Leslie Anderson, a native Virginian, is a reference Librarian at Alexandria Library, Local History/Special Collections Branch. Her article "Tabitha (Bugg) George Smith of Mecklenburg County, Virginia, won the 2013 NGS Family History Writing Contest. Ms. Anderson co-authored and edited Virginia Slave Births Index, 1853-1865. Ms. Anderson has been published in the Magazine of Virginia Genealogy and the VGS Newsletter.Her memberships include AAHGS, the National Genealogical Society, the Virginia Genealogical Society, and societies in Pennsylvania. Her media appearances include C-SPAN's American History TV and Blog Talk Radio. Ms. Anderson recently launched a blog, 1stuscoloredcavalry.wordpress.com.
Mr. Bubb is a lecturer for the Human Development and Family Studies Department and affiliated faculty for the Office of University Writing at Auburn University. He is also an American Psychological Association Wilbert McKeachie Teaching Excellence award recipient. Robert is a member of AAGHS, Preservation of African American Cemeteries, California Genealogical Society, and Alabama Cemetery Preservation Alliance. He currently works with the Center for the Arts and Humanities, Auburn Cemetery Advisory Board, the Lee County Cemetery Preservation Commission, and the local community to document and repair African American burial grounds in Lee County, Alabama.
Char McCargo Bah is a Freelance Writer for the Alexandria Gazette Newspaper and author of two books, "The Alexandria's Freedmen's Cemetery: A Legacy of Freedom" and co-author of "African Americans of Alexandria, VA: Beacons of Light in the Twentieth Century" Currently, she is the City of Alexandria's City Genealogist on the Ramsey Homes Project, former City of Alexandria, Virginia's Genealogist on the Contraband and Freedmen Project, City of Alexandria's and the 2014 Alexandria, Virginia Living Legend. She has participated in over 23 interviews with major television stations and newspapers regarding her work on the Freedmen Cemetery. In 2019, she is scheduled for 38 book-signings and presentations throughout the District, Maryland, and Virginia.
We Were Always in the Court House: What You Can Find on African Americans in Court Records
Harvey Bakari is a public historian, consultant, trainer, and artist. Formerly, he interpreted 17th and 18th-century African American history for 23 years at the nation’s largest living history museum, Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. He held numerous positions, including Manager of African American History Interpretation and performed presentations for countless people at the museum, outreach programs, and for award-winning nationally-broadcast history programs. He earned his bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts and minor in Afro-American Studies at Virginia Commonwealth University. He resides in Virginia, is the founder of Bakari Historical Consulting LLC, and is a board member for the Society of Friends of African American History.
Names, Lives, and Records: Behind the 1870 Wall
Historian Roland Barksdale-Hall authored Leadership Under Fire (Amber Books, 2017), “Inventions and Patents” in African American Leadership: A Reference Guide (Mission Bell Media, 2015); “William Hunter Dammond” in African American National Biograph (2014); "The Black Family," "Entrepreneurs," and "Slave Status and Inheritance" in The Encyclopedia of African American History 1619-1895: From the Colonial Period to the Age of Frederick Douglass (Oxford University Press: 2006). Affiliations and honors include AAHGS Life Membership, American Society of Freedmen Descendants Senior Fellow, Mercer County Historical Society, International Society of Sons and Daughters of Slave Ancestry and Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society Pittsburgh Chapter.
Robert Burch was born in Atlanta, GA. After leaving Talladega College, he served in the U.S. Navy, touring the Caribbean, South America, and the Mediterranean Sea. He works at Park City Group in Salt Lake City in corporate compliance and food safety. Robert is President of the Utah Chapter of AAHGS, a board member of the Sons and Daughters of the U.S. Middle Passage, and Family History Director of the LDS Genesis Group. He’s involved in the Utah Memorial Columns lynching project and the Utah Juneteenth Committee. He is a member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. and the Utah Black Roundtable.
Documenting Lineage to Enslaved Ancestors
Benjamin P. Bowser is Emeritus Professor of Sociology, California State University East Bay (Ph.D. Cornell University). As a sociologist, he specializes in research methods, public health, and community assessments. He served on three Institute of Medicine (National Academy of Science) expert panels on drug abuse and HIV risk and authored forty peer-reviewed papers and chapters. His books related to his presentation are The Transatlantic Slave Trade and Slave: and New Directions in Teaching and Learning (2012), and The Black Middle Class: Mobility and Vulnerabilities (2007). Dr. Bowser is a past President of the Association of Black Sociologists (2004), was a visiting professor at the University of Paris (2005), and is a member of AAHGS.
Karen Burney is a national speaker who has spent almost 30 years doing genealogy research. She is the Founder of The Roots Exchange and Education Society (TREES) and has written a book, "Freedom At The End of The Land." Ms. Burney teaches classes on various topics including Beginning Genealogy, DNA, the Civil War, Slave Research, and many more. Ms. Burney has traced her own family back 7-8 generations to the slavery era and helped many others reconnect with their lost ancestors. She is working on a soon-to-be-released book about her ancestry.
Ms. Camp receiver undergraduate degrees in history and sociology, a Master's degree from Washburn University, and a Certificate in Genealogy from Brigham Young University. She is a founder and President of the Kansas Network to Freedom; founder and Board Member of the Brown vs Board Sumner Legacy Trust; and founder and President of the Kansas Chapter of AAHGS. Ms. Camp has served as National Vice President and President of National AAHGS. In 2013, she wrote African American Topeka, a book on 150 years of African American history in Topeka, Kansas. The book was published by Arcadia Publishers, as part of its Image of America Series. Ms. Camp is currently the Genealogy Librarian at the Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library. She teaches genealogy and history classes across the country.
How to Use the Genealogical Proof Standard
Shannon S. Christmas, MCP specializes in genetic, colonial American, and African-American genealogy in Virginia and the Carolinas. He serves as a 23andMe Ancestry Ambassador, administrator of The Captain Thomas Graves of Jamestown Autosomal DNA Project, and as a co-administrator of The Hemings-Jefferson-Wayles-Eppes Autosomal DNA Project. Shannon uses autosomal DNA to verify and extend pedigrees, assess the veracity of oral history, and reconstruct ancestral genomes. Shannon serves on the faculty of The Midwest African American Genealogical Institute. Shannon has a Bachelor of Arts in Government from Harvard University and a Masters in City Planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Dr. Clark-Lewis is one of the founders of AAHGS. She is Professor of History and Public History Program Director at Howard University. She served as the first AAHGS Treasurer and Vice President for Genealogical Programs. She completed her BA and MA at Howard University and holds a doctorate from the University of Maryland. Dr. Clark-Lewis was former Director of Graduate Studies at Howard. Her academic appointments include Banneker Professor, George Washington University; Professor, Pennsylvania State; and Professor, Northern Virginia Community College. She formerly served as National Director, Association of Black Women Historians; Executive Board member,Organization of American Historians; Board of Directors, National Council on Public History; and Executive Council, Association for the Study of African American Life and History. Dr. Clark-Lewis is the prize-winning author or editor of six books. She co-produced Freedom Bags, a PBS documentary and winner of Oscar Micheaux Award from Black Filmmakers Hall of Fame.
Melvin Collier has been conducting genealogy research for 26 years. He has published three books, Ealy Family Heritage: Documenting Our Legacy (2016), Mississippi to Africa: A Journey of Discovery (2008) and 150 Years Later: Broken Ties Mended (2011). Because of his contributions to African-American genealogy, Melvin was awarded the 2016 Paul Edward Sluby, Sr. /Jean Sampson-Scott Meritorious Achievement Award. He has a Master of Arts in African American Studies from Clark Atlanta Univ. (2008). A former civil engineer, Melvin was also an archivist for six years at the Atlanta University Center. He is currently employed by the Department of Defense.
The Second Middle Passage: Following the DNA Trails
Organizing and Self-Publishing a Family History Book
Mr. Cummings has over 20 years' experience as a Marketing professional in both an agency and retail setting. He earned a Bachelor's degree from the University of Arkansas at Fayettville. He is currently employed as a Modular Development Manager for a global retailer. Mr. Cummings manages the technology behind the "Journey Through the Generations" organization and has recently started researching his own family history. He currently serves on the Social Media Team of AAHGS National Chapter, where he manages the organization's YouTube channel.
Hey Researchers! Google is Your Friend
Aaron Dorsey has been conducting genealogical research for over 20 years. He has documented his family history throughout the United States, uncovering the slave-holding family of twelve of his ancestors in nine southern states. He specializes in African American, Slavery, and Texas research. Aaron has conducted numerous lectures throughout the Washington, DC Metro Area on researching enslaved individuals. His research was featured in "The Genie" published by the ARK-LA-TEX Genealogical Association, Inc.
Pamela E. Foster, M.S.J., is a Ph.D. teaching/research assistant in the Georgia State University Communication Department. She has won numerous awards and fellowships for her scholarship on intergenerational black family stories, antebellum Southern plantations, black people’s early country music participation, and early black higher education. She is the author of four books, including a church history, a family heritage, and My Country: The African Diaspora’s Country Music Heritage, the first history of black people and country music. She has served AAHGS in numerous capacities since 2005, including board member, Nashville chapter co-founder, and Nashville chapter president.
Black Stories in the House: A Critical Assessment of African American Plantation Tourism
A Life Member of AAHGS, LaBrenda Garrett-Nelson has been a Board-certified genealogist since 2015 and in 2016 was elected as a trustee of the Board for Certification of Genealogists where she currently serves on the executive committee. She focuses on writing and lecturing at major conferences and institutes—she was the SLIG 2019 Coordinator for “1619-2019: Four Hundred Years of African American Genealogy.” She is also the Registrar General for the Sons and Daughters of the United States Middle Passage, the national lineage society that honors ancestors who were enslaved or indentured in the United States before 1865.
Using DNA to Confirm Oral History Regarding An Enslaved Common Ancestral Couple
The Importance of Historical Context in Meeting the Genealogical Proof Standard
Dr. Torren Gatson is Assistant Professor of History at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. He is one of three pairs of undergraduate students and faculty members who have been collaborating on research related to the histories of enslaved people in North Carolina. From the University of North Carolina at Greensboro: History major Deasia Kamara will present with Dr. Torren Gatson. From North Carolina A&T University: History major Deshawn Elam will present with Dr. Arwin Smallwood, Professor and Chair of the Department of History and Political Science. From North Carolina Central University: Visual Communications major Kyrie Mason will present with Professor of Public History Dr. Charles Johnson.
C.R. Gibbs is an author/co-author of six books and a frequent national and international lecturer on an array of topics. He has appeared on the History Channel, French and Belgian television, Gibbs wrote, researched, and narrated "Sketches In Color," a 13-part companion series to the acclaimed PBS series, "The Civil War", for the Howard University television station. The Smithsonian Institution's Anacostia Community Museum features Mr. Gibbs among its scholars at the Museum's Online Academy website. He is also a D.C. Humanities Council Scholar. In 1989, he founded the African History & Culture Lecture Series whose scholars continue to provide free presentations at libraries, churches, schools, and other locations in the Washington-Baltimore area. In 1997, he led 26 people across the continent of Africa. In 2002, Mr. Gibbs authored "Black, Copper, & Bright," the first book ever written on the District of Columbia's African American Civil War Regiment. He won the 2008 award for excellence in historic preservation public education given by the mayor of the District of Columbia. In 2009, the Congressional Black Caucus Veterans Braintrust honored Mr. Gibbs for his many years of articles and presentations on African Americans in the U.S. armed forces. He is also a member of the Company of Military Historians. In 2011, he appeared in an episode of the popular History Channel series, "How The States Got Their Shapes".
Damita Drayton Green is an independent historian, genealogist, and owner of Yesteryear Perspectives LLC. Ms. Green earned her MS degree from The Johns Hopkins University and has completed graduate level studies in African American history and the African diaspora at Morgan State University. She is a former national board member of the Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society, Inc. (AAHGS). Ms. Green is a member of numerous genealogical and historical organizations, to include AAHGS, the Association of Black Women Historians (ABWH), and the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH).
Using Historical Resources in Genealogical Research
Ms. Hamilton is a retired U.S. Army Colonel. She received her undergraduate degree from Howard University and her master's degree from Western Kentucky University.She has over 25 years' experience in genealogy research. She is past president and a charter member of the Metro Atlanta Chapter of AAHGS. Ms. Hamilton is a member of the Board of the Georgia Genealogical Society. She is adjunct instructor for the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research (IGHR), where she teaches the "Researching African-American Ancestors" course. Ms. Hamilton has done genealogy presentations at national conferences of the Federation of Genealogical Society, National Genealogical Society, National Archives and Records Administration, the Georgia Archives, and the Atlanta History Center. She is a member of a number of service action organizations, to include the National Association of Black Military Women and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
Paul Heinegg has worked as an engineer for the past thirty years overseas in Tanzania, Liberia, and Saudi Arabia. He became interested in the history of the free African American community while researching his wife's ancestors from Northampton County, North Carolina. They descended from a community of African Americans who had been free in Virginia since the colonial period. They owned land and appeared to have been on good terms with their white neighbors.
Marvin T. Jones is a documentary photographer, filmmaker and historian. Over a 12-year period, Jones documented the largest fortress constructed by the Haitian Republic, the Citadel Henry. Jones has successfully nominated seven North Carolina Highway Historical Markers, extensively presents histories with lectures and films and won awards from AAHGS and the North Carolina Society of Historians. Jones is a board member of the Alliance to Preserve Civil War Defenses of Washington which promotes the memory of Mrs. Thomas and is a member of both AAHGS’ Central Maryland Chapter and James Walker Dent Chapter.
Natonne Elaine Kemp is a family historian, writer and presenter. A native of Washington, D.C., she is a graduate of the National Institute on Genealogical Research (NIGR) now known as the Genealogical Institute on Federal Records (Gen Fed). She was editor of Homeplace, the official newsletter of the Old Edgefield District African American Genealogical Society, and serves on the Journal Editorial Board for the Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society (AAHGS). Ms. Kemp is the co-author of the award-winning book, There Is Something About Edgefield: Shining a Light on the Black Community through History, Genealogy and Genetic DNA.
Overcoming the Hurdle of the 1890 Census
Janice Lovelace, Ph.D. is a genealogical researcher, author and lecturer, with over thirty years of experience. Dr. Lovelace is a frequent speaker at national and regional genealogy conferences on health and genetics, ethnic minority genealogy,and research methodology. She authored the National Genealogical Society's continuing education course African American Roots: A Historical Perspective and is an instructor at the Midwest African American Genealogical Institute (MAAGI). She is a national board member of Association of Professional Genealogists (APG) and serves on her local society's board. She belongs to the Ohio Genealogical Society, AAHGS, and the National Genealogical Society (NGS).
Herman Mason Jr., Ph.D.
Dr. Herman "Skip" Mason, Jr. holds a Doctor of Ministry degree in African American Social and Environmental Justice from the Interdenominational Theological Center. His dissertation "Black Ancestors Matter: Ancestral Memory, Genealogy and DNA in the African-American Church" is in preparation for publication. Dr. Mason has taught at Morris Brown and Morehouse Colleges in Atlanta. Currently, he is the Director of Library Services at Voorhees College in Denmark, South Carolina. He is the author of numerous books on the history of African Americans' experience in the south and has also curated major exhibitions as well as consulted on PBS documentaries. He has presented genealogy workshops throughout the country.
Dr. Matin has established a solid record of commitment to faith and historical organizations. Building upon her interests in her family history and social justice work, Khadijah conducts research in how family and faith history shape identity. Khadijah has served AAHGS as National President, Vice President/History and Vice President/Genealogy, and as chapter president of the Jean Sampson Scott – Greater NY Chapter. At present, Khadijah is a member of AAHGS 400th Year Commemoration Commission, exploring the matter of faith.
Harry Bradshaw Matthews is Associate Dean and Director, Office of Intercultural Affairs at Hartwick College, and founding president of the USCT Institute for Local History and Family Research. He has been honored by proclamations from legislative bodies in Maryland, New York and Pennsylvania, and the Congressional Black Caucus Veteran Braintrust for outstanding historical and genealogical research. He is the author of African American Freedom Journey in New York and Related Sites, 1823-1870. He received his B.A. from SUNY Oneonta and his M.A. from Northern Michigan University. He is a director of the SUNY Oneonta Foundation Board.
Maddy McCoy is the Founding Director of Slavery Inventory Database, LLC, a historical research consultancy established in 2005 with the mission of creating connections to those whom history has forgotten. The Slavery Inventory Database works with local historic sites and historic house museums by helping them identify and better interpret their enslaved populations. Maddy is an independent historical researcher, professional genealogist and former historian for the Fairfax County Cultural Resource Management & Protection Department. She was recently appointed as vice-chair of the City of Alexandria’s Historic Alexandria Resources Commission. Maddy was born in Alexandria, Virginia where she resides.
Millie McGhee-Morris is a successful author, publisher, and inspirational speaker. She has spent considerable time during her lifetime mentoring young students. In 2008, she created the group New Writers in Action. She mentored the students in the group and helped them develop plans for their individual literary careers. Ms. McGhee-Morris has written numerous books, one of which became a documentary which she co-directed. Her new book “Shocking Truth and Lies” documents her family connection to the former FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover. Ms. McGhee-Morris attended University of Maryland University College from 2016 to 2018. She has been a member of AAHGS and has received numerous awards for her work, to include the Woman of the Year Award in 2007 from the National Association of Professional Women.
RIC MURPHY is the National Vice President for History, for the Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society, and is an educator, historian, scholar, and lecturer who has presented throughout North America, the Caribbean, Europe and Africa. As an award winning author and highly acclaimed historian, Murphy explores the roles and rich contributions made by African Americans in United States history. His books have received over twenty awards and citations, including six for his most recent book, The Biography of Rear Admiral Larry Chambers, USN: First African American to Command and Aircraft Carrier, McFarland Publishers. His completed book, The History of Virginia’s First Documented Angolans, is expected to be published by The History Press in the spring of 2020, to be followed by a more detailed account of the lives and stories of the so called “20 and Odd” Angolans. He recently chaired AAHGS’s 400th Commemoration Commission, bringing attention to the arrival of the first documented Africans in English North America in 1619, at Point Comfort in the Virginia colony; and helped to guide the organization in recording the historic contributions and achievements of Americans of African descent over a four hundred year period. He has served in elected and appointed positions within state and local governments, and has taught and lectured at the post-secondary level. He has served as Chairman of the Board of several private and community based organizations; on numerous national, local and not-for-profit Boards of Directors; on countless Advisory Boards to community-based organizations and not-for-profits; and has received numerous national awards for his public activism and community work. His family lineage dates to the earliest colonial periods of Plymouth, Massachusetts, and of Jamestown, Virginia. Mr. Murphy’s lineage has been evaluated and accepted by several heredity societies, including the Daughters of the American Revolution; the National Society of the Sons of Colonial New England; the Sons of the American Revolution; the Sons of the Union Veterans of the Civil War; and the Sons and Daughters of the U. S. Middle Passage. Mr. Murphy was a Fellow at Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government; and he has a Masters in Urban Affairs from Boston University, and a Bachelor of Science Degree from the University of Massachusetts. Contact Info: RicMurphy@ricmurphy.com.
An avid genealogist for over 25 years, Dr. Shelley Murphy, aka "familytreegirl" presents genealogy workshops at local, state, and national genealogy conferences. Along with other interesting problem-solving genealogy methodology lecture, Murphy is particularly well-known for her inspiring and interactive presentation "SO WHAT"on genealogy research. Dr. Murphy is a coordinator and instructor at the Midwest African American Genealogy Institute (MAAGI). Dr. Murphy serves on the Boards of the Library of Virginia, Albemarle, Charlottesville, and Fluvanna Historical Societies.
Carol Kostakos Petranek erves as a Co-Director of the Washington, D.C. Family History Center where she coordinates classes, conferences and community outreach projects. The Washington DC Family History Center (FHC) provides free access to family history resources and internet genealogical websites, and hosts several special interest groups, including one specializing in African-American research. Carol volunteers at the National Archives in Washington, D.C. as a Genealogy Aide in the Research Room, and as a Volunteer Coordinator for a FamilySearch digitization project at the Maryland Archives. She writes and edits personal and family histories, and blogs about her research at SpartanRoots.wordpress.com.
Malissa Ruffner, JD, MLS, CG, has been the director of the Genealogical Institute on Federal Records (Gen-Fed) since 2015, and was the editor of the Maryland Genealogical Society Journal from 2017 to 2019. She has worked for the Georgetown Memory Project since 2016.
Robyn Smith has been researching her family and others for 20 years. An engineer by day, Ms. Smith applies those research and problem-solving skills to the field of genealogy. She specializes in Maryland research, African-american and slave research, and court records.Ms. Smith promotes the documentation of communities and emphasizes the use of proper genealogical standards. Robyn taught Advanced African-American Genealogy part-time at Howard Community College in Columbia,Maryland from 2008-2015. She also lectures and writes about family history research. She is the author of numerous genealogy articles and a genealogy teaching blog called Reclaiming Kin (www.reclaimingkin.com). In 2015, Ms. Smith published the book version of her blog, "The Best of Reclaiming Kin."
Jerome Spears, a native of Baltimore, Maryland, accelerated his genealogical research in 2009. His undergraduate and graduate degrees in geography from Morgan State University and University of Hawaii respectively have served him well in assisting his approach of meticulously positioning ancestors within the historical context of place and time, in order to uncover and reveal some remarkable family history discoveries. He is a retired thirty year U.S. Army veteran, who has also been a musician and record producer, as well as a professional boxing commentator. Currently a member of Howard County's Central Maryland Chapter of AAHGS, he now adds family historian, lecturer, and truth seeker to his titles.
Benefits of Serving as a Family DNA Data Manager
Erica is an educator with a Bachelor's degree in Education from FAMU and a Master's degree in Special Education from FAMU. She has been researching her family hsitory for over twenty years. Her family roots are in the Bahamas, South Carolina, and Georgia. Ms. Tinsley has hosted 3 family reunions and done a presentation at a local AAHGS meeting on Genealogy and Social Media. She has created several websites, video libraries, and social media pages for her genealogical findings.
Teresa Vega holds degrees in Anthropology and Asian Studies from Bowdoin College. She is a proud member of the Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society (NY/NJ Chapters) as well as a member of the Greenwich Preservation Trust. She serves as a core panelist on BlackProGen Live, a podcast of professional genealogists, and is also the co-administrator of FamilyTree DNA's Malagasy Roots Project along with CeCe Moore of PBS's Finding Your Roots. Her genealogy blog can be found at www.radiantrootsboricuabranches.com. Most recently, she is the founder/owner of the new online genealogy-focused store, www.rrbb-Shop.com.