My family -- the Tollivers -- can be traced back to South Western Virginia in the mid 1700's. The five Tolliver brothers were locate in Wilkes, later Ashe Country, North Carolina, in the 1780's.
My great, great, great grandfather, Charles Tolliver one of the five brothers, moved to Lawrence County, Indiana, along with his brother Moses (who died along the way) in 1815. I still have cousins living in and around Louisville, Illinois.
They moved with neighbors and relatives by marriage.
Our family has married into several families with Melungeon surnames...Circumstancial evidence, but nothing concrete so far that proves a Melungeon connection.
Although I'm fair skinned with blue eyes, I have the "Anatolian lump" (most commonly associated with Turks from the Anatolian region of Turkey) on the back of my skull and Asian shovel teeth (indicating American Indian ancestry at some point)...As did my father and as does my daughter. Physical indicators of Melungeon heritage.
There are two interesting mysteries surrounding our family. No one can seem to find who is the father of the "five brothers" or where he came from. This is one of the indicators of a potential Melungeon link -- a family suddenly appearing.
The second is that four brothers, Moses, William, Jesse and Charles are all proven by DNA analysis to come from the same male line, with Y-DNA matches from varying surnames that come from Ireland to Poland and Sweden to Spain.
The DNA of the fifth brother, John, does not match the other four brothers and is of Southern European ancestry. A common ancestor is Perez...There is an exact match between four Perez brothers living in the Philippines and Tollivers living in Ohio and Georgia, who have never lived anywhere else.
Here are some questions to solve the mystery:
Who really was the father of the five brothers? Where did he come from and why did he suddenly appear from no where? This question is pretty much Tolliver-centric.
Why did they move to Southern Indiana precisely at the time they did? It appears that other Melungeons were moving there at about the same time. The answer to this question may shed light on the reasons behind the migration from Appalachia to Souther Indiana during the early 1800's, and how it related to the Melungeon experience.