The Douglas Archives

A collection of historical and genalogical records

This section is dedicated to networking and research into the Douglases involved in slavery and the slave trade.

Virtually all Afrodescendant Douglases anywhere in the Americas, are Douglases because of enslavement - both in colonial Britain & in successor states such as the United States of America. We, would like to know more about Douglas and other related family history.

Further reading on slavery can be found in the History section>>>


The image on this page is entitled 'Maid Douglas'. Does anyone know any more about who this might be?

For details of 35,000 slave voyages from the sixteenth to nineteenth centuries, see The TransAtlantic Slave Trade Database.
Also, visit
SlaveVoyages.org.

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Remarks of MSP Patricia Ferguson (Glasgow Maryhill) honoring Joseph F.Douglas, Sr. for Tartan Day 2001.
From Scottish Parliament Official Report Vol 11, No 06, Thursday 15 March 2001.

http://www.scottish.parliament.uk/business/officialReports/meetings...

"... Today, I was told of an interesting piece of history. Alexander Hamilton may have drafted the US constitution, which declares that all men are created equal, but it was black Scots Americans—the descendants of African slaves and Scottish settlers—who helped to give substance to those aspirations two centuries later. One of them was Professor Joseph Douglas. I do not have time to go into Professor Douglas's entire curriculum vitae, which is long and distinguished, but I will say that he is a lifelong campaigner in America for higher education for all and was the first black professor of engineering at Penn State University.

I wanted to mention Professor Douglas not only because of his Scots ancestry, but because he ties us in with the idea of using new technology. Professor Douglas's daughter, Marion, works for the United Nations in Macedonia. Having watched a meeting of our Equal Opportunities Committee in February this year, she brought Professor Douglas's heritage to our attention. She decided that, since she had, as it were, found the Scottish Parliament, she would tell us about her own heritage. It is interesting to note that new technology is beginning to reap dividends in promoting the culture of Scotland and the Parliament of Scotland as far afield as Macedonia."
Lowcountry Africana - a useful resource
Lowcountry Africana is entirely dedicated to records that document the family and cultural heritage of African Americans in the historic rice-growing areas of South Carolina, Georgia and extreme northeastern Florida, an area that scholars and preservationists have identified as a distinct culture area, home to the rich Gullah/Geechee culture.

Past scholarship has documented the cultural ties between Gullah/Geechee descendants and the people of West Africa. Ongoing research conducted by the USF Africana Heritage Project suggests that the Lowcountry Southeast is also a unique family heritage area where enslaved communities were remarkably stable over time, due in part to the specialized rice-growing skills enslaved people brought with them from Africa.

The Lowcountry Africana website will be a treasure trove of primary documents, book excerpts and multimedia that further document and explore the dynamic cultural and family heritage of the Lowcountry Southeast.

Access to the entire content of Lowcountry Africana will always be 100% free. Website features will include:

• Searchable database of primary historical documents of interest to genealogists, historians and other scholars

• Key Archive pages: a place where archives with major holdings on Lowcountry plantations can share birth, death and other records of enslaved people and communities

• Key Researcher pages: a place where key Lowcountry researchers share content of their choosing with readers

• Sponsored Family Foundation Pages: a place where major slaveholding families share plantation records

• Family tree files (GEDCOM files) containing information on family lineages constructed from plantation records, with associated documents, photographs and multimedia. Readers will be able to download family files and print custom reports to build books on their family's history.

• WPA slave narratives, indexed and fully searchable

• Book, film and music excerpts from key researchers of Gullah/Geechee heritage

• Searchable name indices from books on Lowcountry history and genealogy, to help researchers target useful resources

• Photo gallery of historical Lowcountry photographs

• Teachers' resources and lesson plans for using the primary documents on Lowcountry Africana in the classroom.

• Free membership that will provide readers with an online storage locker for their favorite Lowcountry Africana and Internet content, for fast retrieval

• A custom Internet search engine geared to search only sites with content pertaining to the Lowcountry

• Lowcountry Lives: an area of the website where we tell life stories, both remarkable and mundane, of slaves, freedpersons and enslaved communities of the Lowcountry

• Feature of the Month: an area of the website where we highlight documents or photographs of interest, an article about a particular aspect of the Lowcountry African American experience, or newly discovered archives

• Family Stories: a page where readers can share and preserve family history and memories

• News items of interest to researchers of all things Lowcountry

• Forums/message boards where readers can interact and share research and advice

• Conservation Efforts: a place where readers can learn about efforts to preserve Lowcountry cultural resources and landmarks

• Links Page with referrals to related Internet resources

• Blog – an informal online journal where we share the ins and outs, highs and lows of our archival research, and share new insights gained from ongoing research
African Roots Podcast

The GenealogyWise Group, African Roots Podcast was created by Angela Walton-Raji and provides information about the African Roots Podcast which can be found at http://africanrootspodcast.com/. The African Roots Podcast is a weekly podcast devoted to African American genealogy news, events, and resources.
I am researching my ancestors. I have used US census records and found William Douglas in the 1880 census listes as 78 years old, and born in Virginia. This leads me to guess that his birth year is 1802.

He is listed at line 26 of the attached census excerpt. His race is designated "Mu" for mulatto. Thus one of his parents was white.

Seeing as the US Civil War ended in 1865 and slavery was officially abolished in 1868 with the ratification of the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, I am assuming that this William Douglas was born in slavery. I am currently trying to find more details about this William Douglas to determine details about his life and hopefully to find his siblings and other ancestors.
Attachments:
Thanks for sharing. Please also remember that it is critically important for you to TRACK/TRACE THE SLAVEHOLDING (WHITE) FAMILY/FAMILIES. The blunt truth is that you can, and usually will, find more info & records (US, UK, etc.) on them than on our own Black American (and other Black & Native American) ancestors. I, too, have State of VIRGINIA Douglas historical connections which seem to link the Virginia group to those in Middle TENNESSEE. Please note: Census designation as Mulatto, Colored, Black or Negro is not always enough in and of itself to discern that someone literally was what they were designated. This was often or usually the census-taker's visual impression of the person they were enumerating. My greatgrandfather (a Gudger, not a Douglas), was mulatto, yet he also was referred as Colored, and probably elsewhere as Negro or Black. If you continue to do primary (or secondary) research of census documents and transcribed census info, you probably will see that for the same person, these terms can and do change from one census to the next. Thanks, and please do share again!

Frederic March Douglas, Jr. said:
I am researching my ancestors. I have used US census records and found William Douglas in the 1880 census listes as 78 years old, and born in Virginia. This leads me to guess that his birth year is 1802.
He is listed at line 26 of the attached census excerpt. His race is designated "Mu" for mulatto. Thus one of his parents was white.
Seeing as the US Civil War ended in 1865 and slavery was officially abolished in 1868 with the ratification of the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, I am assuming that this William Douglas was born in slavery. I am currently trying to find more details about this William Douglas to determine details about his life and hopefully to find his siblings and other ancestors.
Frederic March Douglas, Jr. said:
I am researching my ancestors. I have used US census records and found William Douglas in the 1880 census listes as 78 years old, and born in Virginia. This leads me to guess that his birth year is 1802.<.

I wonder how old his wife was?

He did well to have three children born after his 60th birthday!
I am totally sidetracked today, and have come across a remarkable family.

Mourning and Henderson were slaves who both lived very long lives. Henderson lived to be more than 85 years of age and Mourning was said to have lived to be almost 100 years of age. At the time of her death sometime after 1920 she had almost 200 grandchildren and well over 1000 great grandchildren. What a remarkable woman to have lived and seen such an achievement.

Henderson was owned by one of the many Douglas slave owners in Chesterfield County SC and Mourning was owned by the neighboring Meachum slave owners of Anson County NC.

Some of their family, who took the surname Douglas, are documented here>>>

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Making conections

The more information you can give about the people you mention, the more chance there is of someone else connecting with your family.

Dates and places of births, deaths and marriages all help to place families.

Professions also help.

'My great-grandmother mother was a Douglas from Montrose' does not give many clues to follow up! But a bit of flesh on the bones makes further research possible. But if we are told who she married, what his profession was and where the children were baptised, then we can get to work.

Maybe it is time to update the information in your profile?


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