Southern Colonies of North America PROJECT! NEW!

+29 votes
The Southern Colonies project is up and running.  If you are interested in participating we are setting up sub projects which can be lead by members.  The scope of the project is to include all original southern colonies including British, Spanish and French colonies in the continental USA.  It is expanding daily though and may include other colonies (islands in the south) as well as other topics including Native Americans, Slavery, etc.


If you have an interest in joining or if you have good research resources for colonial America, please let us know or add them directly to the appropriate page.  Additionally, if you have an area that you are experienced with or would like to learn a little better, please feel free to contact the project leaders so we can get you involved.  This is a great opportunity to see how a project is started, and also to lead a sub project which is a new option on WikiTree.

Project page link:
asked in The Tree House by Nae X G2G6 Mach 5 (53.9k points)
recategorized by Jillaine Smith
Nae and other project leaders,

I share the following with all good intentions and out of a concern that we may be confusing wikitree volunteers and losing sight of the value that projects can provide.

if "U.S." is in the project title, as well as "colonies," that conveys to me a focus on those colonies in the south of the original 13 that would form the first states of the USA.  But your description above includes regions that were neither colonies nor what became the US.  I doubt I'm the only one confused by this. If you collectively want such broad coverage, then perhaps a different project name?

i also notice from the project page that it includes original settlers as well as their descendants. I've seen this become problematic in other projects that then have a hard time deciding where to draw the line, confusing and even discouraging volunteers from participating.

That's (only) part of why PGM chose to limit use of the project template just to those who actually emigrated. Makes it really clear what's included.

I have been very excited to see the launch of the southern colonies project but share with others some concern that it may become so diluted as to not have much focused purpose. That makes me worry about its future.

-- Jillaine

The “unofficial” Chronicles of New France Project ( ) actually preceded the establishment of the Southern Colonies of North America Project. Last month someone in the Southern Colonies project contacted me regarding the relationship of the two projects, and consequently, I responded that I would work on the details for connecting the two. A multitude of other WikiTree endeavors caused me to postpone that commitment. So now how to proceed?


Both project use the same map. So how shall the U.S. territorial regions be subdivided? And can the Chronicles of New France Project finally become an official project?

I don't see why it can't.  It does overlap into the Southern Colonies (which include any/all colonies in the southern part of America that became part of the USA, regardless to when they were originally started) as well as the Acadia (Nova Scotia 1600+)/Quebecois (French settlers 1600+) projects...

In the Southern Colonies, which I think you have reviewed, the French colony/settlement is a "sub" project and pertains to the area in the Southern US which actually leaves out a huge area to the north that was settled and inhabited by the French to Canada.

A separate project makes sense, and probably an umbrella "French Settlers in North America" to encompass Acadians, Quebecois, and those in the southern half of the continent.  Maybe with an addition of an "interior" the areas not covered by the other projects.

I'll post a separate G2G and link here to get everyone involved.  THANK YOU AGAIN!



3 Answers

+8 votes
This is an exciting new project!
answered by Paula J G2G6 Pilot (210k points)
+7 votes
I don't know how much the scope of the project has been discussed so far, but I'd like to know more about the inclusion of parts of New France in this project! The Acadians and Quebecois projects both cover portions of New France (mostly parts that are now in Canada), so I want to do what I can to help us all work together effectively! :)
answered by Lianne Lavoie G2G6 Pilot (418k points)

Great Question!  We haven't hammered New France out yet, in fact we haven't even started to really discuss it or work on it.  Still in the discussion phase, not only with this but other aspects of the project.  It's still an infant.

Since you chimed in though, I believe we are going to focus on the southern part of New France, but, if you have some folks who might be interested in participating and assisting with shaping this part of the project, please send them our way.  Especially if they are familiar with the resources/research for the colony in the southern portion.


Thanks Lianne!

I did notice that the map on the front shows a pretty large grey area between what was the blue French territory and the red English territory, extending into western North Carolina and much of Tennessee. This was French territory as well, as the name of the French Broad River in Asheville demonstrates, and in my view ripe for exploration. There are interesting tales of French settlements, and they went among the Indians with relative ease. The history of French exploration in the New World is fascinating and mostly unknown to the average American.

I will happily volunteer to curate any New France information here if there isn't already someone doing so. I will say that my French is very limited, but my interest is high.

Hi, Trevor,

As one with roots on both sides of the divide established in the Quebec Act, which demarcated the boundaries of British North America between 1763 and 1783, I must say that French jurisdiction on the Western slopes of the Appalachians befrore the 7 Years War was more actual in the North than the South ... there was an actual presence in what became Western Pennsylvania, at Fort Duquesne, although it was disputed with the Six Nations, and on the other hand there were at most trading posts between the Ohio Valley and Spanish Florida on the east side of the Mississippi (and north of the Ohio there were only Cahokia, Kaskaskia, Vincennes, and Fort Detroit.) Effective sovereignty was still exercised by the Cherokee, the Creek Confederacy, the Chickasaw and the Choctaw.

So French roots in the Old Northwest would be about the extent of the researchable ... I know my Desrosiers dit Lafreniere ancestors had Metis cousins at Detroit, for instance, whose descendants are all over the Midwest today.
+9 votes

What is the criteria for determining if a profile belongs in the project? Birth in a place during the colonial period? When did the colonial period end? For example, someone born in Viriginia in 1770 would be included, but someone born in 1783 would not? What should one do if one has profiles that fit the criteria, but no capacity for volunteering beyond their own profiles?

I am sorry if I overlooked this in the project description. (And I am not sure how West Virginia can be a colony. Western Viriginia (including what is now West Virginia), perhaps. smiley)

answered by Ellen Curnes G2G6 Mach 5 (51.7k points)
Hi Ellen,

Glad you asked.  As I stated this is a new project and many details have not been formalized, especially regarding dates.  Just this weekend we have gained enough members to actually have a good discussion on each point.  We are sort of aiming at the 1776 for British colonies or perhaps even earlier, but the Spanish and French haven't been even discussed, although I do have four folks that are heading up New Spain (again as of this past weekend).  NOTE:  The 1776 project includes years 1776-1789 so to at least tenatively answer one question:  Born in Virginia 1770=part of the project.  Born in 1783 in Virginia part of the 1776 project.

I am not sure where WV came up, but it was NOT a colony.  It was part of the Virginia colony and colonial resources for the entire area of a colony are going to be included in each colony/sub project.  So, if research sites have colonial records that will assist someone in researching their ancestor who happened to live in present day West Virginia or Kentucky, but IN the colony of Virginia, we will be trying to inlcude the research sites/resources on the colony page.


Hope this clears it up a little, but again, this baby was just born, and hasn't even started to roll over, let alone express it's personality, except for the fact that it's hungry and it's growing.  Thanks for your patience

If you are interested in contributing to the formation and raising of this little one, let me know!  We'd be glad to have you!
PS:  Overlooked one question.


If you do not want to join the project, that is fine.  That is not a requirement for adding the template (which we have a preliminary one, but it's not finalized either because other things have not been decided yet).   Resource pages are also open to use or contribution by anyone.  If you go to the project page there is a link to the main resource page.  Then it opens into other sub project resource pages which become more specific to each.
1776 is only when the revolution BEGAN. We were still colonies until the British surrender at Yorktown in 1781! But I am flexible . . .

You are absolutely correct Robin.  But the 1776 project takes over at 1776, so I don't think there is a need to duplicate or overlap, but again, we don't have anything etched in stone yet, so....  smiley

Just a little joke about WVa. I had reviewed the project page, and one of the members listed WVa expertise (which I am sure will be helpful).
That was probably me.  LOL  It's just been going round and round, and we pretty much have decided that the colony will include the original territory (because there were settlers in areas like WV and KY) to use Colonial Virginia as an example.

Mags just brought up Spanish colonies/settlements in the Georgia area.  I think we will also incorporate these into the Georgia colony page as well as on the Spanish Colonies page.

The main goal is to help researchers find their roots.  Provide sources for colonial records.  As easily as possible and if that means duplicating resources on several resource pages, so be it.  We are going to try and be as accurate as we can, but until we have members to take on these sub projects, they are just going to have to percolate on the back burner.  :)
I admit I am easily confused.  When I joined the Southern Colonies project I thought it was the Southern Colonies of the original 13.  I later discovered it was more inclusive and Texas and Arizona were part of the project.  Having so many ancestors in Arizona who migrated from the original Southern Colonies, I was pleased to learn they had a place in the project.  Then I found the Westward Ho project and other sub-projects.  Now, I wish the Southern Colonies project was less inclusive and agree with Ellen.  I feel it would be easier to find the appropriate sub-projects if new members didn't need to start out with the giant Southern Colonies.  For me, the name does not descirbe the full scope of the project.  Also, it seems it would be easier to manage if it was not so all encompassing.  I realize, historically, it makes sense.  These are only my impressions and I clearly do not have the experience of others involved in the project.  I am very grateful for all the time and effort so many have devoted to this project.

Jo Ann
HI JoAnn,

Not to are not the only one who assumes that the Southern Colonies project is just about the original thirteen  LOL   When we started this, it was an idea to encompass the entire Southern part of what is now the USA (excluding island colonies and focusing on the continental, but that CAN and MAY change...)

As a result, we are working on the southern half of the North American continenty, parts of which were settled many years before the orginal "English" colonies along the Atlantic coast.  We have tried to encompass the colonization of the entire part of what is now the continental USA and create resources for those who may have an interest or ancestors who may have settled in these areas.

In regards to Sub Projects...Maybe on the the "Project Page" we should list the "sub projects" that are within the project?  Would this be helpful?  I mean, really, I have had to look up some of the project names via Wikipedia or otherwise to figure out what they are and what they encompass, and I am for whatever makes it easier for a member, guest or otherwise to find what is of interest as quickly as possible.  If you or anyone else has a suggestion that might help, PLEASE post it...after all, that is one of the great things about WikiTree.  We are all volunteers and collaborators working toward making it better for us, guests, researchers, etc.....


Thanks!  Nae!



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