Posting Plantation Records

Posting Plantation Records

Africana Heritage Project scours plantation journals to re-create slave family trees.

Descendants of slaves from Charleston, SC’s Magnolia Plantation <www.magnoliaplantation.com>, as well as other properties operated by the Drayton family, may soon get help breaking through the brick wall African-American genealogists often encounter at the Civil War.

With funding from the plantation foundation, volunteers with the University of South Florida’s Africana Heritage Project <www.africanaheritage.com> will pore over the Draytons’ plantation journals to re-create slaves’ family trees. The family files will be posted as free GEDCOMs on the genealogy wiki WeRelate <werelate.org>. Africana Heritage Project founder Toni Carrier says that’s happening gradually as the research progresses.

Magnolia Plantation and the Africana Heritage Project are also collaborating on a Web site to launch in March: Lowcountry Africana will document African-American heritage in South Carolina, Georgia and northeastern Florida’s historic rice-growing region – in particular, the unique Gullah (also called Geechee) culture. The site will feature slaveholding families’ plantation records, a searchable database of primary historical documents, name indexes, to Lowcountry history and more.

Carrier encourages genealogists with ties (or suspected ties) to Drayton family plantations to contact her organization.

From the November 2007 issue of Family Tree Magazine.

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