Born a Slave: Rediscovering Arthur Jackson's African American Heritage

David W. Jackson
Oct 1, 2021
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1m 23s
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Speaker's Introduction
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8m 02s
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Have Realistic Expectations
10m 17s
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Build Timelines
15m 20s
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Dead End or Detour?
9m 42s
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City Directories
15m 54s
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Announcements / prizes
8m 44s
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Questions / answers
19m 56s

About this webinar

Using his book by the same title as a guide, family historian and preservationist David W. Jackson inspires genealogists to embark on a quest to rediscover their ancestors of African descent. Jackson reveals his forty year quest culminating in a research breakthrough of a mysterious black ancestor, his great great grandfather Arthur Jackson, who was born a slave. Jackson’s family has identified as Caucasian for four generations not knowing this hidden family secret.

About the speaker

About the speaker

David W. Jackson began genealogy in 1980 at age 11. He graduated magna cum laude with a BS in Historic Preservation from Southeast Missouri State University. He enjoyed a 20+year career as a local historian and archivist for nonprofit historical o
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  1. AD
    Annie Delyth Stratton
    3 years ago

    I missed the live presentation because the sun came out that day, but watched it the next day on video. Your circumstances similar in many ways to mine: a family story, obscure histories, suggestive hints. I got a lot of ideas regarding process for following up on my own mystery. I think I’ve already picked up a couple of clues. I’m going to watch the video again (love being a member of Geoff’s webinars!), and see what else I can learn, because I may be on the cusp of pinpointing either the circumstances, or perhaps the person (who I think was a woman). I have butterflies. I never thought this one would ever be solvable… but maybe… and then I have others to work on!

    BTW, I absolutely agree with the other folks who recommend the Freedman’s Bureau. I was lucky enough to be one of the people who did transcribing for them. Illuminating, filled with detail and stories, heartbreaking at times, but a window into real lives.

  2. CW
    Charles Wilson
    3 years ago

    Interesting presentation angle from a white person tracing his African ancestry. Well done. Had several questions to ask and if he presenter knew about the Beyond The Kin Project.

  3. TS
    Traci S. Kape Thysell-McPherson
    3 years ago

    Loved it! David’s presentation and style were fun and easy to follow. As a bonus he has a great laugh and is seemingly humble. Inviting to beginner and more advanced alike. The subject isn’t part of my current research or study, but I learned so much because he made it appropriate for everyone! Thank you David Jackson! Very much enjoyed your teaching. I could imagine you starting out as an 11 year old and how you got to where you are now . . . The Never Ending Story. Look forward to more from you.

  4. RL
    Rebecca Loud
    3 years ago

    The webinar was phenomenal. Thank you so very much!!!

  5. MR
    Maryann Rozzell
    3 years ago

    Well presented with valuable tips for learners in organizing research. Sensitive topic was handled well.

  6. MS
    Marie Smith
    3 years ago

    Outstanding presentation! Was given in a factual and non biased way, very impressive, given the topic.

  7. DM
    David Moragne
    3 years ago

    Very informative and motivating.

  8. DB
    Debra Bateman
    3 years ago

    Very interesting. It reminded me I need to track clusters of the same name, not just the people I am researching.


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