This Week's Pod Cast


Welcome back to the African Roots Podcast! You can reach me at AfricanRootsPodcast.
Well, I am coming to you today from the lovely city of Little Rock Arkansas on the banks of the Arkansas River.


I shall be be speaking tomorrow at the Arkansas Civil War Commission Sesquicentennial celebration of Freedom! It is called Let Freedom Ring, and I am so delighted and honored to speak at this event!

So many events have occurred this week, I hope that you are incorporating stories of freedom into your own family narrative. If you don’t know or can’t find your own family’s story of freedom, then find out what happened on a wider level—how did the community fare when word came that the war had ended? How were the enslaved people told? Or had they become free before that time. The Civil War was an incredibly dynamic time, with changes and unexpected occurrences affecting all. I hope that you realize that the 13th Amendment was passed, and several places in Arkansas have been commemorating this event. Have you also taken note of this critical anniversary? Tell all of the stories–of the Freedom Seekers, of the men who then became Freedom fighters, and also telling the story of the “self-emancipators”.

Freedom's Arrival

Let’s tell the story, and make it a goal to tell you own family story of freedom. What happened in your own ancestral community?

The Appalachian Oral History Project

Appalachian Oral History
This oral history project was shared earlier this week. I was excited to learn about this oral history effort coming from Emory and Henry College in Emory Virginia. One does not often think about enslaved people coming from Appalachia. one of the interviews was of a woman interviewed not too long ago, in her 90s, and she was sharing stories that she heard from her elders when she was longer. I am sure that you find listening to this interview from a daughter of once enslaved people.

Bernice's LogoLast night’s episode of Bernice Bennett’s show on Blog Talk Radio, featured James H. Commander who spoke about an amazing degree of empowerment that has come from his experience documenting his family history. He is the author of “Love At Our Roots. How Freedom Became a Force for Change.” He addressed something that I think many of us have experienced—a special sense of empowerment that resulted from the research of family history. He spoke of the family’s origin in Alabama, and then the eventual migration to Chicago. In addition, he mentioned some amazing resources and records that he was able to find along the way. I think you will find it to be a most interesting show. Her show airs every Thursday evening at 9pm EST on Blog Talk Radio.


Legacy Freedom Series Lecture

Next week’s webinar on Legacy Family Tree Webinars, will feature Bernice Bennett, who is speaking in Part 2 of the Freedom Series. Her topic will be the Civil War Widow’s Pensions, and the focus will be on African American women who filed for pensions and some of the unique situations that affected their applications. This takes place next week April 24.


Let’s talk about the Freedman’s Bureau. These amazing records are available on Family Search and the Internet Archive. They are wonderful, but they are not indexed. Well, a major initiative is about to unfold to get these essential records indexed. We need to join this effort. A partnership is being formed with the Smithsonian NMAAHC, Family Search, AAHGS, and hopefully all of us. Let’s all participate and see what we can do to make these records available and researchable by name.


Memorial in May

PAAC 2015

I am excited to share with you some information about the Memorial in May–the annual conference of  PAAC. This year they shall share information about the African American cemetery found on old Quawpaw land. This should be a landmark conference. I hope that many of you will be attending this event. For more information, please contact:

Thank you for another week of sharing events and websites with me. I have to wind things down and prepare for my experience tomorrow at the Civil War Sesquicentennial Commission. Thank you all for listening and for being there. Remember to keep researching, keep documenting, and to keep sharing what you find!

2 Responses to “African Roots Podcast Episode #315 April 17, 2015”

  1. Shelley says:

    Good podcast, 2015 is so important, everyone is noting it except the folks that need to hear it.

  2. Carla Coleman says:

    Thank you for all of the great information you post. What a resource!

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