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Slave Records Bibliography


  • Born in Slavery: Slave Narratives from the Federal Writers’ Project, 1936-1938. Online (American Memory), Manuscript Division and Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress.
  • Freedman’s Bank Records. 27 reels National Archives microfilm Record Group 101; CD-ROM, Salt Lake City, UT: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 2000; HeritageQuest database. (Available remotely to NC residents via NC LIVE through their local libraries). [Includes signatures of and personal identification data about depositors in 29 branch offices of the Freeman’s Savings and Trust Company, 1865-74.]
  • University Press of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA. Afro-American Sources in Virginia: A Guide to Manuscripts, Michael Plunkett, Editor, and Guide to African American Documentary Resources in North Carolina, Timothy D. Pyatt, Editor.
  • Woodtor, Dee Parmer. Finding a Place Called Down home: A Guide to African American Genealogy and Historical Identity. New York: Random House, 1999. [Her Interactive Guide for Beginners is highly recommended.]


  • Burroughs, Tony. Black Roots, a Beginner’s Guide to Tracing the African-American Family Tree. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2001.
  • Byrd, William L., III, and John H. Smith. North Carolina Slaves and Free Persons of Color series. Westminster, MD: Heritage Books, 2000- .
  • Catterall, Helen Tunnicliff. Judicial Cases Concerning American Slavery and the Negro. 5 volumes. Washington, DC: Carnegie Institution of Washington, 1926-37.
  • Cooper, Jean L. A Genealogical Index to the Guides of the Microfilm Edition of Records of Ante-bellum Southern Plantations from the Revolution through the Civil War. Bloomington, IN: 1st Books, c2003.
  • Federal Writers’ Project [WPA]. Slave Narratives: A Folk History of Slavery in the United States, from Interviews with Former Slaves. 17 volumes. Reprint, St. Clair Shores, MI: Scholarly Press, 1976. [Volumes 13 and 14 are North Carolina.] Also available through
  • Rose, James M., and Alice Eichholz. Black Genesis: A Resource Book for African-American Genealogy. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 2003.
  • Streets, David H. Slave Genealogy: A Research Guide with Case Studies. Bowie, MD: Heritage Books, 1986.
  • Thackery, David T., and Dee Woodtor. Case Studies in Afro-American Genealogy. Chicago: The Newberry Library, 1989.
  • Thackery, David T. Finding Your African American Ancestors: A Beginner’s Guide. Orem, UT: Ancestry, c2000.
  • White, Barnetta McGhee, compiler. Somebody Knows My Name: Marriages of Freed People in North Carolina County by County. 3 volumes. Athens, GA: Iberian Pub. Co., c1995.
  • Witcher, Curt B. African American Genealogy: A Bibliography and Guide to Sources. Fort Wayne, IN: Round Tower Books, 2000.


  • Brasfield, Curtis. “ ‘To My Daughter and the Heirs of Her Body:’ Slave Passages As Illustrated by the Latham-Smithwick Family.” National Genealogical Society Quarterly 81 (December 1993): 270-282.
  • Brasfield, Curtis G. “Tracing Slave Ancestors: Batchelor, Bradley, Branch, and Wright of Desha County Arkansas.” National Genealogical Society Quarterly 92 (March 2004): 6-30.
  • Jupiter, Del E. “From Agustina to Ester: Analyzing a Slave Household for Child-Parent Relationships.” National Genealogical Society Quarterly 85 (December 1997): 245-275.
  • Lennon, Rachal Mills, and Elizabeth Shown Mill. “Mother, Thy Name Is Mystery! Finding the Slave Who Bore Philomene Daurat.” National Genealogical Society Quarterly 88 (September 2000): 201-224.
  • McBride, Ransom. “Searching for the Past of the North Carolina Black Family in Local, Regional, and Federal Records Resources.” North Carolina Genealogical Society Journal 9 (May 1983): 66-77.
  • Mallory, Rudena Kramer. “An African-American Odyssey through Multiple Surnames: Mortons, Tapps, and Englishes of Kansas and Missouri.” National Genealogical Society Quarterly 85 (March 1997): 25-38.
  • Mills, Gary B. Notes and Documents: “Can Researchers ‘Prove’ the ‘Unprovable’? A Selective Bibliography of Efforts to Genealogically Document Children of Master-Slave Relationships.” National Genealogical Society Quarterly 89 (September 2001): 234-237.
  • Nordmann, Christopher A. “Jumping Over the Broomstick: Resources for Documenting Slave ‘Marriages’.” National Genealogical Society Quarterly 91 (September 2003): 196-216.
  • Peebles, Minnie K. “Black Genealogy.” North Carolina Historical Review 55 (Spring 1978): 164-173.
  • Randall, Ruth. “An Interracial Suit for Inheritance: Clues to Probable Paternity for a Georgia Freedman, Henry Clay Heard Sherman.” National Genealogical Society Quarterly 89 (June 2001): 85-97.
  • Rapport, Sara. “The Freedmen’s Bureau As a Legal Agent for Black Men and Women in Georgia: 1865-1868.” Georgia Historical Quarterly 73 (Spring 1989): 26-53.
  • Ruffin, C. Bernard, III. “In Search of the Unappreciated Past: The Ruffin-Cornick Family of Virginia.” National Genealogical Society Quarterly 81 (June 1993): 126-138.
  • Williams, Gary M. “Links Before Emancipation: Afro-American Slave Genealogy in Virginia.” Magazine of Virginia Genealogy 32 (February 1994): 3-10.

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