Monthly Archives: March 2014

African Roots Podcast Episode #258 March 14, 2014

This Week's Pod Cast


Welcome back to the African Roots Podcast!
You can always reach me HERE.

Did you get a  chance to hear Bernice Bennett’s show last night? Last night two guests presented a wonderful dramatization of the escape of the Fields family from Hanover Virginia? It was amazing and the true story of a family from Hanover and their escape to freedom was shared with the listeners. This is a true story with many pieces of the story taken from an old family diary. The guests were Drusilla Pair and Ajena Rogers. This was a story that they both developed from original historical resources and I hope you listen to the archived version if you missed it last night. It was very well done! and quite moving. And remember you can always catch the show every week on Thursday evenings at 9pm, on Blog Talk Radio.

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University of Virginia: Osher Lifelong Learning Institute
The Image That Changed the World

Today from 1:30 – 3 at the Meadows Presbyterian Church, a special presentation will be made by Dr. Michael Suarez about the image that changed the world. At least the image that made an imprint around the world. The image is called “Brookes” and you have seen it hundreds of times. It was the first time that the anti-slavery abolitionist community had an image to make an imprint on the horrors of slavery. You know the image—-the ship with bodies lying prone on different levels, lining up the hull of the ship with the human cargo being carried to the Americas. He will describe the use of the print and how it became a broadside used from London to the US, and widely distributed among abolitionists for decades. It is also the image that one sees today in HS and college texts. I never knew the ship from which the image was taken, nor its history. The lecture will discuss the impact of the visual and how image and text have a dramatic effect in terms of affecting a movement. Sponsored by the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, at the University of Virginia.

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For Professional Genealogists–a Webinar

Click HERE for Information

“Targeting and Finding New Genealogy Clients”  This is hosted by the Professional Genealogist Podcast and for those of you who are searching for methods of gaining clients—tune in. To be discussed with be methods for new and for seasoned genealogists. Marian Pierre-Louis will be the presenter and she will present two case studies – one on an ethnic genealogy niche and the other a geographic based niche. 

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By the way, the new AAHGS Chapter in Delaware is inviting members to their upcoming meeting next week in Wilmington Delaware. More information can be found here.
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Fairfax County Genealogy Society Conference

Fairfax Genealogical Society Spring Conference Sessions begin Friday, March 28, 2014, 2:00 pm Sessions end Saturday, March 29, 2014, 3:45 pm Fairfax Marriott 11787 Lee Jackson Highway Fairfax, Virginia 22033   Early bird registration ends March 16th.   Leslie Anders will be presenting 4 sessions in Track 6- African-American Research on Saturday, March 29th. Information about the sessions appears HERE.

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Tomorrow in Baltimore


Maureen Taylor, The Photo Detective, is in Baltimore to show those in attendance how to identify and discover stories behind old old family photographs. Ms. Taylor is an internationally recognized expert on photograph identification and genealogy, and she will be bringing together her knowledge and skills in history and research into family stories while giving insight into the invention and development of photography itself. She has been featured in the national and international press, including Wall Street Journal, The View, The Today Show, and more.

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A Publishing Bootcamp Webinar!

Do you have a story to tell and want to turn it into a book project? Well there is a webinar next week, who want to learn about the various options on how to write and publish the story. Thomas Macentee and Tina Sansone are the presenters and I think you will find them to cover all aspects of publishing and self publishing in particular. So follow the links and consider catching them.

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 An Underground Railroad Workshop
Please join us for : Preserving Underground Railroad Stories, Sites & Structures. Saturday April 12 2014, 1-4pm  Indiana History Center  Indianapolis
Event is free and open to the public, seating is limited RSVP at  or 317 234-1268

Presenters include:
Cheryl Janifer LaRoche PhD -”Free African American Communities and the Underground Railroad” She is the author of ”The Geography of Resistance”
Deanda Johnson PhD- “Getting to Know the Network to Freedom and Researching the Underground Railroad” This should be an interesting presentation.
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* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * ** * * * * * * *From the University of No. Carolina, Chapel Hill
Macon and Eaton Bible Records 
Collection is called Macon and Eaton Family Bible Records 1743 -1837
This is exciting because embedded in those records are some rare slave births as well. I have a link for you to the site, so if this interests you and if you have Halifax and Warren county ties, by all means investigate this collection!
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Chancery Court Records from King William County VA are now digitized. This is an ongoing project from the Library of Virginia but those with ties to King William County are encouraged to study these records. The are between 1868 -1913. The contain some African American records and also some Native American data from Mattaponi, and Pamunkey Indians from Tidewater Virginia. Chancer Court records are fascinating and worth exploring.

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Well thanks again for listening this week!! Have a great week of research and remember to keep researching, keep documenting and keep sharing what you find.


African Roots Podcast Episode #257 March 7th, 2014

This Week's Pod Cast


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

Hope you are all thawing out and maybe there is a hint of spring in the air. At least we have had a slight thaw in the mid-Atlantic area.

Genealogy News ! !


Deadline Extended for MAAGI Scholarship

Scholarship Information Here

 There is still time to apply for a scholarship to attend MAAGI to July. It is always great to consider expanding your education. MAAGI is the Midwest African American Genealogy Institute. The deadline has been extended to March 15th.

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Speaking of education, I just learned about an online class that is offered out of the University of Pennsylvania. It is called the History of the Slave South. This is an amazing class offered online and it goes throughout the entire academic semester. This looks like a very impressive and thorough class, and for those completely unaware of the complexity of American slavery, this might be an excellent foundation course. It is too late for this one, as they are half way through the semester, but I shall make a point to follow them to see future classes.

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Hope you were able to catch Bernice Bennett’s show, Research at the National Archives and Beyond. She has two broadcasts this week. Karen Sutton was a guest and spoke about her massive Funeral Program Collection. She went into great detail about her collection of documents from the extensive booklets to the small prayer cards. A lot of good information.

A second broadcast occurred when Robyn Smith came on and shared her work on looking at Brick Walls and whether or not they are artificial or self-imposed brick walls. This was a wonderful re-broadcast of this episode and the live chat unfolding was full of good links being shared by listeners as well..

And coming up next week—the live dramatization of the play by Drusilla Pair, whom we know as Professor Dru, “Flight to Freedom”. This play grew out of the research that she conducted when studying a historic house in Virginia and the family that lived in that home, the Fields Family. She combine her interest in history and research with her passion for writing. This is a great example of how one can combine their interests. She shared much of this when she spoke in St. Louis, and many also witnessed something similar through researcher Konnetta Alexander. Ms. Alexander combined her passion for research, story telling and art, and presented the story of Matilda, and ancestor whose story she has also presented in a unique way. Sometimes we should allow our stories to come forth in new ways, and both of these ladies are providing perfect examples of thinking outside of the box.

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Indiana Genealogical Society Annual Meeting, Ft. Wayne Indiana is coming up next month on April 5th, and J. Mark Lowe will be the featured keynote speaker. Ft. Wayne of course is always a great place because the Allen County Library is there, and for me a neat place to conduct research.

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Fairfax Genealogy Society Annual Conference on March 28th and 29th at the Marriott Hotel, Fair Oaks.
I have attended this event in the past and have always enjoyed it! This year they have many tracks which look so exciting! There is also an interesting African American Track as well, so take a look at it and perhaps we will run into each other there!

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Do you like photographs? Are you intrigued by old 19th century and early 20th century photos of African Americans? Well take a look at sites such as DeadFred, Forgotten Photo Project, but don’t forget to look at There is a set of images called Precious Photos. Take a look there. Also, on Facebook there is a group called Vintage African American Photos. Beautiful images and elegant portraits and astounding images of children. And also some interesting images do show up on Ebay as well.

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My word this week is collaboration. I mentioned the work that Drusilla Pair collaborated with a colleague Adjena Rogers. Well we have been awaiting it’s arrival and it will be out in the next 1-2 weeks we will  have a chance to own the book, and to hear them on Bernice’s show as well.  But their is a story of collaboration, and it is time for us to consider collaboration as a method of getting our own stories published. Their book is called Our Ancestors, Our Stories, There are many avenues out there, and for those who want to write, perhaps joining forces with others of a similar interest might be the avenue to follow.

And as budding writers, let us also remember that to be a good writer, we must also be a good reader. We need to have models and to read not only for content, but for structure, and to tell our story well. So include the Memory Keepers book in your library. But you need to also have Finding a Place Called Home, Somerset Homecoming, Black Roots, Black Indian Genealogy, the Washingtons of Wessyngton, and more, in your library.


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Well thanks for listening to this week’s podcast! Stay warm and I hope you have a great week of research. In the meantime, keep researching, keep documenting and keep sharing what you find!