The Year Without Genealogy, Part III

Just when you thought it was safe to venture out and that libraries might be opening up for more than answers to easy questions, Zap! Key genealogy states become cautious again. Utah included–

Instead of fussing about what we don’t have let’s consider some of the information that we do. From Amazon last year, I ordered a copy of Lord Dunmore’s Little War of 1774, His Captains and Their Men Who Opened up Kentucky and the West to American Settlement. Written by Warren Skidmore with Donna Kaminsky and published by Heritage Books, Inc. in 2002, a critical resource for the early take over of western Virginia–the lands that became Kentucky and over the Ohio River, future states of  Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and Michigan.

For almost every early American ancestor, genealogists will benefit by reading about the “little” war at Point Pleasant and studying carefully the lists of men who served on the ground in that fracas. Over 40,000 men are named with intriguing personal details about many of them. From western Pennsylvania, from the Great Valley of Virginia, from Southside Virginia, and from what became, much later, West Virginia, these men are listed. Public Service Claims , militia rolls, casualty lists, and pensions granted are also included.

You see, the real genealogy significance of this work lies in its documentation of men participating in a strategic military event from counties whose records have been lost or missing over the many years from then until now! Real sources that help to make-up for record loss preventing you from claiming your own ancestors. You have a name of a person with a possible birth date and even a place, but no connecting information to your family.

Lord Dunmore’s Little War  not only opened the way for settlement in Kentucky and parts west, it opens the way for actual search and discovery for your ancestry–places of residence, and rescue, and origin. The documents are described. Those that have appeared in print are stated with bibliographic details. What the printed volumes do not include is also indicated.

What is left for you to do is locate these resources online or through inter-library loan, or by purchase for those available in re-print or even mint-condition copies of the original printings. 202 does not have to be “the Year without Genealogy for you!” Your favorite Kentucky genealogist, Arlene Eakle

PS Finding alert: Most libraries catalogue this volume under Kentucky, not Virginia.

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