Genealogist Tony Burroughs to speak at Black Historical Society confab

Written by admin   // January 19, 2013   // 0 Comments

Internationally recognized genealogist Tony Burroughs will be among the featured speakers Saturday, February 2, 2013 at the “History Begins With You Genealogy Conference” at the Wisconsin Black Historical Society (WBHS), 2620 West Center Street, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Burroughs will be joined by presenters Dr. Deborah A. Abbott, adjunct faculty member at the Institute of Genealogy & Historical Research (IGHR) at Sanford University in Birmingham, Alabama and Dr. Richard L. Pifer, Director of Reference and Public Services for the Library-Archives Division of the Wisconsin Historical Society. Burroughs’ book, “Black Roots: A Beginners Guide to Tracing the African American Family Tree,” was number one on “Essence Magazine’s Best Seller List” and is now in its fifth printing.

His chapters, “African American Genealogy” is included in the “Encyclopedia of African American History;” “How to Create a Family Tree” is cited in “The Experts Guide to 100 Things Everyone Should Know How to Do” and his chapter on “African American Genealogy” appears in “The Source”.

An Adjunct Professor of genealogy at Chicago State University for fifteen years, he was one of three co-authors of the “African American Genealogical Sourcebook” and has been quoted in newspapers in London, Paris, Toronto, Hong Kong and Sydney, as well as the New York Times, People Magazine, Time Magazine, Wall Street Journal, Christian Science Monitor, Ebony, and Jet Magazine.

He has received numerous honors to include the “Distinguished Service Award” from the National Genealogical Society and “Fellow of the Utah Genealogical Association.”

In 2012, Burroughs received a fellowship from the Black Metropolis Research Consortium to research the Underground Railroad in Chicago. In 2005, he was selected as one of 5,000 African Americans to be included in a video oral history archive by The History Makers.

The Chicago resident has delivered over eighty lectures at national conferences including nine national keynote addresses, eight regional keynotes and eight state keynote presentations. A current Vice-President of the Board of Directors of the Illinois Genealogical Society, Burroughs’ genealogical research has qualified him for ten lineage society memberships to include the Century Family of Nebraska, The General Society of the War of 1812, the First Families of Pennsylvania, the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, Pioneer Families of New Mexico, First Families of the Twin Territories (Oklahoma and Indian Territory), Tennessee Ancestry, Kansas Early Settlers, Chicago Rebuilder and the Cook County (Illinois) Pioneers.

His research on the Underground Railroad in 2001 enabled the Kimsey Crossing home in Tamarora, Illinois to be recognized as an historic site by the National Park Service’s “Network to Freedom.”

His testimony before Congress in 2000 helped preserve 135 year-old records from the Freedman’s Bureau.

Burroughs has researched Olympic Gold Medal sprint champion Michael Johnson’s family history and consulted on the Reverend Al Sharpton- Strom Thurmond genealogy and the genealogy of Oprah Winfrey. He has appeared as a guest genealogy expert in several television documentaries to include “Roots Remembered” (2007), “The Real Family of Jesus” (2005), “African American Lives” with Henry Louis Gates (2006), and “Ancestors 2 (2000).

He has been interviewed on CBS Sunday Morning, CBS News, ABC World News Tonight, BET Nightly News, National Public Radio (NPR) and a variety of local broadcast outlets.

For additional information call the WBHS at (414) 372-7677 or visit their website at www.



History Begins With Youth Genealogy Conference

Tony Burroughs

Wisconsin Historical Society

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