William Clifford is not in my list of Merritts. We also have a tradition of a Cherokee ancestor. However, our DNA study indicates that the Cherokee was a female, as the male y-dna line goes unbroken back through England into the Mediterranean.
My own ancestors went from VA into KY, but our DNA study shows that we have have relatives who ended up in GA for sure. You can see some of the information for our GA folks at our website, maybe they are related: