Ancestors Tree



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Charts and Records


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Millions of Americans become interested in family history because they want to trace their ancestry back to a homeland. After beginning, many people find that ethnic research includes specific and fascinating challenges, and this is particularly true of African American research. Many African Americans, believing they are descendants of slaves, falsely assume that records relating to the lives of their ancestors are non-existent. Episode seven endeavors to dispel some of the myths associated with African American genealogy research.



  • Begin at home to find information about yourself and work back one generation at a time.
  • Interview relatives for family history stories.
  • Enter the information that you have gathered on a pedigree chart, family group record and research log.
  • Join an African American Genealogical Society.
  • Learn about African American history and the records that are available to you.


Mom and BabySuggested Activities

Regardless of your ethnic background, historical events affected the lives of your ancestors, and learning about those events can help you in your family history search. Using the dates and places on your pedigree chart, create a simple time line that shows some of the historical events that your ancestors may have experienced, such as the Civil War, the Potato Famine in Ireland, or the Great Depression. Locate history books about those events that will help you better understand the lives and experiences of your ancestors. For African American Research, use the time line below to identify three main historical eras that influenced African American records: Civil War and Reconstruction (1861-1877), Segregation (1896-1954), and Civil Rights Movement (1954-1970) .



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