This Week's Pod Cast

Hello and welcome back to the African Roots Podcast! My name is Angela Walton-Raji and you can always reach me at .

Hope you are having a good week, and there is lots of good news on the genealogy front to share.  The best news comes from a new partnership that was announced this week. Footnote–a site that many of us use, has partnered with LowCountry Africana to make available to the public information on people enslaved in South Carolina. They have provide digitized images of records from the Colonial years of South Carolina up through the mid 1800s.  The collection contains estate records, bills of sale and so much more!  To view these South Carolina records, please visit

Lowcountry Africana has also established an online volunteer program to create the searchable index for this collection. To learn more about this volunteer program or to sign up to be a volunteer, please go to . This should be big boost to the African American genealogical community!

This week, I have been busy responding to Calls for Papers, myself and one opportunity caught my eye. There is still time to submit a proposal for the Family History Expos. Deadline for submission is July 30, 2010.

Also there is time to submit a proposal to present at the annual AAHGS conference in October.

The Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) is soliciting papers and panels for its upcoming 96th Annual Convention. This year’s conference theme is: “African Americans and the U.S. Civil War.” Although the program committee welcomes papers and panels on any aspect of African and African American history and culture, special preference will be given to submissions directly related to this year’s theme.

Their call for Papers for 2011, has already been released and considering how next year 2011 is a special year, we need to also think about how we plan to incorporate those sesquicentennial celebrations into our family histories. Important topics include African Americans and the abolitionist movement, African American women who also made contributions during the war, and life among the civilians during the war years, and so much more.

Do you have USCTs?   Well, tell their story. Consider adopting one and tell his story on your website or blog.  Now if you have ancestors who were not soldiers—then tell the story of how they became free and when they got the word of freedom.  There are lots of ways to celebrate their history and to join the commemorative efforts that will unfold in 2011—the 150th anniversary of the beginning of the Civil War.

Get Involved in Civil War Workshops and Events!

Speaking of Civil War—-what are your plans for the upcoming year?  As a person interested in history and genealogy I hope that you also will be thinking about honoring those who were true freedom fighters—the Black soldiers who served in the Union Army and Navy.  The majority of them served in the US Colored Troops, but many also served in the regular army.  The 54th Massachusetts Infantry, for example were not volunteers like the US Colored Troops—they were part of the regular US Army.

In addition there were black soldiers who served in white units in several states, and the lesser known soldiers—–the black soldiers who served in the Indian Home Guards.  The Home Guards—1st 2nd and 3rd  were the only Union regiments to come from the Indian tribes of Ind Territory.  The remaining 20+ Indian regiments were Confederate units.  I have personally identified 60 black men who served in the Home Guards. They were among the men who were identified as Loyal Creeks after the Civil War.

The reason I mention these men and mention the Civil War is also because for the next  5 years—-we will  hear of various efforts to commemorate this war, and it is our responsibility to insure that the roll that our ancestors played will be included. We had a roll and it needs to be mentioned, illustrated, depicted, discussed and those who served should be honored.  Among the soldiers were the civilians who also served—who served as blacksmiths, teamsters, carpenters, laborers, and the women—who served as nurses, guides, laundresses and more.  Our ancestors were directly effected—and were not passive—-how do you plan to honor them?

This is the time to start thinking about 2011—the 150th anniversary of not only the Am. Civil war, but of the dismantling of slavery, and the beginning of Freedom.

Well thanks for listening this week.  I appreciate you for being there, and for hearing from you.  Drop me a line at

And—please continue to do what you do. Keep researching, keep documenting and please keep sharing what you find.

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