Detroit/Ontario Underground Railroad Memorial
Detroit/Ontario Underground Railroad Memorial
It has been said that "for those who despise genealogy, they surely detest their ancient blood, as well as the blood in their own veins."

Tracing your ancestors is an exhilirating, exhausting and sometimes a disappointing adventure as any researcher will admit. However the success in finding relatives or confirming family ties when researched thoroughly, will leave a lasting legacy for family members who can then fill in the blanks about their lineage. While any family research is difficult, trying to find information on Black Americans prior to the Civil war can pose a challenge. Offered below is a small listing of repositories, books, videos, websites and a select workshops offered by presenters from Indiana's Black Geneaology 2011 Summit. If you find any of this information useful, please be sure to share with others so that they can be productive in their research.

(Please note that you may need to download the free applications to listen to the presentations. Once downloaded, you will be able to listen to the 30-45 minute workshops).

Avoids Traps in African American Geneaology by geneaology expert Tony Burroughs. 3/11/2010
Records of Resistance (Abolitionist Societies & the Underground Railroad) by Shamele Jordon. 10/22/11
Search & Reward Notices (Value of Ads in the Negro Press) by Lisa Lee of 10/22/11

Akeret, Robert U. Family Tales, Family Wisdom: How to Gather the Stories of a Lifetime and Share Them with Your Family. New York, NY: Morrow, 1991.

Beller, Susan Provost. Roots for Kids: A Genealogy Guide for Young People. Baltimore, Md.: Genealogical Pub. Co., 2007.

Braxton-Secret, Jeanette. Guide to Tracing Your African Ameripean Civil War Ancestor. Bowie, Maryland: Heritage Books, 1997.

Burroughs, Tony. Black Roots: A Beginner's Guide to Tracing the African American Family Tree. New York: Fireside, 2001.
Collier, Melvin. 150 Years Later: Broken Ties Mended. 2011.

Croom, Emily Anne. Unpuzzling Your Past: A Basic Guide to Genealogy. Cincinnati, Ohio: Betterway Books, 1995.

Drake, Paul E. You Ought to Write All That Down: A Guide to Organizing and Writing Genealogical Narrative. Bowie, Maryland: Heritage Books, 1996.

Ferraro, Eugene. How to Obtain Birth, Death, Marriage, Divorce, & Adoption Records. Santa Ana, California: Marathon Press International, 1989.

Fletcher, William P. Recording Your Family History: A Guide to Preserving Oral History With Videotape, Audiotape, Suggested Topics and Questions, Interview Techniques. New York: Dodd, Mead, 1986.

Frisch-Ripley, Karen. Unlocking the Secrets in Old Photographs. Salt Lake City, Utah: Ancestry, 1991.

Helm, Matthew. Genealogy online for dummies. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley Pub., 2011.

Linder, Billy Royce. Black Genealogy: Basic Steps to Research.
Nashville: American Association for State and Local History, 1981.

McClure, Rhonda R. The Genealogist's Computer Companion. Cincinnati, Ohio: Betterway Books, c2002.

Rose, Christine. Courthouse Research for family historians: your guide to Genealogical treasures. San Jose, CA: CR Publications, 2004.

Smith, Franklin Carter and Emily Anne Croom. A Genealogist’s guide to discovering your African-American ancestor: How to find and record your unique heritage. Baltimore, Md.: Genealogical Publishing Co., 2008.

Smith, Lorna Duane. Genealogy Is More Than Charts.
Elliot City, Maryland: Life Times, 1991.

Stewart, J. Discover Your American Heritage; How to Obtain U.S. Government Assistance in Family History Research: An Inexpensive Method to Finding Your Ancestors in Federal Archives. Grovetown, Georgia: Ancestral Historian Society, 1981.

Steuart, Bradley W., ed. The Soundex Reference Guide. Bountiful, Utah:Precision Indexing, 1990.

Walton-Raji, Angela Y. Black Indian Genealogy Research. Bowie, Maryland: Heritage Books, 1993.

Woodson, Carter G. Free Negro Heads of Families in the United States in 1830. Washington, D.C.: The Association for the Study of Negro Life and History, 1925.

Family Search
Genealogy Center of the Allen County Public Library's African American Gateway 
National Archives
State Library & Historical Societies

Wishing you much success in your research and God bless!

*A special thanks goes to Wilma L. Moore of the Indiana Historical Society and Curt B. Witcher, Allen County Public Library's Geneaology Center manager who compiled a wonderful list of resources for the beginning and experienced research.