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Juneteenth is helping families discover details about enslaved ancestors

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Members of a Civil War re-enactment troop are seen in front of the Lincoln Memorial during Juneteenth celebrations in Washington, D.C., in 2023. Photo: Aaron Schwartz/Xinhua via Getty Images

Axios, June 2024

Juneteenth’s popularity is encouraging more descendants of enslaved people to research their families’ history and visit “sites of memory” linked to enslavement, experts tell Axios.

The big picture: Never before in U.S. history have descendants been able to easily access so many historic family documents online, thanks to improvements in technology, AI, DNA tests and genealogy websites.

  • The National Park Service, nonprofit groups and some states have also better mapped or transformed historic sites connected to enslavement.
  • “While we are looking at how African Americans honor Juneteenth by celebrating our future, we’re also tipping our hat to a past that speaks to a liberation or freedom tradition,” Samuel Livingston, professor of Africana Studies at Morehouse College, tells Axios.

Continue reading at Axios.

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