Ancestors born before 1900

Ancestors born before 1900
Frances Simpkins, Leah Foote, Emmaline Foote, Rosetta Foote

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Welcome to Lukasa!


Most of you know that I work to honor our ancestors' memories by reclaiming our knowledge of them and documenting our family history. This is the beginning of our lukasa. We borrow this tradition, no we reclaim this tradition from Central Africa. A lukasa is a memory board used by members of the Bambudye secret society of the Luba to help remember and retell their history.

I wish I could say that I actually learned about lukasa first hand when I lived in Zaire (now DRC), but I can't. I learned about them when I went to an African Art Exhibit sometime after my return. I wish I had started researching our family history in 1986 when I first returned from Zaire. Better still, just imagine what I would have learned from our then elders, now our ancestors, if I had kept the pursuit going when Cousin Shaw (Floree Simpkins Shaw, 1892 Calhoun Falls, SC - 1987 Buffalo, NY) sat down and helped 13 year old me write my first paternal line tree.




I don't know what will come of this - perhaps ramblings, thoughts, research ideas, roadblocks, shared efforts of each of us, and our breakthroughs. For now, I'm just going to stop and thank our Ancestors, starting with Cousin Shaw who took the time to show me how we were related as first cousins once removed. I thank our Ancestors, those known and unknown, for their great courage and the strength they had to have to survive the Maafa. I know that you are not far from us. I feel you with us in this journey. We call your names and remember. We work to reconnect with our family from whom we were separated during the period of enslavement. We work to learn more about our ancestral homes and people in the Motherland. We ask your guidance as we build our lukasa.

Tuasakadila bua kutupesha moyo!

Thank you for giving us life.

Nsoni Nnenna Abena

12 comments:

  1. I love the name LUKASA, and thank you so much for sharing its meaning. I am excited that you've decided to create a blog for us to journey along with you on those moments of discovery and celebration! I especially look forward to learning more about you and those you call -- family!

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    1. Thank you for the encouragement, Liv!

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  2. Everything happens within its own season. Seems to me Cousin Shaw is working with & through you just fine. So happy to see you entering the blogging space to share your knowledge and thanks for the lesson on LUKASA. Welcome!:)

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    1. Still working on Cousin Shaw's piece!

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  3. Welcome to the world of genealogy blogging! Thank you for sharing the meaning of LUKASA. I learned something new. I'm looking forward to following your journey to find your ancestors! :)

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  4. Welcome - great post! Paying homage to our ancestors through their stories is giving them life. Documenting their journey is the key to new discoveries. Thanks for sharing! Looking forward to reading the Lukasa.

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  5. Love your blog Sonia! I am anxious to hear more.

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    1. Thank you Vicky for your encouragement!

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  6. Thanks Sonia for putting a name to what we call Researching.... I am looking forward to reading all about you Research Journey. Happy Ancestral Hunting....

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