About 20 years ago, when my mother moved out of her home and into a limited care facility, she gave me a box filled with family data: an old family Bible, old photographs, a couple of handwritten family genealogies, old mementos dating back to the Civil War era, and odd scraps of paper relating to assorted ancestors. This box sat neglected in the bottom of an old chest of drawers until the year 2000 , when, out of curiosity, I dragged it out and started rummaging through the debris of the past. One thing led to another. I started roaming the internet seeking information. Genealogical sections of local and regional libraries were searched. E-mails were sent to known relatives. Queries were posted on genealogical bulletin boards. And the information began to pile up. To organize all this incoming data, I purchased a piece of software for my Mac (Reunion 7) and started to organize the ancestral links and connections.
For most of this information I am deeply indebted to those researchers, living and dead, who have preceeded me in their genealogical quest. Little of the information is a result of my own original research. The basic information about our "original" American ancestor, William Wright, and many of his descendants was done by the Wright researcher, William "Bill" Wright, who currently resides in Texas. Robert L. Wright, who currently resides in Ohio and near the ancestral lands of our common ancestor, John Wright and Margaret McKittrick, has researched that line and recorded much on-site information from cemetary tomestones. Also, much of the Wright lineage descending from John Wright and Margaret McKittrick was done by Rev. Wellington Wright and and William Wright early in the 20th century. That information (and other tid bits of genealogical information) I inherited from Wirt M. Wright, my grandfather. What I, personally, have to contribute are small bits and pieces of information gleaned from my Family Bible, assorted memorabilia from the past, and my wanderings along the winding pathways of the Internet.
Being an educator most of my life, I have been convinced that making connections is the basic goal of knowledge. Whether it is in biology, physics, literature, or genealogy, making connections with bits of data and constructing a "big picture" is what gives us our basic world view. My search for ancestors has connected me to history as nothing has before. To know, for example, that I had a great-grandfather who served in the 47th Illinois Regiment during the Great Rebellion has brought Civil War history alive to me. Or that the Wright Clan has Scots-Irish roots has stimulated my interest in Scottish and Irish history. It's not all about "blood" or "genes." After 10-15 generations the gene pool is so diluted that it's largely meaningless anyway, but it is the knowledge that we have historical connections to each other as "family." And, of course, the more one delves into ancestral connections, the wider the circle of inclusion, and the more one is convinced that all humanity (and all life) is interconnected. That these characters of the past now live in my heart and imagination has become important to me. I would like to honor their lives by passing on to you what I and others know about them.
I invite any and all of the living descendants named (and unnamed) in this web site to share with me any information about themselves or their ancestors. And please correct me if my information is wrong. If anyone would like to know the sources for my information about a particular family group, I will gladly comply.
I am Richard W. Wright, son of Donald Graham Wright and Ruth Doris Watenpaugh. My E-mail address is:
I invite your comments and corrections.