Thursday, February 28, 2008

Carnahan Announces Online African-American Genealogy Series

Carnahan Announces Online African-American Genealogy Series

New Videos Can Help Families Trace Their Roots

Jefferson City, Missouri — Secretary of State Robin Carnahan announced today that her office has placed online a five-part video series highlighting African-American genealogy. African-American Genealogy: Putting Together the Pieces of Your Past was created by the Missouri State Archives, a division of the Secretary of State's office.

"I am pleased that we made this series available to assist researchers in overcoming many of the common obstacles encountered in tracing African-American roots," said Carnahan. "Finding genealogical records for ancestors can be challenging, so these videos are designed to help people track their family tree."

In the five-part series, Traci Wilson-Kleekamp, a Family History Research Consultant, provides helpful tips on accessing the best websites, which records are most beneficial, and how to get the most out of original records. Together, "What's Out There?;" "What's Your Story?: Finding It on the Web;" "How Do I Find Out More?;" "What Happened During the Wars?;" and "How Do I Put All the Information Together?" teach researchers to use all the pieces they find to gain a better understanding of those who came before them.

Wilson-Kleekamp guides researchers through the process of identifying ancestors from the era of slavery through a variety of records and documents. The series provides a solid background in conducting slavery-era research and reviews specific books, databases and online resources that contain vital information for African-American genealogical study.

The new website is part of Secretary Carnahan's long-term commitment to the African-American History Initiative, a program that aims to create a broad public awareness of the rich contributions of African-Americans to the state. The initiative also strives to offer new resources to historians, genealogists and to others studying Missouri's culturally diverse history.

The series is available online at

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