This site includes the Cunningham, Walker, Finney, Benner, and many related and collateral families who lived in White County, Illinois, beginning in the early to mid-19th Century. Before that, many of them lived across the Wabash River in Posey County, Indiana. Most families came from the South, but a few traveled down from the Northeast. In the 20th and 21st Centuries, with increased mobility, the families are scattered across the United States and the world.
As of 2 November 2014: 1,038 individuals in 333 families with 240 surnames. Working family by family to add citations, attach documents and pictures, and generally clean up the tree.
Navigating the site
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When I was 13 years old, I walked into the courthouse of my home town, Carmi, Illinois, and asked to see the vital records. The clerk (who was our next-door neighbor) gave her permission. I quickly learned to find my way around the birth, marriage, and death records of White County, Illinois.
It was not long before I discovered that all eight of my great-grandparents had died in that county. Six of them had come there from neighboring Posey County, Indiana. I was off on a never-ending hunt that has so far lasted five decades.
During that hunt, I have extended a few lines back to the early 1500s, which is as early as a European can hope for. Many lines have been extended sideways, i.e., by following the descendants of my ancestors' siblings, and also by including some of the families who married my indirect kin. More recently, I have found several cousins through DNA matching.
The one great hole in my tree is my own Cunningham line. Despite many years of searching, I still do not know who the parents of my great-great-grandfather Samuel Hawkins Cunningham were. See Most Wanted.
I invite you to search or browse this site, especially if you are or suspect you are a relative, and most especially if you have something to correct or add.
17 October 2014: Site went public
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Samuel Hawkins Cunningham
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