Sturkie Family History


Welcome to the Sturkie Family Website, a work in progress. This line of the Sturkie family had its roots in Switzerland and was transplanted to America in the 1750's with the emigration of Heinrich Sterchi and his wife along with his son Hans Caspar and his wife, Ulrich Sterchi (born 1694) and his wife with their son Christian, Ulrich Sterchi (born 1704) and his daughter Margaret and son Ulrich to the Orangeburgh District of South Carolina.

My grandfather, William D. Sturkie, was very interested in family genealogy and corresponded with his South Carolina cousins in the 1930's. Inheriting his papers has been an incentive for me to follow up on his work. My mother, Kathleen Sturkie Powell, and Cousin Sandra Bell, have been tireless in their efforts to search, support, identify and verify information. This website is built largely on the diligent work of many Sturkie family researchers and is dedicated to them. I hope that it will be a bridge to future generations both as a cooperative research base and link to our rich and wonderful family heritage


"I just wanted to find Benjamin's grave. I just wanted to know when and where he was born, and when and where he died."

"In the spring of 1997 I had the opportunity to do additional research I decided to concentrate on Orangeburg, South Carolina as there had been several mentions that the father of Benjamin, with his brothers had settled there when they came from Europe."

"Three years later, I was astonished at what I had found and where it had led me. And I knew that what I had found had to be shared with the descendants of these Swiss immigrants and preserved for future generations. I was less than enthusiastic about the prospect of trying to write a book, but I have given it my best shot and this is the result. I have tried to be very careful in transcribing all the notes and records, but there are bound to be errors and I apologize for those that may have slipped in.

I was really just in search of Benjamin.
And I still have not found his grave

In Search of Benjamin Sturkey
Patricia Christine Sturkey

October 2001

Patricia and I worked on and off through email over several years. She was an inspiration, a great problem solver. She unraveled many of the tough Sturkie riddles. It was my privilege to have worked with her. Because of her insatiable curiosity, her tireless quest for proper documentation and interest in family stories, Patricia has left an incredible legacy for all American Sterchi/Sturkey/Sturkie's.

After 12 years of research and authoring In Search of Benjamin Sturkey, she continued to research Sturkey/Sturkie families who migrated from Orangeburg, SC to other southern states. Along with documented facts, Patricia included some family "stories" and tried to verify them when possible. Her contribution The Sterchi/Sturkie/Sturkey Family from Switzerland to South Carolina & Beyond is the most comprehensive research on the Sturkie Family to date. Thank you, Patricia.

Mary Ward

"I borrowed from all, without any exception.
I am sewn between ancestry and posterity.
I am a drop of water in a flowing river of time; a molecule in a
mountain; a cell in a great family tree."

~ Oliver Wendell Holmes
Sturkie Family Records