Welcome to this site dedicated to the history and the genealogies of the pioneers who settled the Cumberland highland area of central Appalachia, a region encompassing eastern Kentucky, southwestern Virginia, West Virginia, western North Carolina,and east Tennessee.
Mountaineers had a habit of migrating in small groups of intermarried families. They would settle together and continue to maintain a sense of community defined by blood connections, subsistence farming and hunting, and barter-based exchanges. In these isolated settlements (a term that, in this context, falsely conjures images of "town" or at least "crossroads"), the rhythms of social interaction -- courtship, marriage, worship, recreation, death and dying -- were constrained among a few neighbors. Thus the realities of "community survival" have, over time, unfairly morphed into modern-day stereotypes of "inbreeding", ignorance, or immorality.
To go directly to my searchable database of individuals, click below!