Recently I have been using wikitree to document all the early settlers in my county. I am finding a lot of families connect in the pioneer days because they married their neighbors and other members of their small communities. Travel was not easy, and you socialized with those in your vicinity. So pioneer times seems to be a good time to connect various families that settled in the same area.
I am sure New Englanders and Virginians are probably well aware of this because they had such early pioneers. I am finding the same holds true for my later day pioneers here in Florida, some who came during or after the Indian wars, during or after the Civil War, before the railroad arrived in 1888 and some who followed around the turn of the century. I am finding the origins of the earliest settlers were from nearby states, but after the railroad we were getting folks from the northern climates as well.
I have started a project called the Pinellas County Pioneers project, which has almost 200 pioneers profiled so far. I am writing this to encourage you to look at your own counties and your own towns and neighborhoods. You might just find a lot of connections of various famllies in your own backyard!
Sharon Troy Centanne
Genealogist and Local Historian