The Swink ancestors were German and most likely were part of the mass migration of Protestants (Palatines) that fled Germany in the early 1700s due to religious and economic reasons. My Swink line had reportedly settled in western North Carolina by the mid 1700s and most of the people in that area had come down the Pennsylvania Wagon Road to settle the frontier just east of the Appalachian Mountains.
A family legend told to my great-great grandfather, Jonas L. Swink, by his grandmother said that John Lewis Swink served and was killed in the Revolutionary War at the battle of Guilford Courthouse in North Carolina. This has been proved untrue and his service is no longer recognized by the Daughters of the American Revolution. Many Swinks lived in Guilford County at that time, and while he may not have been part of the militia, he may have died there around that time. His wife and three children were reported to have moved to South Carolina after his death and the first records of the Swink family in South Carolina in the late 1700s find Lewis N. Swink as a farmer and landowner in Union County.
Jonas L. Swink, son of Lewis N., was a Confederate veteran and farmer who died at age 89. Jesse Lewis Swink, son of Jonas L., moved his family to Woodruff, SC where he and wife Margaret Elizabeth Bishop raised a large family. Jesse Lewis Swink was a farmer & merchant who died at age 93.
One of the sons of Jesse Lewis Swink, Clarence D. Swink, was a conductor on the railroad who was shot and killed by a hobo. As Clarence fell, he pulled his own gun and shot the hobo. For more details see page for Clarence D. Swink. Three sons of Jesse Lewis Swink, including Ralph B. Swink Sr, served in World War I and several grandsons in World War II.
Highlighted names show the direct ancestor line of Ralph B. Swink, Sr.