Archives for September 2008

Old Ned’s Cabin A Reminder Of Former Slave

During pre-Civil War years, there were several slaves on the more prosperous farms in the beautiful Holston Valley near Bristol. Here and there are reminders of that long ago era. For example, between Cold Spring Presbyterian Church and the James (Jimmy) Thomas place there is a large formation of rock near which once stood a humble home of ex-slaves. Read More … [Read more...]

Piece of black history rests with Arkansas church

Centennial Baptist Church sits silently on a downtown street, its doors locked and window panes so clouded light has trouble getting in. The roof is sagging and some shingles are missing. The foundation has started to crack. A National Historic Landmark, the church was built by a black architect and was pastored by the Rev. Elias Camp Morris, president from 1895 to 1922 of the National Baptist Convention USA, Inc. Read More … [Read more...]

Northern Colorado Town a Monument To Possibility

Those who settled Dearfield nearly a century ago felt the same tug to scratch out a good life from hard turf and harsh conditions as pioneers who went generations before. "For many, this was their last chance to own something, to live the American Dream," said La Wanna Larson, who is leading an effort to preserve what is left of one of the first -- and, perhaps, largest -- African-American settlements in Colorado. Read More … [Read more...] Launches as the Most Comprehensive Online Resource for Local and National Obituary News & Personal Tributes

BOSTON, Sept. 22 /PRNewswire/ --, an online resource for local and national obituary news, officially launched today -- forever changing the way people access obituaries and memorialize those who have been important to them. Through one centralized web destination, makes obituary and memorial service information easily and reliably searchable, while creating a safe place where families and communities can come together to share the treasured stories of those who have passed. has been operating as a beta site since it became funded in February 2008. … [Read more...]

Genealogy Has a New Face – The 21st Century’s Answer to the Past

GREELEY, Colo., Sept. 19 /PRNewswire/ -- Irbo Inc., a company dedicated to preserving the high standards of the genealogical community, today announced that they have combined the interest of this enormous industry with the community of those who see genealogy as a profession of ethics and honor. Unlike other bid format sites that help to sell physical wares,, a reverse auction entity, has implemented a method to screen those specialists that have a confirmed background in the field or who have educational experience in the field. "The challenge for us was to bring … [Read more...]

Remembering Wellington and Oberlin’s great escape

White and black, they stood together 150 years ago and freed slave John Price from slave catchers. Carlisle Township residents Janice Brooks and her daughter, Charlotte Sizemore, couldn’t be prouder of the efforts of Sizemore’s great-great-great-grandfather Matthew Gillett, a white Wellington farmer who took part in the Sept. 13, 1858, Oberlin-Wellington Rescue. Read More … [Read more...]

Woman donates family relics for history museum

When Janice Laster moved to Frederick in 1993 with furniture and belongings of her great-grandparents, she closed a loop in her family history that began more than 120 years ago. Laster, who for decades has been interested in genealogy and wanted to see a local black history museum, will donate her collection of family relics to the African American Resources Cultural and Heritage committee. Read More … [Read more...]

Blanks family went from slavery to emancipation in Kerr County

Like anyone of her age, Florine Clay, who will be 90 years old next year, remembers a lot about “how things used to be.” She and her cousin, Roy Neal, 82, are the last of their generation living here who are direct descendants of the first black families in Kerr County, who arrived here as slaves in the mid-1800s. Read More … [Read more...]

One Visitor Has Special Interest

Bettye Kearse wanted to see what Montpelier looked like when her ancestors lived there as the slaves of President James Madison. So she made the trip from Boston, where she's a pediatrician, to tour the restored mansion. During yesterday's celebration, she sat in the third row of the VIP section, within feet of two Supreme Court justices and political dignitaries. It was probably the 10th time she has visited the Orange County estate. "I'm very comfortable there. It's part of my legacy, my feeling of belonging," the 65-year-old said. But Kearse believes her connection to Montpelier goes beyond … [Read more...]

Gullah Geechee embody unique African American culture

The Gullah Geechee people embody a unique African American culture made up of the descendants of West African slaves. They occupy the islands and costal regions of the eastern United States from Jacksonville, North Carolina, to Jacksonville, Florida. The largest groups live in South Carolina, where they are called Gullahs, and in Georgia, where they are called Geechees. Their culture and language represent a unique blend of African and American elements. Read More … [Read more...]