International African American Museum Launches Genealogy Center

The International African American Museum (IAAM) announced the launch of its new center for Family History. It is the IAAM’s first program launch.

The International African American Museum (IAAM) will be an innovative national genealogy research center dedicated solely to celebrating and researching African American ancestry. The center will engage in genealogy education, original research, community archiving, public outreach, and collections. It will also assist with DNA testing.

Here is some of the IAAM will do:

* Include immersive, interactive exhibits, and multimedia experiences for visitors of all ages

* Include a “Center for Family History” where individuals and families will advance the exploration of their own personal histories

* Will be a gateway to historic sites in South Carolina’s Lowcountry important to African American History

* Will be a national and international resource and a significant addition to the cultural, educational, and economic assets of Charleston, the Lowcountry, and South Carolina

The IAAM is scheduled to open in late 2019 or early 2020. It will be located on the former Gadsden’s Wharf in South Carolina – the site where almost half of all enslaved Africans first arrived in America via the Transatlantic Slave Trade. The museum will be a source of rich history and will likely become a place of pilgrimage for African Americans from around the country who will come to pay homage to their ancestors – engaging in the sacred site where they arrived.

Toni Carrier is developing the center. She is a nationally recognized genealogist, and founder of Lowcountry Africana. Toni conducted research on Michelle Obama’s ancestry for Obama and America – actually tracing her paternal ancestor’s arrival to the site of the IAAM museum as well.

The center will be staffed by a team of experienced genealogists and historians to digitize records, present online research tutorials, and produce scholarly articles. In addition, Toni Carrier’s team will be fully equipped to assist visitors with selecting and ordering a DNA test, interpreting the results, and using online DNA matching resources to help visitors get the most from DNA testing.

Related Articles at

* Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture

* Four Million Freedman’s Bureau Records Released

* How Much African Ancestry Does the Average African-American Have?

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