Black Genealogy and History Talks

All the talks currently offered are listed here.

Black Genealogy and History Talks

All the talks currently offered are listed here.

You can find the upcoming online events here. Upcoming live events here.

You can find the upcoming online events here. Upcoming live events here.

Tracing African & Caribbean Ancestry Talks

A Black History 1

Tracing African Caribbean Ancestry: Who Do You Think You Are?

Tracing your ancestry – your Black History - to answer the question’ where am I from’ with guidance from Ancestry Talks’ Paul Crooks

 

Join Paul for this captivating account of how he traced his African ancestor -  Ami Djaba. Paul’s family tree reaches back 6 generations, a journey that took him back 200 years to the Gold Coast of West Africa, via Jamaica.

 

In this masterclass, Paul delivers a revealing talk on Black & British history and ancestry.

 

You’ll gain an insight into 

  • how you can discover who you are and where you’re from
  • how his ancestors enslaved in the Caribbean were a collective part an unstoppable force for change on a grand scale.

 

Come and ask questions about how to start exploring family history. Who knows? Maybe you'll be inspired to explore your Ancestry.


A Black History 2

Black Ancestry: Paul Crooks' Top 10 Tips For Tracing Your Roots

Understand what it’s like to explore Black genealogy and find out who you are and where you came from.  

 

Paul Crooks is a genealogist with a specialist interest in African Caribbean history.  Paul will deliver unique insights drawing on his personal case study to 

 

  • share his 10 hot tips for tracing African Caribbean ancestry 
  • demonstrate how you can trace forebears using public records 
  • highlight potential pitfalls that may get in the way of your search and how to overcome them

 

Come and ask questions about how to start exploring family history. Who knows? Maybe you'll be inspired to explore your Ancestry.

A Black History 3

Beyond Windrush: Tracing Your Ancesty with the Passenger Lists

A Black History & Ancestry masterclass. Paul Crooks reveals the secrets of tracing your Ancestry to Windrush and beyond with passenger lists.

 

A Black History & Ancestry masterclass. Paul Crooks reveals the secrets of tracing your Ancestry to Windrush and beyond with passenger lists.

 

Paul Crooks will discuss how 

  • he used The Passenger Lists to search for his family tree and back story
  • the passenger list complements other sources of ancestry information.
  • you can use the Windrush Generation Passenger Lists to explore your African and Caribbean history, fill a gap in your family tree and bring your family’s Windrush backstory to life.

A Black History 6

How I Traced My Ancestry

Back to the 1880s Online

Start tracing your African Caribbean ancestry back to the 1880s and learn how to avoid the major blocks to exploring your ancestry online.

 

You’ll gain insights into how Paul varied his search technique to overcome major barriers to tracing his great-grandfather. This talk will cover records specific to African Caribbean research, as well as other materials of more general interest to people of African Caribbean descent.

A Black History 4b

How I Traced My Ancestry

Back to the 1860s Online

Guidance on tracing your ancestors and bringing your Black history to life.

 

This talk complements Paul Crooks’ talk “Tracing Your Roots Back To The 1880s”. Paul will give guidance on how to search online and trace your history further back, to ancestors who lived during 1860s. 

 

You’ll gain insights into how Paul overcame major barriers to tracing his great-grandfather online. This talk will cover records specific to African Caribbean ancestry. Paul will discuss other materials of more general interest to people embarking on journeys to find their roots.

Paul Crooks Tracing African Ancestry

How I Traced My Ancestry

Back to the 1830s Online

A Black genealogy masterclass in tracing African Caribbean ancestors all the way back to 1830s 

 

Paul Crooks will share advice on how to trace African Caribbean forbears who lived during 1830s. 

 

You’ll gain insights into Paul’s approach to overcoming major barriers to tracing records of his ancestors enslaved in the Caribbean. This talk will cover records specific to African Caribbean research, as well as other materials of more general interest to people with African & Caribbean forbears.

Eventbrite Deptford

Secrest of the 1817 Slave Registers Uncovered

Trailblazing author and family historian Paul Crooks captivates his audience with an account of how he traced his African forebears enslaved on a sugar plantation in Jamaica, 200 years ago.

 

Paul was told that it would be impossible to trace records of slave-ownership let alone his African ancestors enslaved on plantations in Jamaica. “No one had tried because such records did not exist.” In the 1990’s, undeterred, he embarked on a journey of discovery that led from suburban North London to Jamaica and ultimately back to the Gold Coast of Africa; an effort that has brought him international recognition for his breakthroughs in African Caribbean genealogy research.

By 1999, Paul had realised the Slave Registers' potential for researching Caribbean Ancestry and African Roots. Paul’s revelations preceded a flurry of enquiries into the slave registers and slave compensation records. He will talk about his journey and how he traced his roots. 

 

The 1817 Slave Registers

Paul will :

  • discuss how the slave registers can support the exploration of Black Ancestry, Black history and self-identity
  • reveal what the registers reveal about the roots of British racism 
  • the origins of the slave registers and how and how he discovered them
  • talk about his journey and how he traced his roots
  • create space for questions and answers

 

Come and ask questions about how to start exploring family history. Who knows? Maybe you'll be inspired to explore your Ancestry.

A Black History 8

The 1834 Slave Compensation Records

Paul Crooks discusses Britain’s slave compensation records and what they  reveal about his Ancestry  and Black history

 

In this Black history masterclass, Paul Crooks emboldens calls for reparations speaking about his search for his African Caribbean ancestors.

 

In 1833, The British government passed legislation to end its system of enslavement. Britain raised the equivalent of £20 billion to compensate Britain's slave owners for the 'loss of human property.'  It was the largest state-sponsored payout in British history before the banking crisis in 2008. Taxpayers' money went straight into the pockets of people who had already profited from its system of slavery.

 

Paul will discuss his personal journey to:

•       trace his African ancestors enslaved in Jamaica

•       find evidence of compensation linked to the enslavement of his ancestors on the Cousins Cove Sugar Plantation, Jamaica

•       encourage, motivate and inspire others to explore their ancestry and bring back stories to life.

You will gain insights into how public records can help you explore your ancestry

A Black Genealogy DNA Testing 21

What does DNA Testing tell me about my Origins

An insightful Black Genealogy masterclass exploring DNA testing. For you, if you’re one of many asking “Where am I from?”

 

An insightful Black Genealogy masterclass exploring DNA testing determining your African roots. 

DNA testing is estimated to be a £7.7bn industry. 12 million people from all over the world have taken a home DNA-test. We hope DNA tests can tell us where we are from.

But does anyone stop to ask

  • are 23andMe and AncestryDNA actually testing your ancestry?
  • how much information is passed down through a person’s DNA? 
  • is the industry really just telling us what they think we want to hear?

Paul Crooks discusses 

  • his research into his own African Caribbean ancestry and what it reveals about the origins of African Caribbean and African American people. 
  • the extent DNA testing helps in determine roots/race/ethnicity


Empowering Black History Talks

A Black History 9c

Empowering Black History: The Spanish Maroons of Jamaica

A hidden Black History of what happens when oppressed people decide to take matters into their own hands.

 

Paul Crooks captivates audiences with his accounts of Jamaica’s rich history of resistance and black empowerment. 

 

Paul will encourage you to draw your own conclusion on a particularly turbulent time in the history of the Caribbean, when runaway slaves established communities in mountainous regions of Jamaica, and resisted attempts by British colonisers to encroach on their land.

 

This talk complements Ancestry Talks with Paul Crooks’ Empowering Black History series of online events.

 

This talk is designed primarily to help improve the self-respect of black people young and old and give them a brighter, more optimistic outlook.  It’s also designed to help other people view African Diasporans with more appreciative eyes.


A Black History 10

Empowering Black History: Jamaica's Akan Maroon War

Is Jamaica’s Akan Maroon war the most empowering history of African Caribbean and African American resistance to the system of slavery?

 

When researching his family’s Black history, Paul Crooks discovered his great great great grandfather walked free from a sugar plantation in Jamaica in 1838. Paul wanted to know what lay behind the decision to free the enslaved people of the Caribbean.

 

Did the Maroon war set in motion the decline of European transatlantic enslavement?

 

In this talk, Paul will discuss 

  • the Akan Maroons of Jamaica who set the scene for liberation struggles to come 
  • resistance to the system of enslavement in the Caribbean and North America, as an epic military struggle.
  • evidence that the maroon war led ultimately to the demise of slavery in the British Colonies. 

 

You’ll draw your own conclusion on a particularly turbulent time in the British Colonies in the Caribbean.



African Diaspora Man

Empowering Black History: When Tacky Declared War on Slavery

Tacky's War is a not often spoken history of how a hero responds when his people are denied justice, equality, and freedom.  
 

 When researching his family’s Black history, Paul Crooks discovered his great great great grandfather walked free from a sugar plantation in Jamaica in 1838. Paul wanted to know more about what lay behind the decision to free the enslaved people of the Caribbean.

 

Tacky's War is one of the great stories of enslavement and resistance in modern Black history. There were   many great Black leaders of freedom movements in the modern era; but is Tacky the greatest unsung hero of them all? You are invited to draw your own conclusion.

 

This talk complements Ancestry Talks with Paul Crooks’ Empowering Black History series of online events.


A Black History 13

Toussaint the Great & The Haitian Revolution

In this Black history masterclass, Paul Crooks focuses on Toussaint L’Overture one of the great military commanders of the modern era.  

 

When researching his families Black History, Paul Crooks discovered his great great great grandfather walked free from a sugar plantation in Jamaica in 1838. Paul wanted to know more about what lay behind the decision to free the enslaved people of the Caribbean. 

 

The Haitian revolution led by Toussaint L’Overture inspired events in Jamaica that ultimately led the British government legislating to end the system of enslavement in colonies in the Caribbean.

 

Paul will focus on Toussaint L’Overture’s

  • leadership capabilities;
  • strategic decision making capabilities when confronted with tantalising situations; and 
  • brinkmanship

 

This talk complements Ancestry Talks with Paul Crooks’ Empowering Black History series of online events.




A Black History 9a

Empowering Black History: Jamaica’s Second Maroon War

The forgotten Black History of Jamaican Maroons in conflict with British colonials during the period of enslavement


When researching his family’s Black history, Paul Crooks discovered his great great great grandfather walked free from a sugar plantation in Jamaica in 1838. Paul wanted to know more about what lay behind the decision to free the enslaved people of the Caribbean. 


This talk is part of a series of online talks on Jamaicans rich history of resistance and black empowerment. The Second Maroon War of 1795–1796 was a conflict between Jamaican Maroons and the British colonisers. 


Paul critically discusses key historical figures in this Black and British history, challenging audiences to draw their own conclusion on a particularly turbulent time in the history of resistance to enslavement within the Caribbean. 

 

This talk is designed primarily to help improve the self-respect of black people giving them a brighter, more optimistic outlook.   It’s also designed to help other people view African Diasporans with more appreciative eyes.

A Black History 17a

The Jamaican Slaves Who Abolished Slavery

A Black history recounting great sacrifices made by forebears who participated in one of the Caribbean Islands' great liberation struggles.

 

When researching his family’s Black history, Paul Crooks discovered his great great great grandfather walked free from a sugar plantation in Jamaica in 1838. Paul wanted to know what lay behind the decision to free the enslaved people of the Caribbean.

 

Paul will implicate his ancestors in events leading up to Jamaica’s Baptist War, which ultimately brought the British system of slavery to its knees. 'The Jamaican slaves who abolished slavery'.

 

This talk complements Ancestry Talks’  Sam Sharpe and the Baptist War

 

This talk is designed primarily to help improve the self-respect of black people young and old and give them a brighter, more optimistic outlook.  It’s also designed to help other people view African Diasporans with more appreciative eyes.

A Black History 16

Empowering Black History: Sam Sharpe & The Baptist War

Black History drawing accounts of witnesses to Jamaican rebels who reset the timetable for the abolition of slavery in the Caribbean.

 

When researching his family’s Black history, Paul Crooks discovered his great great great grandfather walked free from a sugar plantation in Jamaica in 1838. Paul wanted to know what lay behind the decision to free the enslaved people of the Caribbean.

 

The atmosphere in Jamaica was electric when the legalised form of the slave trade was abolished.  The enslaved people of the Caribbean thought this meant the end of the system of slavery – but it didn’t; far from it.

 

So exactly how did the system of slavery reach its eventual demise?   Were enslaved people passive recipients of their emancipation, or did they play a role in dismantling the system?

 

Paul Crooks is changing the discourse on ancestors enslaved in the Caribbean and North America and exploring black ancestry. 

 

Paul will demonstrate

  • how Sam Sharpe’s Baptist war brought the system of enslavement to its knees in Jamaica;  and
  • the impact the Baptist War had on the British government procrastinating on passing legislation to end enslavement in the colonies in the Caribbean
  • shed light on an aspect of Black History that is largely ignored.
A Black History 19 (2)

Empowering Black History: The Perfect Storm that Ended Slavery

Join Paul Crooks for a black history masterclass as he discusses black resistance, the rise and fall of enslavement in the British Colonies in the Caribbean and North America. 

 

Paul Crooks was intrigued to learn his great great great grandfather walked free from the Cousins Cove sugar plantation, Jamaica in 1838. This prompted Paul’s curiosity about what lay behind the decision to free the enslaved people of the Caribbean. 

 

Every age rewrites history, particularly black history. Paul will place into historical perspective factors that contributed to end of the transatlantic slavery. Paul challenges established ideas about abolition; an idea created in the consciousness of many, by Great Britain’s responsible for the creation and guidance of informed opinion. 

  

In this talk, Paul will explain 

  • how the decision to offer liberty to people enslaved in the Caribbean and North America began when military struggles between Africans in the Caribbean and colonisers; and 
  • how this unleashed forces that set in motion the demise of slavery in the Caribbean and North America. 
Paul Crooks Ancestry

Colorism Origins: Secrets of the 1817 Slave Registers

A Black history masterclass on what does the 1817 Slave registers reveal about the origins of colorism? 

 

Ancestry Talks' Paul Crooks will provide insight into the roots of colorism, stemming from his research into his family history, going back over 200 years. 

 

Paul will discuss why many Africans & Caribbeans view race through the lens of a colour hierarchy prescribed during transatlantic enslavement. 

 

Discussion includes 

• what the 1817 Slave Registers reveal about the roots of colorism 

• how African Caribbean ancestors were taught to embrace colorism 

• why colorism never disintegrated after transatlantic slavery ended 

• the extent to which understanding of the history of the modern era can 

  • a) be used as a tool for empowerment 
  • b) recalibrate the discourse recalibrate the discourse on race, colour and identity
  • c) enable people to reflect on attitudes and behaviour in relation to colorism. 
A Black History 19b

The Economic Reasons for Abolishing Slavery

The abolition of slavery was not merely the result of a rising standard of political ethics in Britain. Money had everything to it. When researching his family’s black history, Paul Crooks discovered his great great great grandfather walked free from a sugar plantation in Jamaica in 1838. Paul wanted to know more about what lay behind the decision to free the enslaved people of the Caribbean. Paul found that the abolition of slavery was not merely the result of a rising standard of political ethics in Britain. It was a form of cutting off losses. Money had everything to do with the decision to offer liberty to people enslaved in the Caribbean and North America. If Paul will outline how the everyday activities of Africans enslaved in the Caribbean • weakened the British Colonies in the Caribbean economically; and • led to Britain champion the end of transatlantic enslavement in the Americas. This talk is designed to help improve the self-respect of black people young and old and give them a brighter, more optimistic outlook. It’s also designed to help other people view African Diasporans with more appreciative eyes.
A Black History 21

From Africa to Diaspora: Black History for Beginners

A Journey through the most interesting periods Black history from Ancient Africa to Black Britain via the Caribbean.

 

In this talk, Paul Crooks will:

  • Highlight key topics and events along the Black History timeline
  • emphasise events where ‘Africans at home and abroad’ have taken action – on a grand scale – to shape their future and the future of others
  • inspire, encourage and uplift you with African & Caribbean ancestry

 

Programme

  • Africa: Before the rise of Capitalism 
  • Africans in the Caribbean: From Enslavement to Emancipation 
  • Black & British: The Windrush Generation 
  • Reclaiming and drawing inspiration from the Past

 

This talk is designed primarily to help improve the self-respect of black people young and old and give them a brighter, more optimistic outlook.  It’s also designed to help other people view the African Diaspora with more appreciative eyes.


Tracing African & Caribbean Ancestry Talks

A Black History 1

Tracing African Caribbean Ancestry: Who Do You Think You Are?

A Black History 2

Black Ancestry: Paul Crooks' Top 10 Tips For Tracing Your Roots

A Black History 3

Beyond Windrush: Tracing Your Ancesty with the Passenger Lists

A Black History 6

How I Traced My Ancestry

Back to the 1880s Online

A Black History 4b

How I Traced My Ancestry

Back to the 1860s Online

Paul Crooks Tracing African Ancestry

How I Traced My Ancestry

Back to the 1830s Online

Eventbrite Deptford

Secrest of the 1817 Slave Registers Uncovered

A Black History 8

The 1834 Slave Compensation Records

A Black Genealogy DNA Testing 21

What does DNA Testing tell me about my Origins

Empowering Black History Talks

A Black History 9c

Empowering Black History: The Spanish Maroons of Jamaica

A Black History 10

Empowering Black History: Jamaica's Akan Maroon War

African Diaspora Man

Empowering Black History: When Tacky Declared War on Slavery

A Black History 13

Toussaint the Great & The Haitian Revolution

A Black History 9a

Empowering Black History: Jamaica’s Second Maroon War

A Black History 17a

The Jamaican Slaves Who Abolished Slavery

A Black History 16

Empowering Black History: Sam Sharpe & The Baptist War

A Black History 19 (2)

Empowering Black History: The Perfect Storm that Ended Slavery

Paul Crooks Ancestry

Colorism Origins: Secrets of the 1817 Slave Registers

A Black History 19b

The Economic Reasons for Abolishing Slavery

A Black History 21

From Africa to Diaspora: Black History for Beginners