In 1977 I was intrigued by the story and genealogy of the family of Alex Haley that was depicted in the movie “Roots.” As one gets older, you wonder about the ancestors you never met and their stories.
Nowadays, we are finding more people who are interested in finding out about their ancestral tree who are leaving a written account of their footprint. We are seeing more biographies and memoirs written that tell of the journey about that author, their highs and lows, the lessons they learned and the stories they will pass on to inform the generations that follow. Now there are countless resources to help you with your journey to discover the branches of your family tree.
I am now my parent’s generation. While there is no written account of the lives of my ancestors, only oral stories that started out with renowned griots in the family, historical accounts that were once difficult to compile are now being explored like an archeological expedition. Now, after having a lengthy conversation with my mother back in 1992, one that I should have continued before her passing, I am compiling information from that conversation along with valuable information from some of my cousins and other methods of archival research. I’m trying to pull together information about these people whose DNA we share and fit the pieces of the puzzle together as accurately as I can. For if it wasn’t for them, we would not be.
The one thing I regret is not sitting down and having more conversations with my parents and other family members to piece together the path of where our ancestors marched from then and now to me. Whether it’s HIStory or HERstory, learn about YOUR story by finding your roots.