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Help Needed!

I would like to create a page specific for research in African-Americans who lived in Muscogee County.  Please, please share with us any documents that you have regarding your ancestors who lived in Muscogee County. There are multiple sources, i.e. newspaper abstracts, wills, deeds, inventories of estates, which make mention of slaves or freedmen. Suggestions are always welcome!

Documents FIRST STOP!
Georgia's Slave Population in Legal Records
by David E. Paterson

Excellent and very, very thorough intro to courthouse records by David Paterson. This especially applies to Upson County, and he gives many examples including names of slaves so you just might be lucky!!

Ex-Slave Marriages to 1876
After the Civil War, licenses were issued to African Americans and are usually in a separate book. They often contain former slave owner when available. This is probably still available in the Muscogee County Courthouse.

Ex-Slave Marriages 1875-1877
During these brief years Form A- Marriage Licenses were used and you may find them in the Courthouse in a bundle. These contain the parent's name, age of bride and groom, etc.

Case Study - Determining Maternity David E. Paterson provides some guide lines for determining maternity through available records. He has done a case study on the Alpheus Beall's slaves showing how to apply the data found on various records. Although this deals with a Slave Owner in Upson County, you could gain insight to apply to your own research.

David was recently awarded the "Award for Excellence in Research Using the Holdings of an Archives" category.

EARLY COUNTY FREEDMAN'S BUREAU Michael Dennis' Letter to the Freemen's Bureau, November 30, 1865 with Introduction by David E. Paterson .

Although this deals with Early County information, it is helpful as a "how to find information in the Freedman's Bureau Files" document, and also provides insights into Plantation Life.

Tom Blake's slave data includes largest slave holders in 1860, and matching surnames in the 1870 Census for many southeastern counties.

Porterdale Cemetery - Columbus (African-American)

City Cemetery Records, including Porterdale. John Allen has a marvelous site...and he just completed the Porterdale Cemetery (Columbus) (11,000 people!)  What a great asset to researchers. There is a link right in the middle of this page...but be sure to also click on his Georgia Cemeteries, as he has many cemeteries in various counties.

Thanks to John Allen for the page and Virginia Crilley for sharing.

Best Place for Links, Newsletter, Database

This site Afrigeneas Home Page should be book marked and explored for all the best, and up-to-date material on African American Research. [Note: they ask for a donation - I'm not endorsing the site, just letting you know something is available.]

Placing Your Query

It is helpful to fellow-researchers if you mention that you are looking for an African-American ancestor. This points them in the right direction to share information.
  • Place it on POST your Query "View Message Type" - choose bible, marriage, obit, etc. While you are there, click "Add Board to Favorites" - then next time, you can select "My Favorites" and easily go between Boards. Send me an email Kemis Massey, if you need help.

  • Place it on the Afrigeneas Home Page
If you find OTHER places that are a big help, please share them.

Join a Mailing List

Mailing List which you may find helpful!
  • Afrigeneas is one of the very best. If you find others, please let me know.

    Civil War

    Black Navy - Union
    Black Navy - US Navy Site
    Black Dispatchers - Union

    Early Church Membership

    Click here for information on churches.

    Sheriff's Sales

    Check here to see some newspaper abstracts that dealt with Slaves being sold in Muscogee County.

    Published Research Resource

    Columbus Georgia by Judith Grant (Part of the Black America Series) Available from 1-888- 313- BOOK Publisher: Arcadia Publishing, 2 Cumberland Street, Charleston, SC 29401 and about $18.99. Outlines the African-American as well as basic city history of Columbus Ga. Many names, notable and not, are mentioned in its 124 pages. No index.

    The revised edition of "The Source: A Guidebook of American Genealogy" (Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1997) includes a very useful chapter entitled "Tracking African American Family History." Includes types of records and what information you might find there and where to locate them. The Bibliography is also excellent.

    African-American Family Research" Part 1
    by Roseanne Hogan, Ph.D.
    (Ancestry Magazine, Mar/Apr 1996, Vol. 14, No. 2)

    African-American Family Research" Part 2
    by Roseanne Hogan, Ph.D.
    (Ancestry Magazine, Jul/Aug 1996, Vol. 14, No. 4)

    The Challenge of African American Research" (above)
    by Curt B. Witcher, FUGA
    (Ancestry Magazine, Sep/Oct 1997, Vol. 15, No. 5)

    The Freedman's Savings & Trust Co. and African American Genealogical Research"
    by Reginald Washington
    (Prologue: Quarterly of the National Archives and Records Administration Summer 1997, vol. 29, no. 2)

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