Angela Y. Walton-Raji on November 27th, 2015

This Week's Pod Cast


Welcome to episode #347 of the African Roots Podcast. You can always reach me HERE.

National Day of Listening


I hope that you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving day and were able to spend it with your loved ones and good friends. I also hope that you will take some time and talk to each other and to record family members. Children, talk to your parents, and parents talk to your children. Tell them your stories. And if everyone has left, then record something of yourself today. Tell your own story—interview yourself. Get the story out there!


NGS Featuring Speakers of Color in 2016

NGS 2016 Afr Am Workshops

After noting several years ago that several known speakers of color in the genealogical community were not accepted, often having only one speaker of color, it appears that a good number of speakers of color have been approved and will be permitted to present at the 2016 National conference for the National Genealogical Society. Among the speakers are Deborah Abbott, Roberto Fernandez III, Pamela Foster, Michael Henderson and more.

In addition, ten sessions that will interest attendees who conduct African American research are being offered. The conference will take place May 4-7 in Ft. Lauderdale Florida.


Bernice's Logo

Don’t forget to tune in next week to Bernice Bennett’s show, “Research at the National Archives and Beyond” to hear Marcellaus A. Joiner, and archivist and North Carolina specialist. His topic will be the Neal Family Story. He has much to share as an archivist and also as a researcher. Note that Ms. Bennett’s show airs every Thursday evening at 9pm EST on Blog Talk Radio.


NANOWRIO Update – Genealogical Story Completed!


I am pleased to share that I have completed my  goal of writing a 50,000 word novel in 30 days. This was for NAMOWRIMO (National Novel Writing Month). Actually I completed it in less than 30 days, as I was putting into novel form a story that I have already told many times in the past 25 years. The format is simply that I took a genealogy story from my maternal line and told their story of freedom. I have additional stories that I can tell, each of which could be a novel. However, I was amazed at how the words flowed when I began. The story will need lots of editing and polishing, however, I am honored that I completed the NANO program, and stuck with it. The fact also is that I told a story with dialogue of my ancestors and their journey to freedom. For each character, the journey was different, and this was one of many lessons that I learned from  years of research.

I have also come to appreciate the value of putting down our ancestors’ experiences and in a sense “get down on the ground with them”, and walk the soil with them. What an amazing exercise this has been, and I must say that I look forward to undertaking this exercise again. There is a lesson for all of us as genealogists and family historians, and that is that we have an awesome task, as we dare to even attempt to share the family story.  But to get it out there takes courage, but the value is immeasurable.


Well, thanks for tuning in again this week, especially during this holiday weekend. Make some memories, tell some stories an remember to keep researching, keep documenting and keep sharing what you find!

Angela Y. Walton-Raji on November 20th, 2015

This Week's Pod Cast


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



David Patterson Discusses Probate Records

If you have ever wondered anything about Probate records, then last night’s episode of Bernice Bennett’s show is an outstanding example of scholarship and knowledge. Ms. Bennet’s guest was David Patterson, and he really broke down the various components of estate inventories, wills, vouchers and so much more. This was an enlightening session and if you missed it, you should go and click on the podcast! He was excellent, and I think that this an episode that you may want to take notes. David Patterson also has a book coming out that will focus on the research that he has conducted in  Georgia, and it promises to enlighten the listeners on so much under-mentioned history and data! Bernice Bennett’s show, “Research at the National Archives and Beyond.” airs every Thursday evening at 9pm on Blog Talk Radio.


Online CollageGenealogy Online Events This Week

This has been a really busy week online for African American genealogists! From Google hangouts, to webinars to blog radio, there was a flurry of activity in the online community! Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday were all offering a number of presentations, discussions and interviews, and I hope that you were able to catch some of them.

Whack Wednesday with Dear Myrtle A Visit with Bernice Bennett
Brick Wall Busters With Black Pro Gen A Bricjk Wall Session with African American Researchers
SCGS Webinars
GGS Webinars


The New Ancestry is Coming

NewAncestryNew Ancestry

We have all heard the word that by mid December, December 15 to be exact, that the old Ancestry will be gone. Enter the new (and improved) Ancestry with new features and hopefully a more efficient way of finding the data that we seek. We are all creatures of  habit, but as the new change is inevitable, then we should be ready for it to come.

A suggestions–make a note over the next few weeks of the “favorite” collections that you use. Then locate them now on the “new” Ancestry. By doing so you will save yourself a lot of grief by going to your regular collections with ease once the new Ancestry is locked down and the other will be discarded. This is a good time to see what the actual holdings are on Ancestry for African American research as well. Many people have no idea that there are dozens of amazing African American collections that one can use. What a great time to become acquainted with them. So find them now on the old site and find them on the new site so that you will not be lost once the old page literally goes away.

Ancestry Afr Am Collections


Join the online community–Genealogical Social Media Thrives

FB Afr Am Genea GroupsSample of Facebook African American Groups

Take some time to find your genealogy friends in Social Media. Whether you belong to a society large or small chances are they are on Facebook. If you are interested in a small community online, chances are there is a group or following on Twitter as well. There are a number of online groups that you are urged to follow. Also take note of the many people in the international community who are also African ancestored people. Twitter is quite full of them, and they too, are pursuing their history, heritage and family heritage. Let’s meet them, greet them, re-tweet their tweets and offer support as we can.

Next week is Thanksgiving week and I wish you all the best as you gather with family and loved ones. Make some memories and celebrate old traditions as well. We have many things to be thankful for, and let us all pray that the world will become a safer place. Prayers for friends in France, Mali, Kenya and other strife riddled places in the world. We are so fortunate. Share your love, your friendship and your spirit of kindness.

In the meantime, keep researching, keep documenting and keep sharing what you find.