Monday, February 27, 2006

Speaker Spotlight: Elizabeth Shown Mills

A family tale about an Indian princess and a horse trader sparked Elizabeth Shown Mills’s interest in ancestry as a child. Decades of exhaustive research failed to prove the story. Newly available genetic tests have decidedly disproved it. On Wednesday, Elizabeth will use this and other real, ethnic traditions---some of them fact and some of them fancy---to explore the role that oral history plays in ancestral research and the standards that good genealogists apply.

Elizabeth well knows the subject. Her last book, the historical novel Isle of Canes www.isleofcanes is based on a skillful weaving of Creole tradition and documentary research from Canada to Cuba to Paris and Seville. After reading it, Historical Novels Review proclaims, “You’ll never look at American history the same way again.” Join the audience at 2:30 on Wednesday for Oral History, Documentary Evidence, and Core Truths, to learn ways to find the “core truths” in your own family stories.

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