Thomas Putnam, his wife Dorothy, and their son Thomas Junior arrived on the ship Increase in coastal Virginia in 1647. The family moved inland in Virginia in the early 1700s, and it was about then that the name converted to Putman. By the mid 1700s, some lines moved to North Carolina and then by the revolution into South Carolina. Other lines moved west to Kentucky. One line remained in Northern Virginia. By 1800, the families rapidly expanded south and west. By the early 1800s, branches reached into Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois. Others went south to Georgia, Alabama and across the south to Texas. By the Civil War, they were expanding further in the ever moving westward trend of America itself. If you know the state that your ancestors were in for the better part of their lives, look them up (hopefully) in that state. Once you locate them, the text will give you details on where they came from, and you can start going backwards tracing your roots. If you have trouble at all, e-mail me and I’ll get you started. You can also go to the state by state census reports. Run a search in one of the years that would have your ancestor in it. That will or should give you info on who he is, and where to look in the next earlier census report. You can work the line all the way back that way. See that section for instructions. Although I have a great amount of detail here, nothing is ever complete or finished. Please send me any new information and certainly send me any corrections. Enjoy!