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Black Roots: A Beginner's Guide to Tracing the African American Family Tree.

Black Roots: A Beginner's Guide to Tracing the African American Family Tree by Tony Burroughs Fireside, February 2001, $16.00 ISBN 0-689-87909-3

My late Aunt Grace said that every black family needs their own history book. This easy-to-use, easy-to-read guide simplifies a seemingly mammoth task into accomplishable baby steps. Down to the AA batteries for the tape recorder, Burroughs helps the reader prepare, organize and start the process of recording his or her family history.

Burroughs uses his own genealogy search as an example and includes pictorial illustrations, and proper documentation technique versus fraudulent forms that researchers can use as a guide. Black Roots also evaluates the helpfulness of internet search engines and surname traces for African Americans. Burroughs is also careful to help direct the reader to investigate the entire African Diaspora that expands from the continent of Africa to the Caribbean, Brazil and Canada.

The most useful part of the book was the brick walls that Burroughs himself, went through. From obtaining copies of birth certificates to where to look next, Black Roots follows every turn and offers helpful solutions to these "dead ends." If you believe, as my aunt did, that every black family should have their own history book, here is an excellent beginning. Use it to develop what might become the most important book in your library--your own family biography.

Michelle R. Gipson is Director of Advertising at BIBR.
COPYRIGHT 2001 Cox, Matthews & Associates
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2001, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Title Annotation:Review
Author:Gipson, Michelle R.
Publication:Black Issues Book Review
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Mar 1, 2001
Previous Article:How to Make Black America Better.
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