The Melungeons blog

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

TN Encyclopedia: MELUNGEONS By Ann Toplovich , Tennessee Historical Society

The University of Tennessee Press, Knoxville, Tennessee.


"The most well-known location for Melungeons in the state is in the Clinch River area of Hancock and Hawkins Counties. Other groups of people called Melungeon can be found in the Graysville area of Rhea and Hamilton Counties and in Davidson and Wilson Counties in Tennessee, as well as in the states of Virginia, Kentucky, Florida, South Carolina, and Louisiana. One estimate is that approximately forty nonwhite/nonblack communities similar to the Hancock County Melungeons live in the South."

Another Excerpt:

"A major phenomenon in the Melungeon lore of the 1990s and early 2000s was a revival of interest in the possible Portuguese lineage of the group, spurred in large part by college administrator Brent Kennedy's 1994 book The Melungeons: The Resurrection of a Proud People. In this work, Kennedy gleans from his own family's history a theory that the Melungeons originated as Islamic Moors from Iberia, Turkey, and North Africa, refugees from Spanish and English activities on the Atlantic coast in the 1500s. Masking themselves as Christian Portuguese to avoid possible ethnic cleansing, he asserts, the men made their way inland, intermarried to a limited degree with Native Americans, and created the people called Melungeons. Research into this theory is centered at the University of Virginia branch campus at Wise, and the Muslim-Portuguese account can be found at several Web sites devoted to Melungeons."


Monday, April 28, 2008

Joanne the Troll

The new slang on the Internet is troll. On the Melungeon GenForum, certain members are calling others, a troll. Well, I have been collecting troll dolls since childhood. I have a wee tiny one with long pink hair, big pointed ears, huge pointed nose, a very big mouth and little beady eyes. I named it Joanne or just Joannie. I think it is unfair to the real trolls to have their name associated with this newest slang.

I found a sweet online article about the history of troll dolls.


Melungeon Heritage Page


"Since you ended up on this page, it probably means you are interested in Melungeons...maybe you are a Melungeon descendant or researcher or just heard the term and are trying to figure out "


Saturday, April 26, 2008

Gobekli Tepe - Paradise Regained?

forteantimes March 2007

Sean Thomas


Friday, April 25, 2008

Turkey: Discovery of 12,000-year-old Temple Complex Could Alter Theory of Human Development


"Turkey: Discovery of 12,000-year-old Temple Complex Could Alter Theory of Human Development - news and analysis about Central Asia and the Caucasus"


Wednesday, April 23, 2008

A Hidden Race of People in the Appalachian Mountains.


"The Melungeons are now (maybe) considered of as the first group of early settlers to the Americas from Spain, Turkey, Portugal, Greece, and several other Mediterranean countries. The main influence, which brought these groups to America, were the Spanish. Yet, what we know of them is still a mystery for the most part. The Melungeons were very private individuals and for hundreds of years their ancestry was shunned and never really talked about. The Melungeons headed for the hills and mountain valleys of the Appalachian landscape and kept a very secluded life. They lived off the land like that of the Indians and continue to prosper under the identity of other American groups."


Tuesday, April 22, 2008


" is a genealogy website to assist you discovering sources to identify your families in Virginia."


Saturday, April 19, 2008

Re:An example of the "shunning and shaming" tactic

Excerpt :

MaryE wrote:

<<"Larry, the 'shunning and shaming' is a human trait. Been used by every culture since day one. It is very effective if the subject person is in his right mind and is educible.">>


I don't know about being a human trait. However I can tell you that through out history the woman were raped by the men of their nation's victors. This practice is ongoing to this very day. Many woman became pregnant as a result. Some of the victims of rape conceived and gave birth to babies that might have resembled the rapist - the conquerors.

These are the children who were shunned and put to shame because of their physical features.

This is what the Melungeon Movement is about....we are all akin.

The shunning and shaming the people of mix-ancestry is just plain wrong.

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Harrogate, Tennessee - Googled

MHA 12 Union will be in Harrogate, TN.


Thursday, April 17, 2008

The Walter Kelly Descendants Home Page

I'm a desendant of this Kelley who settled in Kanawha County, WV. I have read many books that claim Walter Kelley was murdered by Indians. According to these books, he had a negro woman who met the same fate.


Wednesday, April 16, 2008

The Life of Ottoman Jews


"One of the most significant innovations that Jews brought to the Ottoman Empire was the printing press. In 1493, only one year after their expulsion from Spain, David & Samuel ibn Nahmias established the first Hebrew printing press in Istanbul."


Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Today's Standard-Times

"Excerpt: The discovery of one's roots can be an exciting and rewarding experience, but the road leading to the ultimate goal can sometimes be painful and disheartening."

"Last Sunday, Dr. N. Brent Kennedy spoke at the fifth annual fund-raiser of the American-Portuguese Genealogical and Historical Society at Taunton's main library, detailing his quest for his ancestry."

Dr. Kennedy,discovered he was a Melungeon, and he wrote a book The Melungeons: The Resurrection of a Proud People, and Untold Story of Ethnic Cleansing in America."

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Laree Lee

....can't you find anything that is more updated. The articles written by Virginia Demarce on the Melungeons needs to be updated. Maybe she will see your post and write more about what she has learned since her last article. The Internet is so much more advanced more documents are available.

She has a right to publish her thoughts and research online too. I think a lot of people would be interested. This decade old review has it's own little quirks.

I warn that just because an author's article is in a well known genealogy society magazine, that does not always mean that all of the genealogy is correct. The work can be incorrect for many reasons. But, the placement in a well known source does help bring the author a feather in their hat.


Queen of the Melungeons?

This day in history: Joanne, the leader of the Melungeon Heritage Research Group became known as Joanne - Queen of the Melungeons.



"Nancy can call me anything she wants as long as she keeps pointing out how all my hard work has paid off."

"She is right. Rootsweb,, and this board use to be flooded with people who claimed to be Melungeons because they had a Turkish disease, a bump, a squat, or because they had a surname that was in Kennedy's book."

"What started out as a 'handful' of people who kept posting the truth everywhere grew and grew -- and finally the truth started poking up everywhere -- until we have the current situation -- I'm quite proud to have been part of this Melungeon Movement that has been working to take back our heritage!"



Sunday, April 13, 2008

Melungeon First Union

The two mayors, Nuri Ertan and Caynor Smith, became friends after the two countries came together when their two cities became "sister cities" when they enrolled in a program Sister Cities International. This picture was taken on the steps of the County Courthouse in Wise County, Virginia in July 1997. The mayor of Cseme, Turkey, along with his wife, the mayor of Wise, stood next to Melungeons in support of their new found friends, the Melungeons.

On that day, in July 1997, Connie Clark, loudly proclaimed these words, "We are not going to take it anymore...." Connie Clark was talking about the ongoing oppression that her people have had to endure for centuries. It was on this day that the people of Turkey forged a kinship with the people of Appalachia.

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Melungeons have been hi-jacked

To any Melungeon researcher:Approximately 50 people have hi-jacked ALL Melungeon research, calling it their own and refusing to listen to anyone who has conflicting views.

Wherever possible, the owners of lists concerning Melungeons have restricted their membership to those folks who agree with their statements and have refused to allow any statements other than approved ones to be on their lists. Their stated purpose is to limit their lists to people who support the aims of the list and who are in tune with its philosophy, thus insuring that any IDEA in variance with these aims will never be heard by their membership. Doesn't this sound 'funny' to you? Isn't something similar going on in Texas today?

Some members of these specific lists have been unsubbed from the lists without notification. This also closes the archives of these lists to the view of anyone having an opposing position. What is all the secrecy about? Is there something shameful going on that we should know about and that they don't want known?

Even this message board has been taken over by this small group and I feel it is quite likely that my message here will be deleted shortly, so I am placing it on several Melungeon blogs as well. It will remain on the net for folks to find.

I firmly DISAGREE with much of what has been written in the last few months on boards such as this one, excepting certain proven documents from the past. I firmly believe that Melungeon research should NOT be quashed by folks who have determined that ONLY the people that they WANT to be Melungeons or descendants can post to this or any list without them posting e-mails with all sorts of complaints, ridicule, nasty words etc. I FIRMLY disagree that the reputations of researchers who are unable because of disability to defend their work should be ruined by POLITICAL debate of something that happened after WW I that has been ongoing in Melungeon research at the present.

I have as much right to research and disseminate Melungeon data as anyone else. Yet, I am talked about both behind my back and to my face. I am dismissed from Melungeon research according to this SMALL group of approx. 50 people and made fun of. This affects me, but it also affects hundreds of other folks who would LIKE to know about their Melungeon descended families, possible health issues and more, and yet they are afraid to post simply because of what they have seen posted by a VERY FEW of the most vocal of this group of restrictive Melungeon researchers.

The beliefs of this small group of researchers about Melungeons are racist, restrictive, and in my own personal opinion they try to deny anything other than European and Native American ancestry. While I would like to unify people, they divide.

If you do not like such tactics, I invite you to join my Melungeon mailing list where folks are friendly, many origins, and genealogies are discussed along with culture, history, dna, and more. There is NO fighting, NO arguments on my list. It is active, different everyday and highly interesting.

Please send an e-mail

Look for a response from and I will be glad to have you joining us.

Love and health in family ties,


The Melungeon Health Education and Support Network


Wilkes County, North Carolina

Interesting that Melungeons have a connection with Wilkes County, NC. I have ancestors who were married there and one ancestor was a constable in the late 1700's. Instead of going west, these familes move to Harrison County, WV. Up hear we call these groups as WV Guineas.


Saturday, April 12, 2008

Potentially Fraudulent Genealogy

From: The Generations Network

Thursday, April 10, 2008 8:49:32 PM


"We have recently become aware of three websites purporting to allow family history research:, and The sites claim to have “the largest online genealogical search tool” and promote themselves as the foremost resources for genealogy, but from what we can tell, these sites are nothing more than a series of web pages with links to other services. These sites, in our opinion, are clearly fraudulent. On each site, potential customers are lured to purchase under what we feel to be false, misleading and deceitful promotional material, and get little or no value out of money spent at the websites. Blog and message board posts from the community confirm this opinion. The people/companies behind the websites are buying very high level paid search results on Google and other sites. In addition, they are using trademarks of well-known websites, including and, to get higher-than-normal natural search results. It appears the site colors, fonts, and pictures on at least one site are designed to mislead people in to believing the site is related to As the leading online family history company, The Generations Network, Inc. and its website properties including and its global network of Ancestry sites,, and Rootsweb, we want to encourage consumers to validate and verify the legitimacy of a website before providing credit card information or paying for services. TGN will take appropriate administrative and legal action to do its part to protect the community from these sites."


Friday, April 11, 2008

Email Alert

The Melungeon community has questions about the relationship between MHA and ATAA. Since we are in an election year we are prone to be undivided. The political atmosphere is heating up between the run for the White House. This election year is split in families, everyone working for their candidate.

I have read many message boards who have questions for both MHA and ATAA. You can send an electronic letter to me and I will give them to the president of ATTA when I meet him.

Send your electronic letter:

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Brent Kennedy and Turker Ozdogon

This picture was taken in 2007 in the city of New York. This is also a picture of a God given miracle. On a day in December of 2005, Brent Kennedy had a stroke immediately following the memorial service for a dear friend and colleague, Joe a Professor at the University of Virginia's College at Wise. Brent gave the eulogy for, Joe Scholnick, Jr. Immediately after the memorial Brent had a grand mal seizure that was the result of an aneurysm in his brain. He collapsed in the hallway of the facility where he had just finished giving the eulogy.

Brent was taken to the emergency room at Holston Valley Hospital. When his was evaluated, they found that his shoulder had been broken from the fall that was caused by his stroke. The doctors kept Brent in the hospital for a few days. His stroke was mild and being Brent, his spirit remained untouched by the physical damage to his body. But just a few says later he went back into the hospital. The doctors determined what was happening and found that Brent had an aneurysm in his brain. The bleeding in his brain had to be stopped so he was sent to surgery to repair the damage. Brent had no brain activity at all. They say that when it is this serious, most people choose to unplug the life support to end their loved ones life. It was the machines that kept Brent's body functioning.

This time he became unconscious and remained in a coma for three months. Brent's wife, Robyn (Vaughn) Kennedy did not give up on her husband. She could have taken her husband off the life supports systems but, instead her love for her husband kept him alive. The rest of his family were at his side, praying to God for a miracle.

Then one day Brent became conscious! So many of us believe that God isn't finished with Brent Kennedy. He has had to endure strenuous painful therapies. Robyn Kennedy decided to take her husband to the Patricia Neal Stroke Center in Knoxville, TN. If you click on the link you will see a picture of Brent Kennedy doing his rehabilitation while staying in the center. The Kennedy family was by him, talking to him, playing his favorite CD's, while he was in a coma.

Now I would like to explain the miracle that took place while Brent was in a coma, the four major religions prayed to God to ask him to heal our brother Brent. Prayers were said at Mecca, a Rabi and his family along with others prayed at the Holy Wall in Jerusalem for a miracle. There were Protestants praying and people around the world lighted candles in their homes and prayed. The Catholic Church had a special service to pray for our brother Brent Kennedy. Even those of the Hindu faith prayed.

I do believe that only a few people get prayers to God, from all around the world at the same time for the same person. This picture of Brent is a reminder that God does indeed hears our prayers and grants a miracle. I hope his experience becomes an inspiration for those who suffer from disabling strokes. I hope that everyone acknowledges that yes indeed, Brent Kennedy's life is a God given miracle.

Mr. Kennedy was the President of the Wellmont Foundation in Bristol, Tennessee.He was able to raise funds to bring better health care to the Appalachian people living in Tennessee.

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The purpose of this group is:

Maybe the Yahoo Group named Melungeon Heritage Research is not understanding that the ATAA is made up of Turkish-Americans. There is nothing wrong with these Americans being lobbists. Who are they (MHRG) to deny these Turkish-Americans their freedom to celebrate both their American and Turkish culture?

I have been reading the posts at MHRG and in my opinion they are a group who have a sincere hostility for Turkish Americans. Some of the posts are laughable, these ones have a caveman mentality.

The MHRG even professes their intentions towards the Turkish Americans communities. They hate the people of Turkey. They think that the Turks want to rule the world. I tell you this is paranoid thinking.

The Melungeon Heritage Research Group now has a Saint among them. She arose to sainthood when she revealed the that there is no Turkish DNA to begin with. So she concludes that ALL Melungeons do not have Turkish DNA in their body, based on the facts, she just figured out.

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Welcome to Anatolia, a land on the cultural crossroads


"In this web site, I focus on the early history of Anatolia, beginning from the Palaeolithic age to the end of Hellenistic Period. Therefore successive Roman, Byzantine, Seljuk and Ottoman empires are not included here. However, as the time permits and when I have them ready, I am going to publish my study notes on these later civilizations in a separate section “Imperial Anatolia”."

Read more about the migration of Anatolians to America

From Anatolia to Appalachia

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Researchers suspect Stonehenge was ancient healing site


This Stonehenge story is worth the time to read. I watched a documentary on the History Channel. These researchers was about UFOs who use Stonehenge as a vortex. There were many other ancient sites that were mentioned as being a vortex for UFOs. The documentary was spooky. The area is known as a religious site too.


Monday, April 07, 2008

Ancestry of Barack Obama

compiled by William Addams Reitwiesner

"The following material on the immediate ancestry of Barack Obama should not be considered either exhaustive or authoritative, but rather as a first draft.

Christopher Challender Child, Robert Battle, and Michael Hurdle contributed to this report. In addition, corrections were provided by Joe David Bellamy, Judy Barry Strangfeld, Gratia Dunham Mahoney, Fred Chalfant, P. J. Evans, James Quinn, James R. Kuttler, Brian Casto, Jay Webber, and John M. Cogar"


The public school in its relations to the negro

This article mentions the Melungeons.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

"Verry Slitly Mixt:": Tri-Racial Isolate Families of the Upper South--A Genealogical Study

Genocide, diplomacy and terrorism

April 2, 2008

A partial transcript the Assembly of Turkish American Associations’ meeting with The Times editorial board.

"Leaders of an umbrella group for Turkish-American groups stopped by The Times recently to discuss the debate over the Armenian genocide, Turkey's membership in the European Union and quashing Kurdish separatism in northern Iraq. Below are highlights from that meeting."


Thursday, April 03, 2008

Poop Fossil Pushes Back Date for Earliest Americans

Randolph E. Schmid, Associated Press


"April 3, 2008 -- New evidence shows humans lived in North America more than 14,000 years ago, 1,000 years earlier than had previously been known."

This story is from the Discover Channel. In an Oregon cave fossilized feces were discovered. Naturally scientist did a DNA test on the fossil. When the results came back, the scientist learned that who ever took a poop in the cave 14,000 years ago was related to people living in Siberia and East Asia. This story is true, no bull poop.

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Is Molungeon a slang word

A Dictionary of Slang, Jargon, and Cant by Albert Barrere and Charles Godfrey Leland 1887 page 60

"Mr. Henry A. Wise once said, in the legislature of Virginia, that a mulatto was the offspring of the young gentleman heir-apparent of an estate with one of the family or house servants, but that the child of a female field-laborer by a Yankee pedlar was a molungeon."


Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Yes We Can