I had an interesting conversation with a fellow genealogist, and the discussion of "projects" came up. There are numerous opportunities to take our research in a fascinating direction with genealogy projects. I know that some in this group have already developed some fascinating projects. But I am also aware that more of us can engage in fascinating projects that will not only become satisfying, but will also assist others in learning more about our rich history from the Territory.
Among others, researcher Terry Ligon has put in several years documenting the 2000+ Chickasaw Freedmen who became a part of Equity Case 7071 with his blog, Bettie's List. In addition, he has also put energy into documenting several cases of Oklahoma Freedmen with his YouTube videos. Like,wide Verdie Triplett too advantage of living near an old Choctaw Freedman burial ground that lies adjacent to the Choctaw Nation Skullyville cemetery, and spearheaded the effort to preserve and protect Roseland cemetery in Spiro Oklahoma. And of course, I have this blog devoted to Choctaw Freedmen Legacy, as well as a website and a blog one with focus on the Freedmen all of the of the Five Tribes. My colleague make a remark in the conversation, that many have not looked beyond their own personal history of their one family, because they have no idea what would be a good project to undertake. Well, I realized the truth in that statement, and decided to put together a small list of potential projects that might be useful for others to consider.
The purpose of a Project Projects can 1) connect you with other researchers, 2) help you to learn more about your own family, and 3) open new and unexpected doors of opportunity. For some ideas on what can be undertaken, I have provided a small list of projects--all of which are needed to add to the breadth of knowledge about the history of Freedmen from both Choctaw and Chickasaw Nations. The story is greater than our own family---and there is far more to tell than just the effort to find your family on the Dawes roll.
Possible Projects to Expand Knowledge of Choctaw Freedmen History-Choctaw/Chickasaw Civil War Soldiers - Our Forgotten Freedom Fighters -Marking Burial Sites of Freedmen Ancestors -Finding and Documenting Old Freedmen Landmarks -Documenting Old Freedmen Schools -Where Did They Worship-Discovering Old Freedmen Churches -In The News- Documenting Choctaw/Chickasaw Freedmen in Historic Newspapers -Forgotten Faces - Collecting the Faces of Choctaw/Chickasaw Freedmen -Places Where They Lived - Former Settlements of Choctaw/Chickasaw Freedmen -Leaving Home - The Great Migration Took Them - Life Beyond Oklahoma -Leaders Among Us - Examining Freedmen Leaders of the 1800s -Celebrating Our Educators - Freedmen Teachers This is a small list that can be expanded. Hopefully others will become more assertive in their research and will start to share what they find with others. Some projects will be well-suited for those living in Oklahoma near the ancestral home. Other projects will be better suited for those who live near archives, such as the Nation Archives in Washington, or in Texas near Ft. Worth. And yet others can be conducted by simply studying census and other online records--which can be conducted by all from home. I shall be writing a series of articles related to the list above, with suggestions on ideas to undertake a project. The goal is to merely encourage others to explore the records with a new eye and to become generous in the research and enhance the historical research process for all .
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