Our Fifteenth Year! Last Updated 12/24/2017.
In 1993, this beautiful lady gave me a gift that has lasted a lifetime. She gave me a love for our family’s history — for the preservation and discovery of our heritage.
This is Ruth Caudill Kilby. We love you, we miss you.
Photo Credit to her Grandson, William ‘Bill’ Kilby
The Caudill Reunion web page was started in 2002 which means we’re now in our fifteenth year — somewhat hard to believe. (It’s been intermittent based on funding availability and we’re funded through 2018 at this time — woo woo!).
Who are we?
This web site was originally started by the great grandchildren of Alford Martin and Jannie Blevins Caudill. Martin and Jannie owned the Caudill Cabin now located within Doughton Park, situated on the Alleghany and Wilkes County, NC, line within Basin Cove. As the Blueridge Parkway (BRP) was being developed in the early 1930’s, the Caudill Cabin became part of ‘Bluff Park’, or ‘The Bluffs’, which was a new National Park formed as part of this same effort. Senator Robert Lee Doughton, also known as “Farmer Bob”, was a longtime U.S. Congressman from nearby Laurel Springs, NC. Bob Doughton was a staunch parkway supporter and advocate — The Bluffs were renamed Doughton Park in 1961 in his honor.
We are also a group of volunteers known as Caudill Family Cabin sponsored by Friends of the Blueridge Parkway. In this capacity, we support the National Park Service providing trail maintenance and minor cabin maintenance volunteer services. Visit us on Facebook! (See Friends of the Family page).
Nine years ago (2004), we started the Caudill YDNA Project. We serve as administrator for this project hosted by Family Tree DNA. By comparing the YDNA from males of different and various branches of the family, ‘relatedness’ can be proven or disproven. While this scientific research methodology cannot identify an individual common ancestor, it CAN prove there was a ‘Common Ancestor’. Please visit our Caudill YDNA Page.
- We have proven that the CAUDELL clans of Georgia share a Common Ancestor with the CAUDILL clan from northwest NC;
- We have proven that some of those with the CORDELL spelling of the surname share a Common Ancestor with the CAUDILL clan from northwest NC;
- We have proven that Jesse P. Caudill shares a close genetic relationship with those of the Jeremiah Caudill line.
It was probably around 1998 or so that cousin Rob Hahn started our sister site — CaudillCabin.org. Rob and I collaborated when that page was stood up and a lot of the content is shared between the sites.
Our State Magazine, The Caudill’s and Their Cabin, by Randy Johnson, October 2009.
Appalachian Moments by Germain Media – That Pioneer Spirit
What do we do?
There are a couple of large objectives for this page:
- Provide a permanent repository for the collection, preservation, and storage of data and information related to our rich family heritage;
- Serve as a place where all Caudill’s can unite, find distant family, and learn of their heritage;
Why do we do what we do?
It’s about the people — it’s about the family. I’ve made hundreds of new friends and acquaintances as a direct result of genealogy:
- Some of you have climbed up mountainsides with me on your hands and knees looking desperately for a graveyard — that’s supposed to be here somewhere;
- I’ve shared your pain visiting your parents in the hospital;
- Some of you send me Christmas Cards every year;
- Some of you mail me obituary clippings;
- I’ve lost at least one of you to cancer;
- One of you became my family physician and my backpacking amigo;
- I met some of you after you drove hundreds of miles to join us at a family event;
- Some have discovered for the first time their heritage because of our work;
- I’ve shared a case of Poison Ivy with at least one of you, and chigger bites with a few others;
- We’ve raked leaves together and we’ve built cemetery fences together;
- We’ve hauled logs, we’ve shared meals, we’ve camped, we’ve shared stories, and we’ve written new ones;
It’s about the people …
What’s on the Web Page?
Let me start by stating that everything you’ll find here is free. Whether you’re kin or not, I hope you enjoy what I’ve compiled across the decades with the help of countless others. I’m here to chronicle our rich heritage, not to make money. I’ve worked countless hours gathering our family’s history and believe resolutely that selling someone their heritage is simply wrong. This is a passion for me and I get paid every time someone discovers from whence they came through my efforts herein.
Being a junkie for this stuff as I am, I’ve visited many archives and government offices dredging up old deeds, grants, wills, marriage licenses, military records, and other official documents seeking morsels of previously undiscovered information. I’m adding this content as time permits.
Without exaggeration, I’ve gathered not less than 1,500 photographs of people, places and events related to our family. Like the family tree, only a fraction of those items are posted —- maybe someday, everything can be posted: it’s a herculean task. You can visit our Photo Album to see what I did manage to post.
Fact or Fiction is a section where I keep stories about the family. Have you ever heard of Caudill’s War? Read all about it in this part of our web site. How about the Caudle’s of Anson County that fought in the battle of Petersburg? Do you know who Colonel Benjamin Caudill was? Not all of this is posted yet, but I am eating the elephant one bite at a time.
The digging has always been tough, yet not always fruitful. Some of my findings are included in the section I call The Record Vault.
We hope you enjoy our site and invite you to contribute your information for others to enjoy. All my contact information is included below and I really do hope to hear from you!
Lenny F. Caudill II