known.

Johan Heinrich Herget's first record in NC was the birth of his son, Peter July 25, 1754 "on a branch of the Big Peedee." Anson County had been created in 1748, out of the Indian Lands in the outskirts of settlements in NC. He had grants of land totaling 300 a. on a branch of the Peedee River. About 1763 or 1764, he moved to a grant of 200 a. on Richardson Creek, near present-day Monroe, Mecklenburg Co., NC.

That is as far as we need to take this, now. His descendants married into the Tilman Helms line and into the Presslar/Pressley line. Those marriages are a matter of record, see Gerald Helms book, "Helms Descendants 1720-1991."

This note is to outline what is known about his coming. The author does not know his path, whether down the 'Great Wagon Road' through the Shenandoah Valley of Va, or in other possible routes. The Hargrett author does mention the " Old Carolina Road", which is east of the mountains. (segments of US rte 15/29 approximate some of that Old Carolina Road.)

I think we have the right immigrant in mind, but more is needed to establish his German origin place and his exact route after debarking in Philadelphia.

The Carolina Road extended north to at least Warrenton, Va., where a present-day marker is placed. It also exists as segments as far north as the Potomac River at Lucketts, Va. where present-day road signs show that name. That inner route would pass through Orange County where a number of Helms-related situations occurred. More work is required on this.

Nevertheless, this helps fill-in the background of the various families which interacted with the Helms in North Carolina. It may be significant to note that Jacob Nicol Hargart was listed as a Lutheran. The names of the German immigrants were often misspelled.

William Helms of SC has written that the Helms came to NC with a group involving descendants of Jost Hite who had a large grant in Frederick County, VA directly at the place where Leonard Helme had land at the Opequan Creek. Also the Falkenburgs and Hite paths from NY via VA to Carolina and that of the NC Helms are similar.

There are records of the Hite's in NY, PA, VA and in the Carolinas. This is currently being explored as to it's significance. Also Helms intermarried with some of the group associated with Hite in VA and did marry into several Palatine families in North Carolina. Jacob Hite went on to SC and was killed by Indians there. The relationships of the people involved are being looked into, particularly the apparent proximity to the English Helms families of Leonard and Meredith Helms, thought by some to have been descendants of Thomas Helme of Goosnargh, Lancashire England; however, that has not been proven. The English connection is supported by the DNA studies. Meredith marriages to Helmes in England have been found and a Meredyth farm (vineyard) has been found near Middleburg, VA. One Thomas Helme may be significant. There were several there. Later in NC, there was a Thomas, neighbor to Tilman Helms The full Significance of this is being evaluated.

The Bethlehem, PA Connection

Bethlehem, PA was founded in 1741 by Moravian missionaries from an evangelical German Baptist group.

The Moravians and Brethren had an early beginning in Germany which is dealt with here. This file is offsite so Click here to read this file in a new window.

Nearby, Emmaus and Nazareth, were also Moravian settlements of a Cloister nature. Both were near Easton which was at the junction of the Delaware and Lehigh Rivers. By being associated with Bethlehem, PA, Moses Helms and the NC Helms brothers imply a connection to the German Baptists, since Bethlehem was nearly a closed German community at first. A reasonable assumption might be that the incoming Germans sought out the existing German settlements whenever they arrived. They often moved on, because of lands opening up in new areas, such as Western PA, MD, VA, and the Carolinas. The Bethlehem settlement is too late for the initial Palatines, but not the second wave mentioned above. A more reasonable assumption is to relate most strongly to the Welsh Baptists in SC.

Recently we have found a Bethlehem TWP in Hunterdon County, NJ across the Delaware River, opposite the Bethlehem, Easton area of PA. Thus, it is possible that the Helms trip south could have started in Bethlehem (TWP), NJ rather than in Bethlehem, Bucks County, PA. Also we have found a Bethlehem Parish near Albany. NY where both Helm's and Falkenburgs were found. An early Helms Mill, owned by Thomas Helms was at Hackettstown, NJ. One reference indicated that at one time the actual area of Bethlehem, PA was within the NJ proprietors' lands; so, there may be confusion with regards to "Bethlehem" in the Helms story, and depicted by Gerald Helms' book.

Dr. Peter Craig, in a letter to the writer dated 25 Aug 1995, identified several German Helm Philadelphia County birth records: Adam, son of Peter and Maria Helm b. 4 Sep 1766, son, John, b.28 Mar 1769; Jacob, son of Peter and Elizabeth Helm b. 4 Jul 1772, daughter, Margareta, b. 7 Jan 1776, son, Peter, b. 5 Mar 1779, daughter, Maria, b. 7 Jun 1781 10 Jul 1762; Margaret, daughter of Christian and Martha Helm, b. 17 Jan 1774, son, John, b. 5 Jan 1771, daughter, Margaret, b. 17 Jan 1774, daughter, Eliz., b. 1 Feb 1777, son, Charles, b. 20 Mar 1779, all baptized at the First Moravian Church (German); Henry and John Bethel, twin sons, of Christian and Martha Helm, baptized at St. Michaels & Zion Church (German) Philadelphia, PA.  None of these are pertinent to the NC Helms brothers family issues.  Also, no births were listed by Dr. Craig for the Bethlehem, Nazareth or Emmaus Moravian settlements.  A list of individuals in Bethlehem in the time of the French and Indian War  is available but I have not yet seen it.  It was called for by the authorities who feared that the pacifist Moravians were harboring Indians who had committed murders, or others.

One theory about the Helms involvement with the Bethlehem, PA area would have them possibly associated with establishing the roads and infrastructure of the Colonial Frontier forts above Bethlehem.  These roads were established about the time the Helms Brothers were supposed to have been there (about 1740-47).  Dates for the roads and Forts has been established, but no Helms have been identified in that so far.  The Barbados Helmes were military (Militia) which lends weight to that theory that they may have participated.  The Helms were surveyors and surveys were largely done by the Military in Colonial America

Present continuation of searches at Smithfield TWP near the Colonial Fort Penn is leading to a conclusion that it was a place where Helms could have been in the early 1740's.  (That TWP no longer exists, and the area is now in Monroe County).  Alternatively, there was an area identified on early maps as Smithfield, Williams TWP, just south of Easton.  A farm of Thomas Hellem has been referred to in Lower Smithfield TWP in Bucks County History.  Another Smithfield was Lower Smithfield is which is now in Monroe County.  The Thomas Hellem property was sold by his daughters.  The deed was found at Harrisburg and it indicated that he was probably a Dutchman, Helling.  Helling may also be a German spelling.  The Pennsylvania Dutch were not usually Dutch at all, but were associated with the title "Deutch" which meant German.  On the other hand there were actual Dutch in Eastern NJ and NY, stemming from the earlier Dutch settlement in NY and possibly later immigrants.

Census data for a William Helms was found at Rock Hill TWP, PA, near Quakertown, just south of present day Allentown, PA.  In later time, Northampton and Monroe Counties were created in these sections of upper PA.  The trigger for settlements in the Northampton County area was the fraudulent "Walking Purchase" which opened that area for settlement; albeit, at the expense of bad Indian relations.  Thus, it was the trigger for Indian attacks as well as for settlements and ultimately the frontier forts.

A book "Report of the Commission for the Establishment of the Pennsylvania Frontier Forts" has been identified which lists the military and other participants.  The report has been read and there were no Helms listed, but the report is silent on the road building aspect.  Robert Morris was Governor.  Parsons, the Proprietor's agent in Easton, PA may have been involved as well.  Legislative acts and personal papers relating to the forts and roads out of Bethlehem are also being sought.  The roads are infrequently mentioned in the records of the Assembly.  No systematic collection has been made of those legislative actions.  (It was useful for the Moses Helm story in Bedford County, Va. to find the acts of the Legislature giving him the contract to build and maintain roads there. It was hoped that similar information could be found about the Pa. roads).  Both Leonard and Meredith Helme had similar contracts in Frederick County, VA.  Both Moses and Leonard were cited for laxity in doing the maintenance part of their jobs.  Both had a  group of people with them to do the work.  In Leonard's case in Frederick County, VA, the workers were indentured servants.  In the case of Moses, it appears that they were simply a group working together.  Moses group has been identified by name.

It will be remembered that Moses Helm went to Bedford County, VA as the chief of a road building crew authorized by the Legislature.  He may well have had a role in planning or building the roads from Bethlehem to the Forts.  Involvement with those projects is in my mind the most logical reason I have found for the Helms to have been in Bucks County at that time.  (Although land had become scarce and the opening up caused by the "Walk" could have been a reason).  The PA county structure has changed a great deal since then, but the events would have been in the upper reaches of Bucks county then.  Present-day Rte 100 which passes by the Israel Helm Brandywine lot extends to the region of the Blue Mountain where one of the line of forts, Fort Lehigh, was built in 1755.  It also connects to old roads to Emmaus and Bethlehem.  One old map notes Rte 100 leading to Bethlehem.  We had found a house ruin and an old Carriage Inn or early Rail Station on that road near Chadds Ford. Present-day Rte 1 through Chadds Ford would have been a "Kings road" from Kennett Square, and portions of the upper end of Rte 100 are shown as "King' Road".  The family story is that the brothers were on a Kings road, one on either side of a boundary, which fits the Brandywine site at the circular Delaware boundary at Brandywine Creek.  The Broome's, a family which married into the Helms, in NC was supposed to have been close by.  Broome's were found in the Darby TWP tax list, along with "Taxable" Helms, in about 1715-20. Extensive data for Broome's in England and in the Caribbean have been found, as well as Broome settlers in MD.   However, the link between those Broome's and the family which intermarried with the Helms in NC (Wm Broome, son of John B., -m. Eliz Helms, daughter of Tilman Helms, in  1772) has not been found, as yet.  Some Helms in Chester County at that time (Job, Isriel, and William) have been identified with the Swedish Helms by Dr. Peter Craig.

The Dutch and Holstein Connection

This section includes data for both Dutch and Holstein connections, which will be continued until we definitely establish one or the other or perhaps both origins for the Helm(?) people found so far.

Much literature falsely shows Holstein in Germany, Whereas it was then in Denmark.

Dutch Data

I also ran into a record for Peter Helm, originally from Holland, who added an "S" to his name.  He had a son Peter and a grandson Peter D. Helms, born 1843.  His grandfather would have come in about 1780.  They settled at Reading, PA, were later at Philadelphia, then at Pike County, where the grandfather died in 1850.  Peter D.'s children were Richard, Jeremiah, Lucy, Peter D., Jr., Birch, and Clinton.  These details may help determine who Peter Helms is, if we run into him in the studies.  Peter Helms born before about 1785 looks like a unique Helm(s) line.  (Coming from Holland does not mean he was Dutch.  In that time, they spoke of Low Dutch, meaning Hollanders, and High Dutch, meaning German.  Almost all of the German emigres I read about in 700 pages of German Emigrants came from Rotterdam, Holland or on Rotterdam ships).  A great number came down the Rhine to the Baltic and left from Dutch ports in Dutch Ships.

The Dutch family Hellinck, a weaver, in Leyden, Holland where the Pilgrims first went in self-exile, was a Dutch Helm. The "ck" ending means grandson of. (That spelling can be found in Early PA)

The Pilgrims learned weaving as a trade while in Leyden.  It could be significant that Moses Helm was listed as a "weaver" in his Piscattaway Deed, and the Irish Isaac above was a "clothier", and that George Helm in Winchester, Va. had a Loom.  Although, working in textiles was the principle activity of the English who had occupied Londonderry and other northern counties in Ireland, from where many later came to America.

The presence of Hellins and Hellings in Bucks County then and today may be significant.  Are they another Helm/Helms line?  Are they Dutch Helms?  What is the derivation of their spellings?  A friend has identified a Dr. Helm in Suranam, currently.

In addition, in the discussion in Part Seven OTHER HELMS, we have found a possible Helms-like immigrant from either Holland or Holstein, where in 1642, Jan (John) Helms was said to have immigrated from Barltt, North Brabant Holland to PA, according to; The Ketelhuyn Chronicles 1451-1899 and The Swart Chronicles 1338-1899. Actually he apparently first came to the NY Dutch colony, located near Albany NY, which was later taken over by the English and later overrun by the Indians. Perhaps the Helms were scattered like the other inhabitants. History says that most of the Dutch remained after the English take over.

We found North Brabant, as Noordbrabant province, S Netherlands, presently bordering on Belgium to the south and on Germany to the east. The capital is Hertogenbosch (Den Bosch); other cities include Tilburg, Eindhoven, and Breda. However, we have not found a Bartl/Barlt there. To view a map of the possible location of Bartl click here to view in a new window.

Holstein Data

In addition to that supposed entry into PA, we found a Jan Helmsz(en) (Jan de Bock) from Barlt in Holstein at south Dithmarschen District. He arrived at New Amsterdam, the Early Dutch colony, by "den Houttuyn" on August 4, 1642. We also found him at Bethlehem Parish, near Albany NY, where he or a descendant had a farm.

See the map for S Dithmarschen click here to view in a new window. This is the district where we also found a Barlt which was a parish in the area. The name was variously spelled. Bartl has a church emblem, perhaps meaning a Parish. (Kirchdorfer) Elfie Wilde, our German specialist, has found that Barlt is a small town, in June 2005 population was 853. But they govern themselves.

Barlt used to belong to the parish of Meldorf. (See Meldorf just above Bartl on the map) But, in 1428 they built their own church, giving the reason that it was too hard to go to Meldorf to attend church when the weather was bad. They still had to pay money to the church in Meldorf. Between 1598 and 1600, the church was renovated.

Helmsand is an island shown in the sound, that is uninhabited. Today, it is connected to the mainland by a dam and is now part of a National Park, protecting birds. No indication of why it named Helmsand. Of course we are considering things of 300 years ago.

The Bartl Church records start too late for us; but, the Meldorf church records start in 1520. We have leads on availability of LDS microfilm of those church records, and can expect more family data in the future.

A historical review has shown that the status of that area has varied a great deal because of numerous wars. It was part of Denmark at one point, but now it appears to be part of Germany. The populous in Dithmarschen is largely German and has been that way for a long time; so, it is not possible to determine the probable nationality of Jan Helms(sp in the 1600's). Our best lead is the church data, as mentioned above.

The coincidence of the place, Bartl is striking. It is possible that Jan's path to America was through Holland, as many came here on Dutch ships. And Holland is right next to the district of Holstein. Jan first settled in the Dutch Colony near Albany, NY. The year, 1642 is a potentially compatible date for this Jan/John to have also been the NC Helms originator in some way, possibly involving the South Carolina (SC) Hellums as discussed later in Part Seven, OTHER HELMS .

This is attractive, since we have not found any evidence of a North Carolina (NC) Helms entry into America. And our DNA tests do not match well with other English sources as discussed in Part Nine, DNA RESULTS, necessitation a broader search for our NC Helms roots, than just English. We are currently studying the Holstein case and hope to enlarge the information there in the near future. We have genealogy work to do in both cases. We also see the need for a Hellums DNA test to compare with the other American Helms in the current DNA project. See Part Eight, DNA STUDIES.

The Swedish Connection

The family history of the early Swede, Captain Israel Akeson (alias, Helm), was studied and does not seem to relate to the NC Helms.  Although, Israel Helm, Jr. is really unaccounted for since he was supposed to have "gone to sea" about 1691, and another son or grandson would be needed from the Captain Israel Akeson (alias Helm) line to forge a link to the NC Helms brothers.  See the Peter Craig comments above.  There are ships passenger listings for Israel Helm in 1692-93, going between Philadelphia and NY, which need to be resolved.  However, until some additional trace of a link is found, the English Helme's (John, William, and Thomas) remain the principle focus of the search for a father to Tilman and George by this writer.  I have some ideas about Israel Jr. having been in Barbados.  (1) There were other Helms family segments there in addition to Helmes,   (2) Claypool land was there and he may have been a surrogate purchaser for Israel Jr.'s mother, since she became indebted to him for some reason.  The mother also stayed in Philadelphia when Capt. Israel went to live at his NJ home, Helmstatt.  My guess is that she stayed there at the waters edge hoping for the return of her eldest son.  Dr. Peter Craig said he thought that Israel Jr. was not in any real danger from the pig stealing charge which he skipped bail on, an Archivist in NJ disagreed.  It was a repeat offense, the English had taken control of the local court from the Swedes, and the English Common law would have been enforced.  Pigs ran free in the colony in "open range", we would say.  They were branded by slitting their ears and such markings were registered.  Israel, Jr. was accused of altering such markings on some pigs.  The English Common Law in effect in Pa. gave the judges wide latitude of punishments, branding, whippings, hand severing, or banishment to Australia for that offense.  The senior Israel had been one of the Swedish colony judges but the incoming English had displaced them all, with the exception of Capt. Israel.  I think that Israel, Sr. was not sure he could protect him.  Also, Israel, Sr. remained a judge only one year after the English took over.  He was active politically in NJ after going there, which may account for the 1992-92 ships passenger listings, mentioned above.  The affairs of the NJ colony were conducted at Elizabethtown. Israel, Sr. was a member of the Legislature. There is some Barbados data suggesting our line if the spelling of Holme were accepted. Israel Jr. might well have changed his name to avoid extradition.

For several years we have considered the question of how to differentiate between the descendants of the Swede, Captain Israel Akeson, Alias Helm, and other HELMs who we find in Pa and NJ. This file, CLICK HERE TO VIEW, provides the best data we presently have on Captain Israel's line. It also includes some individuals who have been alluded to as illegitimate descendants, just for completeness. These data provide a location in some cases and the approximate dates for most of them. The Swedish names are not of certain spelling, as most had an alias, assigned to them or adopted by them after they were here. The timeframe falls into the time slot appropriate for our purpose.

A recently established website dealing with the Swedish Colony on the Delaware River can be found at:


A picture of the famous Gloria Dei Swedish Church may be found at:


The Religious Connection

In view of the strong involvement of the NC Helms brothers and their descendants in religious matters, and since they were said to have come to NC from a Welsh settlement or with a Welsh group in the Philadelphia area, the next step in the search was of the religious and historical records at the West Chester, PA and Philadelphia Libraries, and later in other counties in PA and NJ.

This located a Rev. John Helme/Holme/Helling (but Probably John Holmes) at Lower Dublin (1686) in the Pennypack Baptist church which met in the Barbados Storehouse.  A Presbyterian, Rev. George Craig, Sarah Smith in the first Baptist Church of Phil. and William Smith in Philadelphia, were there in the 1700 time period. We found a Richard A. Tilghman who married Susan Toland , Apr 26, 1860,and they had six children, but he is out of our date range of interest. (Added Feb 2003).

Extensive Tilghman genealogical information, and Craig and Smith Genealogies were found in PA and MD, but need to be studied further.  Virginia Cordes, in a letter to Gerald Helms in 1984 had previously shown Daniel Helms at Marple TWP in 1715, and John and Thomas Helms on the 1715 Darby taxables list in "Delaware County History" by Ashmede.  Significantly, Moses Helm was instrumental in founding a Presbyterian Church in Bedford County, VA where he settled, as described by Samuel K. Helm.  I did not find anything on the Fortenbury/Falkenbury's, initially.  A Falkenbury was in the Swedish Colony and served as an Indian Interpreter at Little Egg Harbor, NJ.  It is not presently known how we get from Falkenburys in NJ/Pa to Falkinburys in NC in Tilman's time, and how we relate the Falkenburgs and George Helm, found on the Wagon Trail in the Shenandoah Valley. However, it appears that the real link is with Falkenburgs who passed through Cecil County, Md and were in the Shenandoah Valley region of VA as outlined above, rather than from the Falkenburgs of Little Egg Harbor, NJ.

More recently we have found additional Falkenburgs in NY and PA. Click here to go directly to the table.

Later, I used the GRS genealogical index and the LDS listings to extend these historical and religious library searches, and did find Falkinbury families in Western VA, Anson County, NC, and elsewhere.  The spelling of these names is an issue, according to Dr. Peter Craig, the name derives from a Holstein family of George Falkenburg, sometimes spelled "bury" and pronounced "berry" by the Swedes, who was an ancestor of some early Delaware River Swedes.  Sometimes the name was spelled Fortenbury, as in some accounts of George Helms wife, Mary Margaret.  There were Fortenbury deeds in NC contemporary with the NC Helms brothers. See Appendix.  Recently Harold Polk has developed information which placed a Falkenbury as an Indian interpreter in Little Egg Harbor, NJ, and linked him with the Delaware Swedes. The Falkenburgs were known to have gone on to SC.

Christopher Helme initially settled in MA Colony but went to Exeter, NH with Antimonium dissenters from Puritanism (one who emphasizes the role of faith in salvation, rather than works-a distinctive Baptist position), then to RI in further dissociation from the Puritans.  His descendants were into the Baptist faith in RI, as his descendants are mentioned in RI Baptist church records.


French Connection

Recently DNA data has became available through Y- DNA genetic test results of known NC Helms descendants, that has identified the HAPLO group for that line. By study of the details of the specific markers a definitive HAPLO Group, R1b, has been identified for the NC Helms; and, it is a well known group which has been found to have come from France to England. Just when this arrival occurred is conjectural.

By the times of the Colonial period, those people had likely been assimilated into the general population. But whenever they were, and bearing whatever name they used, the ones of our interest had that same Y-DNA imprint suitable adjusted for mutations. After those distant times, migrations of continental people continued and some migrated from France to England before the Roman conquest. It is believed that they initially settled in SE England, from about 1200BC to 400AD but continuing. Those initial settlers did not have surnames as we do today. Therefore, surviving companion persons still in France could have migrated here via England or directly to the USA at any time with or without using the Helms surname. We have no assurance that we are the only line here possessing that DNA.

In about 1066-1100 AD, William the Conquer, established a new land inheritance procedure in conquered England which was intended to make all of England the perpetual inheritance of his conquering Officers. To do that, he began the idea of surnames, which eventually was established throughout England. (His secondary purpose was to be sure he collected taxes for all of England).
Some call this the Manor system then widely used on the continent. England did not eliminate that system for centuries. A key part of the system was to consider the people as serfs, subject to the Manor Lords. That is, they were tied to the land-more or less as slaves, as it were. By the Colonial times, surnames were in general use in England and in many other countries, but surname practices were not uniform.

The earliest Helms-like surnames, we know about in England, appeared in about 1300. So this date marks the beginning of the so-called Genealogical family tracing techniques which we use today. New Genealogical surnames came from a number of things, such as place, occupation, and what was called the Paternal method, widely used in many countries, which resulted in many surnames ending with, son (like Wilson, Johnson, or other such symbolic names). These names may not be useful Genealogical or Generic purposes. There were many Wills or other first-named people with differing genetics and most had sons. So, all Wilson's were obviously not genetically kin. similarly any Helms whose name came from a place named Helm are not necessarily all kin. However, any which are kin are so-marked by their Y-DNA. Therefore, DNA is a powerful tool for Genealogical purposes.

Genetic techniques trace all the way back to their origin in Africa eons ago and areas therein still have people with those genetic labels. In fact, Cameroon is strongly indicated as the starting point and a large fraction of the present populace there has that R1b HAPLO Group involvement. Always remember that many mutations will have occurred over that time period. Mutation rates vary with the Y-DNA markers, with some being slow and others being faster markers. A genetic line is promoted by the persistence of the markers which are changing more slowly.

There is considerable literature available which goes into the details. It is not our purpose here to detail it. The point to be made here is that one of the results from the NC Helms Y-DNA studies, is described in Part 9, herein, was the identification of the probable path and timing of their migrating to England. Additionally, one would expect some remnants of people remaining in France after any migrations to England. Presumably some may have the same genetic label as the NC HELMS. Whether genealogical continuity has been maintained is conjectural. That can only be proven by DNA testing.

We have not found any leads to Helms or similarly named people coming here directly from France. We do know that there are some who are working in that area. Our interest here is in letting anyone having French Helms data know about our interest, and hopefully adding to this area.
So far, the little we have collected on Helms in France can be viewed by clicking here.



The parents of Tilman, George, and Jonathan Helms remain elusive, but there is some chance that a little more work may place them in Bucks County in the early 1740's.  However, a strong possibility exists that the Helms marriages did not occur until they were in NC, after 1747-8.  All of the families seem to have been in NC then.  Of course, these families could have traveled together to or gathered at NC.

The recent finding of Thomas Helms, in NJ, who might have been linked with NC, and finding Helm's and Falkenbyurgs at Bethlehem parish near Albany NY means that the initial Helms wagon trip to NC may have originated in NJ or NY rather than PA. And, there was a strong German Baptist flavor to the Hunterdon County, NJ situation. The changes in NJ County structures has to be factored into the data.

As for the brothers wives, the listings, so far examined in these various ways, say that NJ, PA, NC, and SC could have been the place where some if not all of the Helms brothers families came together with their wives' possible relatives.  For Tilman, the Craig's were in the upper Bucks County area and a Wm. Craig has been found on the Blunston Licenses List for deeds West of the Susquehanna River after 1733.  The Smiths were in the early PA Colony, but are too elusive, and the Falkenbury/Fortenbury's are very scarce, but present in the Swedish Colony on the Delaware.  A lead to Falkinbury's in NY, PA, VA and NC is compelling.  Whether the family came to NC with the Helms, or a daughter married a Helms in PA or NC may be irrelevant.  A major problem is the gap in time between the supposed marriages in NJ in the mid 1740's and the coming of children 8 to 12 years later.  I think it is likely the marriages occurred in NC. At the present time, it is more logical that the Helms brothers marriages may have occurred about the time the households were established and the birth of their children in NC as evidenced by their deeds and the children's birth dates.   This is still being studied.

Some of all of the families were in various colonies in the appropriate time period. This is summarized in the following table, which identifies people for further study.  The connection with the Colonial Frontier Forts will be dealt with later.  The next step will be to search for more information on each of these people.

Because of the unique group of Falkenbury first names it is sort of easy to visualize their path through the colonies to SC by 1790, but specifically, placing them in Anson CO NC with the Helms in 1763. The link with George Helms in Shenandoah in the 1740's is also apparently established. We have not treated their spread from SC, after 1790. The historical records of the Falkenbury family have not been very kind about the spelling of their surname. The following table lists the occurrence of which we are aware of for the Falkenburgs and other key people.

For a table of Falkenburg sources see the table. Click here


This table needs review to include other data, now available.

(Several names are to be added to the table from recent work, notably the Falkenbury's in old Orange County, VA, the George Helm in the lower Shenandoah Valley, The William Helms and. George Tilman in Prince George's County, VA, and, in addition, John Helme, found in the Jamestown Settlement in 1624 census of survivors of the Indian attacks, who has been shown to have had a wife and child living after the attacks.)

There have been additional new names, added in mod 12, from our extensive data collection. In that connection, we have a new file which is a collection of relevant English data, not previously summarized in our present website, which is in preparation, and will be added to the website shortly. Some of the new names now listed below in red come from that collection.

State Helms, etc. Tilghman
Craig, etc. Smith Fortenb'y,
ENJ Samuel - 1643 (1)

Eliz - 1713 (1)

Possibly other Barbados related Helms: e.

Thomas, John (2)

Moses (1740 deed)

  John - 1739 John, Philip, Job - 1643 & others.

See full list

John - 1739

(also Phil)


Israel - 1641, 1655




Christopher (1686-1721) (15)

Samuel (1697-1712) (16)

Thomas Helms 1755-1772

James Helms - Bondsman of Thomas

HELMS, Sary,  m. FLANNIGAM, James,  on 01/01/1767, Glouster County. (11)

HELMS, Maria, m. SOMMERVILLE, George, on  12/05/1771,  Glouster County. (11)

HELMS, John,  m. BEETLE Catherine, on 10/02/1774,  Glouster County.(11)

HELMS, Susannah m. BUCKIT, William, on 19/02/1777,  Glouster County. (11)

Tillman, Nicholas1761-1770's (12) . . Agnes, Anna - 1733

Henry, Jacob - 1727

E PA, Phil Rev, John - 1686, at Lower Dublin (probably Holmes) (3)

Samuel - 1701 at Brandywine (1)

Daniel - 1715 at Marple

John & Thomas at Darby 1715

Thomas in Bucks County.

WM. at Rockhill

Francis b.1641

Isaac b.1644

Richard A. Family - in Merion Bapt. Ch. about 1700


Rev George,

Geo. Jr.

abt 1700

William After 1733 (14)


Sarah-1700 (Phil)

& Others


John (1660's) Charles County. (2)

John (1660's) Charles County.(24)

Thomas Elmes, immig 1665

WM. Elmes, from VA 1671

WM. Elmes, transported 1681

Wm. Elmes and Sarah 1696 (21)

Mabry 1739

Mayberry 1763

Thomas 1708 Ann Arundel County.

Gydeon (Gideon) 1681

WM. 1742

Rachel 1743


Kathrine 1722

Robert 1747

Archibald 1756

Thos, Francis, John, WM. 1696

possibly others


Henry Valcheburg bef 1716 (20)
New England

Robert Elmes immigrant 1635

Sara Elmes 1662

John b. MD, was in ME 1665, m. Mag. Gutch in MA 1679, Children: Mary, Christopher
. . .
New York . . . . Several Falkenburgs in Albany NY, 1720.(17)
Dutch New York Jan Helmsz(en), 1642 (25) . . . Lambert Van Valkenburg, 1644 (26)

John Elmes 1684 (Elmes Cabben on Duck Creek)

John Elmes Feb 1701 Sussex Co. Deed of 311 a., bet. Love Creek & Steckley land.    d. by 1704

George Helm, Irishman, 1733 (22)

. . . .
NC Walter 1755

WM. 1755

(In addition to Thomas, Tilman, George, and Jonathan in 1663 tax records with some land records before that) 
See Appendix

John Sr/Jr 1755/69

Richard 1760's(19)

Joseph, Moses, George 1769

WM. 1755

A Craighead was there too

Benjamin, Charles, John, WM., Zachariah 1763 at Anson County. Isaac, Henry, Andrew at Anson County, 1763

The 1st land record: 1748

SC George 1738

Anne 1740

John A. 1755

Jacob 1763

George 1764

Thomas Elmes 1690

WM. Elmes 1778

John 1755 Catherine 1745


Alexander 1772

Geo, Josiah, Mary 1737


Eliz. 1740

Jacob 1787

John Helin, Jamestown 1623 (27)

John Elmes 1625 Norfolk

Thomas Elmes 1663

Mary Elmes 1667

Marg. Elmes 1678

Math, Elmes 1680 Norfolk

Math. Helmes 1683 James River (28)

William Helmes 1704 in Pr Geo. Co. (18)

John 1707, VA Col.

Geo Helm ~1740

Wm. Helmes wife, Ann Albem. 1759

Thomas Helms 1723 at Stafford County RR (4)

George Helm (1723 - 1769) and his bro. WM. Helm are not involved here.

George Helms 1744 nr Strasburg (23)

Wm., Jonathan and George Helms 1746 (23)

 George 1704 Pr. Geo. Co. Robert 1764, too late. Charles, James, Jeremiah, John, Thos, WM.& others Andrew (1737-44)
Shenandoah Valley together with George Helm
Barbados Thomas, John, and William, possibly other relations (2)
Mrs. Anne Tilman m. Carmichael  . Smiths were there but not evaluated .
RI Christopher Helme's was there in early times . Only later Craig records were found Only later Smith records were found  .


(1) The Samuel's at ENJ in 1643 and at the Brandywine in 1701 could not be from Christopher/Rouse Helme line in RI.  Also may have been a typographical error, meaning to say Israel.

(2) Significantly, two Thomases and John and William were found in Barbados: Major Thomas and Captain Thomas.  That has not been factored into prior genealogical studies. This John was in Maryland in a large grant to Sewald as an indentured servant.

(3) Rev. John Helme/Holme/Helling at Pennypack in 1686 requires further scrutiny. (Probably Holmes.)

(4) The Thomas Helms (1723 Stafford County, Va. Rental rolls) is resolved by Samuel K. Helm's book, pp 27-29, as son of Leonard and brother of Meredith in the VA Helm line.

(5) It was said in some Tilghman Genealogies that the same Tilghman's were correctly listed in more than one state.  For instance, the History of Chester County, PA by Pope listed Benjamin, Edward, James, Richard and William Tilghman, some of whom have also been found in MD/DE records.  Some were lawyers, whom have also been found in MD/DE records.  Some were lawyers, some military which may account for this.

(6) Years ago, Martha Helms Bates had developed a listing of children of Israel Helm, Jr.  This has been contested by Dr. Peter Craig, a noted Genealogy expert on the Delaware River Swedes.  Bates had shown a son, John, b. 1695 who could possibly have been the father of the NC Helms brothers.  Until some additional evidence of this is found it is best not to use that case.  The nature of the small 200 family Swedish community and the good documentation of the ancient Swedish Colony suggests that it would have been difficult for a family of the NC Helms brothers' apparent size to have gone unnoticed in a Swedish family in the Delaware River region.  Also, some of the Helmes we have been tracking seem to have emerged from Barbados when coming to the Colonies, rather than from an indigenous source, or from England.

Of course, It is possible that Israel, Jr. went to Barbados in 1691, married and had children who trickled back to the Colonies in the 1720's or 30's.  Some of the "family stories" show them at places similar to the old Israel Helm sites.  Also, the Ships passenger listings of Israel Helm in 1692-3 between Philadelphia and NY remain to be explained.  That was not likely to have been Captain Israel Helm, according to Dr. Peter Craig, who also said that "passenger listings" are unreliable.  The Helms coming from Barbados have been attributed by genealogists to the English Barbados have been attributed by genealogists to the English Helme family from Goosnargh in Lancashire, England.  Christopher was later found to have originated from the family of WM. Elme/Helme of Long Sutton, Lincolnshire, England.  The connection of the Goosnargh and Long Sutton Helmes is not presently known.

(7) The John and Thomas Helms in taxables list at Darby, PA in 1715 and the Daniel at Marple, also in 1715 remain to be accounted for.  As mentioned in note 5) above, Martha Bates had shown a son, John (supposedly b. 1695), to Israel Helm, Jr.; but Dr. Peter Craig denied this. Peter Craig had shown a William Helms at Darby in 1765-74 (earlier in Ridley, b. abt 1728); so, there was other Helms lines around.  That William may have been too late to have interacted with the NC Helms brothers.  In fact, Barbados records place him in the next generation after Thomas and John.  There were Thomas and John Helme's in the Christopher-Rouse-Samuel line in RI in about 1700, who might be the source of these Helm(s) people.  There was a Daniel in ENJ in 1780 who may descend from the 1715 Marple Daniel.  Also Christopher's son, Sands Helme, died in Surinam, a colony ceded to the Dutch in the treaty ending the fight over NY.

(8) There was a Hellam (Hallam) TWP listed in York County, PA in the 1790 Census, but no Hellam's or Helm(s) were listed there.  (Halam is an English spelling of Helme.)

(9) Rev. Alexander Craighead was an early minister in the Carolinas.  (Gerald Helms pa 41)

(10) The Thomas Helms in Ann Arundel County, MD in 1708 needs to be explored.

(11) These are the first people with the exact spelling, HELMS, who have been found in NJ.  The implication is that they were in the geographical area of Hunterdon County, rather than in present-day Gloucester, hence probably have no connection with the Swede, Captain Israel Akesson (alias Helm).  The Court Records for Glouster County were burned in 1745, so there may well have been other HELMS  there before 1767.  Hunterdon County was split off from Glouster County, so the precise location of these people cannot be determined from the county location only. The source of these marriages is the"Hunterdon County, New Jersey Marriages, 1790-1850". 

(12) Nicholas was said to have come there from NC and Hunterdon County Records show: "Bastin Mires of Bethlehem, cooper, and Nicholas Tilman, mason, (now) live in Amwell", (1770) #31039. That Bethlehem would be the Bethlehem TWP in Hunterdon County. Nicholas was involved with the Morris Canal. Presently, we are not able to connect him with the Tillman/Tilghman families we have documented. However, there was a timely Richard Tillman in Anson County, NC. We have a NJ website note that "(Old) Amwell TWP was formed by Royal Charter in Burlington County, NJ, 1708, and in Undesignated Areas: Bethlehem TWP Existed in 1730, details uncertain.", Ref. "Some Records of Old Hunterdon Co. 1701-1838", Phyllis B. D'Autrechy, Trenton, 1979. Hunterdon was an early county, split later. (Old material should not be read with current geography in mind.) Some possible descendants of Nicholas are shown in this file, Click here to view.

(13)Just lately we have identified a John Tilghman who was b.in MD but probably died in Maine. This is drawn from a list of Early New England Settlers, which showed John in Maine, and from the Genealogy of Johannes Tilghman of England, c. 1225, by Karen Sola. John Tilghman was b. in Somerset CO, MD after 1652, m. Magdelen Gutch in Mass, 1679, they had children: Mary and Christopher. Mary married Mr. Soper and Christopher m. Hulda Hans. John's parents were Christopher Tilghman and Ruth Devoshire. Christopher was the grandfather of the Elizabeth who was b. 1694 who we have determined would have been a possible North Carolina Helms brothers' mother, as discussed in this website.

(14) Samuel Blunston was authorized to grant Licenses to "Sundry Persons to Settle and take up land on the West side of Susquehanna River by the Hon. Thomas Penn Esq.", dated 11 day of January 1733. A list is available in the Pa. State Land Office (Dept. of Internal affairs) a Harrisburg, Pa. page 7 of "Blunston's License Book " office # 64). Of particular interest to us are: Polk, Shelby, and Craig, known allied families of the NC Helms. Wm. Craig is of special interest on account of Tilman Helms wife, Rachel Craig

(15) Christopher Helm and a grandson, Robert and several others have been found at the Bashin Ridge Presbyterian Church, SOmerset Co., NJ. It appears that Christopher would have been of the same generation as the NC Helms Father. We also have another Christopher when Leonard Helm left him 40 Shillings in 1745 in Winchester, VA.

(16) First Court Record ???? Vol 2, 1797 A Samuel Holmes (possibly Helmes) was a plaintiff against Thos Buchmon; and on 17Dec1712 a Sam'll Helmes is listed as a juror. A NJ archivist things these are the same person. So we probably have a Samuel Helmes in Clovente Co., NJ by 1797. No other data available due to county records having been burned.

(17) "The Documentary History of of the State of NY Vol I" gives a list of the free holders in Albaby in 1720.  There are are several Falkenburghs and Valkenburghs. (Johannes, Hendy, and Jacob Valkenburgh) and Jaac Falkenburgh. The spelling is not exact but is strongly suggestive that it is the Falkenburgs who were later in MD, VA and the Carolinas. Hendy is obviously Henry, and Jaac is obviously Isaac.
That probably labels our Falkenburgs as Palatines, or direct descendants of Palatines.
Henry Z. Jones in "More Palatine Families" in a chapter, "Some Later Arrivals" lists Johan Christ Falckenberg from Neiderbieber, and, in his "The Palatine Families of NY" pp 227-230, he lists Johann Valentine Falkenburg (aka Johan Wilhelm Falckenburg) as coming from the Neuwied area, near Koblenz, Ger. As I recall, our three Falkenburg brothers are related to Johan Valentine Falkenburg.
Our Falkenburgs went South from NY thru Cecil Co. MD to Western Va., then, to the Carolinas.
Christofel Falkenburg was listed as the spouse of Maria Bauer in NY church records, in 1758.
All of that places our Falkenburgs as starting life in NY, and in that Palatine group, it seems.

(18) William Helmes, 1704 in SE VA is one of the most timely Helms persons  we have had who was close to a Tillman family. William or one of his children may have married into the Tillmans, and there was a Tillman girl, Elizabeth b. 1694 -just the right age in that Tillman line. More information is available in the linked file: William Helms Hulmes Notes. Helmes Wife in 1759 at Albemarle Co.

(19) Richard Tillman, b. 1727 was from the line of George Tillman and Mary House in Prince George Co., VA.  Richard d. abt 1800 in Montgomery Co., NC (derived from old Anson Co.). George was an early neighbor to William Helme on Blackwater Creek Pr. Geo. Co., VA , according to lost VA records found in England.  To find Richard in Anson Co.  may be highly significant in our search for the possible Tillman mother of the NC Helms brothers.  We have focused on Elizabeth b. 1694 to Gideon and Margaret Manax.  Richard was in the next generation after Elizabeth in a parallel line (like a nephew). John Tillman who was father of Tobias was similarly a nephew.  John and Tobias were also contemporaries with the Helms in the Carolinas.

(20) "Land Records of Cecil Co, MD No. 3 p 224 shows:
Lease Ephram Augustine Herman to Clement Barkston land part of Bohemia Manor, opposite the lands of Hugh Watson and William Barkston and by land formerly  held by Henry Valchenburgh.   Lease is for 3 natural lives of Clemet Barkston and his wife Catherine and Catherine Dare , eldest dau. of Wm Dare, Jr.  Rents of one pound 10 shillings and two dunghill fowls to be paid on 23 Nov. yearly.
Made 6 Dec. 1716.
Witness Elizabeth Collyer, John Hollet, Rec. 39 June, 1719
S, Knight Clerk"

(21) Wm. and Sarah Elmes bought Ashley Green from an Ashley in 1696, but sold it back to a member of the Ashley family in 1735, Cecil Co., MD.  Wm was listed as a Vestryman in the Shewbury PC Church in about 1704.  The sale may have meant that Wm. left that area.

(22) PA Colonial Records 1600-1800's, "Abstract from "The American Weekly Mercury" pa 65, 9/13/1733 . It reads:
HELM, George, Irishman - escaped from the goal of Dover, Kent Co., Del.

(23) Militia data from Augusta Co., VA shows an item:
"On Complaint of Capt. Shoul the following were fined, among the names were those of William Helms, Jonathan Helms and George Helms for not appearing at 2 private and 1 general muster."  At that time, Augusta was a very large Co.; so, it is not possible to pinpoint the location.  This is the first thing we have found which would suggest that the NC Helms brothers may have been there in 1746.  We have no other data which supports their presence there; although, we have had data for a Gerge Helm near Strasburg, VA. in 1744.  We do not have a William Helms in the NC group, later; so a William presents a problem.  However, having persons of militia age with two of the names of our "brothers" on a timely basis is interesting.  It would support the idea that our Helms may have worked their way along the Wagon Trail through Virginia to North Carolina. (It is not  unusual for Militia soldiers to be undisciplined.)

(24) This John appears to have been a business person. Note that we had two John Helmes in Charles County, MD the first John died. We have both purchase and sale data for a plat called "Shrewsbury'.  To view a indenture for this second John Helme CLICK HERE.  The document is from the Charles County Court, Liber E Folio 175, dated 10 MAR1673. John Helme sold that place to Henry Asdpenall in 1674 and no other record has been found for him. That is recorded in Archives of MD, Early holdings P78,79, 1674. John married Mary, the widow of John Mills.  He may have moved to Upper MD. To view this file CLICK HERE.

(25) This Jan or John Helmsz(en) in NY 1642 has been associated with the Hellums of SC, and might have been a forerunner of the NC Helms. In the Falkenburg column, we list serveral Falkenburgs. In the same Rensselaer section, nr. Fr. Orange we have Isaac, Thomas, Melgert, John, Jacob. Andries and Claes (Nicolous) Falkenburg with some listed as Valkenburgs, which seems to have been a Dutch spelling, Also a list of all of the Free Holders at Albany lists others namely: Jochim, Bartlemeus, Lamert, Hendrick (Henry), and Jaac who may be the Isaac at Rensselaer. Some may have been at Ft. Orange.

(26) Lambert Van Valkenburg was in NYC before 1644. His arrival has not been discovered. His genealogical account has a good discussion about the spelling. The surname comes from Van Valkenburgh, meaning in Dutch, 'from the castle of the falcons' (van=from; valken=falcons; burgh=castle), It sometimes reverts to Valk or Valck which mean 'falcon'. And has resulted in Falconburh whereas the original name in Holland was Valkenburg, or vice versa since it is an international family. Even today, the descendants of Lambert still use Valkenburg in both Canada and America. a further deviation is Valic or Volick. Valck and Volk and Follick (the German/Dutch accent making a 'v' sound like an 'f' to English ears). His genealogy to the present has only one Helms entry, in the late 1800's. So it appears that there were Dutch and Germanic Falkenburgs in Colonial NY. Lamberts ancestry is traced to very early times. His genealogy is available. At: http://www.navvf.VVgene/pafg/

(27) John Helin 1623, sometimes given as John Helme.

(28) Matthew Helmes transported to "the James River area" in 1683 by Wm. Harrison and the Math Elmes in Norfolk in 1680 may be the same person, since the Norfolk settlement was also on the Mouth of the James River, and Helme and Elme were often interchanged. Matthew may have been a forerunner of the William found at Pr Geo Co. in 1704. We have not found any data for William before or after Pr Geo Co in 1704, so Matthew might be a forerunner, and, now, finding William's wife mentioned in Albemarle Co. suggests they may have moved there after selling that Pr Geo 133 a. property. If we could find Matthew in the Caribbean before 1680, it might lead us back to England for that line.

These listings were the first step, when combined with other information, to begin looking for additional data on specific families.   The census indexes were generally for "heads of families", so it does not tell us if they had a daughter, Elizabeth, Sarah, Rachel, or Mary Margaret.  The actual census enumeration form might provide more information -- like number in the household, more names and ages possibly, and possibly different generations, although that kind of data only became collected after about 1790, which is after our time of interest. Sometimes it is possible to infer things from their neighbors (as in the case of the Thomas/George/Tilman Helms adjacent sites in NC). And those above at Rensselaer with Jan Helmsz(en) or his descendants. Jan was there in 1642. In 1720 there were Helme Janse, and Helmes Vedder, both names and surnames may be inversed.

For a table of Falkenburg sources see the table. Click here