Black History Month: Trace Your Ancestry Masterclass with Paul Crooks

Wednesday 20 October 2021

Genealogy specialist Paul Crooks discusses Britain’s slave compensation records and what they reveal about his Ancestry and Black history.


Trace Your Ancestry: Britain’s Slave Compensation Records -1834

In this Black history masterclass, Paul Crooks emboldens calls for reparations speaking about his search for his African Caribbean ancestors.

In 1833, The British government passed legislation to end its system of enslavement. Britain raised the equivalent of £20 billion to compensate Britain’s slave owners for the ‘loss of human property.’ It was the largest state-sponsored payout in British history before the banking crisis in 2008. Taxpayers’ money went straight into the pockets of people who had already profited from its system of slavery.

Paul will discuss his personal journey to:

• trace his African ancestors enslaved in Jamaica

• find evidence of compensation linked to the enslavement of his ancestors on the Cousins Cove Sugar Plantation, Jamaica

• encourage, motivate and inspire others to explore their ancestry and bring back stories to life.

You will gain insights into how public records can help you explore your ancestry.

Who is this talk for?

The talk is suitable for you if

• You want to develop your knowledge and understanding of black history

• you’re new to exploring family history

• you have some experience of searching for your ancestors and want to know about other sources of information

• you’ve started and you’re having problems furthering your search

About the speaker

Paul Crooks pioneered research into African Caribbean genealogy during the 1990s. He is the first to trace his family history from the UK, back 6 generations, to ancestors captured of the West African coast and enslaved on a sugar plantation in Jamaica.

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