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About us


The Harwood Family History DNA Study welcomes Harwoods of all similar spelling variations from all over the world. This international all-volunteer investigative study is designed to move beyond brick walls in traditional research, to use Y-DNA profiles in tracing different Harwood (and similar spelling) family lines back to their earliest detectable origins, and to find and either prove or disprove relationships between and within these family lines. We now have over 22 distinct and unrelated Harwood Y-DNA tester profiles from five different countries -- England, Australia, Canada, the United States and Belgium. (The umbrella surname Harwood, as used on this website, typically includes similar surnames such as Harrod, Herod, Horwood, and so on.)



The Y-DNA test for Harwood-surname males
, swabbing the inside of the cheek, is EASY and QUICK -- two swabs at 60 seconds each. No blood is involved.  No medical or other information is recorded or obtained. The testkit comes in the mail to the tester's home and is returned by mail after completion of the swabs. To order a testkit, use the Join button above and follow the sequence. 

Y-DNA testing measures specific characteristcs on the male tester's Y-chromosome -- markers passed down on the direct paternal line from a father to his son, to his son, to his son, etc., with relatively few changes or mutations over the centuries. These genealogical markers usually (but not always) follow the surname back through the generations many hundreds of years ago to the time in history when surnames were first generally adopted, and then continue to follow the genetic profile back through the Middle Ages and beyond. A second test is recommended to confirm and verify each line back to the Most Recent Common Ancestor and to preclude a possible DNA sidetrack from the expected paternal line due to an unrecorded adoption, name change, friendly neighbor, or research mistake.

Female Harwood descendants and male Harwood descendants not having the Harwood surname can readily participate
and advance the study by encouraging their Harwood-surname brothers, cousins or other relatives to submit a Y-DNA test representing their common Harwood line.  Also, any Harwood descendant -- including females and non-Harwood-surname males -- can participate by doing the Family Finder test.  It's a great bang for the buck.  Its remarkable technology uses at-DNA to search for matches on all the ancestor-surname lines on both sides of the tester's family and for matching ancestor-union profile blocks reaching back typically around 6-7+ generations, subject to random recombination and reduction of blocks each generation.    

A Y-DNA test of any number of markers is welcome and can always be upgraded later - sometimes without a new swab if enough material is still on file from earlier test swabs.  But we strongly recommend tests of at least 37 markers in order to avoid false positive matches, which are very common with 12m tests and fairly common with 25m tests.  Tests of 67 or 111 markers are recommended as progressively more accurate and detailed for long-range tracing and use of TiP Report comparisons. 

We use the leading testing company with the largest databank. No one with our Harwood study has any interest in the testing company FTDNA or any related entity, or receives any type of compensation in connection with the testing program.

Privacy of test results and samples is protected by the strict protocols and guidelines followed by the testing company, as required by federal and state law. Each tester has his own password-protected testkit page where he can see his own results and any matches with other testers. On this Harwood group website's Y-DNA Results page, each tester can choose to identify his test results by his earliest known ancestor's name, or by surname and place of origin, or by surname only, etc. Moreover, Y-DNA marker results contain only lineage information (markers showing how closely the tester could be related to another tester with similar markers), and not medical information.

Our Harwood group has no funds except its own limited member contributions, but may be able to share part of the testing cost for a Harwood line not previously tested. PLEASE INQUIRE IF THE COST-SHARING CONTRIBUTION IS AVAILABLE FOR YOUR LINE. Anyone who wishes to help advance our investigation  may do so by contributing to future key tests through the Harwood group General Fund.

Y-DNA testing as a vital part of our Harwood group study has the potential to discover solid, highly reliable information of unique value on the history of our different Harwood family lines that cannot be gained through any other means with any level of expense or effort.


Each test from a Harwood immigrant line into America represents a snapshot of Harwood DNA coming down to us from the immigrant's time of departure and place of residence in the British Isles. Consequently, one important objective of our tracing program is to recruit test participants that represent the various principal Harwood lines immigrating to America, including --

1. The THURLBY-JAMESTOWN line of immigrant GOV. WILLIAM HARWOOD (c. 1598 -- aft. 1628), who sailed from England in August 1620 on the Francis Bonaventure to Jamestown, VA. There he became chief of Martin's Hundred Colony, survived the Good Friday Indian Massacre of 1622, and founded the Charles City line of numerous Harwood descendants in VA, NC, TN and other places. Gov. William's brother, CAPT. THOMAS HARWOOD (c. 1603 London - c. 1652 Warwick Co. VA), sailed to VA in 1622 on the Margaret and John, married GRACE c. 1623, led expeditions in 1627 to protect the settlers from Indians, and founded the Warwick Co. Harwood line. Capt. Thomas Harwood's grandson William in 1769 built the historic Harwood Plantation now called Endview and located at Newport News, VA. We would very much like to have a test from a descendant of either Gov. William or Capt. Thomas to verify this line back to Thurlby

See the late Betty Harwood's detailed and well-sourced database of Harwood descendants back through William-Jamestown to his grandfather WILLIAM HARWOOD (JR.) of Thurlby, Lincolnshire (born c. 1550, will c. 1600). William Jr. was the son of WILLIAM (SR.) (will 1568) AND ANNES HARWOOD of Thurlby. (This study has three different subgroups in two completely unrelated haplogroups -- two different I1a Viking/Scandinavian subgroups and one E3b1 Mediterranean-Middle- Eastern subgroup -- that all claim descent from the Harwoods of Thurlby in Lincolnshire. We are now looking for a test that will prove which subgroup's claim is correct.)

2. The DEVONSHIRE-BOSTON line of immigrant ANDREW HARWOOD (c. 1600 -- aft. 1645). He immigrated from his English home in Dartmouth, Devonshire, to America around 1640. He was made a freeman in Boston in 1643, lived there with his daughter Mrs. Thomas Finson, and died after 1645. See Watson H. Harwood, A GENEALOGICAL HISTORY OF THE HARWOOD FAMILIES, DESCENDED FROM ANDREW HARWOOD, 3rd Ed., vol. 1, Chasm Falls, NY, 1911. (A test is needed on this line. We hope to learn whether these Devonshire-Boston Harwoods are related to any of the three John Harwoods from Devonshire born from 1515 to 1614 and listed in Section D below on Harwood families in England.)

3. The ESSEX-CHARLESTOWN line of immigrant HENRY HARWOOD, from Shenfield, Essex, England, in 1630 with wife Elizabeth to Salem and later Charlestown, Mass. A herdsman, he became a freeman in Mass. Bay Colony in 1630. His second wife was Winifred. He died in 1637 after extraordinary suffering in a storm. See Watson H. Harwood, A GENEALOGICAL HISTORY OF THE SALEM HARWOODS, Descendents of Henry and Elizabeth Harwood, Who came from England with Governor Winthrop, in 1630, and settled in Charlestown, Mass., vol. 2, Chasm Falls, NY, 1912. (A test is needed on this line.)

4. The SURREY-CONCORD line of immigrant NATHANIEL HARWOOD (1626 - 1716) and his wife Elizabeth. The son of John Harwood of London, he and Elizabeth and his three brothers Thomas, Robert and John, immigrated to Boston probably before 1650. (This line reportedly came earlier from Cranleigh in Surrey County about 50 miles southwest of the present Gatwick Airport.) After 1665 Nathaniel and Elizabeth moved to Concord, Mass. Nathaniel made his living as a cordwainer, and died in Concord in 1716 at age 90, a year after Elizabeth. See Watson H. Harwood, A GENEALOGICAL HISTORY OF THE CONCORD HARWOODS Descendents of Nathaniel Harwood, son of John Harwood of London, England, vol. 3, Chasm Falls, NY, 1912. This Surrey-Concord line may trace back to WILLIAM HARWOOD, born ca. 1578, Cranleigh, Surrey, with son John born ca. 1600, London, Middlesex, and later sons born in Cranleigh. (Two Harwood testers tracing back to the Surrey-Concord line on different chains have recently matched as J2.)

5. The SUSSEX-ONTARIO line of immigrant HENRY HARWOOD, who was born in 1813 in Lewes, Sussex, and married LUCY SUSAN COLEMAN. They immigrated to Canada in 1834, and raised their family of five sons and three daughters in East Zorra, Oxford County, Ontario. Lucy died in 1852. Henry's line traces back to HENRY HARWOOD and wife MARY JUPP, both of West Grinstead. They married in 1715, and both died in November 1735. See John H. Harwood, HARWOOD HISTORY: IN PARTICULAR, THE STORY OF THE HENRY HARWOODS OF LEWES, SUSSEX, AND THEIR DESCENDANTS, 1979; Beth & Stuart Harwood, chief researchers. (We want to investigate whether the Sussex-Ontario line goes back to JOHN HARWOOD, reportedly born ca. 1478 Wikham Broke, Sussex. We need an Ontario Harwood test tracing down from Henry Harwood to compare to our current I1a Sussex test for a possible match plus another test in Sussex tracing down from John Harwood b. 1478 to confirm the profile.)

6. The BEDFORDSHIRE-MARYLAND line of immigrant RICHARD HARWOOD, born 1670 in Streatley, Bedfordshire, England, who immigrated to America and settled in Anne Arundel Co., MD. He married Mary Knighton (1670 Bedford, Lancashire, England -- 1737 Anne Arundel MD) 1692 in Anne Arundel Co. They had four children -- Elizabeth, 1693, Dinah, 1695, Thomas, 1698, and Richard, 1707. This line reportedly comes down from JOHANNES HEREWARD born c. 1430 in Berkshire, England, some of whose descendants were born in East Hagbourne, Berkshire. This immigrant Harwood line may have owned the splendid, historic Hammond-Harwood House in Annapolis, MD. We have an R1b1 Harwood test reportedly tracing down from Richard Harwood of Anne Arundel Co., MD. We need a second, confirming test from the MD line, plus a third Harwood test from Bedfordshire to explore the Bedfordshire-Anne-Arundel connection, plus, most importantly, a fourth Harwood test from Berkshire to find whether RICHARD HARWOOD'S line could have come down from JOHANNES HEREWARD in Berkshire.

7. The line of Revolutionary War soldier JAMES HARWARD -- born 1760 King and Queen Co., VA, and died 1840 Wake Co., NC. His immigrant ancestor is unknown. He married in Wake Co. (1) ROSANAH BARBEE 1781 and (2) RACHEL VELVIN 1828. His will was probated in Wake Co. 1840 at WB 24, p. 441. His name was spelled Harwood on a 1784 deed, Harrod on the 1790 NC census, Harward on his will, and both Harward and Harwood on his pension application. See the late Betty Harwood's homepage for a link to this line.

8. The BEDFORDSHIRE-PENNSYLVANIA LINE of immigrant JAMES HARROD, soldier and Baptist.  [*MVS: presumed - no re-confirmation in Bedfordshire records].  He was born c. 1668, Luton, Bedfordshire, England, and died bef. 1759 Piscataway, NJ.  He married Maria Kent, born c. 1670 in Oxford, Bedfordshire.  James and Maria immigrated to America in 1714 with four of their five sons, including Ambrose, Thomas and Samuel. The fifth son, JOHN HARROD Sr. (1700-54) immigrated in 1722, and settled in Little Cove,Lancaster Co., PA. His first wife Caroline Downey was killed and scalped by the Indians at Little Cove c. 1736.  [*MVS: incorrect - she appears to belong to Harrod line of Orange Co., VA / Franklin and Mercer Co.s, KY - possibly descended from Thomas.  First wife was possibly Mary Ellis, but no reliable confirmation.] John Sr. and first wife had two sons, John Jr. and Thomas.   John Sr. and second wife Sarah Moore reportedly had ten children, including Samuel [*MVS: no children, killed], Nellie, William, Rachel, Mary, Col. James, Sarah, Levi [*MVS: moved to Ohio to live with his son Levi Harrod in Knox Co.], Elizabeth, and Jemima.  John Sr.'s widow Sarah witnessed the Shingas Massacre of 1755, Great Cove [*MVS: not possible - family always resided in Little Cove].  JOHN HARROD Jr.(c. 1736 Little Cove PA – c. 1781) and Sarah's son COL. JAMES HARROD (c. 1742 Little Cove PA - c. 1792 Washington Co. KY) founded Harrodsburg (now Mercer Co.), KY when he established Fort Harrod there in 1774 -- the first permanent English settlement west of the Allegheny Mountains. [*MVS: WILLIAM HARROD served under George Rogers Clark in Indiana, founded the fort which later became Louisville, Kentucky under the General's orders, and retired to Bracken Co., KY where two descendants gave information to Dr. Lyman Draper]. [Source: Harrod tester (I1d) summarizing (a) for Harrod (I1d) tester ancestry back to John Harrod, Jr., b. 1736; several kin genealogists’ documented records; (b) for John Jr. brothers, marriages of John, Sr. and Bedfordshire James Harrod: Draper Collection and Kathryn Harrod Mason, James Harrod of Kentucky, using Draper Collection, Bernice Swainson, etc.  Additions and caveats by Harrod family researcher Michael V. Schwing are noted by *.]

One Haplogroup I1d (I-L22)Harrod tester tracing down from John Harrod Sr., and presumably James Harrod of Bedfordshire, England, has matched two other closely related Harrod testers who don’t trace that far back.

For further information on Harwood family lines, please see The Harwood DNA Study Group Genealogy website at

All other Harwood lines are also cordially invited to test and participate, and will be identified as the study information develops.


An equally important objective is to encourage Harwoods in the British Isles and elsewhere to participate and trace their lines back through Lancashire, Yorkshire, Lincolnshire, Devonshire, Sussex, London, Middlesex, Surrey, Essex, Northumberland -- wherever the trail may lead -- as far back as possible. The Harwood families originating in the United Kingdom do not all descend from a common ancestor. Instead, our testing has found a more complicated picture of numerous Harwood lines, either genetically unrelated to each other or genetically remote from each other, developing in different parts of the country, and sometimes in the same county.

We need to identify the different Harwood families in the British Isles and obtain tests that will determine:

(1) which of these Harwood lines are descended from a common ancestor,
(2) how closely they are related, and, if possible,
(3) which may have given rise to the others and where.

English Harwoods were concentrated in three principal area groups in the 1800's -- Lancashire-Yorkshire, Middlesex-London, and Sussex -- as shown on the 1891 and 1841 English census rolls. We suspect -- subject to testing and verification -- that most of the Harwoods within the Lancashire-Yorkshire and Sussex area groups could be related to each other. We consider the Harwoods in each of these two area groups to be a possibly separate line to be tested against the other Harwood area groups for relatedness, and to be verified through at least two and ideally three or more tests within each area group to see how homogeneous the Harwood population is within each aea group.

We also assume -- subject to testing and verification -- that the Harwoods in the Middlesex-London area group are less likely to be a homogeneous line than the Harwoods in outlying area groups such as Lancashire-Yorkshire. London appears more likely to have attracted those wanting to seek their fortune from all the outlying areas.

These three potentially different Harwood lines have been identified from the 1891 England census, where we see 8,466 total Harwoods in the following significant area groups of concentration, including the Lancashire-Yorkshire cluster of adjacent source-counties:

GROUP A -- four-county cluster (total 37%)
Lancashire 22% (1,873) - northwestern coast
Yorkshire 9% (741) - adjacent to Lancashire on the east
Durham 4% (319) - adjacent to Yorkshire on the north
Lincolnshire 2% (208) - adjacent to Yorkshire on the south

GROUP B -- London 15% (1,254) - southeastern central

GROUP C -- Sussex 4% (340) - southeastern coast - two counties south from London.

Trace percentages of Harwoods are found in most of the other counties in England.

Fifty years earlier the 1841 England census shows 4,533 Harwoods with essentially similar distribution percentages in the same places. 1841 England also shows 31 Harwoods born in Ireland and 10 born in Scotland.

We need to correlate the data on Harwood concentrations in different area groups from the 1841 and 1891 English census rolls with the census data from earlier periods, if available.

Now that we have initial Harwood tests completed from Lancashire, Lincolnshire, and Sussex, our priority wish-list includes Harwood tests from --

Lancashire (largest Harwood source-county -- two to three more tests needed),

Lincolnshire (location of Hereward the Wake and Thurlby Harwoods -- two to three more tests needed),

Yorkshire (second largest Harwood source-county -- at least two tests needed),

Northumberland (location of Harwood Forest, the Harwood settlement, and Robert Herward in 1273 -- at least one test needed), and

Sussex (1891 pocket of Harwoods -- second test needed).

These tests should help us prove whether the Harwoods in any of these places are related. Any information on the different Harwood family lines in England, or any suitable Harwood test participants in England, would be most welcome. Please email the group administrator.


Reflecting the differences in the Harwood-variation Y-DNA profiles that we have found in our testing, the Harwood-variation surnames are considered to have originated for different Harwood families in different ways and in different places. Interestingly, back in the much earlier period pre-dating surnames, Hrothgar's brother in the Old English epic BEOWULF was named Heoroweard.

Some Harwood-variation family surnames have been characterized as primarily Anglo-Saxon during the early phases of the era when surnames began coming into use, and reportedly originated when the family was living in Lincolnshire, before the Norman Conquest in 1066. More specifically, the Saxon families Harwood, Herward, Horwode and Whorwood were seated at a remote period in Lincolnshire and Cambridgeshire, and from there produced the Harwood families in Counties Stafford, Oxford, Berks, Salop, Hants, and so on. See Watson H. Harwood, A GENEALOGICAL HISTORY OF THE HARWOOD FAMILIES DESCENDED FROM ANDREW HARWOOD, 3d Ed., Chasm Falls, NY, 1911, p. 12.

Burke's COMMONERS OF GREAT BRITAIN adopted the claim that the Harwoods derive their name and descent from Hereward the Wake (watchful), also known as Hereward the Saxon, discussed below in the section on famous Harwoods. LTG. T.N. Harward, author of HEREWARD THE SAXON, 1896, claimed descent from Hereward based upon Hereward's alleged second marriage.

However, the noted genealogist and barrister H. W. Forsyth Harwood disputed LTG. Harward's claim, writing in 1907 that Hereward left only a daughter. Watson Harwood wrote in 1911 that no living Harwood could trace his descent from Hereward, pp. 10-11.

According to Forsyth Harwood, the different families bearing the name of Harwood, Harward, Herward, Horwood, etc., are not all of common origin. The name has been derived in various ways, most often from a place, such as Great Harwood in Lancashire and Horwood in Buckinghamshire. The Staffordshire Whorwoods came from a manor of Horewood in Compton, and numerous Yorkshire Harwoods from Harewood in that county.

The SURNAME HARWOOD has been frequently characterized by other authorities as a HABITATIONAL NAME derived from the name of a location, such as the town(s) of Harwood in Lancashire County, or the nearest wood with an abundance of rabbits, or the nearest gray wood. Dictionary of American Family Names, Oxford University Press, describes the Harwood name and related locations as follows:

"HARWOOD. English and Scottish: habitational name from any of various places, for example in the Scottish Borders and in Cheshire, Lancashire, Lothian, Northumberland, and North and West Yorkshire, called Harwood or Harewood from Old English har ‘gray’ or hara ‘hare’ + wudu ‘wood’. This name has also become established in Ireland."

The settlement of Harwood and Harwood Forest are both located in Northumberland, a county where Robert Herward was listed in 1273.

The largest producer of Harwoods is Lancashire County, which includes the towns of Great Harwood, Little Harwood (five miles to the west) and Harwood (fifteen miles to the south). In briefly researching the history of Great Harwood, we are so far unable to find a Harwood individual for whom this town was named. We do find William de Harwode listed in the town of Harwood in 1379.

The SURNAME HORWOOD reportedly originated when the family lived in either of the Horwood settlements in Buckinghamshire and Devonshire, or near any muddy woodland. The name Horwood is said to be derived from the Old English words hor, meaning muddy, and wod, meaning wood. The name was first found in Shropshire where they were seated from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest in 1066 AD.

The SURNAME HARROD is said to be either a derivative of the Scandinavian personal name HARALD; or a variant of HARWOOD; or a variant of HEROD. The SURNAME HEROD is English (chiefly Nottinghamshire), being primarily a nickname from the personal name Herod (Greek Herodes, apparently derived from heros ‘hero’), borne by the king of Judea (died 4 AD), who at the time of the birth of Christ ordered all male children in Bethlehem to be slaughtered (Matthew 2: 16–18); or a variant of HAROLD. Dictionary of American Family Names, Oxford University Press.


Harwood-variant surnames currently show the following different numbers for telephone listings in the UK, US and Canada:

Harwood -- UK 2881 - US 5081 - Can 598
Horwood -- UK 622 -- US 133 --- Can 294
Harrod ----- UK 433 -- US 2030 - Can 97
Herrod ----- UK 91 ---- US 691 --- Can 34
Hereward-- UK 53 ---- US 0 ------ Can 1

The numbers and concentration areas for the Harwood-variant surnames on the 1891 England census are:

Harwood 8,466 -- see above

Horwood 1,740 -- London 27% and a chain of counties above London from Hertfordshire 7% west to Buckinghamshire 10% to Gloucestershire 5%

Harrod 1,266 --
Norfolk 21 % adjacent to Lincolnshire 6%, adjacent to Yorkshire 5% and Northamptonshire 4% to Warwickshire 4%
Essex 14% adjacent to Middlesex 5% and Kent 4%

Herod 380 -- Lancashire 20% adjacent to Cheshire 12%

Herrod 306 -- Nottinghamshire 53% adjacent to Yorkshire 11 % and Derbyshire 13%

Harward 373 -- London 31%

Harewood 166 -- Yorkshire 22 % adjacent to Lancashire 13% and Durham 17%

Whorwood 52 - Staffordshire 31% adjacent to Warwickshire 29%

Extending the Harwood search to Scotland, we found no Harwoods or Horwoods on either the 1891 or the 1841 census.

In view of the substantial numbers shown for these different Harwood-variant surnames, it would be helpful to have tests for these other surname spellings to compare with the Harwood DNA profiles, especially Horwood in London and Harrod in Norfolk. See and We need to determine whether or not these spelling differences also represent significant genetic differences.


Some older Harwood lines allegedly trace back to the 1400's, 1500'S or 1600's, as found on and listed below:

CUTHBERT HARWOOD, born c. 1580 in Barnard Castle, Durham -- the ancestor of most of the Durham Harwoods. A whole area of Barnard Castle is named Harwood (forest, dene, burn, etc.).

EDWARD HARWOOD and wife Judith Gurley, married 1607 in Knebworth, Hertfordshire, with eight children born in Knebworth.

EDWARD HARWOOD, born c. 1668 England, married Hilda Fairweather ca. 1688 London.

GEORGE HARWOOD, born ca. 1570 Lincolnshire, children born Lincolnshire, is likely the grandson of William Harewood, Sr., discussed above as the earliest known ancestor of the Thurlby-Jamestown line of Harwoods.

GEORGE HARWOOD, born c. 1766 England, married Susanna Wilkinson 1785 Gadney, Lincolnshire, with children born in Gosberton, Lincolnshire.

JOHN HARWOOD, 1515 Coldridge, Devonshire - 1551 Shirwell, Devonshire, with son Johann born 1545 Aldermey, England.

JOHN HARWOOD, born c. 1590 Devonshire, married Mary 1609 Malborough, Devonshire, with son Matthew born 1620 Salcombe, Devonshire.

JOHN HARWOOD, born ca. 1614 England, married Grace Chappell 1633 Barnstaple, Devonshire.

None of these Harwood lines has been verified or researched by the Harwood group administrator.


, commander of the South American Division of the British Navy, was a British hero in the Battle of the River Plate in December 1939, the first major naval battle of World War II. The German pocket battle-ship Graf Spee was on the loose sinking allied merchant ships in the south Atlantic. Harwood sailed in his cruiser the Ajax with two other cruisers to look for the Graf Spee at the mouth of the River Plate in Argentina and attack it on sight, even though the cruiser guns were much less powerful with a much shorter range than the German guns. The Graf Spee hit and severely damaged the HMS Exeter, but the Exeter succeeded in hitting and damaging the Graf Spee above the waterline.

The Graf Spee captain Langsdorff decided the damage required the ship to head into port at Montevideo. Required a few days later by Argentina to leave the harbor, Langsdorff decided the Graf Spee could not escape the blockading allied ships, ordered the ship scuttled, and then committed suicide. Promoted to Rear-Admiral, Harwood (1888 London -1950 Goring-on-Thames) was the son of the late Surtees Harwood, Ashmans Hall, Suffolk. In 1924 he married Joan, daughter of the late Selway Chard, Magnolia House, West Tarring, Sussex, and they had two sons.

JOHN HARWOOD, an English horologist from Bolton, Durham (1893-1964), invented the first automatic winding wristwatch, patented in 1924. A former World War I soldier working in a small watchmaker's shop on the Isle of Mann, Harwood used the kinetic energy at the wrist of the wearer for tightening the mainspring by means of an oscillating rotor in the center of the watch movement, a ’perpetuum mobile’ for an omnipresent timepiece. When the airship Count Zeppelin made its historic 21-day round-the-world trip beginning in Lakehurst, New Jersey, in 1929, the Harwood watch was worn by American journalist Lady Drummond Hay, the only female on board. The ingenious invention ranks among the milestones of watch history and is recognized as a classic among wrist-watches, as determined by the well-known watch magazine CHRONOS. Harwood Watch Co. Switzerland sells this revolutionary watch today.

A charming story relates that some Harwoods are descended from LEOFRIC, the Anglo-Saxon Earl of Mercia in Lincolnshire and Lord of Coventry and Bourne, and his wife, LADY GODIVA. She, of course, is famed for her legendary ride through the marketplace at Coventry in Warwickshire.

Reportedly, Leofric's and Lady Godiva's son ROBERTUS HEREWARD, the first Hereward of record, was born near Bourne in Lincolnshire. Becoming known as HEREWARD THE WAKE, Robert led a vigorous military opposition to William the Conqueror. Hereward made a desperate stand in 1071 with his followers against William's soldiers on the Island of Ely, fighting his way out with sword in hand. William later pardonned Hereward out of respect for his bravery and restored him to his estates, and he became the last Earl of Mercia. Hailed as a symbolic hero of English nationalism, Hereward was the subject of various legends that may have been incorporated into the Robin Hood legend, as well as various books and novels and a television series in 1965. HEREWARD THE WAKE, LAST OF THE ENGLISH, by Charles Kingsley, published in 1909 by Cassell & Co., Ltd., one volume of the People's Library.

The Harwood families have enough history and legends to suit everyone, and it will be fascinating to see how DNA science might confirm, negate or expand what we know about our Harwood ancestors.

Information on other famous Harwoods in British history would be welcome.


Each testing member is encouraged to post and furnish his direct paternal line information to the group administrator, including the name of his Harwood Most Distant Ancestor (MDA) with approximate birth and death years and places, if known, to which he can trace his Harwood line with reasonable probability, using conventional research methods. Each tester is encouraged to post his family tree on his testkit page (limited for privacy to deceased ancestors only) so that each tester can quickly view and compare his family chain to his matching tester's chain and discover a possible link.  If FTDNA finds a match between members, FTDNA notifies them, and they may communicate with each other and exchange information to expand and extend their lineage.

The volunteer group administrator coordinating the study is an amateur genealogist with only limited knowledge in DNA technology. He handles administrative details, answers member questions within his range of information, manages this website, and summarizes results when available with the information and guidance of FTDNA.

The only money that changes hands is between the participant and FTDNA for the test kit and lab work. FTDNA provides discounted prices for our members. The lab work is done by professionals at the University of Arizona, Tucson.

FTDNA is available by email and by phone to discuss the meaning and interpretation of test results with the members and the group administrator. Since the members furnish their own ancestor information based on their own conventional research, some may be correct, and some incorrect. Each member can check the sources of the matching member to verify the accuracy of the pedigree information. Neither FTDNA nor the group nor its administrator can verify or vouch for the accuracy of the names, dates, or other pedigree information furnished by the members.

This website is updated periodically with new information. Any additions or corrections to the information on this website and any ideas to make this website more useful, accurate, relevant or informative, or to improve the design of the study, are welcome.