African American Migration
|African American Genealogy Wiki Topics|
A record of major migrations of African Americans and precipitating events.
Emigration to Canada
- Benjamin Drew. A north-side view of slavery : the refugee, or, The narratives of fugitive slaves in Canada related by themselves, with an account of the history and condition of the colored population of Upper Canada. Boston: John P. Jewett and Company, 1856. Digital Book
- George Hendrick. "Black refugees in Canada : accounts of escape during the era of slavery." Jefferson, McFArland & Co., 2010. FHL 971 H6h
American slaves migrated to Canada in search of freedom after the American Revolution See: Africans in Canada
- J. Blaine Hudson. Encyclopedia of the underground railroad Jefferson, North Carolina : McFarland & Co., 2006. FHL 973 H26hj
- Larry Gara. The liberty line : the legend of the Underground Railroad.Lexington, Kentucky : University of Kentucky Press, 1961. FHL973 F2ag
- William Still. The Underground railroad reprint of 1871 ed. New York, New York : Arno Press, 1968. FHL973 F2asL
- Wilbur H. Siebert. The Underground railroad from slavery to freedom. reprint of 1898 ed.North Stratford, New Hampshire : Ayer Pub. Co., 2000. FHL 973 F2siw
State and Local Sources Publications
- Glennette Tilley Turnr. " The Underground Railroad in Illinois." Glen Ellyn, Illinois: Newman Educational Pub., 2001. FHL 977.3 H2tg
- Owen W. Muelder. " The Underground Railroad in western Illinois." Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Co., 2008. FHL 977.3 H2mo
- J. Blaine Hudson. " Fugitive Slaves and the underground railroad in the Kentucky borderland." Jefferson,North Carolina: McFarland & Co., 2002. FHL 976.9 F2h
- Emma Marie Trusty. "The Underground railroad : ties that bound unveiled ; a history of the underground railroad in southern New Jersey from 1770 to 1861."Philadelphia, Pennsylvania : Amed Literary Inc, 1999. FHL 974.9 F2te
- William J. Switala. "Underground Railroad in Pennsylvania." Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania: Stackpole Books, 2001. FHL 974.8 F2sw
- R.C. Smedley. " HIstory of the Underground Railroad: in Chester and the neighboring counties of Pennsylvania." reprint. Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania: Stackpole Books, 2005.
- Wilbur Henry Siebert. "Vermont's anti-slavery and underground railroad record, with a map and illustrations." reprint. (New York, 1969) FHL 974.3 H2si
Historical Society of Pennsylvania
- Harriett Tubman was a woman of remarkable skill, determination, and dedication. She was a "conductor" for the Underground Railroad where she assisted runaway slaves to find freedom not only in the northern U.S. but all the way to Canada.
- Dorothy Sterling. Freedom train : the story of Harriet Tubman.Garden City, New York : Doubleday, 1954. FHL 921.73 T79s
There was a notable community in Nova Scotia. Some of the newly free slaves would intermingle with Canadian Indians, as they often did in the U.S. Don't ignore Canada when looking for your African American ancestors! Check out this site about Harriet Tubman
For more, see: Canada First Nations Genealogy Research Community
- See routes to freedom taken by runaway slaves: Many Rivers to Cross, the African Canadian Experience
- Fugitive Slave Case Files, 1850-1860. US Circuit Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. NAID 279005
- Fugitive Slave Case Files, 1851-1863. US District Court for the District of Columbia. NAID 4306299
- Fugitive Slave Case Files, 1850-1860. US District Court for the District of Maryland. NAID 278775
Emigration to Liberia
- Recommended Website: 'African-Americans to Liberia, 1820-1904,' by Michael Hait, African American Genealogy Examiner.
- Liberia,Monrovia,Census, 1843 FamilySearch Historical Records
American Colonization Society Sources
- Library of Congress. American Colonization Society
- Wikipedia. American Colonization Society
- Tom W. Shick. Emigrants to Liberia, 1820 to 1843, an alphabetical listing.Newark, Delaware : University of Delaware Department of Anthropology & Liberian Studies Association in America, 1971. FHL 966.62 W2e
- Tom W. Shick. Behold the promised land : a history of Afro-American settler society in nineteenth-century Liberia. Baltimore, Maryland : Johns Hopkins University Press, 1980. FHL 966.62 H2s
- Eric Burin. Slavery and the peculiar solution : a history of the American Colonization Society. Gainesville, Florida : University Press of Florida, 2005. FHL 973 C4be
- Maryland Historical Society. American Colonization Society/Liberia Collection
- Richard L. Hall. "On Afric's Shore." A History of Maryland in Liberia, 1834-1857. Baltimore, Maryland: Maryland Historical Society, 2003. FHL 966.62 H2d
- Penelope Campbell. Maryland in Africa: the Maryland Colonization Society,1831-1857.Urbana, Illinois : University of Illinois Press, 1971. FHL 966.6 H2c
Migration within the United States
Slave Populations before the Civil War
By 1790, nearly all Africans to be imported to the United States had already arrived. They lived in primarily four states.
- South Carolina—107,000
- North Carolina—101,000
- No other state had more than 30,000 enslaved people.
Between 1820 and 1860, huge increases in slave population occurred across the South. Slave populations in 1860 are listed below:
- South Carolina—402,000
- North Carolina—331,000
Migration after the Civil War
Between 1790 and 1900, 90% of African Americans lived in the South.
By 1960, 50% of African Americans lived in the South.
- 100,000 African Americans moved to Kansas in late 1870s, early 1880s
- 500,000 African Americans left the south during WWI (1916-1919)
- 90,000 to Pennsylvania
- 73,000 to Illinois
- 43,000 to Michigan
- 1 million African Americans left the South in the 1920s
- 5 million African Americans left the South between 1940-1960
- During 1970s, African Americans started returning to the South, especially to larger, urban cities.
- By 1990, 84% of African Americans lived in urban areas.
- See Field to Factory: Afro-American Migration 1915-1940by Spencer Crew.
Enslaved in the North
By 1800, approximately 37,000 northern blacks were still reported in bondage. By 1830, most northern states had required freeing of slaves although 3,600 people remained in bondage, mostly in New Jersey.
In 1860, there were 488,000 free blacks or about 10% of total African Americans in the U.S.
- 46% of free blacks (226,000) lived in North and West
- 46% lived in upper South (KY, MD, MO, TN, VA, NC, DC)
- 8% lived in deep South