Charles Presswood & family in front of the house he built in Perry County, 1904



Here is the Collins/Presswood/Keen part of the family tree. Many of these folks were in Sumner County, Tennessee and migrated to Perry County, Illinois in the 1840s (a 250 mile drive nowadays). Perry County is located in southwestern Illinois where growth boomed in the 1850s due to construction of the Illinois Central Railroad and the discovery of large coal reserves.

In general, females married young and families were large. Death often came early for both children and adults, so second and third marriages were common. There are several instances of a fellow marrying, then after his wife's death, marrying her sister. Without finding a family bible, it is impossible to pin down exact birthdays in the early days - most people just didn't know and the ages they reported on marriage, death, and census records varied greatly. As well, many did not read or write and spelling was indefinite. The important thing, genealogically, is identifying the family connections and learning about their lives.

You can navigate this site by using the surname index, charts, or the handy search tabs. Each person has their own page with a chronology of their life according to information discovered so far.

Enjoy exploring!