African-American Project

Privacy Level: Open (White)

Surname/tag: African-American
This page has been accessed 1,556 times.

Categories: United States Projects | African-American Project | African-American History | Slavery, United States of America | Slavery, The Atlantic | African American One Name Studies.


Space:Slavery, United States of America


Working Lists

Space:Asante's 100 Greatest African-Americans
Join us in the African-American Project Project!


This project's aims are:

  • To collect in one place information and resources to assist in building and documenting African-American Genealogies.
  • To bring together WikiTreers interested in connecting African-American families to the Global Family Tree.
  • To improve the profiles of the people who emigrated and the people who were forced to emigrate from Africa.
  • To provide and maintain a logical and organized structure to and create a method to link Unconnected family trees In a way to help individuals identify and celebrate their history. It's incredibly difficult for most families to go back further than the Civil War, but that doesn't mean they can't connect to the tree laterally in modern times.


Leader: Sarah Heiney
Project Coordinator: Lucy Selvaggio-Diaz

The following people are working this project, If you are interested in helping, please add your name to the list and post a message on the public comments. One of the project members will get back to you.

Denyse Baham
John Bentley
Bill Debuque
Javelle (Blue) Fields
Nora (Johnson) Jenkins
Shira Destinie Jones Landrac
Patty LaPlante
Elisa Mayfield
Yvonne McCowan Gammell
Alexis Ritter
John Schmeeckle
Ellen Smith
Vivian Tanniehill

Next Steps

We can use subcategories of Category:African-American_History to collect profiles and free-space profiles for black cemeteries, slaves and former slaves, slave owners, and various potential useful resources on this topic.

Additional resources will be needed to tackle the challenges of correctly documenting slave families so that their descendants and ancestors can be traced. If you are aware of reliable resources that will help in the research of these genealogies, please post them here so they're accessible to everyone.

To Do List

  1. Populate geographical locations with census data from the first census, until say the 1850/1860 census, with all identified African American descendants.
  2. Many wills in America transferred slaves, so we need to place a general request out to Wiki researchers to create profiles to document their names, to include the responsible family
  3. Create African-American Name studies, for clustered surnames.

Upcoming Tasks

  1. Create a page for African-American DNA research.
  2. Categorization
  3. Create a space for research requests
  4. Create a dedicated task list freespace

Started Tasks

  1. Connect profiles from Molefi Kete Asante's Space:Asante's 100 Greatest African-Americans
  2. Fix Sojourner Truth's profile and review other existing profiles
  3. Connect Medal of Honor recipients (Buffalo Soldiers)

African-American Profile Examples

Images: 1
African-American Project Image 1
African-American Project Image 1


On 1 Dec 2017 at 06:11 GMT Lucy (Selvaggio) Selvaggio-Diaz wrote:

Does anyone like the graphic for the project?

On 26 Nov 2017 at 03:45 GMT Alexis (Wilson) Ritter wrote:

Greetings! I am a direct descendent of slaves from Maryland and Virginia. Like most black folks, I’ve hit the dreaded Civil War Wall for a majority of my ancestors so I’m starting to research the slave owners. I would love to help others with their research and curate information that might be useful as folks dig into their own history!

On 24 Oct 2017 at 15:59 GMT Nora (Johnson) Jenkins wrote:

Hello, I would like to become a member of the African-American Project. African American Descendent of British and African Binfords and Wkyes many of whom were original Quakers with first issuances of land in Virginia.

On 18 Oct 2017 at 20:15 GMT John Schmeeckle wrote:

I'd like to grow the tree of Benson Wright Nevels-64. He was a soldier in World War I, and his son was a soldier in World War II. Both are ancestors of one of my nieces.

On 15 Aug 2017 at 15:38 GMT Abby (Brown) Glann wrote:


I see you also posted in G2G asking for volunteers; would you like to be the coordinator for this US History sub-project? We'd love to have you!


On 15 Aug 2017 at 15:20 GMT Lucy (Selvaggio) Selvaggio-Diaz wrote:

I added a list of African-American "firsts" from Wikipedia to the "African America Firsts" space. Most of these people have no profiles at all.

On 9 Aug 2017 at 13:41 GMT Sheryl Moore wrote:

Diane - I am not sure if you were responding to my subproject, Worldwide Mining Disasters. If so, slavery isn't a part of the miner info I have; the timeframe is in early-mid 20th century.

Comments can be confusing; please email me if you want the info on a page in this project, or linked to this project in Worldwide Mining Disasters; however you want to handle it.

Thank you for the info on white advocates.

On 8 Aug 2017 at 03:05 GMT Crispin Reedy wrote:

Hi, I have a free space page for a historic (1875) cemetery which has both African American (slave and free) and white burials. Is this something that should be categorized under African American cemeteries so people can find it more easily, or does it not fit the category? Thanks!

On 7 Aug 2017 at 12:35 GMT Diane Kenaston wrote:

Hi! Thank you so much for running this project! In case it's helpful for anyone visiting this page, I'm sharing a document I created specifically designed for White people in how to act as allies of people of color while doing genealogy.

Specifically, it addresses how (and why) descendants of slaveholders should best share information (in answer to John Bentley's earlier question).

Genealogy, Race, and Being a White Ally

Please let me know if you have further additions/corrections!

On 4 Aug 2017 at 02:12 GMT Yvonne (McCowan) Gammell wrote:

Hi. I'd like to become a member of this project. What tasks is one responsible for as the project leader? Thanks!

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