Help Needed!

Please, please share with us any documents that you have regarding your ancestors who lived in Clayton County. There are multiple sources, i.e. newspaper abstracts, wills, deeds, inventories of estates, which make mention of slaves or freedmen. Your finds may be someone who holds the clues you are looking for. Also, directions, missing sites or suggestions are always welcome!

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

Excellent and very, thorough introduction to courthouse records by David Paterson. This especially applies to Clayton 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 maybe available in the Clayton 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. John Allen has a marvelous page ... an example of his work . . . 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.

Best Place for Links, Newsletter, Database

This site should be book marked and explored for all the best, and up-to-date material on African American Research. Afrigeneas Home Page

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 a Query GAGenWeb African-American page.

Place a query on the Afrigeneas Home Page

If you find OTHER places that are a big help, please share them.


African Americans have played a great role in our military since the beginning. The following are a few of sites with the history of African Americans in war. Possibly help understand why ancestors were in one place but settled in others.

Revolutionary War

African Americans and the Revolution
Fighting for Freedom?
The Revolution's Black Soldiers

Civil War

Dispatchers Navy - Union
Navy - Confederate

World War I

African-Americans and WWI
92nd and 93rd Divisions
Fighting for Respect

World War II

The History Place


Nam and Civil Rights

Published Research Resource

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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