Monthly Archives: September 2012

African Roots Podcast Episode #182 September 28, 2012

This Week's Pod Cast


Welcome back to the African Roots Podcast.
I can be reached at

Fall is here, and as October approaches, let’s all keep Georgia on our minds. The issues surrounding the closing of the Georgia State Archives should be on all of our minds and let’s remember to show our support for keeping access to the state archives open to all.

A friendly shout out to those attending the ASALH conference in Pittsburgh. This is the Association for the Study of African American Life and History. Hopefully all of the workshops are enlightening and stimulating.

Also a shout out to Bernice Bennett who is in South Carolina at a statewide conference. I hope you caught the Bernice Bennett show last night, hosted by Natonne Kemp. The focus was on records in Kentucky. Natonne did a great job as a guest host and the dialogue was truly interesting! The show airs every Thursday evening at 9pm EST on Blog Talk Radio

October is almost here, and next week AAHGS will be in Greensboro NC. The following week, the annual conference of the Chicago Afr. Am. Genealogy Society will also unfold, and after that, several hundred folks will be on their way to Salt Lake Cityh for the IBGS–the International Black Genealogy Summit

Next week, in Richmond, the Library of Virginia is launching an event to kick off October, which is Archives month. Where History Begins: Celebrating Our Successes on October 1. This is a workshop for local historical and genealogical societies. The day-long workshop will feature concurrent sessions in the morning and afternoon.

Tomorrow, the Richmond Chapter of AAHGS will have its September meeting on Saturday the 29th at 10:30 am at the Richmond Public Library. The guest speaker will be Dr. Michael Blakey, from the College of William and Mary. He will be talking about DNA and genealogy, the pros and cons thereof, and his own research projects as well. You may recognize his name, as he is most known for being the lead scientist on the New York African Burial Ground project.

You know last week I mentioned a preservation story—the story of the family of Chief Anderson—the flight instructor to the Tuskegee Airmen. They story was about their donation of his papers to the Smithsonian. Well this week—another story emerges—a dress is being donated to the Smithsonian as well. A simple cotton dress. However it was one of several dresses that made history back in 1957 when 9 teenagers went to school. I am referring to the Little Rock Nine. There is a wonderful lesson in the fact that Carlotta Walls’ mother kept the dress that she wore on the first day of school. Her mother saw the fact that the dress made history. The story about the dress appeared in the Washington Post, last week.

The lesson for us is that we all have ordinary things that are witnesses to historical events in our lives and in our community. We should all become our own preservationists, and our own curators. So let’s preserve the dresses, the bricks handled by our ancestors, the tools they used, the photos, the old papers, bibles and more. They are the silent witnesses to the past.

Well–thanks again for tuning in to this week’s podcast! Thanks also for sharing the many documents and announcements with me. In the meantime, keep researching, keep documenting, and always, keep sharing what you find.

African Roots Podcast Episode #181 September 21, 2012

This Week's Pod Cast


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

From Georgia–the latest from the Georgia State Archives:
Governor Nathan Deal has stated that he will work diligently to keep the state Archives open to the public. This comes a week after the announcement that the Archives will close on November 1st. Let’s all watch this story closely and continue to be an advocate.

Well it is fall folks and lots of thing unfolding. I have mentioned many times the upcoming events in October, but there are some lesser known events taking place as well.

From Remington Virginia: Crossing the Rappahanock, a Pilgrimage to Freedom
This will be a commemorative event depicting the story of the enslaved people freeing themselves from bondage. This event has been seen by many of your in the famous photo by Timothy O’Sullivan taken when the slaves from Culpepper Virginia crossed the river into Faquier County. This will take place near Remington Virginia from 9 to 12 noon tomorrow, rain or shine. More on this event at the link above.

October 1st Richmond Virginia
Library of Virginia will present
Where History Begins: Celebrating Our Successes to Be Held on October 1

The Library of Virginia will kick off Archives Month in style on October 1 by offering Where History Begins: Celebrating Our Successes, a workshop for local historical and genealogical societies. The day-long workshop will feature concurrent sessions in the morning and afternoon.

Louisiana Researchers
A great show took place last night on Bernice Bennett’s show, with Judy Riffel discussing genealogical resources for the entire state of Louisiana.

Louisiana State Archives
Louisiana Gen Web site:
Louisiana Land Office Site
Louisiana State University Special Collections
Louisiana Digital Library
New Orleans Public Library
New Orleans Notarial Archives
Louisiana Supreme Court
Historic New Orleans Collection
Archdiocese of New Orleans
Notre Dame University (Indiana)
Afro-Louisiana History& Genealogy (Dr. Gwendolyn Midlo Hall) An amazing database of Louisiana Slaves
Le Comite des Archives (a non-profit group that supports the state archives)

The holdings in Louisiana and last night’s show should inspire all of us to look at the unique holdings in our own home state and to explore the special archives and libraries there as well. Bernice Bennett’s show airs every Thursday evening at 9pm on Blog Talk Radio.

October will be an amazing month with conferences galore—-from Chicago, to Salt Lake City and points in between. If you are not attending these events check to see what is going on in your own immediate area. Example—follow the actions of Joseph McGill and the Slave Dwelling Project.

There are so many things out there to inspire us and to encourage us all to look outside of ourselves, and to look beyond the usual places. Let’s take the wonderful cues from our colleagues and dare to find those unique pieces of information in the unusual places. They await us and those stories need to be told.

Well thanks for listening once again. I appreciate your sharing information with me, and for taking time out each week to tune in. In the meantime, please continue to keep researching, keep documenting and keep sharing what you find.