Monthly Archives: January 2013

African Roots Podcast Episode #197 January 11, 2013

This Week's Pod Cast


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

Well hello everyone and we are well into the month of January and the brand new year and lots of things are underway! I hope you are managing to stay connected to your own New Year goals and have begun to work on those many projects that you may have mentioned in recent weeks.

January has taken off in the genealogy world!

MAAGI is now open for registration! That is the Midewestern African American Genealogy Institute in St. Louis Missouri. This will take place July 9-11th at Harris-Stowe State University!

Among some of the speaker are Tamela Tenpenny-Lewis, National President of the Afro- American Historical & Genealogical Society, Thomas MacEntee, noted blogger and lecturer and leader in the genealogy blogging community. Also President of the Association of Professional Genealogists Kenyatta Berry, Blog radio host Bernice Alexander Bennett, genealogist and documentarian Nicka Sewell Smith, Allen County Library manager, Curt Wither, Black Coal Miner specialist Tim Pinnick, and so many more.

From Northern California:
A new workshop series for African American researchers is announced:
The classes will take place at the Oakland Family Search Library, on Lincoln Avenue in Oakland California
Each class begins at 6:30 pm

This is a 5 part series and here are the titles:
January 29th Freedman’s Bureau Records
February 5 Historical Black Newspapers
February 12th Best Websites for African American Genealogy
February 19th Back Away from the Computer
February 26th DNA Research
There is a small fee of $7 per session.

By the way—there is a lot of energy coming out of Northern California if you have not noticed—keep your eyes on their website—they are truly offering not just information to their members but they are on top of social media and are putting their information out there on many platforms! Go to their website, bookmark it, and keep them on your radar!

Since this is the beginning of the year I thought I would put some national events out there for you to consider, with links to the sponsoring sites:

Ok overall Calendar:

Family Tree University Winter 2013 Virtual Conference

APG Professional Management Conference
March 19 – 20, 2013: Salt Lake City, Utah

RootsTech 2013
March 21 – 23, 2013: Salt Lake City, Utah ** Early Registration now open!!

Forensic Genealogy Institute:> in Dallas TX

JUNE 6-9th
So. California Genealogy Jamboree
Burbank California

June 9 – 14th

July 9-11th
Midwestern African American Genealogy Institute in St. Louis Missouri

August 21-24th
Federation of Genealogical Societies in Ft. Wayne Indiana

October 10-13th
Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society Nashville Tennessee, 34th Annual Conference, “150 Sounds of Freedom: Sesquicentennial of the Emancipation Proclamation”

A regional event: Genealogy Society to Share Tips for Internet Research Middle Peninsula African-American Genealogical and Historical Society of Virginia (MPAAGHS) will hold its monthly meeting on Saturday, January 12, 2013, at 11:00 a.m. at the Essex County Public Library, 117 North Church Lane (Rt. 17), Tappahannock, Virginia. All persons who are interested in African-American genealogy and history are invited to attend.

Note how many groups are now addressing the internet resources—people are appreciating the need to get wired, so to speak and to connect in ways not done before.

By the way—-I hope you take the time to tune into Bernice Bennett’s show from last night. < a href=””>Nicka Sewel Smith a talented young genealogist spoke about her use of technology, and social platforms to connect with young people. She addressed the need to go where they are—whether Facebook or Instragram or other places as well. Bernice’s show airs every Thursday at 9pm EST on Blog Talk Radio.

Thank you for listening and know that I appreciate you all for tuning in. Remember to keep researching, keep documenting and keep sharing what you find!

African Roots Podcast Episode #196 January 4th 2013

This Week's Pod Cast


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

Happy New Year!! It’s good to be back for another year with you here at African Roots Podcast! I look forward to sharing more with you this coming year!

FROM WESSYINGTON PLANTATION: The Tennessee State Museum in Nashville, Tennessee is planning an exhibit featuring Wessyngton Plantation from its founding in 1796 through the Civil War. The exhibit will open February through August 2014 for the Sesquicentennial of the Civil War. I am sure that many of you are familiar with the book by John Baker The Washingtons of Wessyngton. If you are a descendant and have any photos, stories or any other information, please John Baker would like to hear from you as soon as possible. Note also that in February 2013 he will be featured on NPT (Nashville Public Television) for an interview at Wessyngton regarding his work and research for Black History Month. You may read more about event pertaining to Wessyington on his his blog.

Speaking of Tennessee, AAHGS the Afro-American Historical & Genealogical Society will hold the 2013 conference in October, in Nashville Tennessee. The Call for Papers has been released and suggestions have been made on how to submit your data. So if you are interested in presenting in Nashville in October, now is the time!

And don’t forget to Meet Me In St. Louis! The MAAGI website is updated! MAAGI is the acronym, for the Midwestern African American Genealogy Institute. Faculty members are listed.

In the Atlanta area in February there will be an Emancipation Symposium at the SE Regional Branch of the National Archives. Emancipation Symposium at the SE Regional Branch of the National Archives. The event will take place on February 9, 2013, at National Archives at Atlanta, 5780 Jonesboro Road, Morrow, Georgia
Keynote Speaker Hari Jones, Assistant Director & Curator of the African American Civil War Museum, Washington, DC. He is a wonderful speaker and one not to miss. The celebrations of the Emancipation should encourage all of us to find our own family freedom story.

For Virginia Researcher-A New Database!
Volunteers from Charles City Center for Local History have released new databases of use to researchers. Of interest to African American researchers are two that are quite interesting. The Free Negro and Mulatto Register. The other database if the Slave Ancestor File.

From South Carolin:
Another February event—in Spartanburg SC, there will be an African American Family History Workshop, on Feb 1st and 2nd. Some of the Sessions include “How to get started”, “Creative Ways to Bring Life to your Family History” “Local Resources”, “Land Records, Tax Records & Census”….and much more. Take a look and join them if you can!

A moment of shameless self promotion—if you have time, feel free to look at my blog My Ancestors’s Name where I devoted 6 hours on New Year’s Eve, as a special Watch Night Tribute to my ancestors. Every hour at the top of the hour from 6p till midnight, I posted a tribute to my enslaved ancestors on the blog. This was to honor the 150th Year commemoration of the Emancipation Proclamation. This was my way of celebrating this milestone year.

Now that the New Year is here—-time to look at those promises so many of us make to get in shape, clean out old clutter and to get focused or re-focused. Many of us sit at our computers and spend hours looking and clicking and typing, but don’t get up, don’t exercise, and don’t focus on other dimensions of our lives. Well an interesting conversation took place last night on Bernice Bennett’s show, when there was a good discussion about balance! Tune in—her guest was Sharon Weinstein, who addressed many of these issues—not exercising, not eating right, not sleeping, and so much more. This is something many of us are guilty of doing, and letting our passion become our obsession, often at the expense of other things. Bernice’s show airs every Thursday evening at 9pm eastern time on Blog Talk Radio.

Is this your year? Time to write or embark on that project? Well—think about it and consider taking the plunge. This might be the time to start to tell your own story? Tell the story that you want to see written. We often wait and hope that someone else tells our story—but now perhaps it is time right now to do it ourselves. There is plenty of room out there in the “blogosphere” for more writers and bloggers to write and share! To insure that your ancestors have their stories told you should join the community of writers and bloggers and tell their stories. Who would know it better than you who has researched and documented them? Maybe this is time for you to become the portal through which your owns ancestors’ stories can come! If you want to see a good example of a blog of how one has shared what he has found, take a look at Melvin Collier’s blog. It is called Roots Revealed. Read his posts–he shares his journey as he documented it. Is this your year? Maybe it’s time!

Well thanks for tuning in and have a Happy and Prosperous New Year!
In the meantime, keep researching, keep documenting and keep sharing what you find!