I started this blog because I have been doing Stagner family research for the last five+ years and have seen much discrepant information on family trees posted on various family tree websites. I believe that many of these discrepancies are from copying data and not confirming the information. I make no claim to being a Stagner Expert. I am just trying to obtain clarity where I see discrepancies. I understand that the study of your genealogical past is time consuming and not everyone can or wants to spend the time or money that I have in doing this analysis. It has given this retired person a passion, finally!

I began by trying to understand the origin of my Stagner family, which I believe to be from the immigrant Johann Bernhard Steigner who immigrated from the German Palatinate in 1737. In studying this man, who apparently migrated to Rowan County, NC by 1753, and studying his descendants or possible descendants, it has become clear that there are questions along the way that do not have a clear resolution. This is due to lack of good recorded data.

In the last 5 years I have visited many libraries, locations, and spent hours on-line trying to collect data and interpret the data through a series of “white papers” written to myself. These describe my research and how I interpreted the results. I have not had the opportunity to discuss these with too many interested individuals, except by some contact via email and forums, such as ANCESTRY.COM. I have occasionally shared them.

So I developed this blog to try to get some conversation going, perhaps even get help locating missing documentation or information that might help to clear up discrepancies.

When I started my research on the Johann Bernhardt Steigner family descendants, it became clear that there were many cases of common names in the documents found, like John Stagner, William Stagner, Henry Stagner, James Stagner, etc. The same names were found in different locations at different times, and at the same time. How would it be possible to sort out who was who. For example, there were John Stagners in :

Rowan County, NC,
Sumner and Montgomery County, TN
Calloway, Trigg, Warren County, KY

all in the same time period. So in order to try to sort this out I assigned a specific identification to each different name that was in a different location. For example:

John1 Stagner in Rowan County, NC from 1761 –
John2 Stagner in Sumner County, TN in 1798
John3 Stagner in Warren County, KY from 1799-1817
John4 Stagner in Grainger County, TN in 1820
John5 Stagner in Warren County, KY from 1802-1842
John16 Stogner in Montgomery, County, NC 1779-1800
John33 Stagner in Camden, SC in 1781.

As it turned out I identified 30+ John St?gners living in America 1730s to early 1800s.

Two issues became clear to me at this point:

  1. Because I looked at similar spelling in my analysis, I reviewed anyone who was born before 1800 where the name was spelled Stagner, Stogner, Stegner or anything resembling that. It quickly became clear that there may be several different families involved and that it was necessary to understand, at least to some extent, how many families there were and where did they originate and how did they migrate through the growing United States of America. Five different families were identified. This will be addressed in another post.
  2. Some of these Johns (and Williams and James and Henrys) must have been the same person. How was I going to sort that out? My method was to use detailed timelines and storage of data in EXCEL to permit easy access and analysis. This will be addressed in later as needed.

One very import point to fall out of this and what has led to a lot of confusion is that there were four John Stagners in nearby counties in Tennessee and Kentucky around 1800-1820. It appeared to me that these were often confused and may have been misunderstood by some. I admit to still being confused and hope some of this confusion will be cleared up by DNA analysis and by participation in this blog.

Gene Stagner

6 thoughts on “Introduction”

  1. I’m here to help let me know what you need or are presently working on and maybe we can sort it out with what I have and what you have.


    1. Thanks Cathy. I know that you are primarily COX, so you may not be that interested, but all the connections from John J5 (b1766-1842) to John (J123) to Barney (BA1) need to very verified in some way. I am not a certified genealogist, so I only know what I have picked up and put together. I have lots of references and have been summarizing my research in white papers as I go along, but I have found no one apparently interested to very my conclusions and see if I missed something. I continue to search for information by reviewing digitized Family Search data and have actually found a few things that I have never seen others speak about.

      Also the John Stagner (J8-11) found in Montgomery Co., TN and Trigg and Calloway, KY is a mystery. Most claim he is from Barney BA1, but I can’t justify that, i.e. have two John’s from the one Barney without something to explain it. With J5 and J8-11 born and died around the same time and with no apparent interaction between the families, it is hard to explain.

      I am also concerned about Henry Stagner. From Rowan County to SC, TN, KY, IL, & Texas, the origin of these names is not clear and again, I see to be the only trying to sort it out.

      I have tried to summarize these issues in the Discussion Topics, but it is complicated and what I found out by spending so much time on this over the last few years is that no one without a reasonably complete knowledge of all the Stagners will ever come to a reasonably accepted conclusion without understanding this. This is obvious from past research efforts and comments. It is difficult to explain because it is so possibly interwoven between two or three different families. Several counties involved were burned counties, which doesn’t help. Certainly it being the 1760-1840 time period doesn’t help. DNA may help, but locating Stagner men alive and willing is tough too.

      So like I said I have detailed research papers on several different topics. These are not finalized, but always possibly under change due to new information and new theories to prove or disprove.


  2. My Grandfathers name was John L. Stagner and was born sometime in the mid to late 1800’s. He lived in Texas for years. My dad Ardis M. Stagner was born there in 1909. If I find more information, I will share it with you.


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