Researching African-Caribbean ancestry

The Northamptonshire Black History Association is helping African, Asian and Caribbean people trace their ancestry.

They are holding a family research session to help people have a better understanding of where they came from. It can be harder for people of African, Asian and Caribbean decent to trace back their family history because of the slave trade. Slaves often lost their lineage because they took the names of their masters.

For more than 200 years Britain was at the heart of a lucrative transatlantic trade of millions of slaves. By 1807 the practice had been banned, but this did not free those who were already slaves. It was not until 1833 that an act was passed giving freedom to all slaves in the British empire.

Uncovering your family’s past

The slave trade has caused many ancestral links to be lost or buried, so the Northamptonshire Black History Association is offering practical advice to aid people’s searches.

The session is taking place on Saturday Oct 16 at Northampton’s Central Library, Abington Street, Northampton, NN1 2AY.

Author Paul Crooks who has written books about heritage will be at the session offering practical advice about uncovering family history.

The Northamptonshire Family History Society will also be on hand to help answer questions.

For more go to

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  1. British based documentary photographer and film maker Pogus Caesar launches new book ‘Sparkbrook Pride’.

    The foreword has been specially written by poet, author and activist Benjamin Zephaniah

    ‘Sparkbrook Pride’ consists of 70 black-and-white photos celebrating the of residents of Sparkbrook, Birmingham, Great Britain – where Pogus grew up – all taken with his trademark Canon Sureshot camera.

    In the foreword Zephaniah says “I love the ‘rawness’ of these photos, they have a sense of place, yet nothing is staged, and the only information Pogus gives us about those featured is how they define themselves, nothing more. We need no more. So people – it is down to us to piece together the rest of this multicultural puzzle”.

    Last Autumn Pogus visited Sparkbrook several times, and the striking images in ‘Sparkbrook Pride’ are the result. Documenting the diverse individuals who live and work in the area, the book features both the long-standing residents from the West Indies, Ireland, India and Pakistan and the more recent additions to the community from Somalia, Sudan, Malawi and Afghanistan, celebrating the rich cultural mix that defines the area.

    Book details. Paperback, perfect bound, 160 pages, 70 black and white photographs, 11.6 x 8.2 x 0.8 inches. ISBN: 978-0-9566741-1-1

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