African American Family Histories

Cleveland Park Library

African American Family Histories

Saturday, July 13, 2019, 2 p.m.

Assuming that finding pre-Civil War ancestors requires tedious review of slave transactions that are frequently not well documented, African American genealogy buffs may overlook thousands of documents focusing on free ancestors that lived in northern states and the District of Columbia. In the District of Columbia, the number of free blacks outnumbered those enslaved by 1830.

Drawing from his own fascinating experience that includes documenting free ancestry back to the late eighteenth century, Guy Weston will talk about methods to search family history of free Blacks as well as methods to identify those who were enslaved.  In addition, he will discuss the development of a free Black community called Timbuctoo in New Jersey, where his 4th great-grandfather purchased a parcel in 1829 that has remained in his family since that time.