B. How To Use Indexes
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How to Use The Indexes to This Data Base
If you havenıt done so already, read the Background Section which contains essential information that will be helpful to you in interpreting the manifests both historically and in the context of genealogical records on slavery.
The Data Base has three separate indexes:
- Ship Name Index
Approximately 176 vessel names. While this information is not absolutely essential, it will help you to do additional searches by ship or vessel name.
- Owner/Shipper Name Index
Approximately 930 Owners, Shippers, Agents are indexed. This index will probably be the one you will want to consult first if you have traced a slave owner back to this period of research.
- Slave Surname Index
An estimated 10,000 names of slaves are entered into this data base along with the descripti ve data contained on the original manifests. (Note that the number of slaves were not counted for each manifest since it was decided that the more essential information was more important. This estimate is a very rough one.) Of the estimated 10,000 slaves, approximately 250 surnames were identified and indexed. (Note again that this does not mean only 250 slaves were identified with surnames since two or more people could share the same surname.) This is a small number of surnames compared to the total 3number of people being shipped with only their first names identified. Please note that first names of slaves were not indexed, but a first name can be entered and searched for. Time, limited resources as well as the method of searching for your ancestor through tracing his ownerıs path dictated this approach. A thousand slaves could have had the name Wil or Ann but knowing Wil or Annıs slaveowner would reduce that thousand to just one Wil or Ann, your ancestor. In slave genealogy, you must know the ownerıs name before you can find your own ancestor.
RETURN TO SLAVE DATA COLLECTION
Created: 6 March 1999
Updated: 25 April 1999
Webmistress: Valencia King Nelson, SlaveData@afrigeneas.com
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