Monday, August 30, 2010

NARA Prologue: No Pensions for Ex-Slaves

Check out the Summer 2010 copy of the National Archives (US) Prologue magazine where you'll find an online article No Pensions for Ex-Slaves: How Federal Agencies Suppressed Movement to Aid Freedpeople by Miranda Booker Perry.

Click to read the full article at NARA website.

From Ms. Perry's bio, we learn she is an archivist trainee in the Textual Archives Division at the National Archives and Records Administration in Washington, D.C. She has worked on a number of military records projects and has delivered presentations on the ex-slave pension movement. She is currently a Ph.D. candidate in history at Howard University.

With that impressive background, we then turn to study Ms. Perry's source material which include among other items:
  • National Archives Microfilm Publication M2110 reproduces the series Correspondence and Case Files Pertaining to the Ex-Slave Pension Movement, Law Division, Bureau of Pensions, Records of the Department of Veterans Affairs, Record Group (RG) 15.
  • Special Field Orders, No. 15, Headquarters Military Division of the Mississippi, January 16, 1865, is found in Orders & Circulars, ser. 44, Records of the Adjutant General's Office, 1780's–1917, RG 94
  • General Records of the Department of Justice, RG 60
  • Records of District Courts of the United States, RG 21; Records of the U.S. Senate, RG 46
  • Records of the U.S. House of Representatives, RG 233.
Historians review surviving documents, attempting to piece together an understanding of how things were  based on facts asserted in those documents. Genealogists tend to forget looking at a variety of sources and all-to-frequently jump to conclusions.

Let us take follow the example of historians and take a more scholarly approach to our research.

Myrt     :)
Your friend in genealogy.

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