Sunday, October 8, 2006

Expect the unexpected...

There is an interesting article in the Toledo (OH) Blade newspaper dated 8 October by Jane Schmucker - the title is "Expert says to expect the unexpected, Researching family tree can lead to amazing finds." The link to the article is here.

The article highlights a day-long workshop given by Tony Burroughs, a famed Chicago-area genealogist, to a Toledo-Lucas County Public Library group. While oriented towards African-American research, there are plenty of great research stories and nuggets in the article. The article included:

As Tony Burroughs, an African-American genealogy expert from Chicago, ended his seminar at the Main Branch of the Toledo-Lucas County Public Library yesterday, he listed occupations he found on the 1850 U.S. Census.

"Prostitute" and "Pimp" drew chuckles from the audience of almost 70 people.

"Does nothing" elicited outright laughter.

And the audience howled when Mr. Burroughs flashed a Census form on the screen that listed under remarks: "Old hag refused to answer."

"Those are your people," said Mr. Burroughs, a full-time genealogist who wrote Black Roots: A Beginners Guide to Tracing the African American Family Tree.

Read the whole thing!

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