Angela Y. Walton-Raji on February 27th, 2017

This Week's Pod Cast


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

Well we are still celebrating Black History Month and several things are winding down as the month comes to an end in a few days. I hope you were able to catch Black Pro Gen LIVE, this week. This has been the 4th in a month long series for February. This week’s topic was DNA. Lots  of good discussion on what it all means. We are going back to the bi-weekly schedule in March.

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Some news—there is still room and still time to register for MAAGI, the Midwest African American Genealogy Institute. From July 11-13th in Ft. Wayne Indiana, MAAGI–the Teaching Institute will unfold. And some space has opened up in the DNA track so go and take a look. This is not a conference— it is a 3 day workshop, and it is a great opportunity for about 40 people to get some hands on assistance with your projects. Also the Writing Track is unfolding. There will be a writing coach Anita Henderson, and a nationally known historical fiction author–Beverly Jenkins will discuss how to develop plot, characters, and so much more. So take a look at the site for MAAGI-the Teaching Institute.


Image Courtesy of

This week—lots of discussion about those ads from late 19th century and early 20th century articles about people looking for loved ones from whom they were separated during the years of slavery. NPR (National Public Radio) had an interesting piece about those articles. But someone shared a story of a 100 year old woman who traveled from Kansas to Mississippi, to find her daughter who was now in her 60s. The story was one that tugs at your heart to read it. I would love to follow that story to see if they were reunited and the eventual outcome. However, the name of the daughter was not mentioned in the article—what a sad thing to omit, but it was one of those stories that just touch you. I shall try to see if more can be found, and if they reunited, and whatever happened to their descendants. Most people who sought loved ones ever found out what happened to them, and most died with a hole in their heart.

Article share on Facebook about Formerly Enlsaved Woman Finding Daughter
Jefferson County, New Era, January 14, 1899

I have an ancestor with a similar story. She was able to find her sister after 50 years. I can only imagine their reunion. At least people are talking about the impact of war, but also the impact that slavery had on the lives of so many innocent people.

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I have had fun researching the Kemps from the Chickasaw Nation this week. I was intrigued by the case of John Kemp–the oldest man among Chickasaw Freedmen. These Kemps were once enslaved by Jackson Kemp who held over 80 people in bondage. I was surprised to see that 20 of them were listed as “fugitives” from the state. At least 20 were seeking freedom. John Kemp in his Dawes Commission interview named all of his children and also many of his own grandchildren. At least 4 generations were represented in his data

Article Found HERE.

I was able to expand the research by finding two of his children who were interviewed for the Indian Pioneer Papers project. And since uploading it, I have even heard from some of the descendants of that line!


In case you have not noticed—take a good look at Low Country Africana. Her recent post she summarized so clearly the experience that many of us had in Salt Lake City for Roots Tech. Roots Tech is the largest genealogy event in the world, and perhaps, many will consider going in the future.

Full article HERE.

They had an amazing African Heritage Day at Roots Tech this year, which was wonderful! Five years ago, they had no speakers of color. This year, Black Pro Gen also had a live broadcast from Roots Tech as well.


As I said this is still Black History Month. For the month has opened up the African American collections for the month of February. That includes the US Colored Troops and the service records. Also take a look at the many wonderful bloggers. I enjoy reading what new bloggers are doing. One such bloggers is Camille Johnson out of St. Louis and she is sharing her history. Long Legacies is her blog, and show some support.


I urge you all to explore the genealogy community as much as you can with classes, seminars and webinars. As March approaches, note that in Baltimore the historical society of Baltimore County will offer the free class in genealogy, on Thursday morning from 10am to 2 pm.

Well, time to wrap things up for now. Thank you all for listening and remember to keep researching keep documenting and keep sharing what you find.

Angela Y. Walton-Raji on February 14th, 2017

This Week's Pod Cast


Welcome back to the African Roots Podcast, coming to you this week from Salt Lake City Utah, and from Roots Tech!

Well this has been an amazing week folks and quite a memorable one. I have a special guest with me today–Toni Carrier, of Low County Africana.

After arriving on Wednesday, one had to hit the ground running! From the opening session to presentations and workshops to networking with colleagues, I can only say that this experience is one that can be describe as a high energy experience on multiple levels.

The presence of speakers of color was up, and the African Heritage Day was amazing! I got a chance to meet Levar Burton of Roots fame who stirred up the group with a touching opening address. The people are literally from all over the world, and it was amazing to feel the energy.

Toni and I co-presented a workshop discussing our website Mapping the Freedmen’s Bureau. The response was wonderful from those in attendance, and the interest continues to grow in the website.

I am sharing some images here from the week at Roots Tech.

Angela, Tonia Carrier, Anita Henderson, Michael Henderson, Nkoyo Iyamba, Bernice Bennett
Display in Exhibit Hall
Opening Session

Toni and I both got to see lots of things going on this week at Roots Tech, and also to participate in numerous sessions and interviews. I hope that the images above and our discussion will inspire others to consider attendance at Roots Tech, in the future.

Thank you all for tuning in, and thanks for sharing your thoughts and reactions to photos shared this week. In the meantime, please remember to keep researching, keep documenting and keep sharing what you find!