UWA, MCHAM plan genealogy workshop

Published 3:49 pm Tuesday, September 1, 2015

The University of West Alabama’s Black Belt Archives and the Marengo County History and Archives Museum in Demopolis announce the second annual Black Belt genealogy conference titled, Genealogy through the Ages, on October 1-3. The conference is supported by a grant from the Alabama Humanities Foundation, the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.
“In celebration of the American Archives and Family History month during October, Genealogy through the Ages will be a conference dedicated to discussing the local resources accessible to people researching their ancestors in the Black Belt region in west Alabama and east Mississippi,” said Mary Jones-Fitts, President of the Marengo County History and Archives Museum.
Co-sponsored by the Alabama Humanities Foundation, the conference will include a keynote address by Dr. Donna Cox Baker, co-chair for the Statewide Initiatives Committee of the Alabama Bicentennial Commission and a special session on military records by Robert Davis, director of the Genealogy Program of Wallace State Community College. The other speakers and panels will discuss a wide range of available research modes for the beginner, intermediate, and advanced genealogist such as DNA research, church records, family storytelling, online family history sites, and university archives.
Amy Christiansen, Black Belt archivist said, “We hope the conference will address going beyond the standard methods of genealogy and promote newer modes of research like looking through military and church records.”
Genealogy through the Ages will begin on Thursday, Oct. 1 at 5 p.m. with open registration and a presentation by Dr. Alan Brown, Professor of English at UWA, on his new photographic book, Sumter County at 5:30 p.m. followed by a dinner and storytelling by Deborah Rankins Tunstall, Assistant Director of Library Services at the Kathryn Tucker Windham Library Museum, from 6-8 p.m. Actual conference events will kick-off at 9:15 a.m. on Oct 2 & 3. The conference closes with a panel session titled, “Church Records: Born, Married, Died & Buried” from 1-2:30 p.m. and then a tour of downtown Livingston historic churches from 2:30-4 p.m.
The registration deadline is Friday, Sept. 25 and Conference session will be held at the Bell Conference Center on the University of West Alabama’s campus in Livingston.
For more information on the Genealogy through the Ages conference, contact Amy Christiansen at (205) 652-3655/achristiansen@uwa.edu or Mary Jones-Fitts at marengomuseum@yahoo.com/(334) 341-3439 or visit http://centerforblackbelt.org for the flyer and registration form.