USF Africana Heritage Project and WeRelate.org to Collaborate on Groundbreaking Slave Genealogy Research
Tuesday, June 26, 2007 - The USF Africana Heritage Project and WeRelate.org announced today that they will collaborate on groundbreaking historical research sponsored by the Magnolia Plantation Foundation of Charleston, SC. In the first-ever project of its kind, Magnolia Plantation is funding genealogical research in the plantation journals of the Drayton family of Charleston. The USF Africana Heritage Project will reconstruct the lineages of enslaved communities on Drayton family plantations, and build family files which anyone may access for free on the Internet.
WeRelate, the world's largest genealogy wiki, will host the family tree files, provide technical support and share expertise to make the research results easily accessible and user-friendly. "We feel strongly that WeRelate's collaboration in this project will bring talent and expertise to the effort, and will make the work product truly special," said Toni Carrier, Founding Director of the USF Africana Heritage Project. "The folks at WeRelate have poured an enormous amount of time and technical skill into making an innovative, free website where genealogists and scholars may collaborate on research. We look forward to collaborating with them on this historic research."
A "wiki" is a new type of website that makes it easy for people to collaborate on research projects. Anyone can edit pages and build upon others' work. A history of changes is kept so that information is not lost and people can see who changed what. "Wiki's like Wikipedia and WeRelate demonstrate the effectiveness of wiki technology in helping people share information. We are excited to participate in this important and historic effort to reconstruct slave family lineages and make them freely available online," said Dallan Quass, President of the Foundation for On-Line Genealogy, the sponsor of WeRelate.
The USF Africana Heritage Project is an all-volunteer research project sponsored by the Africana Studies department at the University of South Florida. Their research mission is to rediscover records that document the names and lives of slaves, freedpersons and their descendants, and share those records on the free Internet site www.africanaheritage.com. For more information about Magnolia Plantation's sponsorship of this historic research, please follow the link Magnolia Plantation Foundation to Sponsor Internet Archive of Plantation, Slave Records. For more information about the USF Africana Heritage Project please follow the link USF Africana Heritage Project Press Kit.
WeRelate is a free public-service wiki for genealogy sponsored by the Foundation for On-Line Genealogy, Inc. in partnership with the Allen County Public Library. It is the world's largest genealogy wiki with pages for over 400,000 people and growing. Their goal is to be the number one community website for genealogy.
At WeRelate you can connect with other researchers and cooperatively work on web pages for your ancestors. Your research can be documented completely online. You can upload GEDCOM files, upload and annotate scanned documents and photos, include family stories and biographies, and generate maps of your ancestors' life events. WeRelate is currently in beta and is funded by tax-deductible donations. For more information please visit WeRelate.org or follow the link WeRelate video tour.
Related Articles and Press Coverage:
Insight Into Slave History: Project Will Put Names With Faces by Brian Hicks, Charleston Post and Courier
Listen to the telephone interview/podcast at genealogy website Dear Myrtle