finding your roots

your stories

My 4 year old daughter in front of a photograph of my great, great great grandfather.

Hometown turns out to be my ancestral homeland


My sister kept a box of my father's documents in her attic after he died. A year into my family history research she passed them on to me. Late one night I reviewed the documents closely and found my grandmother's mother's maiden name, Cozine, and that lead me to the first of several outstanding leads in tracing my family lines. Continue reading ...

March 7, 2012 | Leave a comment

Indian Line of the Harrison Family of Jackson County, Ky.

James West

We had family oral history of there being an Indian in the Harrison Family. After much research and dead ends, the Harrison line was traced the the Bolling/Baker line to reach all the way to before Jamestown was colonized. Continue reading ...

March 5, 2012 | Leave a comment

Getting a Family on Valentine’s Day


The parents of one of my cousins divorced when she was young, and although she knew he remarried and had children by his second wife, there was no contact with his family, so she grew up as an only child. Continue reading ...

March 5, 2012 | Leave a comment

proud of great grandparents

janice hill-graves

my mother & my aunts always mentioned in a rather matter-of-fact manner that their parents Emma [Grant] and Samuel A. Mitchell were both teachers and my grandfather was also a principal of an Jenkins Orphanage school. Continue reading ...

March 5, 2012 | 1 Comment

The Knight Family Legacy

Peggy Parks Miller

The story has it's origins with the Knight family as plantation owners in Georgia in the early 1800s and traces their descendants for more than two centuries through available historical documents. Continue reading ...

March 5, 2012 | Leave a comment

How Could a Black Man Teach in Rural Georgia, c. 1865-1866

Deloris C Harrington

I had been taught iin American History during the 1940s - 1951 that African American were not allowed to attend school and were unable to read and write Continue reading ...

March 5, 2012 | Leave a comment

Miracle Reunion

Autthor Michael Williams

I am an African-American adult adoptee from New York. It turns out that because of my birth mother's illness her parental rights werw terminated and I became a ward of the state. I ended up being adopted into a family who was well regarded by Angel Guardian Home in Brooklyn. Continue reading ...

February 29, 2012 | Leave a comment


Kenny Wright

The possession of slaves was a mark of wealth for many southerners and the Whaley family of Edisto Island, SC was no exception. Continue reading ...

February 29, 2012 | Leave a comment

My Great Great Grandmother

From The Help to The Great Migration

Donna M Rizzo

All African Americans are aware that once slavery "ended" Black people still had to work in homes and with white families to make ends meet. Continue reading ...

February 29, 2012 | 2 COMMENTS

Slave Owner Ancestor

Lincoln Mulkey

Fortunately I have been able to penetrate the 1870 brickwall on one line of my ancestry. Continue reading ...

February 29, 2012 | 2 COMMENTS

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About the Series

The basic drive to discover who we are and where we come from is at the core of the new 10-part PBS series Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr., the 12th series from Professor Gates, the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor at Harvard University and director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research. Filmed on location across the United States, the series premieres nationally Sundays, March 25 – May 20 at 8 pm ET on PBS (check local listings).

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