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  • 01:01

    Black Slavery Emancipation Research in Northern States - James W. Petty

    in History


    Join Genealogist Jim W. Petty for a discussion of his research on Black Slavery Emancipation Research in the Northern States and learn about the four categories of records that provide genealogical data on enslaved people in Northern states before the Civil War.

    Beginning in 2010, Jim became interested in African American Genealogy Studies upon following client genealogy into the Slave culture of Rhode Island.  Upon learning about the concept of Slavery in all States in America, and the eventual “gradual emancipation” of Black Slaves in each of the Northern States, he realized that a product of the emancipation movement was the creation of Slave birth records from as early as 1777, and continuing until national emancipation in 1865.  These records led to the keeping of other records relating to African Americans in the Northern States, which will hopefully become a resource for researchers throughout the United States.  

    Currently Jim has been collecting and abstracting Slave Birth Records for the State of New Jersey from 1804 to 1865, with the goal of publishing his findings during the 2015-2016 sesquicentennial of Slave Emancipation in the U.S. (1865-1866).  

    Jim has a degree in Genealogy Technology from Brigham Young University, and has been certified as a Genealogist and a Genealogy Records Searcher by the Board for the Certification of Genealogists (1984-2015), and accredited by the International Commission for the Accreditation of Genealogists (1972-2015).


  • DNA and Adoptions with CeCe Moore

    in History

    CeCe Moore, Your Genetic Genealogist, joins Jane today to talk about her work with adoptions and DNA. Find out how she uses DNA to help her adoptee clients discover their origins. What DNA tests does she recommend? What are some of her success stories? How can adoptees do it all themselves?


  • 01:02

    Soldier Engraver Forger: When Art History and Genealogy Meet with Deborah Child

    in History

    Art historian and genealogist Deborah Child joins Jane today to talk about her book Soldier Engraver Forger: Richard Brunton's Life on the Fringe in America's New Republic. Find out how art history and genealogy were used to tell the story of 18th century counterfeiter Richard Brunton -- a deserter from the British Army during the Revolutionary War and one of the first makers of engraved family history registers. Deborah will talk about how she researched Brunton's life and his work as an engraver and painter.

    Order the book: http://shop.americanancestors.org/collections/american-history-and-culture/products/soldier-engraver-forger-richard-bruntons-life-on-the-fringe-in-americas-new-republic

    Find Deborah: http://www.deborahmchild.com/

    First image: Sacred to the Memory of Mrs. Lois Foot. She died Dec, 23 1802 age 40 /  In love she liv'd; in peace she died/her life was asked and was denied.

    Silver medallion, 2 1/16"  x 1 9/16"   

    Illust. William L. Warren, “Richard Brunton.” Art in America 41, No. 2 (Spring 1953), page 71. Photo caption “Mrs. George H. Decker, Watertown, CT.”  Current whereabouts unknown

    Second Image: 

    Family register of Charles Raynolds & Hannah Bidwell

    Rev War Pens and Bnty-Land-Warr App W17528, NARA

  • 01:05

    Property Rights and Wrongs with Judy G. Russell

    in History

     Property Rights and Wrongs: African-Americans at the Courthouse with The Legal Genealogist

    From being treated as property to having their property stolen by those who used the law against the freedmen, African Americans' experience at the courthouse had only one bright spot: it created records for the genealogist-descendants.

    A Certified Genealogist with a law degree, The Legal Genealogist Judy G. Russell examines the interplay between genealogy and the law. She is a lecturer, educator and writer who enjoys helping others understand a variety of issues, ranging from using DNA in family history to the effect the law had on our ancestors’ lives and the records they left behind.

    A graduate of George Washington University and Rutgers School of Law-Newark, Judy is a Colorado native with roots deep in the American south on her mother’s side and entirely in Germany on her father’s side. She's a member of the National Genealogical Society, the Association of Professional Genealogists, and, among others, the state genealogical societies of New Jersey, North Carolina, Virginia, Texas and Illinois. She has written for the National Genealogical Society Quarterly and the National Genealogical Society Magazine .

  • 00:31

    Empress Simone Shares Her Book, Geena - A Bronx Chick’s Story

    in Writing

    Empress Simone credits her parents for giving her the drive to pursue her dreams. A lifelong resident of the Bronx in New York City, Empress Simone devotes her time to family, education, and writing. 

    During childhood Empress Simone realized she loved to write and would pen plays, song lyrics, poems, and short stories. She wishes to throw her hat in the editing arena and help bring fellow-authors visions and literary work to readers and supporters. An Administrative Assistant she is passionate about her love for others and tries to help in any capacity that she can. Empress Simone, an avid reader and old school Hip-hop fan, is also a budding genealogist who extensively studies and researches her ancestors/family history.

    Excerpt from Geena: A Bronx Chick’s Story

    Meet Geena Samuels, a single mother raising two sons in one of New York City’s toughest boroughs. This Bronx Story is nothing like you’ve ever witnessed before. Geena encounters violence and betrayal from those who claim to love her most. She is on a roller coaster ride of a struggle to make ends meet and find true love with emotions raging between love and anger that sometimes lead to war.

    During it all the one saving grace seem to be Geena’s sponsor who helps with the bills and Geena’s expensive shopping habits. However his real intentions are covered by the financial security he provides. Will Geena survive the game, or the web of deceit her best friend Abby or Sponsor have woven, or will naivety and greediness be the cause of her demise?

    Visit Empress Simone at: www.Facebook.com/AuthorEmpressSimoneQuick 

  • 01:24

    William Still Father of The Underground RR, descendant Francine Still Hicks

    in Education

    We are pleased to introduce to you Author Francine Still-Hicks! Francine is the direct descendant of entrepreneur and philanthropist William Still. A black abolitionist, Mr. Still authored the 800 plus page book,The Underground Railroad which is comprised of Records of Facts and Authentic Narratives. Still was Harriet Tubman's Financier, Social Media Guru, Publicst and Friend! The New York Times described Mr. Still in his obiturary as the "Negro Known as "Father of the Underground Railroad" -- Once a Slave, He Died Very Wealthy" He died a millionaire.

    Listen to The Gist of Freedom Archives at www.BlackHistoryUniversity.com and WWW.BlackHistoryBlog.com

    Francine is Bringing the genealogy of family history as a conduit - passage way - the underground to finding... "You!"

    Using "A Girl Named Charity" as a comparison of a modern day plantation we are living in todays society we can overcome! The hardships, obstacles and competitive world around us - we must never give up our "Hope, Faith and Charity" to find our way to the Freedom. Once you are on your path to liberation you will discover your true self in side - "The Me I Never Was!"

    "The Me I Never Was" gently guiding us into the emancipation of all labels placed upon us. Stripping the chains that has bound us from who we were born to be - and discovering a "boundless spirit" born with an authentic matrix!

    Looking Forward in Peace & Freedom,


  • 01:05

    The Ultimate Family History Interview Primer with Nicka Smith

    in History

    Nicka Smith is a professional photographer, speaker, and documentarian with more than 16 years of experience as a genealogist. She has extensive experience in African ancestored genealogy, reverse genealogy, and family reunion planning and execution. She is also an expert in genealogical research in the Northeastern Louisiana area, sharing genealogy with youth, documenting the ancestral journey, and employing the use of new technology in genealogy and family history research.

  • 01:23

    The 371st Infantry of World War I with Sonya Hodges and Douglas Culbreth

    in History

    Do you know about the African American 371st Infantry of World War I that fought in France?  Did you know that Sonya R. Hodges has dedicated her life to research and honor the men who fought in World War I to honor the memory of these dedicated soldiers?

    Please join Sonya R. Hodges-Grantham and Douglas Culbreth for a discussion of the role played by the African American 371st Infantry Regiment in World War I to honor the memory of these dedicated soldiers.

    The 371st Infantry Regiment, an African American unit of mostly South Carolinians came from small towns like Sandy Springs, Anderson, Edgefield, Ninety-six and Laurens.

    The 371st was permitted to fight, after disembarking from their troop ship at a tiny French village in April of 1918 after learning that they had been transferred to the French army.  The 371st was given French equipment, and had to turn in their prized Springfield rifles for French rifles. The unit was reorganized to fit the French army structure and spent the spring of 1918 training in French tactics, communicated via interpreters. That summer, the regiment was put into the line to relieve exhausted French and allied Italian units.  

    Sonya Renae Hodges- Grantham is a mother, grandmother, genealogist, author, graver, historian, and researcher, with a motto of "Get The Job Done and Get It Done Right". She is the Founder and President of the World War I - 371st Historical Society. She is  also the Founder of Cornbread Jubilee, an annual event that is held in honor of the corn crop, agriculture, and farming and Co-Founder of the Veterans Formation (1993) Columbia, South Carolina.  She is sole Restorer/Curator of Childs Cemetery in South Carolina and has also authored two books.


  • 01:09

    So What? Dr. Shelley Murphy

    in History

    Have you searched for records and finally found that special person you have been looking for?  So what?  What does the record tell you?  Is this all that you need?

    Join Dr. Shelley Murphy, aka "familytreegirl" for a discussion on the "SO WHAT" concept?  "So What" is a concept used in the Midwestern African American Genealogy Institute to help analyze genealogical records and resources. The goal is to question the value of the evidence and plan the path to new leads and discoveries. 

    Shelley Murphy, aka "familytreegirl" is a native of Michigan. Shelley has been an avid genealogist for over 25 years researching the Davis, Marsh, Goens/Goins/Goings, Roper, Boyer, Worden, Cureton, & Murphy, etc. family lines. She attends and presents at local and national conferences and currently works for a nonprofit and serves as adjunct faculty at Averett University. In addition, Shelley is a founding member and current President of the Afro-American Historical Genealogical Society Chapter of Central Virginia. 

  • 00:49

    Genealogist, Gist family, African Am., Native Am , White Abolitionist

    in Education

    Join The Gist of Freedom as we speak with two Gist family genealogists, Dr. Natalie Pierce and Mr. James E. Gist. 

    Peter Gist Still the long lost enslaved brother of the Father of The Underground Railroad,  William Still. After 40 years Peter is reunited with his mother Charity Still!

    Samuel Gist was a resident of Great Britain and Virginia. In his will, Gist insisted his daughter free all the slaves she owned on the Gould Hill Plantation in Virginia. She complied and establish 6 free Gist Settlements throughout Ohio. Many of the descendants of the enslaved Gist settlers still live on the settlement.

    Samuel Gist was orphaned.  In 1739,  he was shipped to Virginia where he was indentured. 

    Sequoyah (George Gist) created the Cherokee alphabet, the syllabary.

    Secessionist South Carolina Governor – William Henry Gist, 1858-1860 The first to secede

  • 00:59

    USCT Civil War Widows' Pension Stories with Tonya Hull and Antoinette Broussard

    in History

    Tonya M. Hull has been researching for 30 years. She is a genealogical researcher, lecturer and writer. She was the lead researcher for the PBS series it’s A Family Reunion, Co-Author of “African Americans of Giles County”.  She has served as president for a local genealogical society. She is currently studying to become a certified genealogist. 

    Antoinette Broussard has contributed biographies to the African American National Biography (edited by Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr., and Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham, Oxford Press 2008) and to Harlem of the West (photographer Lewis Watts and editor Elizabeth Pepin, Chronicle Books, 2006). She is currently a writer and co-producer for the Days With Zahrah television show (ABC7), and periodically appear on the show as Ms. Etiquette. In addition, she has  co-authored the forthcoming book, Days With Zahrah Travel Guide (May 2015), and has also published various articles on the accomplishments of her great aunt, Dr. Nettie Craig Asberry—a civil rights activist, and her cousin, Lulu Craig Sadler—a pioneer educator.