Published August 7, 2018

Among the surnames of the St Kitts branch of my husband’s family tree is Maillard. Ann Francis Catherine Maillard (1828-1919) his 2nd great-grandmother, married William Mallalieu. William and Ann lived in the parish of Saint Ann, located on the northern half of the island. Curious about how far back the Maillards may…

Read More St Kitts land grab

Published November 28, 2017

My husband’s ancestors from St Kitts include his 3rd great-grandparents originally from Madeira, Francisco Ricardo de Meneses Cabral and Libania Joaquina Vieira da Silva. Their daughter Eliza was his 2nd great-grandmother, while another daughter Ascenia Augusta was the grandmother of Edgar Oscar Challenger (1905-2000), a labor leader and historian of St…

Read More Edgar Challenger in the FDR presidential library

Published April 4, 2017

In the civil marriage and birth records of St Kitts, my husband’s 2nd great grandfather Richard Johnson Marshall is listed as a school master, with race recorded as “colored”. It is known that he was born about 1845 on the nearby British West Indian island of Antigua, only a few…

Read More Mico – A path to education after slavery

Published June 16, 2016

My husband recently had his DNA analyzed by ancestry.com. Unlike my family tree, which is limited to a fairly small area of northern Europe, his tree is a melting pot with branches from the United Kingdom, the Portuguese island of Madeira, the West Indies, and Africa. In addition to some…

Read More Mary Todd Lincoln’s seamstress

Published August 31, 2015

Two recent episodes of the “Who Do You Think You Are” TV series in the US and the UK featured celebrities discovering Huguenot roots. American TV host Tom Bergeron and British actor Derek Jacobi learned about their French Huguenot ancestors and the challenges they faced in the 16th and 17th…

Read More Huguenot – or not?

Published March 5, 2015

Because many genealogical records from the island of St. Kitts have not been digitized and put online, I have often turned to civil registry records on microfilm. While looking through page after page of Kittitian death records from the mid 1800s, I suddenly noticed that over the space of just…

Read More St Kitts – The Flood of 1880

Published December 8, 2014

While researching some of my husband’s Kittitian ancestors who settled in Harlem in the early 1900s, I have been coming across lots of information about immigrants from the West Indies, and their influence on the Harlem Renaissance period of the 1920s. Escaping the decline of the sugar industry and looking…

Read More West Indians and the Harlem Renaissance

Published October 26, 2014

My husband’s paternal family tree comes from St. Kitts, a beautiful island in the Caribbean that was a British territory until its independence in 1983. His Kittitian ancestors are an interesting blend of British, African, and Madeiran lines. The Madeirans came to St. Kitts and Nevis in the mid-1800s, when…

Read More Madeirans in St. Kitts