Kentucky Kindred

Our Family History, Genealogy, and Kentucky Connections


My brother, Roger gave me a copy of "FamilyTree Maker" genealogy software for my new computer back in 1995. In starting my family tree, I talked with my maternal grandmother Dorothy Helen (McWilliams) Hopper. My interest really began to grow, because she had a story to tell. Her mother Emma Elizabeth Merritt and baby brother died of the flu in 1918 in Helena, Arkansas. Her fatherJames McWilliams took her to Jasper County Illinois, where she was raised by her maternal grandmother Rosa Bell Richey Chesnut. Grandma lost contact with her father, and wondered what happened to him. I began to share in her curiosity, and began a quest to find out what happened to him.

I still have not completely solved the mystery of James McWilliams. However, I have expanded the research beyond James McWilliams, and added several branches to our tree. Maybe one of the branches is connected to you, if so, please contact us!

It is my intent through this website to share the results of my research and facilitate the exchange of information among fellow researchers. With your help I hope to make this as complete a history of these families as possible. If you have a connection to our family, I would appreciate it if you would submit any additional photos, documents, stories, or family group sheets. I am looking for photographs of people on this site. If you have any scanned images to share, I would love to put a face to the name!

email imageIf you have any questions or comments about the information on this site, please contact us. We look forward to hearing from you.