Although I’ve been researching my personal ancestry since the fall of 2011, I figured that I’d start fresh and reminisce over my discoveries thus far.
I remember my curiosity after I had reconnected with my biological mother – I was adopted. I listened to the oral stories she told about my ancestors. Hearing that I had an ancestor who not only attended Tuskegee Institute, but had also crossed paths with Booker T. Washington and George Washington Carver, was fascinating. Learning that some of my enslaved ancestors either bought their own or escaped to freedom, was astonishing. I wanted to crack open those stories and discover more.
My research started with a tree. I created mine through Ancestry.com, and used the names my birth mother had mentioned, as well as referencing to the tree she had began. Like the amateur that I was, I started by only researching the people who were in my direct lineages: aunts, uncles, cousins, brothers, and sisters, were kept off of my tree because I only wanted to know my roots. Over time, I realized that incorporating those other relatives was extremely important and helpful when it came to gather census records and other documents.
In the first few years of my research, I neglected to collect the stories associated with my ancestors. Rather, I made it my mission to see how far back I could go. I got back pretty far. However, when I decided that my lineages couldn’t be traced any further, I wanted to then write about my ancestors the same way Alex Haley had in his book Roots: and Alex Haley’s Queen.
I am now currently trying to play catch up. I am finding the errors in my research and finding new ways to conduct my research. I find genealogy fascinating. I plan to go to grad school for library & information science for archiving. If I’m lucky, maybe I’ll work for Ancestry.com. I’m currently enrolled with their Ancestry Academy, and plan to get my genealogist certification by the end of 2016.
I briefly summed up my past beginning, while also addressing where I am currently and where I want to go. In later posts, I will share specific stories I have found, as well as my results and experiences with DNA testing.