African Roots Podcast Episode #281 August 22, 2014

This Week's Pod Cast

 
Welcome back to the African Roots Podcast! You can reach me at AfricanRootsPodcast@gmail.com

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Well, welcome to the end of August and school starts on Monday here in Maryland, so the summer season is quickly winding down. I hope it has been pleasant where you are and that you will enjoy the remaining balmy nights before the weather changes into fall. And much success to the children as school reopens.

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A shout out to friends in St. Louis as they will be attending the taping of the Genealogy Roadshow. The St. Louis African American Genealogy Society will be setting up a booth along with other societies and they will also be able to watch the excitement as the TV show unfolds. Also a friend from the Facebook community is there and will be featured on the show. True Lewis, whom many of us know from the Facebook group will have her genealogy featured on the Road Show, so we will be watching to see our many friends when the show airs in the fall.

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I know many are getting ready to attend workshops in the fall from Savannah to Chicago, AAHGS, and more. But let’s not forget that in spite of the specialized workshops–there is still room for beginners. We need to always brush up on the basic strategies of research. And today genealogy is taught so differently. One need not learn the Soundex system when one had to know it 20 years ago. So I am glad to point out that in Maryland, in Columbia , there will be a Genealogy Basics for Beginners tomorrow at 2:00 pm. It is free and sponsored by the Central MD AAHGS. More information on the website.

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News from Ancestry!
This past June, Ancestry announced plans to retire the My Canvas website . Well there was a strong voice of concern expressed that My Canvas will not be retired after all, but will simply be moved to Alexanders, a Utah based printing company.

“The transition of MyCanvas will take about six months. But in the meantime, all MyCanvas projects will remain accessible on Ancestry.com until it moves over to Alexander’s next year,” according to Ancestry staff.

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Story Corps

Story Corps is on the Road!

Since everyone does not choose to write their story, Story Corps provides another method. And there is a chance to tell your own story when the Mobile Booth comes to selected American Cities. I learned that this year Story Corps will be visiting Grand Rapids, Michigan, St. Louis Missouri, Tulsa Oklahoma, and Dallas Texas!

I am impressed with the many initiatives that this amazing oral history program provides, and there are some interesting intiatives that they have. There is a military initiative, the Griot initiative, Historias, and so much more! Take a look at this platform for telling your story!  You might find that this is what you are searching for.

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Bernice Bennett’s Show featured Antoinette Harrell last night who addressed the issue of Peonage and how many families were re-enslaved after the Civil War, and also how this new form of forced labor lasted until the 20th century. This is not a pleasant story to research, but it is one where some families may find data on their own ancestors who may have been held. Record Group 60 at the National Archives holds many of the cases worth studying. Ms. Bennett’s show airs every Thursday evening on Blog Talk Radio.

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(Courtesy of Sarah Cato) 

Well it has been a week since the folks in friends who are supporters of the 56th US Colored Infantry honored the men who were buried in the mass grave. The names of the men were reach, Echo Taps was played, re-enactors were there, and of course the local dignitaries were as well. Congratulations to Sarah Cato and the committee for honoring those men who fought for freedom and won.

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Root Digger Genealogy

I want to extend best wishes to Yvette Porter Moore as she launches her own Blog Talk Radio show on Monday! Let’s all tune in to hear her show at 9pm on Monday Eastern time. She has been extremely busy this year and now that fall approaches, she is really reaching out in new directions! Her Root Digger site is busy again and she has also launched her own publishing company in addition to her other new projects that are emerging!  So all the best, to Yvette!

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Well thanks again for tuning in this week. Have a wonderful week and remember to keep researching, keep documenting and to keep sharing what you find.

African Roots Podcast Episode #280 August 15, 2014

This Week's Pod Cast

 
Welcome back to the African Roots Podcast! You can reach me at African Roots Podcast

Monument to 56th US Colored Infantry – Courtesy of Sarah Cato

I have two shouts out – first to friends in St. Louis, who are attending a dedication of a monument at Jefferson Baracks National Cemetery to Civil War soldiers who were buried in a mass grave. The persons in attendance are Friends of the 56th US Colored Infantry, and under the steady hand of Ms. Sarah Cato and the committee of the St. Louis African American Genealogy and History Society. Well the men are of the 56th USCT, are having their names restored at Jefferson Barracks National cemetery in St. Louis Missouri. In attendance will be a band from Ft. Leonard Wood Missouri, a color guard, Civil War re-enactors, members of the American Legion, members of the St. Louis County government offices, members of the St. Louis African American History and Genealogy Society, and the public.

Ms. Sarah Cato and members of her committee are to be congratulated on their hard work, to restore the names of these soldiers to their final resting place. Their story has been told several times, and it is heartwarming to hear that at long last honor is being restored to these men who never lived to enjoy the Freedom that they had earned. May they rest in continued peace.

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Let us also remember to say a prayer that peace will come to the Missouri area, after a very long, tragic and trying week. A young unarmed man was killed by a police officer in Ferguson Missouri this week. Violence erupted after his death and then military rule was brought upon that small community. It is hoped that peace will return to the community, that no more lives will be lost and that the future will be one in which the dignity of all will be recognized and honored. Let us keep this town and all of the people in our thoughts and prayers.

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There is a DNA conference taking place in the greater Washington DC area this weekend, and several hundred people are participating. This Institute of Genetic Genealogy is hosting a 3 day event in Washington DC, and the leading voices in the DNA genealogy community will be speaking. Among them are two names that you might recognize—-Shannon Christmas, and CeCe Moore.  Both have been guests on Bernice Bennett’s show in the past and both are among the many well respected presenters in the DNA community. So a shout out to all of those in attendance for that event.

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 Speaking of DNA here is an interesting email that I received from Mr. Brian Hjort, who is looking for family research assistance, and possibly for African-American genealogical assistance. He has been trying to help Afro Amerasians from Vietnam in finding their American father. “Amerasians are children of American military servicemen and Vietnamese women, born during the war and left behind after. ” They have faced much discrimination in their home country and are apparently still suffering. Those treated worse were the those with Afro American fathers, were even more highly treated with disdain in their own country.

Mr. Hjort has helped Amerasians for 22 years in finding their fathers and bring them to USA. But its hard to find their fathers, since they were kicked in the streets and the dna test are the only ones to help them.  And as he said in his email,  that he hopes that “your people would be able to assist me and them, in finding their Afro American fathers, so they can leave Vietnam to their fatherland and those that respect them for their color of their skin.” Here are some links about him: Homepage: www.fatherfounded.org and also this link: Internation Herald Tribune/Ny Times: 

BBC Video
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By the way—the schedules for several upcoming events are up and online. I mentioned last week the FGS conference in San Antonio Texas.  Also note that the schedule for the National AAHGS conference in Pittsburgh is also available and online. And we are all awaiting the upcoming events for the Roots Tech/FGS conference that shall be up in a few days! This is quite exciting because I am happy to say that I will be presenting at Roots Tech in Salt Lake City in February! This will be the largest genealogy gathering in the world—and I am honored that I will there to give a presentation as well! So stay tuned as the schedule for that event will also be released in the next two weeks!  And another speaker has announced that she too will be a presenter—Bernice Bennett, our favorite Blog Talk Radio host will also be a presenter at Roots Tech!

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I hope you were able to hear last night’s episode of Bernice Bennett’s show. It was a re-broadcast of the program with Joe McGill of the Slave Dwelling project. Since it was a re-broadcast—it was still neat that he was in the chat room answering our questions direction about his project. Also it was timely because we were reminded that the Slave Dwelling conference was mentioned, which is coming up soon, in September 18 – 20th in Savannah Georgia.

This is one of those projects that has arisen out of the interests and concerns of one man—Joe McGill. He began as a lone man choosing the sleep in slave dwellings, and now he is seldom alone. Many people have now become aware of the history and the significance of these places, and how truly sacred many of these places are. I was glad to hear the show again and to be reminded of the importance of his project and also the importance of responding that which calls you.

 

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Well thanks for taking time from  your schedule once again, and for sharing your events with me.  And please remember to respond to those things that call you, those unexpected projects that capture your attention,  you heart your spirit. In the meantime, please keep researching, keep documenting and keep sharing what you find!