Neff Family Historical Society

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The NEFF FAMILY HISTORICAL SOCIETY Society is a non-profit corporation organized under the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in 1993. The Society is also a recognized IRS 501(c)(3) under the U.S. Internal Revenue Code.

The Society published NEFF NEWS, a periodical for Neff and Related Families, from 1991 to April of 2007. Copies are available at the Library of Congress, DAR Library, Library of Virginia and some 105 State Archives and Historical Societies in North America and Europe. ISSN 1072-4648. Most back issues are available from the Society.


work in progress 7 Feb 2019

PROJECTS: Summer-Fall 2015 - Spring 2016

The Nave Family Historical Soc. of Carter County, TN was assisted by us with the indexing and restoration of the Nave-Hess Cemetery in the Siam area of Carter County. The restoration group was headed by a direct family member Dr. James "Larry" Nave Ph.D. of Oak Ridge, TN and supported by local Nave family members and Historians.

Overgrown and neglected, the cemetery cleared for the Nave Society by Inmates from the Carter County Department of Correction's and a surface and sub-surface survey was begun in August which included discovery of many previous unknown memorials. This Nave family is detailed in the book, Nave, Robert T. and Margaret Hougland, "TETER NAVE EAST TENNESSEE PIONEER, His Ancestors and descendants," Gateway Press, 2007. Currently available on

PROJECTS: 2012-2013
In 2003 the Neff Family Historical Society funded a grant to James Madison University to resurvey the NEFF-KAGEY Cemetery nr. Mt. Jackson in Shenandoah Co., VA. Cemetery site was first cleared then each memorial was mapped using CAD with GPS locations. Each memorial, including field stones, were transcribed, photographed and index to location. This information has been compared against indexes made in the 1890's and April 1929 by Dr. John W. Wayland Ph.D. It became quite clear that between these dates, some of the original stones had been moved to the Cedar Grove cemetery nearby. Depressions in the ground indicated some interments were relocated and some were not. Project completion is planned by Summer of 2013 with family members linked within the cemetery links to descendants in SE Ohio and Indiana.

In December 2012 we updated the nearby "Kagey Cemetery" records with 32 additional memorials. The list of burials now match the inscriptions made by Mrs. Jeanette Conner Ritenour in June of 1983. The interments are now being linked with source references cited and some biographical information. We have found where memorials have been moved from both the nearby Neff-Kagey cemetery and the Kagey Cemetery to the nearby CB Cedar Grove Cemetery. Interments did not begin there until the 1890's. Some earlier memorials had been moved to Cedar Grove which explains discrepancies between a pre-1890 obit and the memorials location today. Photos of these memorials planned for summer of 2013. Our thanks to Shenandoah County historian Daniel W. Bly for his ongoing contribution to this project.

Administrator of the NEFF NÄF NAEF NAFF NAVE y-DNA project with "Family Tree DNA" of Houston, TX. In 2006, we began a Surname research project based upon and utilizing the latest Y-chromosome DNA testing technology. The Neff surname lines under study are those who immigrated from Switzerland and Germany to North America from the early 1600's to the early-1800's. The original surname spelling is generally found as NÄF. In North America, common variation are found as Naef, Naff, Neff, and Nave. We currently over 165 DNA test results posted. Project and results may be view at: For additional information, email us at the contact address shown.

Find-a-Grave records we created or manage will have the following: "Neff Family Historical Society, Inc., ID [example: B1683]" The Society uses the Library of Congress "Henry Number System" to identify an individual back to the immigrant ancestor.

"[DNA]" denotes one or more test from family members which are posted on the Neff project with FamilyTreeDNA. Go to the WEBPAGE link below to learn more about this project with FamilyTreeDNA


Early immigrant Neff family lines include:

[T] line: William Neff: Earliest Neff family to arrive in America c. 1630's from England. Found in Haverhill, MA. A branch migrated to Upper Ontario, Canada, Simco Co., in the late 1700's. Not related to the German or Swiss Neffs. [DNA]

[A1] line: Dr. Francis Neff: 1719 immigrant to Germantown, PA. Children in descending order of birth are numbered A11, A12, A13, A14 ....etc. Mennonite. [DNA]

[A2] line: Dr. Hans Heinrich Neff: 1717 immigrant to Lancaster Co., PA. Mennonite. Son and family migrated to Shenandoah Co., VA near present New Market. [DNA]

[B] line: Henry Neff: 1717 immigrant to Lancaster Co., PA, Manor Twp. Mennonite. [DNA]

[C] line: [Johann] Michael Neff: 1728 immigrant to Lancaster Co., PA. Lutheran. [DNA]

[D] line: Jacob Neff: 1717 Immigrant to Lancaster Co., PA. Family migrated to Frederick Co., MD in 1742. Mennonite. [DNA]

[E] line: Jacob Naff aka Naef. Date of immigration c. 1745-1765; Settled in Franklin Co., VA; Church of the Brethren [DNA]

[F] line: [Hans] Christian Neff: 1743 Immigrant to Lancaster Co., PA. Mennonite. [DNA]

[G & P] lines: Immigrated to Philadelphia in 1734 and 1743 from Zürich, Switzerland. Naves found in Carter Co., TN, Neffs found in York Co., PA, Naves found on the 1838 Trail of Tears. [DNA]

[H & M] line: Rudolph, Jacob & Ulrich Neff: 1749 immigrants to Germantown, Philadelphia Co., PA and Northampton (Lehigh Co.) PA. From Zell, Canton Zürich, Switzerland; Reformed church [DNA]

We are pleased to support Find-a-Grave and consider this Organization a valuable resource for members and the public doing genealogical research. Updated: 1 May 2018

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Search memorial contributions by Neff Family Historical Society


A1 Line

0 Memorials

A2 Line

452 Memorials

AA Line

0 Memorials