Through decades of effort, Charles L. Bland, Bland Heritage Foundation's Historian, has compiled an enormous volume of research provided by a large number of correspondents.  The resulting data represents more than 2500 written pages of what has to be the most voluminous and comprehensive genealogical record that has ever been compiled of the Bland family in North America, who descended from English ancestry.

     Much of this data has been published in Charles Bland's 1982 book, A Vision of Unity: The Bland Family in England and America, and updated in the 20-plus volumes of “Among Cousins: The Bland Family Newsletter”.  The Book, and newsletter subscription, are available from the Bland Gift Shoppe [link unavailable].

     It is Charles Bland's "Vision" that the several Bland family lines found in America today, will one day be connected through irrefutable documentation.  His "Vision of Unity" is likewise shared by the many Bland cousins who are now distributed worldwide.  While not yet connected through physical documentation, the two major Bland families in America (Family Line #1 and Family Line #2) are found to be only twenty-five miles apart in the year 1575, in Cumberland Parish, England.

       While the chances of finding recorded documentation from the 1500's may be dwindling, the chances of seeing the Vision of Unity accomplished is greatly increasing with the strides being made in DNA matching.  It will be only a matter time when Family #1 and #2 DNA test results will resolve the question concerning an early genealogical bridge between the two families.  To learn more about the Bland DNA project, click on DNA.

     In addition to the two major Lines (#1 and #2), eight family lines have been extensively developed (Lines #3 through #10) with about twenty-eight lines less developed (Lines #11 through #38), all of which lack their proven connection to the two major lines.  Information on these "orphaned" lines are also covered in the pages of A Vision of Unity and the various volumes of “Among Cousins".

     While the data in Charles Bland's published works is believed to be accurate and gathered from reliable original sources, using acceptable research criteria, many cousins take his material as "gospel", rather than doing their own research.  Cousins are reminded that these Family Lines are the best "present knowledge" of the genealogy art and are based on the best information that has been made available to the author.  In cousin Charles' own words, "If it should happen that your research should conclusively prove the incorrectness of my work, no one would be happier than I.  Genealogy is like a giant patchwork quilt that is never finished.  Every answer creates more questions.  The enduring fun and pleasure of Genealogy is in the endless search."


by Charles L. Bland, Historian, Bland Heritage Foundation

This update contains two changes:

1.  For Family 2, the Northern Virginia Family: I have provided some additional detail that would make searching the Newsletters easier.  Case in point: rather than refer the reader to the vast family of John Bland (C1725-1795) as a reference, I have noted the volumes in which his family was summarized in a comprehensive essay, which volume would also contain references to earlier source citations.  I have also divided his line by his children: example, Osborne Bland who becomes 25A6E(1).

2.  Attention to Bland Families noted but Without Extensive Developmental Lines (lines 11-41 below) in this volume has resulted in more lines added but also some collapsed, for example, the line of Morris Brewer Bland, #26 in AC 19/20 has been collapsed into the line of Arthur Bland (#12), who has been shown now to be Morris’ father.



     Each known Bland family is assigned a numeric number, i.e., Family #1 is the oldest known family in America, while Family #2, is the second oldest, etc.

     Each individual is assigned a position within their Family Line.  For example, the code for Theodorick (1629-1671) Bland is "1-4C".  This signifies that Theodorick was a member of the oldest branch of the family (#1), that he was of the fourth known generation of that family, and that he was the third child ("C") of his generation who settled in the American Colonies.

     Another example: James Bland (C1707-1774) is coded "2-5A-6A".  This signifies that he belongs to the second oldest group of Bland settlers (Family #2), that he is the son of the individual coded "2-5A", that is, he is of the 6th ["6"] generation and the first child ("A") of the 6th generation.


The following links will take you to additional information concerning each of the Family Lines.  Each is necessarily brief and generally provides information only for the first few generations.  However, the data will eventually provide the needed connection to the larger family.