This is really two books in one. The first part, originally published by Col. Saunders in a series of newspaper articles between 1880 and 1899, is a compendium of genealogical and biographical sketches of the early settlers of Lawrence County, Alabama and of Alabama itself. Based on first-hand accounts as well as the author’s encyclopedic recollections, it offers glimpses of people and events that are otherwise beyond the reach of our present-day resources. Avowedly “popular” in approach, it is nonetheless a unique and invaluable record of Alabama’s earliest settlers.
The second part of the work, compiled by Col. Saunders’ granddaughter, contains detailed genealogies of nearly 100 Alabama families. Compiled from a multitude of original records, as well as approved secondary sources, these genealogies usually commence with the immigrant ancestor and progress through a chain of descents down to representatives of the line in the mid-nineteenth century. They are replete with biographical detail and are often preceded by a list of everyone of the surname mentioned in early court records. The following is a list of some of the families treated in this section: Baldwin, Bankhead, Banks, Bibb, Billups, Blair, Cantzon, Clark, Clay, Coleman, Cox, Donohoe, Dubose, Dudley, Dunn, Elliott, Flint, Fountaine, Foster, Fry, Gholson, Goode, Gray, Harris, Hill, Hopkins, Hubbard, Kennedy, Lanier, Ligon, Lowe, McCarthy, McGehee, Maclin, McMillan, Manning, Maury, Moore, Mumford, Oliver, Ormond, Poellnitz, Ray, Richardson, Saunders, Shelton, Sherrod, Shorter, Speed, Swoope, Tait, Taliaferro, Thompson, Tillman, Urquhart, Walthall, Watkins, Webb, Weeden, Wells, White, Withers, Wyatt, Tates, and Young.