Why Didn't I Know My Family Held Slaves?
     Hey everyone, I'm Toni Carrier, founder of Lowcountry Africana, the USF Africana Heritage Project and Afriquest.
     I'm blogging today about my research and addressing the questions of the first Carnival of African American Genealogy.
     The Carnival of African American Genealogy is an ongoing series of African American themed carnivals which will result in many new published records and much dialogue between descendants of slaveholders and those they enslaved.
     The theme of this carnival is Restore My Name: Slave Records and Genealogy Research. The carnival is hosted by Luckie Daniels from Our Georgia Roots and Our Alabama Roots.
     My Family's History
     I am a descendant of slaveholers in Copiah County, Mississippi (George Washington Furr), but I never knew this until I had been doing this research for many years. I wonder why this is so.
     The purpose of our work at Lowcountry Africana is to find the records that restore the legacy that African American ancestors left to this generation we live in. We have three websites dedicated to African American genealogy. We have been doing this research for eleven years.
     One night when I was talking to my mother, probably four years into this research, she said something that took me totally by surprise: she mentioned Daddy Furr's slaves.
     I was stunned, I said "Daddy Furr held slaves?" And she said "Oh yes, Daddy Furr had slaves."
     How could this be, four years after my mother knew what I do, that she told me our family held slaves?
     How many conversations had I had with mother yet she did not mention this, ever?
     I don't know.
     I don't know.
     Why Didn't I Know My Family Held Slaves?
     I just don't know.
     I'm still at a loss to explain it but my guess is that it has been something that some slaveholding families did not discuss. I'm still baffled by this, is it cultural? Were my ancestors told not to discuss slavery?
     I don't know. But I do know it is something that we should explore and question.

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