Over the past 25 years, I have worked extensively with Native American Tribes, law firms, and individuals in the area of Native American research in the United States. Among the various titles and positions I have held as an independent contractor are consultant to an enrollment committee, Enrollment Committee Chair, creator of enrollment documents, creator of tips on how to enroll and where to find records, analysis of submitted enrollment applications, court testimony on enrollment issues, searching out records in local, state, and national repositories (and online) to create an archive for a tribe, and locating many original records that some Tribes did not know existed.
On March 24 and April 28, I will be presenting a two-part webinar series hosted by the Fort Myers Regional Library of the Lee County, Florida, Library System. The good news for you is that the webinars are free, each has an extensive handout with a lot of reminders, resources, and some wonderful online links. You do need to register in advance. See below for the link.
No two Tribes (clans, community, nation, or rancheria) are the same. Nor are our ancestors the same. Whether your Native American connection is known, is a family secret, a DNA result, or the probability has been passed down orally, this series will aid in your research. Whether your Native American heritage is from 1900 or 1750, you’ll learn more about the research route. Do come armed with questions so we can help you find the correct research path.
Many types of records and the repositories where they can be located will be covered. The record types to be discussed include Indian census and annuity rolls, oral history, manuscripts, private sources, Indian school records, Tribal records, and Bureau of Indian Affairs and National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) collections. Historical societies, state archives, county courthouses, NARA regional facilities and more will be covered. The importance of understanding the historical context of the records, and the lives they reflect, and their impact on events will be discussed. Many important records are those related to individuals and families that did not attain official enrollment/membership or correspondence related to their quest.
These sessions are designed to share the basics of ancestral research for those with Native American ancestry. It does not provide instructions on how to enroll with specific tribes but provides a path for you to determine your eligibility. Resources that are universal to this type of research are covered. In addition to the resources that I will discuss and provide in the handouts for those who attend the virtual seminars on these dates, we have more for you. Bryan L. Mulcahy, the Fort Myers Genealogy Librarian has compiled a number of guides that would help supplement, not replace, the handout information. These supplemental materials would include information and links pertaining to the NARA, Bureau of Indian Affairs, manuscripts, county courthouse research, and a listing of Native American resources in the collection at Fort Myers Regional Library.
Ready to join the webinars?
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