Tracing your Caribbean Ancestors

Tracing your Caribbean Ancestors: 3rd Edition By Guy Grannum.

ISBN: 9781408175699 £16.99 Paperback

If you have ever wanted to trace your Caribbean ancestry then this could well be the book for you.  Guy Grannum has been working in the National Archives for more than 20 years. During that time he has built up a wealth of knowledge regarding Caribbean records and slave genealogy.

The latest edition of the book includes many of the changes to record keeping systems that have taken place over the last decade. The National Archives hold records for many people who lived in British West Indian colonies. Emigrants, plantation owners, slaves, soldiers,sailors and transported criminals are all to be found in the records held by the National Archive.

Any genealogist who is seeking West Indian ancestors will find this book of use. The book draws together and highlights a wide range of  research materials and resources. Some of which is available online.

Despite the detail provided, Grannum helps the reader further by providing details of how to access archives, supplying lists of further reading to set both the experienced family history researcher or the budding genealogy enthusiast on a trail of exciting and revealing discovery.


Tracing your Caribbean Ancestors
‘Tracing your Caribbean Ancestors’ is a fascinating read.

Getting Started with Family History Research

Readers are given a gentle introduction into how to begin their research, and how to get prepared for set backs and dead ends.  As someone who has done a fair bit of genealogy myself, I know that this preparation is essential in managing expectations.  Sometimes people embark on family history research with romantic notions of being able to trace their direct line right back to Africa.  Whilst in some cases this is possible, in most cases it is not possible without the assistance of DNA technology. Even then, this does not always produce the desired results. It is more likely that you will be able to trace your ancestry back a couple of hundred years.  This is still an excellent result.

The book goes on to talk about the various resources that are your disposal, such as local, regional and national libraries and Internet databases.

Sound Interesting? That’s just the introductory chapters.  You will learn about Migration to the Caribbean, through migration from Europe, to the Transatlantic Slave Trade, The settlement of Black American loyalists, and poor Europeans, who arrived as indentured labourers or  transportees. Other chapters cover military records, slave registers, colonial workers, and the connection between the West Indies and the Britain since post war migration.

Details of how to access the records of all the Caribbean Islands is also provided, including those Islands that were not part of the British West Indies. Every Chapter provides further reading resources.

This book is a must have purchase for anyone of Caribbean descent who is interested in Family History.  Historians, professional and amateur alike would benefit from the knowledge Grannum shares. Those who make their living as family history researchers could only enhance their knowledge and skills by owning this book.

Black Presence recommends that you purchase a copy today from Bloomsbury.

An Article by Phil Gregory: Editor, Black Presence in Britain Website

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