This Week's Pod Cast


Welcome back to the African Roots podcast. You can reach me at

Well, today is Halloween and if you are going to be out this evening driving be extra careful as children are out walking around after dark. Remember to take photos if you are with children or grandchildren as they go about their way ringing doorbells and collecting their treats. But most importantly keep them safe.

And November is right here at our doorstep! The holiday season is close by. Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years are quickly approaching, and most events are now occurring on the local level.



Maryland Celebrates Emancipation!

Here in Maryland, many museums and historic sites are celebrating Emancipation, as it will be 150 years since freedom came to so many. And next year-2015, is a milestone years for many states, as the end of the war brought freedom to so many. Well, tomorrow historic Sotterley Plantation in Hollywood Maryland there will be a ceremony to place a marker remembering those that perished during the Middle Passage at 10:00 am.  The public is invited to attend this ceremony to remember their own ancestors on Saturday and to honor those  ancestors that perished and those that endured to seek their freedom.


Cecil County Genealogy Symposium

Whether you’re just getting started or are a seasoned researcher, the 3rd Annual Cecil County Genealogy Symposium at the Elkton Central Library on Saturday, November 8th might attract your attention. Several groups are working together to participate in this county symposium. Among some of the groups are, the Upper Shore Genealogical Society of MarylandMaryland State ArchivesMaryland Department at the Enoch Pratt Free LibraryHistorical Society of Cecil County and so many more. The point is–take a look at the local groups-as so much history could be there waiting for you to discover. We must remember the story is a larger one where we study the region where the ancestral family lived, not just their names.


Last night on Bernice Bennett’s show, the featured guest discussed the process of preserving the history of a community in a unique way. Ms. Bennett’s guest last night was Margo Williams. Many of us know Margo, through AAHGS, and her writings and the many classes that she has taught. She spoke about her efforts to have an area in a community designated as a cultural heritage site. This is different from the process of having a building or landmark put on the National Register of Historic places. But is is equally has demanding in terms of documentation and history. This is something that perhaps many of us need to consider doing. Some of the old schools, churches and businesses are gone, but the area is still there. Listen to last night’s show as you may get some wonderful ideas to explore in your own ancestral community. The show airs every Thursday evening on Blog Talk Radio.


The Magic Door Should Not Be Televised by Nicka Smith

I urge you to look at Nicka Smith’s blog. She wrote a good piece about the fact that ordinary people can create their own Book of Life, and can research their own story with full documentation.  One does not have to be a celebrity to have their history told. Well she points out that we all have access. And so many are in the public domain. It is just a matter of knowing where to go to find them. And of course it is important to know how to do it properly. The need to know how to properly use a record, avoid guessing and assumptions. As she pointed out there is no magic wand, just as there is no magic door. One does not have to be a noted professor who hires a genealogist in Utah to pull out stories. You also have access and can do this research, and do it properly.  And has one already been done on the family? Well perhaps it is time for Volume II.


Well thanks for listening again this week and do be careful if you are out this evening as many children will be out after dark in costumes knocking on doors for their treats. 

In the meantime, remember to keep researching, keep documenting and keep sharing what you find!


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