Welcome to the Restore the Ancestors Project!

This project is a collaboration between Fold3 (Formerly Footnote.com), the South Carolina Department of Archives and History, FamilySearch and Lowcountry Africana, to digitize every surviving estate inventory for Colonial and Charleston South Carolina from 1732 to 1872, as well as selected Bills of Sale for the same period, in a FREE collection.

When the project is complete, the names of more than 30,000 enslaved ancestors from Charleston and surrounding counties will be restored to history in a free online collection, preserved for generations to come.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Let's Go to the Tote Board!

Hello RTA Friends,
     Well, it's hard to believe it's been more than a year since the Restore the Ancestors project was born. The project launched in July of last year and since that time, we have made great strides in working through indexing the collection, because of your hard work and heartfelt contributions in indexing pages.
     We thought it might be fun to go to the Tote Board to see exactly what we have accomplished. The collection contains 22,037 images, and indexing is 64% complete. Ready for totals?

Number of Pages Indexed

Number of Individual Annotations

Here's where it gets astounding. We have made 393,522 annotations on 14,103 pages, with:

Number of Volunteers

We Have Accomplished So Much! Absolutely Incredible.

And here's what the numbers above really mean:

Plantations Documented

Names of Enslaved Ancestors and Free African Americans Brought Into the Historical Light.

We thank you, our wonderful volunteers, for the hard work and dedication that has turned Restore the Ancestors into the Mouse That Roared. The Ancestors must be so proud!

Monday, August 1, 2011

An Amazing Gift: William and Book T

Greetings Friends!
     We've been rather quiet lately but working away behind the scenes and making great progress on indexing records. Thank you so much for all of the effort you have dedicated to making this a productive summer at Restore the Ancestors, and bringing forth the names and stories of Lowcountry ancestors.
     Incredible volunteer William just finished indexing Book T (1751-1768) - ALL of it! All 648 pages. We knew he was awful quiet this summer, (LOL) but had no idea that it was because he was mowing his way through Book T. Happily, gratefully shocked almost describes our reaction. Amazed, humbled, blessed ... now we're approaching it. We need more superlatives...
     William posted a comment on the Our Volunteers Speak page. Check out what he wrote while we ponder his incredible accomplishment: http://www.restoretheancestors.com/2010/08/our-volunteers-speak.html. Thank you so much William!

Peace and Blessings,

Friday, January 21, 2011

Restore the Ancestors Welcomes Felicia R. Mathis to Advisory Board

The New Year is off to a great start at the Restore the Ancestors project!

Since the project began 8 months ago, we have been blessed by you(!) the kind, generous and enthusiastic volunteers who have responded to the call for help. We've made new friends and come to know old friends even better. Together, we're mowing our way through indexing the incredible free Footnote collection SC Estate Inventories and Bills of Sale. We thank you all so much for your contributions to this enormous volunteer effort. :0)

Today, we are pleased and honored to welcome Felicia R. Mathis to the Restore the Ancestors advisory board. Felicia will join George Geder and Angela Y. Walton Raji in raising awareness of the effort and sharing wisdom to guide the project as we go forward.

Felicia shares her own genealogy research on her blog Echoes of My Nola Past and you can find her on Twitter at @MyNolaHeritage, where she shares lots of great information on genealogy research.

In the months since she joined the project, Felicia has taken the project into her heart and stepped into a leadership role wherever she saw a need - spreading the word about the project, greeting each new volunteer personally, following the project's overall progress, sharing mad love and gratitude for our wonderful volunteers.

We are very honored to welcome Felicia to the Restore the Ancestors advisory board. Welcome, F!

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