History, Tradition, and Culture

Black History Revealed in a Local Cemetery

Recently, while  listening to a genealogy program on Youtube  called BlackProGen Live about free people of color (FPOC), the host, Nika Smith asked  the panel about resources for researching these families. I immediately thought about a book that I had read by African American historian, Dr. Carter G. Woodson (b.1875- d.1950). I jumped over to Wikipedia (yes, over there) to get the name of the book and saw what I thought was an odd reference to Suitland, Maryland! Wait, what? Indeed, the father of Black History month and author of many books on black history, Dr. Carter G. Woodson , had been interred  at one of Suitland’s three cemeteries, The Lincoln Memorial Cemetery. Perhaps I am the last to know, but this was an amazing discovery for me! I honestly did not believe it so I  jumped over to Find A Grave and looked it up and sure enough some one had created…

Genetic Geneology - The DNA Reveal

DNA Testing for Genealogy. Autosomal Testing Demystified

AncestryDNA Ethnicity Estimate

My DNA testing journey began back in 2011 when  free tests were offered to the public via the Roots Into the Future Program – 23andme’s partnership with the National Urban League. They were looking for data, and many of us were looking for family history clues and more details regarding our ethnicity given our history in this country. We in the genealogy community were grabbing them up like…well, like they were free! With some of us,  “free” turned into “free-nzy”.  Needless to say , I am sure 23andme received more than enough  genetic data to fill their DNA coffers, I mean databases. I took the bait and ordered a few kits for family members. We received our kits, registered them, surrendered our spit, sent off the kits, and a number of weeks later we got an email saying our results were ready! We were then able to log in and see our…

Military Service

Our Veterans Revealed

Like so many so many American families, we have a number of men and women in our family who served this country and we are still discovering who they are! Today, I wanted to honor a few that are known in our family. These are just a few.           James McKee, a free man and eastern Ohio native, served in the Civil War at Port Hudson, LA . Many of his descendants continued the tradition of military service. Those that did not enlist or volunteer supported our service men and women through monetary contributions.  I will blog about them later.   Test you knowledge by taking quiz below. African Americans in Civil War History   Learn More about African Americans in Military Service (click/tap title below)

History, Tradition, and Culture

DO, Believe the Hype

Was it me or was the hype machine in full effect in anticipation of the grand opening of the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC)! For months they have been serving up full press promotion amplified by social media! Needless to say, according to the Washington post, the tickets are all sold out until 2017! Congrats on a job well done by Lonnie G. Bunch III and the publicity team! Contrary to what the Rapp group Public Enemy and front man Flava Flav may have crooned when they performed their flagship hit “Fight The Power” at the opening ceremonies, I would say,  DO believe the hype! I recently visited the museum on the Monday after the official grand opening weekend and I  admit that it did not disappoint! Thanks to the kindness of a good friend, I will call her Dar, I got the ticket hook up that…

A Tribute

Remembering Walter Edward Grimes

F is for Father   F is for father you gave me your name, you made me your child and loved me the same. F is for the fun we had during our family times. Wrestling, playing, listening to music from your K-Tel/Columbia House collection- Aretha to Miles Davis to Simon & Garfunkel. Listening to and watching comedy and variety shows together, from Laugh-In  and Flip Wilson, Sammy Davis, Della Reese, Sonny & Cher to  Carol Burnett and Hee Haw. F is for a firm but fair disciplinarian. The only time we feared you was when we failed to obey Mom. F is for fast. You were the man I could never catch in that continuous game of tag that we played for years. F is for fishing which you enjoyed so much. Whether at one of the many lakes around Grayson County near the Texas/Oklahoma border, the little creek in Halawa,…

Their Labor

Their Labor Revealed

While on my journey of ancestral research and discovery, I have been intrigued by the many occupations in which my ancestors, relatives, and their neighbors  labored in order to earn a living or satisfy their enslavers.  There were those who rotated between several jobs and those changed careers though out the course of their lives. Here are just a few of the occupations in which they worked: Dietitian/Nutritionist, Military Police, Teacher, Principal, Preacher, Homemaker, Seamstress, Food Service Worker, Domestic, Servant, Rice Farmer, Sugar Farmer, Soldier, Mechanic, Technician, Dock Worker, Barber, Carpenter, Laundress, Laborer, and Slave. Here is a sampling of my predecessors and their peers listed along with mention of their primary occupations. More than likely they had legitimate side hustles in order to make ends meets. 1910 Pointe Coupee Parish, Louisiana , United States Federal Census Oscar St. Louis a rice farmer Auguste Nelson a sugar farmer   1930 New…

A Tribute

First Steps

  So this is my first blog post. I guess we all have to start some where! I feel like a new born colt, giraffe, or a toddler for that matter , who is trying to walk for the first time- all wobbly-legged and unsteady. The good news is that they usually gain steady footing pretty quickly in order to  obtain sustenance, keep up with the herd , or avoid predators! Well I’m not trying to keep up with the herd or fend off predators as much as I am just trying to get going! Sometimes just starting is the hardest thing !  So pardon the bad grammar and writers’ faux pas!  I am just trying to get this train out of the station! This blog is dedicated to my ancestors and family-known, unknown, yet to be born or discovered. Those that were enslaved and free. Those that sojourned and…