19 Kids and Counting Wiki

James Lee "J.L." Duggar (February 3, 1936 - February 9, 2009) was the son of James Duggar and Velma Duggar.

He was the brother of Barbara Hendrix, Evelyn Long, and Michael Duggar.

He was the husband of Mary Duggar and the father of their two children, Deanna and Jim Bob.

Early life

James Lee Duggar was born on February 3, 1936, in Fayetteville, Arkansas, to James Duggar and Velma (Boggs) Duggar. He was the couple's first child, and they went on to have three more children after him.

Personal life


In November 1960, J.L. married Mary Leona Lester in Washington County, Arkansas.


The couple has 2 children.

Their first child, daughter Deanna Lee, was born on July 8, 1962. She is divorced from Terry Jordan, with whom she has 1 child: Amy Rachelle (born September 30, 1986).

Their second child, son James Robert, was born on July 18, 1965. He is married to Michelle Ruark, with whom he has 19 children: Joshua James (born March 3, 1988), twins Jana Marie and John-David (born January 12, 1990), Jill Michelle (born May 17, 1991), Jessa Lauren (born November 4, 1992), Jinger Nicole (born December 21, 1993), Joseph Garrett (born January 20, 1995), Josiah Matthew (born August 28, 1996), Joy-Anna (born October 28, 1997), twins Jedidiah Robert and Jeremiah Robert (born December 30, 1998), Jason Michael (born April 21, 2000), James Andrew (born July 7, 2001), Justin Samuel (born November 15, 2002), Jackson Levi (born May 23, 2004), Johannah Faith (born October 11, 2005), Jennifer Danielle (born August 2, 2007), Jordyn-Grace Makiya (born December 18, 2008), and Josie Brooklyn (born December 10, 2009).


Through their 2 children, the couple has 25 great-grandchildren.

Their first grandchild, granddaughter Amy, is married to Dillon King, with whom she has 1 child: Daxton Ryan (born October 9, 2019).

Their second grandchild, grandson Joshua, is married to Anna Keller, with whom he has 7 children: Mackynzie Renée (born October 8, 2009), Michael James (born June 15, 2011), Marcus Anthony (born June 2, 2013), Meredith Grace (born July 16, 2015), Mason Garrett (born September 12, 2017), Maryella Hope (born November 27, 2019), and Madyson Lily (born October 23, 2021). The couple miscarried a child in 2010.

Their fourth grandchild, grandson John-David, is married to Abbie Burnett, with whom he has 1 child: Grace Annette (born January 7, 2020). They are expecting their second child, son Baby Boy Duggar-Burnett, due late Summer 2022.

Their fifth grandchild, granddaughter Jill, is married to Derick Dillard, with whom she has 3 children: Israel David (born April 6, 2015), Samuel Scott (born July 8, 2017), and Frederick Michael (born July 7, 2022). The couple miscarried a child, River Bliss, in October 2021.

Their sixth grandchild, granddaughter Jessa, is married to Ben Seewald, with whom she has 4 children: Spurgeon Elliot (born November 5, 2015), Henry Wilberforce (born February 6, 2017), Ivy Jane (born May 26, 2019), and Fern Elliana (born July 18, 2021). The couple miscarried a child in 2020.

Their seventh grandchild, granddaughter Jinger, is married to Jeremy Vuolo, with whom she has 2 children: Felicity Nicole (born July 19, 2018) and Evangeline Jo (born November 22, 2020). The couple miscarried a child, Halleli Grace, on November 26, 2019.

Their eighth grandchild, grandson Joseph, is married to Kendra Caldwell, with whom he has 3 children: Garrett David (born June 8, 2018), Addison Renee (born November 2, 2019), and Brooklyn Praise (born February 19, 2021).

Their ninth grandchild, grandson Josiah, is married to Lauren Swanson, with whom he has 1 child: Bella Milagro (born November 8, 2019). The couple miscarried a child, Asa, on October 4, 2018.

Their tenth grandchild, granddaughter Joy-Anna, is married to Austin Forsyth, with whom she has 2 children: Gideon Martyn (born February 23, 2018) and Evelyn Mae (born August 21, 2020). The couple miscarried a daughter, Annabell Elise, on June 26, 2019.

Their eleventh grandchild, grandson Jedidiah, is married to Katelyn Nakatsu, with whom he has 1 child: Truett Oliver (born May 2, 2022).



J.L. attended the University of Arkansas. He served in the university's Army ROTC.

Real Estate

In 1962, J.L. became a third-generation real estate agent. He worked at his family's agency, Duggar Realty, that his grandfather James Thaddeus "J.T." Duggar established in 1933. He sold sites for the Springdale Holiday Inn & Convention Center, Heritage Funeral Home, McDonald's, and Tamales Restaurant.


J.L. appeared on the TLC show 19 Kids and Counting, which focused on his son Jim Bob's large conservative family.


On February 9, 2009, J.L. died of brain cancer at the age of 73 at his son Jim Bob's house in Springdale, Arkansas.

He was buried in Fairview Memorial Gardens in Fayetteville, Arkansas on February 13, 2009.