Still Flying with Ravens & Ready to Take Flight!:)

Carey Moore ~ Flying With RavensShortly after returning from my first trip in March 2011 to Taos, New Mexico, I posted this painting by the late Carey Moore, Flying with Ravens. It was a Sunday, and I was on the way to my weekly visit with Mom.  A post reflecting the heaviness I carried. I was “going through” and turning to all things beautiful (and quiet) for comfort.

I fell in love with Taos the moment it was described by a friend encouraging me to visit The Enchanted Lands, where she said I’d fit right in.

Well I did visit. I did fit right in. And in May 2014 I’ll travel cross-country with kids in-tow to plant new, permanent, Southwestern roots in Taos, NM!:)

Kinda surreal how much my life has changed since that Sentimental Sunday post.

This time, Mama will journey with us in spirit. I’m not seeking refuge in the mountains anymore, just my own adventures and dreams to fulfill.

Planning on immersing myself in my art, and devoting lots of time loving on my kids — and me!:)

In seasons to come I’ll raft the Rio Grande, join the pilgrimage to Chimayo and celebrate fall harvest with the Red Willow people of Taos Pueblo.

I still believe my old-school coffee house will manifest where I’ll comfort folks with Blue […]

AAGSAR BLOG PRAISE: Ancestral Callings ~ Goin’ hard — thanks to Luckie

The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person who is doing it.” ~ Chinese Proverb

Hands-down the biggest surprise for me since forming AAGSAR in August has been the negativity flung my way via both new and familiar sources. I often have need to challenge myself to be steadfast in my purpose. Sandra’s wisdom arrived just in time, reminding me of where my accountability rests. Good People – Respect the work. Respect the purpose. Respect our Ancestors. #GOHARDorGOHOME ~ Luckie


  • Genealogy Blogger & Site: Sandra WILLIAMS BUSH of Ancestral Callings
  • Post Praise: Goin’ hard — thanks to Luckie
  • Why I it: because it speaks to the core purpose of why AAGSAR was formed. This isn’t about glorification, bullying or setting ourselves above anyone else. We are fighting for the voice of our Ancestors and the empowered knowledge of their descendants. This is SERIOUS WORK! Thanks Sandra for bringing knowledge, wisdom and understanding to our Community.


Goin’ hard — thanks to Luckie

Never thought I’d be a blogger but thankfully my ancestors got together with the ancestors of Luckie Daniels and they all guided me to the Facebook group African American Genealogy & Slave Ancestry Research. There I virtually met a seriously dedicated group of genealogy researchers. But above all I encountered Luckie, the Principal, who held all in the group to a higher standard. We may have done research on our families with piles of books, papers, & stories to prove it, but what […]

HISTORIC MOMENT: President Obama Delivers A Eulogy For Nelson Mandela (Transcript)

Nelson MANDELA ~ Memorial 12.10.13

Wow! I’ve lived to witness yet another historic moment in time — South Africa’s first Black President, Nelson MANDELA being eulogized by America’s first Black President, Barack OBAMA.

I never want to forget whose shoulders I stand on. How many of my Ancestors never lived to experience true freedom — how many died for just a taste of it. I never want to take for granted what went into making me a person who loves and embraces who I AM. And may I never forget my accountability to my family and community — they are one in the same.

A historic day that reminds me to be diligent and conscious of the legacy I’m creating. And hopeful of the day many years removed, to have grands and great grands to share all of the things I’ve been blessed to witness in my lifetime.

As I tell my Daughter each morning as she heads into her school…


Hamba Kahle Nelson MANDELA. Your work on Mother Earth is complete.

Full transcript

President Obama Delivers A Eulogy For Nelson Mandela

To Graça Machel and the Mandela family; to President Zuma and members of the government; to heads of state and government, past and present; distinguished guests – it is a singular honor to be with you today, to celebrate a life unlike any other. To the people of South Africa – people of every race and walk of life – the world thanks you for sharing Nelson Mandela with […]

By |December 10th, 2013|Journal, Reflections|0 Comments

The Bar IS NOT Budging. So Now What?!

Henderson Washington GAI planned to pen this post for private viewing by my AAGSAR Facebook Community only, but I do favor transparency. So that said, this post is available to anyone having interest to read it.

As I shared with AAGSAR this morning, this has been a tough week. As we near our 2014 BLOGFEST event, the first step in preparing has been the work of removing inactive members from the forum. Not a warm n’ fuzzy task at all!:)

Why are inactive members removed from AAGSAR? Read here — AAGSAR Official CHEAT SHEET: Surviving The Principal, TRIBE & 21st Century Slave Ancestry Research.

Members are NEVER happy to exit the forum and some are more “vocal” than others. My reaction to the commentary is usually a mix of surprise, frustration and sadness. Though specific to the transition our Community is making, the responses expose cultural and emotional wounds that feel set on historic rewind. As I shared with Liv of Claiming Kin, we are the only people I’ve worked with who no matter what, fight AGAINST progress and deem anyone attempting to make it, the enemy.

So I’m publishing a behind the scenes exchange between myself and a member who requested to be removed from the community this morning. I think it speaks […]

DNA CENTRAL: 23andMe ~ I See My True Colors Shining Through!:)


If you thought you heard me crooning True Colors with Cyndi LAUPER backing me up, you did! My 23andMe Ancestry Composition updates have arrived and I do get a kick (more than expected) out of seeing the genetic makeup of… ME! My DNA composition does remind of a colorful rainbow!:)

In my admittedly elementary genetic conclusion, scientific DNA analysis COMPLETELY annihilates the baseline for how Race in America is defined!

Clearly the prerequisites defining the (1) Drop Rule no longer apply to most of us! Did (1) Drop as a determination of ethnicity ever really apply? Heck no! But now there’s scientific validation to confirm what historians/genealogists have always known — America is more of a Melting Pot than it ever wanted to openly acknowledge.

So stay tuned! Along with the evolution of technology, DNA analysis is a 21st Century GAME CHANGER!

Who knows what’s in store?!:)



FOOTNOTE (23andMe):

The default Standard Estimate corresponds to 75% confidence. You have the option to make the estimate more strict (the Conservative Estimate is at 90% confidence) or more lenient (the Speculative Estimate is at 50% confidence).

The above graph Speculative estimate and below data Standard estimate:

84.6% Sub-Saharan African
63.3% West African
0.7% Central & South African
20.5%  Nonspecific Sub-Saharan African

10.3% European
2.9% Northern European
<0.1% […]

By |December 6th, 2013|Announcements, DNA|7 Comments

Nelson MANDELA (1918-2013) #MADIBA

Nelson Mandela  ~ Rest In Peace

“A real leader uses every issue, no matter how serious and sensitive, to ensure that at the end of the debate we should emerge stronger!”

Nelson MANDELA | Hamba Kahle Madiba

Additional Reading Resources:

RootsTECH, Online Genealogy and the Question of DIVERSITY?

RootsTECH conference 2014

Let me start with what I dig about RootsTECHmostly everything!:)

Everybody knows I’m a HUGE proponent of technology integration as it applies to genealogy research. Sit aside my being a professional Techie – I’m a historian/genealogist living in the 21st Century!

Though I’ll soon call New Mexico home, my Ancestors roots were planted in Virginia, South and North Carolina long before they found their way to Georgia, Alabama, Kentucky and Ohio. Descendants of once enslaved Ancestors don’t have the benefit of a bounty of records, stored in easily accessible places. To progress, we must spread our net across a broad field of data and utilize EVERY tool in our kit to oft times answer the most basic query.

Add work demands, Mom duties and the reality it takes a village of folks to help conquer my Ancestor challenges — smart technology to support my genealogy work makes practical sense, Techie or not. Technology has been the gift that keeps on giving to my family research.

So I applaud and stand behind the efforts of RootsTECH/Family Search. The work they’re doing — developing smart technology and educating/training genealogy users is essential. If this were not the vision being shared in 2014, I’d be alarmed!

But that said, after returning online in August, I made a deliberate decision to NOT attend the upcoming 2014 RootsTECH Conference, due to the lack of diversity in the Sessions — 238 total — being presented.

Following RootsTECH […]

AAGSAR BLOG PRAISE: They Came From Virginia ~ Why I Blog: My Heart And Soul

In a few weeks AAGSAR will be 150+ genealogy bloggers strong and the landscape of online African American Genealogy will be forever changed. In truth, the change has already begun with the family narratives of 40 NEW + 20 EXISTING genealogists being shared with us daily! Following the transition of my Mom, their writing and fellowship have been a healing salve to my heart. I stay too busy to feel sorry for myself. The Ancestor Work we’re doing is vital. This is their season.

Going forward I’ll re-blog those special AAGSAR blog posts possessing something so authentically good, they MUST be shared and remembered. So I suspect you’ll be reading narratives from LOTS of new genealogists in the days ahead!:)

It’s my hope visitors will share the and support this new breed of Family Griots. There’s something special happening and I wouldn’t want you to miss a minute of it. ~ Luckie



Why I Blog: My Heart And Soul

Grandma Margaret and cousin Beaniee
Grandma […]

Call For Submissions: Carnival of African American Genealogy ~ 6th Edition #DREAMFORWARD: Honoring Dr. Martin Luther KING Jr.


In 2010 the Carnival of African American Genealogy (CoAAG) was created to embrace and share the beauty of African American genealogy and culture with the broader online community.

In observance of Dr. Martin Luther KING Jr.’s birthday on January 15th, we have committed to #DREAMFORWARD and invite you to join us in honoring Dr. KING’s life work and living legacy.

Progress recognizes no color and true change relies on Champions of all ages. A future fulfilling the hopes and dreams of Dr. Martin Luther KING Jr. requires unified purpose and the unwavering commitment of a steadfast community.

Our #DREAMFORWARD community invitation extends to students and welcomes contributors regardless of race, creed and religion.

On January 15th 2014 the community will unite via our dedicated CoAAG #DREAMFORWARD Tumblr to answer the call of one timely and urgent question – how will I contribute to fulfilling Martin Luther KING Jr.’s Dream?




  • CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS: CoAAG 6th Edition #DREAMFORWARD: Honoring Dr. Martin Luther KING Jr.
  • CARNIVAL DATE: Wednesday, 15 January 2013
  • HOST: Luckie of Our Georgia Roots and

TALIAFERRO FLASHBACK: A Call To Action For African American Researchers ~ 2 March 2010

Original post: 2 March 2010 Sandra TALIAFERRO of I Never Knew My Father (archived)

My friend Luckie Daniels of Our Georgia Roots, has written another thought provoking Monday Madness post, this time to the African American Genealogy Community – Madness Monday: The Digital Divide Revisited ~ Tough Love For The African-American Genealogy Community.  After commenting on Luckie’s post, I realized I had actually written my next post.  Yes, I could have let that suffice, but I felt I needed to show my support for and belief in Luckie’s position here on my blog.  So often, we sit back in the amen corner bowing our heads up and down in agreement, but never speak-up and take a stance. I wanted to echo Luckie’s sentiments. My comment to her did that, and posting it here reiterates it. There needs to be some serious changes in the African American genealogy community; those changes need to occur sooner, rather than later before we are standing in the shadows as the online genea-community moves forward.

Thank you Luckie for a very timely and long overdue post.  How sad it was to hear people who have been researching their family history for years stand up in a meeting and ask for help, but they are not on the internet, don’t like, won’t do it. There are so any resources out there, and many connections to make, but you won’t find them in your living room or in the archives.  Genealogy is changing, and the African American community of researchers must change with it. And, it’s not only in genealogy. As another comment so appropriately pointed out, we are missing a wealth […]