Blog Archives

Spontaneous Eruptions

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Posted in Connecting Across Families, Contemporary (1970- present), Discovery & Personal Reactions, Intimacy & Family Life, Linked Descendants, North America, Racism

To Honor the Dishonorable

There is a problem I have been wrestling with for many years. One of the refrains I hear over and over among people working for racial reconciliation is the necessity of honoring the ancestors and the insistence that the ancestors

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Posted in Contemporary (1970- present), Discovery & Personal Reactions, Legacies, North America, Racism, Slaveholders

Slave Descendant Unites With Plantation Owner for Heartwarming Dinner 181 Years After Families Lived There

From South Carolina, my sister sends me this link about descendants of enslaved people and enslavers who come together at Wavering Place Plantation in Hopkins, SC. I am gratified that these reunions of linked descendants seem to be happening more and

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Posted in Connecting Across Families, Linked Descendants, News Media, North America, Plantations, Racism, Support & Harmony

No Account For It

While drafting the post Half-white Slaves of Aristocratic Masters at my blog, I acknowledged that Edward Ball, in his text, The Sweet Hell Inside: The Rise of an Elite Black Family in the Segregated South, employs the term ‘concubines’ to describe intimate, long-term

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Posted in Coercion, Punishment & Sale, Cooperation: Assistance, Support & Harmony, Enslaved People, Intimacy & Family Life, North America, Philosophical Culture, Plantations, Research Adventures, Sex & Concubinage, Slave Trader, Slaveholders, Slaveholding (1780 -1865), Slavery

Linked Through Stories and History

Today is Giving Tuesday, the day when we turn our focus away from purchasing and toward giving to work that we care about. We hope you will consider a donation to help continue the work of Coming to the Table

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Posted in Ancestry, Connecting Across Families, Enslaved People, Farms, Historic Harms, Labor, Legacies, Linked Descendants, North America, Plantations, Research Adventures, Slaveholders, Slaveholding (1780 -1865), Slavery

Just Like Family

In the blog BitterSweet: Linked Through Slavery, we primarily focus on linked relationships between black and white people connected through US slavery—those descended from enslaved people or slaveholders who are linked by virtue of time, place or genetics.  Finding a

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Posted in "Nursing" & Parenting, Cities, Civil Rights/Black Power (1955- 1968), Connecting Across Families, Contemporary (1970- present), Discovery & Personal Reactions, General, Historic Harms, Intimacy & Family Life, Jim Crow Segregation (1890- 1955), Labor, Linked Descendants, North America, Power, Racism, Slavery, Towns

When Places Wrap Us Together

As our car turns down the lane, I flash back to Mom in the driver’s seat, the blue Nissan van idling beneath us as we wait for the yellow behemoth of a school bus to mount the hill in the

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Posted in Connecting Across Families, Discovery & Personal Reactions, Enslaved People, Farms, General, Labor, Legacies, Linked Descendants, North America, Plantations, Slaveholders, Slaveholding (1780 -1865), Slavery

There is a Little Bit of Me in a Little Bit of You — A Black Woman Explains to a White Man . . . . “We Are Kin by Blood and Slavery”

My great grandfather, Jeremiah Turner (1840-1917), was born in slavery. Our family history explained ‘Jery’ was the slave son of Squire Turner (1793-1871), of Richmond, Kentucky. Jeremiah Turner was assuredly Squire Turner’s property when, in 1864, he made a bid for

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Posted in Connecting Across Families, Cooperation: Assistance, Discovery & Personal Reactions, Implications for Action, Linked Descendants, North America, Racism, Sex & Concubinage, Support & Harmony

Amazing grace

People ask what drew me to write a biography of Lillian Carter, mother of President Jimmy Carter (Lillian Carter: A Compassionate Life, McFarland & Company, 2014) Aside from the obvious—who wouldn’t want to write about the life of America’s sassiest

Posted in Ancestry, Arts & Community Culture, Civil Rights/Black Power (1955- 1968), Colonial (Before 1770s), Connecting Across Families, Discovery & Personal Reactions, Enslaved People, Farms, Historic Harms, North America, Racism, Slaveholders, Slaveholding (1780 -1865), Support & Harmony

Redrawing A Community – A Washington Descendant’s Journey

In 2010, an archive of rare documents passed down in my family for over 250 years arrived at my home in Austin. Reading them I came face to face with my family’s role in both creating democracy and denying freedom.

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Posted in Ancestry, Colonial (Before 1770s), Connecting Across Families, Discovery & Personal Reactions, Historic Harms, Legacies, Linked Descendants, North America, Plantations, Racism, Slaveholders, Slaveholding (1780 -1865), The Journey
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