By Dr. Ann Wead Kimbrough
Clockwise: My mother, Angeline Cecil Owen Wead (left); her great-grandson, Kingston Apollo Kimbrough; his sister, Kaidence Aurora Kimbrough; and my son, John Charles Kimbrough
One of the best ways to glean information from family members across the generations is to enjoy a meal together or play games, especially during the holidays.
In December 2019 in Tallahassee, FL, my mother, Angie Wead, made her annual trek from Atlanta to enjoy the holidays with my grandchildren, son and wife, close friends and me. During that Christmas season, my youngest son, John, also visited us. It was a full house.
John is blind and partially deaf. The cards, including UNO cards (his favorite game) include Braille. Most of the games that we purchase include the Braille language.
During such times, my grandchildren learn from their great-grandmother about her childhood and she listens to accounts of their lives. There are often a lot of “I didn’t know” moments.
Those are the breakthrough moments in the collection of Black genealogy. Seek out those special times when generations blend. Take a few notes or record some of the conversations.
For instance, I did not know that my mother grew up with an aunt who became blind. When my son, John, lost his sight at age 8, it was my mother who recalled independent tasks that Aunt Ada would perform including cooking , sewing and playing the piano. Her husband, my great-uncle Cecil was also very supportive.