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Homecoming 2016 Announced!

“Finding Hidden Evidence with New Techniques”

Speakers: Brent Holcombe, Tamika Strong, and Elyce Hill




Mr. Holcombe’s Topics:
  • “SC Vital Records and Substitutes For Them”
  • “SC Land Records, More Than Plats and Deeds”
Ms. Strong’s Topic:
  • “From the Present to the Past: Tracing Afro American Genealogy from 1940 to the 1870 Brick Wall”
Ms. Hill’s Topic:
  • “Afro American Research: Breaking Through the 1870 Brick Wall”

Click here for more information and to register!


Do you have Cinco de Mayo plans? Join us!

We welcome all interested in attending the following event featuring Thomas Thibeault, who will be speaking on famous South Carolinian, Robert Smalls. The program will be held at Augusta Museum of History on 5 May 2016, at 3:00 pm. Copies of this book, as well as others by Thibeault, will be available for purchase. The program is free and open to the public:

Smalls was born a slave in 1839 in Beaufort County, SC. As a boy it became apparent that he possessed unique skills and abilities.

These ultimately landed him a position working in Charleston Harbor as a sea pilot, even though he was not a free man.

Thibeault’s novel, The Man Who Stole Himself: A Novel of the Civil War, tells of Smalls’ taking the Confederate-owned ship he was assigned to sail, and with friends and relatives aboard, steering it through five checkpoints into the safety of the Union Army. Smalls and Adm. Francis DuPont, the Union commander to whom the ship was surrendered, became friends for life. DuPont encouraged Smalls to seek elected office, and he consequently served as the first person of color in the SC State Legislature. He later was elected to the US House of Representatives.

10th Annual Historic Beech Island Tour and Barbecue to be Held April 30

Beech Island 2016

The 10th Annual Historic Beech Island Tour will be held Saturday, April 30, from 10 a.m.-5 p.m.  A barbecue lunch will be served by the society at the Visitors Center from 11 a.m.-2 p.m.  The one-day, self-guided tour will include two historic private homes, Kathwood Plantation built in 1903, and Rose Hill built from 1859-1861, and Redcliffe Plantation State Historic Site, the Hammond and Zubly cemeteries, several historic churches, Silver Bluff Audubon Center & Sanctuary and Risher cabin and the Beech Island Historical Society Visitors Center and Agricultural Museum.  Tickets can be purchased in advance at Historic Augusta, The Handy Hardware in Beech Island, Estate Jewelry in North Augusta, SC, and the Aiken County Parks, Recreation & Tourism Visitors Center in Aiken or at any of the houses and the society’s Visitors Center the day of the tour.  For more information and a brochure, call Jackie Bartley at 803-827-0184, email the society at bdbartley @comcast.net or visit our website (after March 15) at www.beechislandhistory.org.


This is a reminder that there will be an informal gathering at the Adamson Library to discuss any brick walls that you’re having trouble cracking.  You never know who might have the missing info you’re looking for!  Open to all members!


After a long hiatus, Research Trips are once again resuming for members of AGS. Chair Margie Barton has announced that the first one will be a visit to the Thompkins Memorial Library in Edgefield, SC and is planned for Tuesday, Nov. 17th. Chairman Barton has been in touch with Tonya Browder Guy, who has assured her of the opportunity for a full day of research, even making brown-bagging provision for those who choose not to go out for lunch. There are several nearby restaurants for those preferring a longer break. If you’ve not researched in this library before, you have a real treat in store. It has abundant resources which are easy to locate, as well as excellent assistance available. The library opens at 9 am and closes at 4 pm. Plans are to leave from AGS by 7:45 the morning of Nov.17th. Drivers are needed and their travel-related costs shared by the non-drivers attending. The group should return to AGS by 4:45 pm that day. Those planning to attend are asked to complete and return the attached form to AGS as soon as possible.


24 October Seminar


If you want to spend a day with knowledgeable instructors and enthusiastic family researchers, plan to attend this seminar for budding genealogists at the Adamson Library at AGS on Saturday, October 24 from 9 AM – 4 PM.  A catered box lunch and a handbook are included. The registration form is in the Southern Echoes newsletter and may be downloaded here.

The seminar covers basic research techniques for those new to genealogy. However, many family researchers come back for a refresher and say they learn something new every time. The Footprints Planning Committee has been working diligently to update the handbook to reflect technological changes that have impacted genealogical research in recent years.

Did you know?…The “Footprints” seminar was first presented by AGS in 1980 and in 1999 won first place in the programs category from the Georgia Historical Society for its content and longevity in the field of local history achievement.