Home News Welcome to Kentucky Ancestors Online!

Welcome to Kentucky Ancestors Online!

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Louise Jones and Cheri Daniels

Louise Jones and Cheri Daniels

Where to start?  Well, let’s first begin with introductions:  your Kentucky Ancestors Online editorial team consists of Cheri Daniels and Louise Jones.  Cheri, your friendly neighborhood Senior Librarian and Reference Specialist is also a 7th generation Kentuckian, blogger, bibliophile, technology/social media junkie and seasoned researcher who began her library and genealogy journeys at the age of 16. Louise, your friendly neighborhood Director of Special Collections and Library is also an accomplished horse-woman, Mom to an adorable Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, and has worked for three different state historical societies over the last 20 years, helping genealogists, local historians and academic researchers find answers to their research quests.  As we grow Kentucky Ancestors Online into THE place to find articles, tutorials, and upcoming events, we will be working with authors, researchers, historians and genealogists to edit and create interesting, pertinent, and useful information about Kentucky genealogy and local history.

You may be wondering why the Kentucky Historical Society (KHS) made the decision to stop producing Kentucky Ancestors in print and to transition to an online publication.  As a print publication, the mission was to provide a quality resource for genealogists and local historians writing about Kentucky and also to be a venue for first time authors.  For over 40 years, KHS made this publication available to our members which quickly became a very popular and well respected resource.   However, we have long known that this print publication fell short in connecting with our online and non-member audiences. Over the last year we have been exploring ways to reach out to this broader group to deliver an online portal dedicated to Kentucky genealogy and local history which promotes access, learning and engagement.

Rightmyer, Don

Don Rightmyer

With this transition into a new era, we must not forget the wonderful work that came before us. Nor must we forget to thank those who built such a solid foundation. As we began the planning for migration to a new format, your former Kentucky Ancestors editor, Don Rightmyer, was right there with us, offering his insights and guidance from 4 years of producing the print edition. One thing that quickly became apparent was the dedication necessary to produce this educational and prolific resource. We would like to thank Don for his years of service and dedication to this publication as he embarks on a new career. It was no surprise to KHS when we received news that Don had just completed his first book, soon to be released: Torn – The Civil War in Kentucky. While we wish him all the best in this new chapter, we would also like to assure readers that Don’s high standard for quality articles will remain. From BookNotes to Feature Articles, Don’s influence on Kentucky Ancestors will continue. In fact, you will see an article from him among our first articles set for launch.


KAO Staff bringing you the best articles and stories about Kentucky’s rich heritage!

Kentucky Ancestors Online will continue to have full length editor-reviewed articles and book reviews, much like the print version of Kentucky Ancestors. However, the portal will also include new features such as heavily illustrated case studies, video interviews with local researchers and Second Saturday speakers, instructional tutorials, collection highlights and an up-to-date calendar of events. Perhaps the most exciting feature of all will be that the site is not gated solely for KHS membership but will be available to all, for free. Our goal is to attract and serve the genealogical community throughout the country.  We have long known that those with Kentucky roots have a strong interest in their heritage, and treasure the stories of their Kentucky connections for generations.

Kentucky Ancestors Editorial Team

Kentucky Ancestors Editorial Team

We hope that you will take the time to explore Kentucky Ancestors Online and please stop back regularly, because the site will be updated with new content weekly.  Our initial production schedule is a bit daunting (to us, at least) with new authors, re-formatted old favorites and a steady stream of Book Notes and Collection highlights to pique your interest in the resources available to you here at KHS and across the Commonwealth.  To make it easier for folks to navigate the site, the navigation bar includes buttons for Feature Articles, Trending (news segments with, BookNotes, Collections Corner posts and lots more), Events, How To articles and our History Mysteries page where you can contribute your knowledge to some fun mysteries from the annals of Kentucky’s history!

Oh, and by the way, if you would like to write for us or share a story dear to your family, just drop us a line at: khsrefdesk@ky.gov. You can also learn more about this process from our Submission Guidelines page. Kentucky Ancestors Online is a publication of the Kentucky Historical Society.

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  1. wrote on October 15th, 2013 at 1:04 pm

    William Joseph Bonner

    Your initial release on the internet based Kentucky Ancestors Online seems quite professional. Congratulations.

    I would like to try my hand at a submission about the Williams family (ies) of Montgomery County, Kentucky. I have been researching them and their descendants for over 30 years and am finally ready to put it into a coherent writing, that is properly footnoted and sourced, so that the family stories which abounded in my family have at least a reasonably factually-based foundation. I’ll check out the Submission Guidelines and get started on it. Thanks very much for all your hard work.

  2. wrote on February 26th, 2014 at 9:13 pm


    Whoops – typo: “highlights to peak your interest” – should be “pique” rather than “peak”

    I look forward to checking out this new resource. Glad to see it come online.

    – Kay

    • Profile photo of Cheri Daniels
      wrote on February 27th, 2014 at 3:49 pm

      Cheri Daniels

      Nice Kay! I think maybe with just two on the editorial staff, we are going to rely heavily on our eagle eye readers out there to keep us in line! Let us know when you encounter more!

  3. wrote on November 20th, 2014 at 1:54 am

    Carol-Lee Perkins

    I am looking for information on William Henry Martin who was born about 1790 in Woodfird County, Kentucky. He was married to Mary Renick Jones who was born on 22 Jul 1796 also in Woodford County. They had 3 children Alexander ME, Elizabeth and James William.

    I am looking for the antecedents of William Henry Martin and Mary Renick Jones and others. Hope you can help. I live in Ocean Shores, WA and accessing research materials from here is a bit of a stretch for an amateur. Thank You. Carol-Lee

  4. wrote on July 5th, 2015 at 5:01 pm

    Ira Meadows

    I found my great grandfather Isaiah Meadows who was born in Kentucky about 1815 (based on various census reports). Maybe in Knox county, but not sure. I sure would like to know the names of his parents who were born in NC. I traced Isaiah through IL (Gallatin) where he married and raised a family. First wife died and he remarried. Then he moved to Missouri where he eventually died about 1889.

  5. wrote on August 3rd, 2018 at 10:23 pm

    Tiffany Sellers Saenz

    I am looking for information regarding my 6th great-grandparents, John Despain, Jr. and Charlotte Daniel. John was born about 1775 in Virginia and eventually moved to Kentucky with his family. Tax Records show John and his brothers living in Green County around 1800. About June 1801, John married Charlotte Daniel who was born about 1778 to William Daniel and Lucinder Myrtis Littlejohn. Census show that John and Charlotte lived in Green County before moving to Hardin County, Tennessee around 1840. Any information provided in regards to the Despain/Daniel line would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

  6. wrote on February 26th, 2019 at 2:57 am


    Help please. I am looking for information on James Taylor who I once read was buried in a family cemetery on what is now Fort Knox in the early 18 hundreds.

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