5 GENERATIONS: FROM ENSLAVEMENT TO PUBLIC SERVICE IN ATLANTA
The documentary 5 Generations: From Enslavement to Public Service in Atlanta is a commemoration of the achievements of five generations of African American women in the Metro Atlanta area from Reconstruction through the 20th century. By exploring genealogy, family lore, and historic documentation, viewers will become familiar with various historical philanthropic, educational, and political institutions within Atlanta’s African American communities through the lens of the women in one multi-generational family.
Genealogist Robin Foster shares research tips and keeps you up to date with what’s happening at the IAAM Center for Family History.
Our On Demand Learning Library will help you build your research skills and keep your research moving forward.
View our growing collections of funeral programs, obituaries, photos, historical documents and family histories.
Learn from the experts! View guest posts written by experts in the field of African American genealogy.
Would you like to contribute funeral programs, obituaries, photos, historical documents or family histories to our collections? Here’s what you need to know to get started on preserving your family’s history at IAAM!
View featured videos. Ramp up your research skills with video tutorials. Learn more about the rich Gullah Geechee cultural heritage of the Lowcountry. Our video gallery has lots to sink your teeth into. View on any of your devices!
CONTRIBUTE AN ANCESTOR PHOTO OR DOCUMENT
Would you like to contribute Bible records, funeral programs, obituaries, photos, historical documents or family histories to our digital collections? We will cherish your contributions. Here’s what you need to know to get started on preserving your family’s history at IAAM!
LATEST BLOG POSTS
Antebellum church records can be an important resource for African American genealogy as the records often predate public records founds that document births, marriages and deaths. Last week, I shared three resources at the room for South Carolina History at the Charleston County Library, Register of St. Philip’s Parish, 1720-1758, Register of St. Philip’s Parish, 1754-1810, and Register of St. Philip’s Church, 1810-1822. This week I would like to also share another resource which can help identify enslaved ancestors and free persons of color who attended Bethel United Methodist Church from at least 1804 until 1880.read more
We had a lively discussion on last Tuesday's episode of BlackProGen LIVE! "Biology of a Document: From Analysis to Plan," about getting the most from the documents we have gathered in our African American genealogy research. The episode focused on analyzing each...read more
I visited the room for South Carolina History at the Charleston County Library in Charleston, South Carolina because I wanted to show you that you should not neglect to check Charleston church records back in 1720-1822 for African American genealogy. That’s right!...read more
This is how African American genealogy moves forward: slowly, methodically. When I moved to Columbia, South Carolina in 2005, I came across Lowry Ware’s name among the library book shelves at Richland Library. I looked for what I could find there on Beverly Vance (1832-1899), and I found the person who was his half brother and former slave owner. I found several books written by Lowry Ware and others. I learned early on that researching Beverly would be very hard on me emotionally. It involved reading books by Lowry Ware and others that were well spoken of except the formerly enslaved like Beverly.read more
Historic newspapers are an important resource for African American genealogy. Runaway slave ads, jailor's notices of captured runaway freedom seekers, notices of estate sales, private sales and sheriff's sales that include the names of enslaved ancestors are all...read more
Last month I accessed a book online entitled “Census of Abbeville Village and Abbeville Voter List May 1885,” compiled by Lowry Ware held by Larry A. Jackson Library at Lander University. I really had found another way to identify African Americans in 1885 and in...read more
African American Genealogy: When the Pieces Come Together – Guyton Family Bible, Oakley Plantation, Berkeley, SC
One of the biggest challenges in African American genealogy is the sometimes sparse body of documents we have to work in. We’ve been working for years to digitize documents in the Lowcountry, first as Lowcountry Africana, and now as the IAAM Center for Family History. Along the way, many archives, organizations and individuals have worked at our side to scan, digitize and index records that are significant for African American genealogy. Today, we experienced some of the fruits of our friends’ and colleague’s efforts when some pieces of a puzzle fell into place.read more
Have you ever found yourself researching a person with a common name? One time I was helping someone research her family history at the South Caroliniana Library in Columbia, South Carolina. We located her ancestor’s will, and she was browsing through. When she got to where the enslaved that her family owned was listed, she called me over to take a look at what shocked her. The page was full of names of the enslaved, any every one of them had the same name. African Americans have a hard time when it comes to research.read more
We attended this month’s Lower Richland Heritage and Genealogy Society LRHGS’ Kindred Connection: Sharing Our Stories. The funding for this project came from Richland County Conservation Commission. This meeting was hosted by Dedra Harvin at Jerusalem Baptist Church in Hopkins, South Carolina. As I sat the back, I noticed the place was packed. Everyone was listening intently to the recorded interviews being shown upfront.read more
I read Susie King Taylor’s (1848-1912) autobiography where she told of her enslaved experiences with grandmother, Dolly, escaping to freedom, working as an army nurse and teacher, returning to Georgia to marry Russell Taylor, and moving to Boston. Over a week ago, I learned on Facebook that Hermina Glass-Hill has put together a commemoration to honor her life, and of course, I had to go. August 6 was her birthday. The celebration literally changed my life. We in South Carolina give some attention to Susie and the fact that she served with the 33rd US Colored Troops, but going to the place where she went to church and going to the site where she escaped from enslavement definitely had a huge impact on me.read more
After you find an obituary about an ancestor, what else are historic newspapers good for? Newspapers can tell you a great deal about what went on in your ancestor’s time period. African American newspapers bring to light burials, education, masonic lodges, ministers, political activities and so much more. They reveal much more about the everyday lives of our ancestors.read more
The Palmetto Leader covered articles from all over the country, but it also told about the news in Charleston, South Carolina. This African American newspaper revealed stories about churches, universities, and schools. It kept up with the social scene, reported...read more
Gallery: Santee-Cooper Relocation Project
The Santee Cooper Power and Navigation Project, begun in 1939, did much to stimulate South Carolina’s economy after the Great Depression. The project improved navigation on and provided hydroelectric power from the Santee and Cooper rivers to Berkeley, Georgetown and Horry counties. During the project, 900 families were relocated and more than 6,000 graves were relocated or buried beneath the waters of Lake Marion and Lake Moultrie.
ON DEMAND LEARNING LIBRARY
Learn research skills anytime, on any device. Our tutorials will help you get started, or help you take your research to the next level. Grab a snack, settle in, and power up!
We’ve got you covered.
THE INTERNATIONAL AFRICAN AMERICAN MUSEUM
Coming in late 2020 on one of the most important sites in American history, the place where almost half of all African captives arrived in the U.S., the IAAM will present the largely undertold experiences and accomplishments of Americans of African descent.