African American and Slave Research

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The 1860 census counted 3,953,760 slaves living in the southern states. Documenting the lives and family relationships of those slaves can take a lifetime without the help of experienced professionals. African American research is difficult, which may be the reason few full-time genealogists specialize in that aspect of their field. Years ago Lineages, Inc. saw the void and became experts in African American genealogy.Our services have been designed to meet the needs of anyone who hires us to trace their ancestry. Most African Americans have several research goals, including:

  1. Untangle the truths in their family’s oral history from the embellishments that have been introduced with each retelling of the story.
  2. Trace their ancestors back as far as possible in the time allowed for each project.
  3. Identify who owned their ancestors and where they lived as slaves.
  4. Determine if any of their ancestors were free persons of color before 1865.
  5. Find out where their ancestors lived in Africa.

Oral history plays a very important role in tracing African American ancestors. Over the years of telling, bits and pieces of the original story become embellished. Some stories become so distorted that they lead amateur researchers far from the truth. A professional genealogist does not have an emotional attachment to a client’s oral history. They will attempt to document each fact and set aside those that cannot be proved.

After tracing an African American family back to 1865 our focus will turn to identifying who owned them during slavery. Their names will appear in public records only in relationship to that owner. We’ll search property, estate and court records, as well as slave schedules, to prove the owner-slave relationship. Sometimes public records are silent about that relationship, which limits the number of generations that one family line can be traced. If we hit a dead-end on one line, we’ll move to another and see where it goes. All during this process, the story of your slave ancestors will evolve.

Research Packages

Standard African American Research Project – $500.00
The least expensive of Lineages’ in-depth afrian american research projects focuses on up to three or four family lines. Our staff will search multiple record sources to extend the surname of your choice as far back as possible in the hours allocated by your retainer. Our goal will be to extend back to approximately 1866. ORDER NOW

Expanded African American Research Project – $1,250.00
This 25 hour research project involves tracing as many family lines back to the time of slavery—attempting to identifying their slave owners, as well as the plantations where they lived and worked. ORDER NOW

Extensive African American Research Project – $2,500.00 and up
This 50 hour + research project involves tracing as many family lines back to the time of slavery—attempting to identifying their slave owners, as well as the plantations where they lived and worked. We’ll dig deeply to find historical and biographical information to write detailed biographical sketches about your ancestors. ORDER NOW

 

Contact Information

Phone (801) 571-6122
Email info@lineages.com
Mailing Address PO BOX 1584, Draper, Utah 84020-1584

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