Monthly Archives: July 2009

African Roots Podcast #18 July 31st , 2009

This Week's Pod Cast


Hello and Welcome back to the African Roots Podcast!
Today is Friday July 31st, 2009
You can reach me at

On August 8th there will be an African American genealogy presentation at the National Archives Great Lakes Regional facility in Chicago. Renowned lecturer, author, and genealogist, Tony Burroughs, will present a program on African-American family history research. Mr. Burroughs will address the special challenges presented to those researching African-Americans. Information on finding federal records relating to African-Americans will be discussed.

Just a month away for the FGS conference and time to make travel plans for Little Rock, Arkansas
For a full schedule of speakers visit the FGS Conference website and look at the impressive array of speakers.

There is an interesting blog that has also been set up for the conference that might interest you. From the blog, you might be able to put some sessions and some places on your list to visit when you are roaming through the exhibit hall.

Among the speakers are:
Dr. Deborah Abbott—Slave Research a Needle in a Haystack
Katherine Fitzhugh—-Arkansas AAHGS luncheon—How Genealogy Informs History and How History Informs Genealogy
Roberta King – African American Homesteaders
Timothy Pinnick —Reconstruction 101
Judy Riffel – Techniques for Researching Slave Ancestors
Sharon Battiste Gillens – Negro Soldiers of Antebellum Louisiana-Their Service and Records

There are more that I have not mentioned here, and you should indeed consider attending the conference if you have the opportunity to put it on your schedule. Good news is that the conference will also be recorded and you can get a copy of tapes from some of the sessions that you will have missed. Jamb-Inc will be there and recordings will be available.

A workshop is announced for September 12, 2009
Discover Your Roots – African American Family History Conference in St. Louis, MO

This all-day conference is geared to help anyone interested in learning about their family history, whether you are just starting or an experienced researcher. The classes will focus on African American history and research, the best types of records to search, research methodologies, and southern states research. There is no charge to attend and a minimal charge for the syllabus and lunch.
For more information or to register, send email to or visit the website.

News for those with enslaved ancestors from the Virgin Islands.
Virgin Islands Family History Associates are working with to compile an extensive database on the slaves held in bondage on Danish controlled St. Croix. Some of their records trace slaves from the slave ship to various estates, during the period on enslavement of to the early 20th century.

An interesting story that they have followed was the story of Venus Johannes, that they were able to follow through the period of enslavement down to the 20th century and have found descendants. They were able to track the family to 1917. Census records are now online including age, religious affiliations and families. To track slaves, there are slave lists, and plantation inventories. Now 1917 is a critical year for Virgin Island researchers, and anyone using this database must find ancestor living in 1917 to go back in time.

There is a good deal of cross-referencing due to changes in spelling, and uses of names. Virgin Islands Social History Associates is working with to capture this data.
For more information listen to the story on NPR.

For some assistance with those brick wall problems, you may want to consider presenting your case to genealogists who can assist you. There are some threads that have begun on several blogs and on networking sites such as Genealogy Wise where good examples can be found.

The post by George Geder provides an excellent glimpse into how one can present a family case, and present a challenge where they have stalled in their research. The Case of the Jeters:

Another case is presented by Terrence Garnett, who asks the questions if two of the people he has researched, are related, and how. A Case Study How are Milton and Sallie Related?

Consider presenting your case, citing your sources, and invite others to assist you with an analysis of the data that you have presented.

Thanks for listening this week, and remember, to keep researching, keep documenting and keep sharing what you find.

(To hear previous podcasts, click on the Title and date)

African Roots Podcast #17 July 24, 2009

This Week's Pod Cast


Hello and Welcome back to the African Roots Podcast!
Today is Friday July 24, 2009
You can reach me at
The Tennessee State Library and Archives is announcing that they are hosting an African American Genealogy Workshop on Saturday July 25, 2009 in Nashville Tennessee. The event is free to the public. The Archives is located at 403 Seventh Avenue North, in downtown Nashville. The featured speaker will be author John L. Baker, author of the Washingtons of Wessyngton.

THe Wilmington Delaware Stake of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is pleased to present “A Family History Event” on Saturday, August 1, 2009, from 9 am to 4 pm, at their meetinghouse in Newark, Delaware (500 W. Chestnut Hill Road), with the theme: “Around the World in a Day: Let Your Fingers Do the Searching.” Free.

Keynote speakers include Paul F. Smart and Paul G. Nauta from, and the author of “Google Your Family Tree,” Daniel Lynch. Classroom sessions, interactive exhibits and cultural rooms will focus on various online research sources and geographic regions of the world.

Come for an hour or stay for the day! For the beginning genealogist to the professional. For additional information and to register, please visit this site.

The Kentucky Oral History Commission, administered by the Kentucky Historical Society (KHS), recently awarded grants for the second half of the 2009 fiscal year, impacting communities across the Commonwealth. The recipients are listed on their site. This is a great place to get some ideas on the kinds of projects that can be funded, and researchers may want to considering looking at these projects for their own genealogical undertakings.

The list of speakers for the International Black Genealogy Summit is now online. The list of speakers and workshops is varied, and you may want to consider attending now that the event is online.

The Digital Library of Georgia has a wide number of records and images to look at. Among them you will find:
African American Funeral Program and Obituary Collection.

Blue Black Vaudeville and the Silver Screen
There are many other wonderful collections on this site and I encourage you to visit it, soon, and often.

You have heard me speak about the holdings of and I urge you to consider looking at a little known black record set documenting hundreds of black families. I am referring tothe Freedmen records of the Dawes Collection. There more than 8000 black families documented on more the cards, and interview packets accompany the Enrollment Cards. For more information go to

Well thanks for listening to this week’s episode. Remember always to keep researching, keep documenting and keep sharing what you find.

(To listen to previous episodes, click on the date and title of each earlier episode.)