American History During The Nineteenth Century Essay

1004 Words 5 Pages
“Most African Americans, know very little about their family history in the nineteenth century when their ancestors were not considered equal to white Americans” (Roots). While tracing the ancestry of many African Americans is nearly impossible. The episode Finding Your Roots Season 2 had the ability to trace three African American Icons Nas, Angela Bassett, and Valerie Jarrett’s ancestry’s back centuries, giving us a glimpse of the realization that slavery was not that long ago. Looking back at the three Famous African Americans pasts; Nas, Angela Bassett, and Valerie Jarrett, we see three different paths their ancestors endured. For Nas’s ancestry their family was shockingly known for marrying others with the same last name. Today there would be some concerning questions, but as they looked further they found that “Little” was the last name of their elite plantation owners. Nas’s great-great-great grandparents Calvin and Pocahontas Little lived to see emancipation and “In 1865 Calvin and Pocahontas walked off the Carlisle plantation and began their new lives, and through court records they found one way how they used their new-found freedom and it was to be legally recognized as married by the State of the law” (Roots). This was very moving for Nas, and this showed how strong of a connection his third great grandparents had towards each other. Angela Bassett’s heritage could be looked as far back as before the civil war. Where her great-grandfather William Henry…

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